Via @BTNBrentYarinaHighlights baby!
Gallons of offense
Sorry for the lame headline there, but I had to do it. 14 catches for 369 yards and 2 touchdowns is a stat line unlike anything any Michigan fan has ever witnessed in a single game. A game in which Michigan had to put the pedal down and keep it there for 60 minutes. The Gardner to Gallon connection was alive and well throughout the game thanks in large part to the two Devins.
Gardner had a day. 21 of 29 for 503 yards and 2 touchdowns. A 17.3 yards per attempt silenced even the most critical pundits about his ability to throw the football. Another 81 yards on the ground was enough to surpass Denard Robinson for the total yards per game record.
Devin Funchess, with a rather pedestrian by comparison 4 catches for 84 yards, drew a lot of attention from the IU secondary, leaving Gallon the opportunity to get open and, astonishingly, stay open.
For all that can be said about Michigan's offensive output yesterday...751 yards on 83 plays, the opposite could be said about IU's ability to do anything to stop it. But that's Indiana's strategy, for better or worse.
A defensive struggle
The defense gave up a staggering 47 points and 573 yards on 76 plays. Indiana spread-option QB Tre Roberson replaced Nate Sudfeld and lit a fire under the Hoosier offense. His 288 yards passing and 50 yards rushing gave Michigan fits, especially in the 3rd quarter when Michigan and Indiana were going punch-for-punch.
All told, the defense did just enough to contain IU's explosive offense. Eventually, the defense stiffened and gave the offense the chance they needed to win the game. And for me, that's the takeaway. There's a lot to be critical about if you're a Michigan fan after watching the defense yesterday. But I don't put too much weight on a game like this. Indiana's ridiculous offensive scheme, that has to be difficult to simulate in practice, is one that Michigan will not face again.
I think the key to a game like this is just Michigan found a way to win. They never quit defensively. If I recall, Ohio State won a very similar game at Indiana a year ago 52-49. A game which they gave up 35 points in the second half.
I take comfort in the fact that when Michigan travels to East Lansing in two weeks, they'll face an offense on the other end of schematic spectrum.
The OL leads the way
I haven't been listening to a lot of radio shows or gone on to many message boards, but I can't imagine anyone had too many problems with the OL production yesterday. It would seem the lineup of Lewan-Bosch-Glasgow-Magnuson-Schofield worked pretty well yesterday. Joey Burzynski started the day at LG, but was injured in the first half.
I thought Devin looked pretty comfortable in the pocket, and of course Fitz improved dramatically from the Penn State debacle to tally 32 carries for 170 yards, including a nice 27 yard touchdown run. His 4.7 ypc is a nice step in the right direction.
More spread-option designed running plays. Please and thank you.
I know it's just Indiana, but I'd argue they're no worse than Akron or UConn, so to see a dominant performance from the OL, and the offense in general, feels really good.
Set up for final grind
There's no question November is when the rubber meets the road. Going into the 2nd bye week with a 6-1 overall and 2-1 conference record keeps Michigan right in the middle of the hunt for the Legends division.
Iowa gave Ohio State a ballgame in the Horseshoe yesterday. Northwestern has fallen apart in the last 3 weeks. Nebraska will be at home. And of course the big showdown in East Lansing in two weeks will determine which 1-loss team will have the inside track to the B1G championship game. This is what it's all about.
Extra Point: This poor girl
I guess this is the Michigan version of The Stop Girl. What about the guy behind her...what's going on in his head? Oh well. It's funny because won.