The Michigan Wolverines let a strong defensive performance and a 14 point halftime lead go for naught as the Iowa Hawkeyes dominated the second half of play and earned a 24-21 victory at home in Iowa City.
The Michigan defense created 4 turnovers in the game and returned one for a score but the offense once again was the problem and could not score in the second half.
Michigan’s offense had a nice drive going which might have led to the lead or at least a tying field goal attempt with three minutes left in the game, but Gardner was stripped of the ball and fumbled on the 31 yard line and the drive and Wolverine chances at a victory ended.
As a result, Brady Hoke’s Wolverines fall to a 7-4 record with one game to play at home against OSU next week.
This was a very unfortunate outcome of a game in a pretty poor Wolverine season by most accounts.
Outside of MSU, the Wolverines could have easily won the other three games against Penn State, Nebraska and now Iowa.
Michigan’s offense compiled 158 total yards with 60 coming by way of the run. In return, the defense allowed Iowa 21 first downs to go with there 169 rushing yards.
Offensive coordinator Al Borges will once again be placed under scrutiny and head coach Brady Hoke will once again be forced to answer questions about his team’s inability to run an effective offensive strategy.
Devin Gardner did throw for two scores yet only 98 yards passing on 13 completions with 28 attempts.
Freshman Derrick Green once again handled the rushing duties but only totaled 23 yards on 11 attempts.
Some have speculated, yet now the speculation is looking to be more fact that this team under Hoke has an inability to win games on the road in the Big Ten. And the more games they lose, the less likely it is due to circumstance and more likely due to the sheer will of the coaching staff to deliver results.
Too many times now have winnable games been lost and post-game press conferences filed with excuses for lack-luster results.
One more game to go in the regular season against really one of the best teams in the country which is currently riding a two season unbeaten streak. Can Michigan beat OSU? Sure they can. Will they? All signs point to highly unlikely.