Late Snaps: Michigan dares mighty things
• No. 12 Michigan 42, Northwestern 24. Denard Robinson is a scorer of many touchdowns! Four scores, two with his hands in the first half and two with his feet in the second, kept the Wolverines within striking distance of Northwestern in the first half and more than made up for an early scoring deficit in the second. But for five turnovers between the two squads, the score might have climbed even higher.
The story of Northwestern being shut out entirely in the second half is one of repeated, eerily consistent, enormous drive-ending plays by the Michigan defense. A sack and an interception killed the Wildcats’ third-quarter drives; a fumble and a sack put paid to their first two fourth-quarter efforts, and the final Northwestern drive barely reached Michigan’s red zone before the clock ran out.
And how’s Dan Persa’s arm doing, now that the rest of him’s back at full strength? Oh, fine, thanks: 32-of-45 and 334 yards of fine. But nobody’s stat lines ever look too impressive next to a good Denard Robinson game. 338 passing yards and 117 rushing, with four scores and three interceptions, for Michigan’s football engine. And we can’t leave the Wolverines for the night without adding leading receiver Junior Hemingway (5 catches, 123 yards) to our all-name pool. (RECAP | BOX)
• No. 14 Nebraska 34, Ohio State 27. At one point early in the third quarter tonight, Ohio State held a 27-6 lead over Nebraska, in Lincoln, and did so with well-documented roster depletions and a first-year starting quarterback. But Taylor Martinez should have some fun with the media now (to say nothing of the Husker fans booing him in their own stadium) after tying the game up himself with three touchdowns in a row and a final drive that led to a Rex Burkhead go-ahead rushing touchdown.
What slowed Ohio State late? It was, technically speaking, Nebraska’s defense, but they had some help from Braxton Miller’s sprained ankle, which knocked him out for the majority of the second half. Joe Bauserman, in relief duty, completed 1-of-10 passes for 13 yards and an interception. For those of you scoring at home, his recorded quarterback rating for Week 6 will read 0.9. (RECAP | BOX)
• No. 10 Arkansas 38, No. 15 Auburn 14. Arkansas’ offense is a ballyhooed one, and deservedly so, but Auburn being kept off the scoreboard for three quarters is a new phenomenon this year. Credit Arkansas defenders, not known for picking prowess this season, with three interceptions that muzzled crucial Tiger drives. That’s not to take any shine off Tyler Wilson, who went 24-of-36 for 264 yards, threw two touchdowns and ran for another. (RECAP | BOX)
• No. 25 Baylor 49, Iowa State 26. Robert Griffin’s incomplete passes now significantly outnumber his touchdown passes, and so passes (HAHA GET IT) everybody’s favorite stat of September 2011. Griffin was outpassed tonight by Steele Jantz (STEELE JANTZ!), but added 125 of the Bears’ jaw-dropping 397 rushing yards to compensate. (RECAP | BOX)
• Houston 56, East Carolina 3. Look, I know this isn’t the whizbang East Carolina offense of seasons past, but UTEP scored 39 more points against the Cougars. 304 yards is actually Case Keenum’s lowest single-game passing output this season, but with nobody willing to score on them for once, Houston was able to give Cotton Turner a few reps. (RECAP | BOX)
• No. 7 Stanford 48, Colorado 7. Lookit! Colorado scored on Stanford! In the second quarter, not in garbage time! They intercepted a pass from the other team, which is really good, and then made the football do some more stuff until they got points! Also, Andrew Luck hit a 2011 high with 370 yards and three scores, but that one touchdown is about as much of a moral victory as the Buffs could’ve hoped to glean from this with all those defensive suspensions.(RECAP | BOX)
• Georgia 20, Tennessee 12. Having attended this football game with a large party composed of fans from both schools, I can confirm this event was replete with unsettling moments for all involved. Pretty much all you need to know from a quick-hits standpoint is that Tennessee’s starting quarterback and tailback were both knocked out of the game with injuries; the Vols recorded negative rushing yards, and that at one point, thanks to consecutive holds, a facemask, and consecutive no-gain plays, Georgia faced 4th-and-57. Fourth down. And fifty-seven yards. (They punted.) (RECAP | BOX)
• No. 2 Alabama 34, Vanderbilt 0. This is in here because Alabama’s the No. 2 team in the country, and it bears mentioning they technically played a football game tonight. It’s a bad shutout, but take heart; that score is pretty genteel by this year’s Saban standards. (RECAP | BOX)