BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — 51 degrees and blue skies set the tone for the Big Noon Kickoff between the Indiana Hoosiers (3-3, 1-1 B1G) and the No. 4 Michigan Wolverines (6-0, 3-0 B1G). IU brought the effort and intensity, but Michigan overpowered the Hoosiers in the end, 31-10.
Prior to the game, news broke that Indiana would miss veteran LB Cam Jones, TE AJ Barner, WR D.J. Matthews Jr., WR Javon Swinton, and DB Jaylin Williams. Michigan didn’t have WR Roman Wilson.
Michigan received the first-half kickoff and scored on a 50-yard run from Heisman hopeful RB Blake Corum to put them on the 1-yard line. Corum scored on the next play. The drive took 2 minutes and 28 seconds. IU took over on their own 25-yard line and gave Michigan the ball back after a 2-minute drive. Bazelak took an 8-yard sack for loss.
However, the Hoosiers sparked some hope against this nationally-ranked team, driving 76 yards down the field to score a touchdown midway through the first quarter. Cam Camper, available after missing the Nebraska game, made a 33-yard catch to put the Hoosiers in scoring position. Josh Henderson’s 4th TD of the season tied the game.
A concerning moment took place after the Henderson score.
Mike Hart, Michigan’s RB coach and former RB coach at Indiana, suffered a seizure, according to FOX. Both teams took a knee, and Cart was carted off the field, taken to a local hospital. Hart was alert. According to Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh, Hart will remain in Bloomington overnight for tests.
IU’s defense held Michigan and forced a punt and field goal in the first quarter. IU rolled down the field at the beginning of the second quarter but a series of offensive and defensive pass interference calls ruined the rhythm. IU came away with a 41-yard field goal by Charles Campbell to match the Wolverines 10-10.
IU DL James Head, Jr. blocked Jake Moody’s 26-yard field goal attempt, and the Hoosiers came out swinging on their next drive with an explosive 39-yard run from true freshman Jaylin Lucas, who led IU’s rushers with 45 yards on the ground and another 20 in the air.
U came up short of a touchdown and settled for a 24-yard field goal, which they thought would put them in front. Michigan edge Mike Morris had other ideas, and he returned the favor with a blocked kick himself.
The first half went back-and-forth, filled with plenty of penalties as well as tough defensive stands. Both offenses struggled to capitalize in the red zone, scoring a combined 20 points in the first half.
To start the second half, IU punted, and Michigan drove 99 yards to get on the board. Cornelius Johnson scored a 29-yard catch and run. Michigan’s QB J.J. McCarthy was given more than enough time in the pocket, exposing IU’s secondary for the duration of the drive.
After a three-and-out drive for IU, Michigan returned the 4th-and-3 punt for 32 yards, and tack on 15 yards for a late hit on Venson Sneed. Starting at the IU 33, a score seemed inevitable.
However, IU DB Devon Matthews intercepted McCarthy, McCarthy’s first INT of the season. Bradley Jennings deflected the ball, his highlight play in a masterful performance, in which he recorded 13 tackles.
IU didn’t capitalize, resulting in another IU punt, the 3rd of the quarter. The Hoosier faithful stuck around, hoping for a comeback.
Michigan kept the IU fans quiet, and broke the malaise with a touchdown with 9:43 left. A balanced approach, including pass attempts targeting TE Luke Schoonmaker, finished with a pass from McCarthy to Schoonmaker. He finished with a career-high nine receptions.
IU’s offense continued sputtering, and McCarthy, Corum, and co. exposed IU’s secondary and broke away with two scores late.
Overall, the Hoosiers covered the 23-point spread, and put up a worthy fight against the powerful Wolverines for the first three quarters. Their offensive weaknesses and fatigued defense made the difference in the fourth quarter.
Moving forward, the Hoosiers need to focus on giving more time to their quarterback (Bazelak was sacked 7 times) and taking time away from the opposing quarterback.
The final score was Michigan 31 – IU 10.
Indiana’s next contest is in one week against Maryland. ESPN2 will air the game at 3:30p ET from Bloomington. Maryland won 38-35 last season in College Park.
Photo by Indiana Football