Observations on the win over San Diego State, 28-7!
Michigan overcomes three 3rd quarter turnovers, and stops 10 of 13 Aztec possessions in Michigan territory including two red zones. Michigan gets 21 points off their three red zones while San Diego State only gains 7 points off their three red zones. Each team scores 7 points off turnovers, and Michigan chokes up 4 compared to the Aztec's 3. Michigan forces San Diego State into five 3 and outs, and Michigan is held to three 3 and outs.
Offense was very poor in the second half, but did finally come up with one drive to close out the win. Overall, offense gained 413 net yards, 320 on the ground, 18 first downs and was 5 of 12 on 3rd and 4th down conversions. Denard Robinson ran 21 times for 200 yards and all 3 TDs including a 53 yarder. Vincent Smith gained 47 yards on 9 carries for the last TD plus 3 catches for 44 yards. Fitzgerald Touissaint gained 67 yards on 13 carries. Passing game was pretty much non-existent! Robinson was 10 of 17, 8 caught by our receivers and 2 caught by San Diego State defenders. Smith and Hopkins give away fumbles, and Denard is picked twice for four turnovers. Still, in the end, time of possession was almost even, we had about a 30 second advantage. Miles Burris led the Aztec defense with 10 tackles.
Defense played great!!! What a difference a Greg Mattison coached team is over a Greg Robinson coached defense. The Aztecs managed 376 yards, 123 on the ground, 20 first downs and were 8 of 21 on 3rd and 4th down conversions. Ryan Lindley was 23 of 48 for 253 yards, one sack and one TD. Ronnie Hillman gained 109 yards in 21 carries, and we forced two fumbles from him. Dylan Denso and Colin Lockett had 7 catches each for a total of 148 yards, but our defense gave up no big plays. How about Blake Countess? He came in for an injured J.T. Floyd and led the defense with 7 second half tackles and a pass break up. How many true freshmen have come in to play and tackle like that in the past few years? Thomas Gordon and Kenny Demens also had 7 tackles. Kenny Demens, Ryan VanBergen and Craig Roh forced fumbles, two of those were in the red zone. Jake Ryan had 5 tackles and 2 fumble recoveries. line was getting better penetration and pass rush; Ryan VanBergen tipped a pass.
Matt Wile got his first touchback on a kickoff, and the kickoff team looked much better. Wile punted four times, two were over 50 yards and two downed inside the 20. Jeremy Gallon did a great job recovering a fumble that hit J.T. Floyd on punt coverage, made some nice fair catches including coming up to grab one at the 19, and had a beautiful 21 yard return setting us up at the 25 rather than the 4 yard line. It was disappointing to see Brendan Gibbons miss a meaningful 40 yard field goal, but the defense came up big to cover for him.
4-0 going into Big Ten play and hosting the Gophers for the Brown Jug. We've got to keep improving! We are a better team now defensively than we were 4 weeks ago, but we really need to work on becoming a better ball possession offense. Go Blue!!!
3 Suspended/Ineligible Players for San Diego State