Observations on the win over Illinois, 31-14!
Michigan earned 6 red zones for 17 points; Illinois scored 14 points in 2 red zone trips. The Wolverines score 7 points off turnover while the Fighting Illini fail to capitalize on 3 Michigan turnovers, and one dropped turnover.
Fitzgerald Touissaint had 192 yards on 27 carries for a TD. Denard Robinson was 6 of 10 for 92 yards, and ran for 30 yards in 12 carries for 2 TDs. Devin Gardner comes in and goes 2 of 5 for 47 yards including a 27 yard TD pass to Martavious Odoms to put the game out of reach in the 4th quarter. Kevin Koger had 2 catches for 42 yards, and Junior Hemingway also had 3 catches for 43 yards. Jeremy Gallon got an 8 yarder. Offense had 362 net yards, 223 on the ground, 14 first downs, was 6 of 15 on 3rd and 4th down conversions and dominated time of possession by 5:30 minutes. Robinson had all 3 turnovers, and needed to be replaced, injury or no injury. He's up to 16 for the season in 10 games, and almost gave away a 4th turnover that was dropped.
Defense was incredible! We held the Fighting Illini to 214 net yards, 37 on the ground, one first down, 7 of 19 in 3rd and 4th down conversions, forced them into 9 punts on seven 3 and outs and two turnovers. It was their best game of the year! They didn't allow Illinois into our territory until 1:45 left in the 3rd quarter. Mike Martin led the defense with 9 tackles and 2 quarterback hits. Desmond Morgan had 8 tackles. Kenny Demens and Ryan VanBergen had 7 tackles each, and we had 4 sacks with VanBergen in on 3 of them. Jordan Kovacs had 5 tackles and forced a fumble that Thomas Gordon recovereed. J.T. Floyd did quite a job on A.J. Jenkins, the #1 receiver in the Big Ten with 2 pass break ups, and interceptions and 4 tackles for the day.
Brendon Gibbons missed a 38 yard field goal, but hit a 27 yarder. Jeremy Gallon had 4 punt returns for 62 yards. Matt Wile had 6 kickoffs with 5 touchbacks, his best effort of the season. Will Hagerup punted 4 times with one downed at the 14 yard line. John McColgan had a big fumble recovery on an Illinois punt return, and Freshman Delonte Hollowell nailed the punt retuner so he couldn't get to the ball.
Bring on Nebraska and the Buckeyes at The Big House! Go Blue!!!