Michigan Football went to Nebraska and lost to the Huskers on Saturday night by a final score of 23-9. Denard Robinson was injured early and did not return. That pretty much signaled the end of Michigan’s hopes to win this game. Russell Bellomy was inserted at quarterback and struggled completing just 3 of 16 passes for 38 yards to go along with 3 interceptions.
The loss drops Michigan’s record to 5-3, 3-1 and improves Nebraska’s to 6-2, 3-1.
When Bellomy entered the game, Nebraska’s defense went into attack mode and thoroughly enjoyed teeing off on the inexperienced signal caller. Michigan’s defense fought valiantly, but the offense couldn’t sustain a drive – which kept the defense on the field for most of the second half. Craig Roh had a tremendous game with 5 tackles, 2 TFLs and a sack. Kenny Demens led the Wolverines with 10 tackles and Desmond Morgan had 9 with a TFL.
The loss removes Michigan from the driver’s seat in the Legends Division and gives that distinction to the Huskers. Based on how the offense looked without him, any game Robinson can’t play is going to be extremely difficult for Michigan to win. They are calling his injury a nerve problem and he apparently was unable to grip the ball which kept him on the sidelines bundled up in a winter coat.
Brendan Gibbons was 3-3 on field goal attempts including a career-best 52-yarder. He has now made 10 straight field goals. Gibbons’ 52 yard field goal is tied for the sixth longest in school history, and is the longest kick by a Wolverine since Hayden Epstein connected on a 57-yarder (11/3/2001).
This was the second straight game that Michigan failed to score a touchdown. The Wolverines only managed 188 yards of offense. Take away the 101 yards that Robinson accounted for before his injury and U-M eked out 87 yards. Nebraska wasn’t spectacular, but they didn’t have to be. Ameer Abdullah rushed for 101 yards and Taylor Martinez had 223 yards of total offense.
Watching Robinson run off the field after the game, I was not encouraged. His right arm was extended straight down and he was careful not to move it.
Nobody said winning a Big Ten Championship would be easy. Well it just got a lot harder and without Robinson it will be virtually impossible. Up next for Michigan is a trip to Minnesota and a battle for the Little Brown Jug. The question Michigan fans will be asking is this; If Denard can’t play, why not go with Devin Gardner at QB? It was just a few weeks ago at a postgame press conference when Gardner said his dream is to be the quarterback at Michigan.