The euphoria of the 5-0 start quickly dissolved into serious concerns as the Wolverines got roughed up by rival Michigan State, 34-17. The real football season has started.
Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez saw plenty of blame to go around, and plenty of work to do for his team.
"First, it goes back to fundamentals," Rodriguez said.
"We had dropped passes today, we had interceptions ... and we didn't do a good job in pass protecting in the last couple series. There is a laundry list of things that we need to get better at."
--Michigan Stadium had a crowd of 113,065 for the Wolverines' showdown with rival Michigan State, the 227th consecutive game of more than 100,000 fans. It was the second-largest crowd in the history of Michigan Stadium.
--In the loss to Michigan State, the Wolverines posted season-lows in every offensive category: points (17), rushing yards (162), passing yards (215) and yards of total offense (377).
--Sophomore QB Denard Robinson completed 17 of 29 passes for 215 yards against Michigan State, and he rushed for 86 yards on 21 carries. It was the first time this season Robinson had fewer than 100 rushing yards.
GAME BALL GOES TO: DB J.T. Floyd -- For the second week in a row, Floyd collected a career high 13 tackles. He had 10 solo stops and three assisted tackles against the Spartans, and was a rare bright spot on the defensive side for Michigan's troubled unit.
KEEP AN EYE ON: P Will Hagerup -- The freshman from Wisconsin hit a career-best 62-yard punt early in the matchup with Michigan State. Hagerup had a previous best of 58 yards the previous week against Indiana, and this season has seven punts of 50 or more yards.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "He just wasn't as sharp today. I don't know the reasons. His eyes were in the right frame of mind. He might have been pressing a little bit. Sometimes that happens; a guy wants to make plays and he presses a little bit instead of letting the game just come to him." --Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez, on sophomore quarterback Denard Robinson's performance in the loss to Michigan State.
STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL
LOOKING GOOD: The Wolverines had eight players catch passes in the loss to Michigan State, spreading the ball around and preventing the Spartans from focusing on taking away any one player. Tight ends, running backs and wide receivers were all part of the passing game, which produced 287 yards for Michigan.
STILL NEEDS WORK: The overall weakness of the Michigan defense was exposed the previous week when Indiana passed for almost 500 yards against the Wolverines. The vulnerability was magnified against Michigan State, as the Spartans rolled up 536 yards of offense. As the Wolverines move into the tougher portion of the schedule, their defense has betrayed them too often to feel confident about their chances.
--PK Seth Broekhuizen hit a 34-yarder against Michigan State, Michigan's first field goal since the opener against UConn.
--LB Mike Jones continues to be sidelined with a leg injury.
--DE Ryan Van Bergen had a sack against Michigan State, his second this season and the seventh of his career.
--RB Fitzgerald Toussaint missed the Michigan State game with a lingering shoulder injury.
--S Mike Williams is sidelined after suffering multiple concussions, and the Michigan coaches have raised the possibility that his career might be over.
The TSX Files: Michigan post-MSU
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