UConn predictably didn’t amount to too much of a challenge for Michigan on Saturday. The Wolverines dominated the game — in every facet and position — for the duration of the game, and there was no shortage of stellar performances from the likes of JJ McCarthy and Blake Corum, among others.
Michigan did what it needed to do to stride to an easy 59-0 blowout. While nothing, in particular, sent alarm bells ringing for the Michigan faithful, a couple of position groups showed us there is still some room to grow if championships are expected from Team 143.
Seven quarterbacks completed a pass in this game. McCarthy displayed his playmaking abilities and raw talent in his 216-yard showing. Mistakes on a read option and an errant throw that should have been picked were his only two blemishes. Davis Warren and Alan Bowman showed to be serviceable backups, as Cade McNamara, unfortunately, will miss several weeks due to an injury sustained during his brief stint in relief.
Running Backs: B+
If Blake Corum were his own category, he’d get an A+, as a school record-tying five rushing touchdown performance is anything but mediocre. However, as a group, Michigan only averaged 4.5 yards per touch on the ground. Against Iowa or Penn State, this would be acceptable — if not great. But 4.5 yards against UConn isn’t anything to write home about.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends: A-
YAC machines Ronnie Bell and Roman Wilson impressed against the UConn secondary. Together, the pair accounted for 160 yards, the majority of which came after the catch. The only knock against the group is Cornelius Johnson and Andrel Anthony did not record a catch. Beyond a nice 31-yard pickup from Luke Schoonmaker, the tight ends played a minimal role in the passing game this time around.
Offensive Line: B
An okay performance from the men up front. Two sacks and five tackles for loss are not great stats to have for a unit that has the potential to repeat as the country’s top offensive line. Beyond the numbers, however, the line gave McCarthy and company plenty of time in the pocket and looks to be a strength for the good guys.
Front Seven: A
Thanks in large part to this squad, Michigan’s defense muzzled the Huskies, holding them to a paltry 110 total yards. Although failing to garner a sack, UConn’s quarterbacks never got the chance to get comfortable in the backfield. Furthermore, Michigan held UConn to only 2.6 yards per rush.
The Huskies managed 1.2 yards per pass on average against Michigan. Nothing further needs to be said. Phenomenal job!
Special Teams: A
AJ Henning’s punt return for a touchdown electrified the Big House and had Jim Mora Jr. cussing into his headset. Brad Robbins and Jake Moody are arguably the best punter/kicker duo in the country — no surprises here.
The Maize and Blue did what they needed to do to earn respectable marks on this week’s report card. How fair were these grades? Let us know in the comments section!