The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
October 26, 2009 - 3B
Ground and air fail Wolverines
KiTk teturns/ Yds
Time of Poss
' Forcier .
M I C H I G A N
By ANDY REID
Daily Sports Editor
The ground game has driven
the Michigan offense all season.
But as the Wolverines fell more
and more behind in their 35-10
loss to Penn State on Saturday,
they had to look more to the air.
Freshmen quarterbacks Tate
Denard Robin- NOTEBOOK
33 combined passes Saturday, tied
for the most this season.
"They're trying to make plays,
they're trying," senior wide
receiver Greg Mathews said of the
quarterbacks. "It's not like they're
not trying. They just have to be
smart with the ball in certain situ-
Michigan still racked up 110
yards on the ground, which was
35 more than the stout Penn State
defense had allowed on aver-
age before the game. And senior
Brandon Minor, who has battled
a nagging ankle injury all season,
brought a physical presence to the
game on just 12 carries.
"Yeah, he runs hard," Michi-
gan coach Rich Rodriguez said.
"Again, he still wasn't at 100 per-
cent. It's a chronic thing, and if
he hits ita certain way, it bothers
him, but he tries to fight through
CATCHING CONCERNS: After
completing all three of his passes
on the Wolverines' first drive,
Forcier was just 1O-of-27 passing
the rest of the game. But those
numbers were certainly impacted
by the number of dropped passes.
"You know, it was the first time
this year - we've had a few drops
(this season) but it seemed like
today, a lot of them were on third
down or crucial situations, and
But from an outsider's per-
spective, Penn State quarterback
Daryll Clark didn't seem too
impressed by the pageantry of the
. = "Both teams come out of the
same tunnel," Clark said. "We
were out in the tunnel, waiting for
Michigan to go down. They were
'Ra-Ra,' makinga lot of noise, run-
ning down the tunnel and what
According to Clark, the most
pumped up guy in the pregame
tunnel was at least 60 years older
than the players wearing the
"We look over at (Joe Paterno),
and he's jumping up and down,"
Clark said. "He's jumping up and
down talking about, 'Yeah, yeah,
yeah,' and I'm looking at him and
I'm like, 'OK, it's time to play foot-
ball, seriously.' But you've got to
love the guy."
The banner is about nine feet
off the ground, which one might
think would be a very difficult
task for the 82-year old Paterno if
given the opportunity to tap it.
But Clark seems to think differ-
"Who, him? Aw, he'd have
jumped over it," Clark said.
NOTES: There is still no word
on whether wide receiver Junior
Hemingway and center David
Molk, who were both injured in
ZACHARY MEISNER/Da/y Saturdays game, will be ready to
Senior running back Brandon Minor only recorded 12 carries as the Michigan running game struggled against Penn State. go next week at Illinois. ... Sat-
urday marked the sixth time in
we had done a really good job all afternoon, which could hinder a maybe even on the second drive,,. eight games that punter Zoltan
year of making the catches on the team's passing attack, Rodriguez we still had some momentum and Mesko averaged more than 40
catchable balls," Rodriguez said. only partially attributed the drops that drop kind of hurt us there." yards per punt. Mesko did not
Several dropped passes from to the weather. JOE PA: Running out of the punt once against Delaware State
the tight end position - by both "It was a little wet, but I don't tunnel and leaping to touch the and averaged just 32.5 yards
sophomore Kevin Koger and know if it was just a concentra- "Go Blue" banner during pregame per punt against Notre Dame.
junior Martell Webb - stunt- tion thing, and sometimes you try festivities may be one of the most Mesko currently ranks fifth in
ed drives throughout the day. too hard or whatever," Rodriguez well-known traditions in college the nation, averaging 45.49 yards
Although it rained for most of the said. "In particular, early, I think football. per kick.
No. Yds Avg Lg
7 314 44.9 62
7 314 44.9 62
No. Yds Avg Lg TD
2 47 23s 22 0
A 89 22.3 U6 U
No. Yds Avg tg TD
1 19 19.0 19 0
P e nn S ta t e
From page 1B
I thought he got a little better
as the week went on," second-
ary coach Tony Gibson said
after the game. "The last couple
weeks he's been working so we
thought it was time for him to
Against Penn State, Rodri-
guez called on Cissoko midway
through the first quarter. On
third down and 4 with the Nit-
tany Lions at Michigan's 17-yard
line, Penn State quarterback
Daryll Clark's pass opposite Cis-
spko fell incomplete and the Nit-
tanyLions were held to a 34-yard
Cissoko came in sporadically
throughout the game, mostly on
third downs and never playing
more than a few snaps at a time.
On his limited opportunities,
Cissoko was not exploited oppo-
site junior Donovan Warren.
Penn State concentrated mainly
on Warren, meaning Cissoko
didn't look particularly over-
matched in big plays as he had
earlier in the season.
"Boubacar just came back
with a vengeance," Warren said.
"You know he worked hard
in practice this week. Got the
coaches to trust him real well.
This was just a matter of them
having confidence in him, and
they got confidence in him."
When Cissoko played, the
Wolverines made major adjust-
ments in the defensive backfield.
Junior cornerback Troy Wool-
folk, who had filled in at corner
in Cissoko's absence, moved
back to safety and replaced red-
shirt sophomore Mike Williams.
NITTANY LIONS nois) next week, which is a huge
From page lB opportunity for us."
Fr____page __B_ Though Michigan's collapse
was a combination of many fac-
tors, including questionable
redshirt junior Obi Ezeh didn't preparation and countless mis-
have time to make his read. takes, one thing is clear after
The result was a 60-yard Saturday: The Wolverines cer-
touchdown bomb to tight end tainly won't be in the Rose Bowl
Andrew Quarless. as Brown talked about before
The score gave the Nittany the Penn State game.
Lions a two-possession lead they And Michigan didn't even
wouldn't relinquish. seem close to that level of play
"That was just a bad day for against the Nittany Lions.
us, I guess," Martin said. "We "I'm disappointed we never
just got to have a better week gave ourselves a chance," Gib-
of preparation going into (Illi- son said.
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Cornerof S.University &S. Foesot n
Sophomore Boubacar Cissoko played Saturday in his first game since Sept. 26.
Woolfolk played alongside red- is still in limbo. Rodriguez said
shirt freshman Jordan Kovacs. after the game Cissoko will con-
When Cissoko came out, Wool- tinue to play "unless he screws
folk and Williams returned to up again," but as a whole, the
their starting spots. Wolverines are happy to have
"We didn't know what was Cissoko back.
going to happen with Boubac- "I'm happy not just for Bou-
ar - don't make me say his last bacar, but for all my teammates,"
name - Cissoko," Penn State outside linebacker Brandon Her-
quarterbacks coach Jay Paterno ron said. "But Boubacar, he's got
said. "We saw him on the field a little issues that needed to get
and said, 'OK, they're probably corrected and coaches needed to
going to move No. 29 (Wool- do what they needed to do to get
folk) back.' It didn't create a lot him back. ... Hey, the slogan's,
of adjustments for us, but you do 'We're all in for Michigan,' and
want to know who's where and we don't want to see one of our
what they're doing." teammates fail. Just to bring him
Cissoko's future this season back and help him is a pleasure."
Player No. nds Avg R T
HERSe 6 25 355 UN
TEAM 1 0 0.0 R
Totals 7 215 30 5 44
Hlaer N Nd Uv g T
PwellEE 2 71 3 4 0
Hayes 1 20 20.0 20 0
Dailey 1 8 8.0 8 0
Totals 3 81 26.3 34 0
Player No. Yds Avg Lg TD
Zug 2 19 9.5 10 0
Astorino 1 0 0 0
Total 3 19 6 -3 10 0
Pe Stae Soo Ass T
Hull 6 4 10
Wallace ' a 2 1 3
Lee 0 3 3
Colasanti 2 0 2
Morris 2 0 25
sudu 2 2
MSeay 2 - 2
Odrick 1 2 25
BIG T:'EN STAND NGS
Tearn Big Ten Overall
Iowa .4-0 8-0
Ohio State 4-1 6-2
Penn State 3-1 7-1
Michigan State 3-2 4-4
Wisconsin 2-2 5-2
Northwestern 2-2 5-3
Purdue 2-2 3-5
Minnesota 2-3 4-4
Michigan 1-3 5-3 .
Indiana 1-3 4-4
S Illinois 0-5 1-6
Big Ten Results
Penn State 35, Michigan 10
Iowa 15, Michigan State 13
Ohio State 38, Minnesota 7 .
Purdue 24, Illinois 14
Northwestern 29, Indiana 28
Toronto can't keep up
with 'M' swimmers
By RYAN A. PODGES
Daily Sports Writer
For the Wolverines, the hard-
est part of the season's first men's
swimming and diving dual meet
was not beating their opponent,
the University of Toronto.
It was fighting their own
After nearly two months of
intense training, there was no
doubt Michigan was tired com-
ing into the meet. But they still
took care of business, crushing
the Varsity Blues 186-99 at Can-
ham Natatorium on Friday.
"We've been getting our butts
kicked every day for quite a few
weeks now," junior Tyler Clary
said. "We're at the end, hope-
fully, of a very hard training
Michigan won 15 of the 17
events. In the two events it
did lose, the 400-yard freestyle
relay and the 200-yard butterfly,
Toronto touched out the Wol-
verines by 0.48 and 0.11 seconds,
Winning its dual meet sea-
son opener is nothing new for
Michigan. The Wolverines have
won 41 of their last 42 inaugural
meets. The tapes came in handy,
With the swimmers a little especially during one of the best
worn down from recent prac- races of the night- the 200-yard
tices, their times were not as individual medley during which
important as the outcome of the junior Neal Kennedy nearly
races and the technicality of the touched out Clary. Kennedy had
swims. been leading the race for the first
"Any meet that's not an end- 150 yards, but may have lost his
of-the-season meet, you want to edge on the last flip turn, as the
go in there and try to work on "instant replay" revealed.
specifics like starts, turns and "Neal and I walked over .to
breakouts," Clary, who won the watch the 200 IM replay," Clary
200- and 400-yard individual said. "On the last turn, we could
medley and the 200-yard back- see I stayed underwater and did
stroke, said. "I'll use these times a few extra kicks and he came
as markers, but I definitely do right up to the surface. He
not compare them with my per- looked at me and just said, 'Holy
sonal best times because that crap, you just whooped my ass
can get depressing." on that part.'"
Michigan had strong perfor- Michigan coach Mike Bottom
mances from its seniors. Char- certainly hopes his team learned
lie Houchin, Alon Mandel, Evan from the relays and the meet.
Ryser and co-captain Andr The hardest training cycle may
Schultz all won two individual be over for now, but his expecta-
events and each swam on relays. tions for the team are still high.
After each race, the Michigan "I am never going to be where
swimmers watched replays of I want to be," Bottom told the
the races on a video screen set Athletic Department. "I always
up next to their bench on the want to be better. My expecta-
pool deck. The races were taped tions are real high for theseguys,
from the deck above the pool, so they will have a hard time
and each swimmer broke down meeting them. I would hope that
his swim to learn from his mis- we would be a lot better the next
takes. time we get in the water."
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