Michigan 31 Rutgers 7 – Game 4 Recap


Final Score: 31-7, Michigan by 24 over Rutgers
SP+ Projection: Michigan by 28.6 (-4.6)
CD Projection: Michigan by 17 (+7)


WEEK 4 RECAP vs. Rutgers

A longing feeling still remains with the offense.  It’s not very easy to put a finger on, but we can certainly feel like there is more potential remaining untapped.  But, Michigan gained over 400 yards, and again eclipsed 50% success rate in the run game.  We got an early peek at some creative play calling in the first quarter with a reverse flea flicker.  I also enjoy the two-running back formations that the Wolverines put on film today.  But, after those schemes were successful, they went back into the garage and the Wolverines methodically trampled the Rutgers defensive front.  Blake Corum finished with 97 yards and 2 touchdowns.  JJ McCarthy was cleaner today, going 15-for-21 through the air for 214 yards and a touchdown.

The defense had an unfortunate missed tackle on Rutgers’ first series of the day.  A 69-yard touchdown pass on the third snap sucked the energy right out of the building.  However, the Michigan defense flexed after the start of the 2nd quarter.  The Scarlet Knights only gained 122 yards in the final three quarters of the game.  Junior Colson led on the stat sheet with six tackles.  But, the most electric moment of the game was a 71-yard pick six by captain Mike Sainristil in the 3rd quarter.  Rutgers never seriously threatened to score again.

The kicking game also left something to be desired.   James Turner narrowly missed a 42-yard field goal wide.  Also, Jake Thaw wasn’t aggressive on an early punt and let it roll out.  The result was a 75-yard field punt that flipped the field position.  There is still no alarm to panic about, but this team will need to improve their special teams execution to win the biggest games on the schedule. 

Overall, the Wolverines have held serve through these opening four home games.  Now, Michigan must pack a few more improvements into their suitcases and travel for the first time in 2023 next week.  We’ll keep an eye on exactly how good a win this ends up being over Rutgers.  I think that team should head to a bowl this season, and might surprise one or two B1G teams, also.  Onward!

About Clint Derringer

@clint_derringer on Twitter U-M B.A. Sport Management & Communications ‘05 U-M M.S. Program & Project Management ‘18