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October 29, 2012 - Image 9

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2012-10-29

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The Michigan Daily I michigandailycom I October 29,2012

By BEN ESTES
Daily Sports Editor
LINCOLN - This wasn't sup-
posed to be Russell Bellomy's
game to win.
Sometimes, though, that's how
it goes - the backup is forced into
duty and must overcome his lack
of experience, must play above
any reasonable expectations that
could be set for him.
That was Bellomy's job in Sat-
urday's game against Nebraska,

after senior quarterback Denard without achieving a first down. "Russ, he probably had some
Robinson exited with a nerve The redshirt freshman quar- mistakes, but we were getting
injury in his throwing elbow. But terback went 3-for-16 through in the redzone, we were catch-
he and the rest of the Michigan the air with three interceptions ing the ball ... it was just the mis-
offense couldn't erase the Corn- and the running game generated takes."
huskers' moderate lead, and the almost nothing. Bellomy - also victimized on
Wolverines fell, 23-9, in their first "You've got one of the (most) several occasions by dropped
trip to Lincoln since 1911. dynamic quarterbacks in the passes - finally got a first down
The performance was, at times, NCAA," fifth-year wide receiver late in the third quarter thanks
ugly. After Bellomy took over the Roy Roundtree said of Robinson. to a double personal foul call on
reins on the Nebraskseight-yard, "Ireaks h l .e _re s. When the Cornhuskers. A third penalty
line late in the second- quarter, he went down, yeah it w as a big 'later on the drive helped Michi-
No. 20 Michigan (3-1 Big Ten, 5-3 factor, but you can' t just let that gan to its third field goal of the
overall) went four straight drives mess up your offense. night, a 38-yarder by redshirt

junior Brendan Gibbons that cut
the deficit to seven points.
But that would be all the scor-
ing for the Wolverines, who fell
into a first-place tie in the Big Ten
Legends Division with Nebraska.
By virtue of losing the would-be
tiebreaker should the teams end
up with the same number of loss-
es, Michigan no longer controls
ts destlnVto get to acbnference
championship game.
The poor offensive effort,
amounting to 188 total yards,

merely continued a trend - the
Wolverines haven't scored a
touchdown since the fourth quar-
ter of the Illinois game two weeks
ago.
It also overshadowed another
strong performance by the team's
defense, which held the Big Ten's
top statistical offense to its low-
est point and yardage total of the
seaso-n.
Only on two long drives did the
defense look vulnerable. Both saw
See SHUCKS, Page 3B

FOOTBALL
Defense the lone bright
spotin loss to Nebraska

By STEPHEN J. NESBITT
Daily Sports Editor
LINCOLN - There were
few positives to be found in the
Michigan football team's 23-9
loss to Nebraska. One brightspot
under the Memorial Stadium
lights, though, hit like a freight
train.
It was senior defensive end
Craig Roh, who sprang out of his
stance on a crucial third down
early in the fourth quarter and

plowed straight through his
blocker until the stunned line-
man fell backward into Nebras-
kaquarterback Taylor Martinez.
The sack put the Cornhuskers
out of field-goal range and gave
redshirt freshman quarterback
Russell Bellomy and the fledg-
ling Michigan offense the ball
back facing just a seven-point
deficit.
On the next play from scrim-
mage, Bellomy reared back and
lofted a pass nearly 30 yards

downfield that fell neatly into
the arms of Nebraska safety Dai-
mion Stafford.
That scenario repeated itself
over and over againat Memorial
Stadium on Saturday.
The matchup not only pitted
the Big Ten Legends division
favorites against each other, it
set up a faceoff between what
are arguably the conference's
top offense and defense.
Facing a Nebraska offense
See DEFENSE, Page 3B

Redshirt freshman quarterback Russell Bellomy was 3-for-16 passing with three interceptions against Nehrasa.
The quarterback gamble

Wolves, RedHawks split series

LINCOLN- The irony of
Russell Bellomy's final
interception, the one
he heaved into double cover-
age in the end zone, is that the
receiver he
was target-
ing could've
been the
quarterback.
Probably
should've.
But Devin
Gardner ZACH
at receiver Z A ND
was a get- HELFAND
rich-quick
scheme, a bad
gamble, and like any bad gamble
it started with three things: a
man, a choice and a misguided

optimism. Michigan coach Brady
Hoke bought into the scheme.
He lost. He didn't lose his shirt
or his house but he lost the game,
23-9, to Nebraska on Saturday.
And he just might have gambled
Michigan out of a shot at the Big
Ten title, too.
Here's how the scheme
worked:
In the beginning, there were
just good intentions. And some
imagination, too, you need that
for the scheme to win you over.
Imagine the best two athletes
- senior quarterback Denard
Robinson and junior quarterback
Devin Gardner - on the field at
the same time. Imagine Robin-
son's legs and his arm, Gardner's
size and his leaping ability at

receiver. Imagine throwing past
overmatched Big Ten defenses
all the way to Indianapolis.
That's what Hoke must have
thought. He must have. And
at the time, it made too much
sense. The third-string quarter-
back, redshirt freshman Russell
Bellomy, was improving. Was
he improving enough? The wide
receivers were pedestrian. Gard-
ner could bring life. No need to
develop young wide receivers,
you could get rich quick.
Imagination.
Opportunity cost. Risk.
Choice.
The choice, yes, here's where
it gets interesting. The imagina-
tion cedes to the rational. The
See QUARTERBACK, Page 3B

By LIZ NAGLE
Daily Sports Writer
The No. 6 Michigan hockey
team gained confidence in a
mild upset over No. 3 Miami
(Ohio) in its CCHA opener. But
on Satur-
day, with MIAMI (OH) 2
a change MICHIGAN 4
in the
wind, the MIAMI (OH) 3
Wolverine MICHIGAN 4
defense
deteriorated and gave the Red-
Hawks a triplet of goals in the
third period before losing 4-3.
On Friday, senior forward
A.J. Treais headlined Michi-
gan's 4-2 win, tallying a pair
of goals off of 6 shots against
Miami, plugging his second
multi-goal contest this year.

PAUL SHERMAN/Daily
Sophomore Alex Guptill and the Wolverines nearly swept visiting Miami.
Treais credits his timely suc- ing fun and what not," Beren-
cess to making "lucky" shots, son said. "But when the game's
but Michigan coach Red Beren- on, there's something going on
son translates it as something in him, whether it's passion or
different. pride and responsibility. But
"He can come in here and sit he's definitely finding a way to
and dead pan that he's just hav- See SPLIT, Page 3B

PLAY-CALL PROBLEMS
Who's to blame for the Michigan
offense's futility this fall? How about
offensive coordinator Al Borges? Page 2B

PUSH FOR POINTS
e The Wolverines settled for a weekend
split with ranked Miami (Ohio), but that's
not going to be good enough. Page 2B

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