Michigan took care of business on the road against Maryland, winning in convincing fashion 59-18. Michigan improves to 10-1 and now has a date with the hated Buckeyes next week. Here are takeaways from the win over the Terrapins.
Donavan Edwards, secret weapon?
The freshman running back received his most playing time of the season, due in large part to Blake Corum sitting out this one. Edwards was a major asset in the passing game, hauling in 10 receptions for 170 yards and 1 TD. Edwards rushed just 3 times for 8 yards, but his abilities as a pass-catcher were on full display and it’s fair to wonder if he’s carved out a big role next week against Ohio State. As good as Corum has been this year, he’s been inconsistent catching the football. It wouldn’t be a surprise if Edwards is a steady contributor against the Buckeyes.
McNamara did lots of good things
Let’s get the bad out of the way first — Cade has to stop throwing balls into the helmets of his linemen and the opposing defense. Cade also threw an interception in the endzone that didn’t count due to defensive holding.
Here’s the good — McNamara made a lot of decisive and aggressive throws, he moved well in the pocket and bought time by scrambling to the outside. McNamara looked like he was playing angry. McNamara was 21-of-28 for 259 yards and 2 touchdowns, and if it wasn’t for a chop block he would have had three passing scores. McNamara didn’t just manage the game, he took shots, he had command of the offense. I felt this was one of the better games McNamara has played this season.
McCarthy also does some good things
J.J. McCarthy was 5-of-5 for 58 yards with a great touchdown pass to Mike Sainristil. McCarthy would later rush for a score with goal-to-go after a botched snap. McCarthy’s athleticism is apparent, his ability to make big plays is clear. There’s clearly no quarterback competition, but don’t be surprised if McCarthy contributes in a big way against Ohio State. McCarthy has been one of the best freshmen in all of college football, and his development has been a positive occurrence this season. There’s a lot to like about young J.J.
A.J. Henning, from bad to great
Henning muffed a punt but recovered it, fumbled the ball later but Haskins recovered it — Henning’s ball security problems were on full display against Maryland, but so was his game-changing speed.
On some kickoff return trickeration, Michael Barrett threw an accurate ball to Henning and he took it to the house for a return touchdown. Head coach Jim Harbaugh could be seen smiling on the sideline right after the return transpired, and Henning’s teammates were really fired up to see him succeed after two major miscues. Henning bouncing back and doing something productive was good to see. He can’t be making any errors next week, that’s for sure.
Lots of contributors in the passing game
Andrel Anthony had an amazing one-handed grab, so did Mike Sainristil. Luke Schoonmaker scored again, Cornelius Johnson had four receptions, so did Daylen Baldwin. In all, 11 different players hauled in a reception in this one. McNamara and McCarthy did a good job of spreading the wealth.
On to Ohio State
Ohio State scored 56 points against Michigan State, Michigan scoring 59 on the same day is a positive occurrence heading into the pivotal matchup next week. The fact of the matter is this game against Maryland didn’t mean a whole lot — it was good to see Michigan put a whooping on the scoreboard, it was good to see this game wasn’t close. It’s time to devote all their energy, aggression, and film study on the Buckeyes. No one thought Michigan would be 10-1, yet no one is going to give them a shot to beat Ohio State. It’s been a damn good year, but now it’s time to prove everyone wrong on November 27.