Michigan-Indiana recap: Rudock posts another monster grade
Here are the top takeaways and highest-graded players from Michigan’s 48-41 win over Indiana:
— Jake Rudock (+9.2) is finally playing like the guy we saw last year at Iowa. After grading negatively in seven of his first eight games, Rudock has put up back-to-back monster grades, albeit against Rutgers and Indiana. That bodes well for the final two games that are crucial in deciding the Big Ten title game. On Saturday he did his best work down the field — on throws targeted 10+ yards downfield, Rudock was accurate on 16-20 targets for 341 yards.
— Michigan’s run defense was exposed for the first time this season, but it wasn’t because they were overpowered on the line. No, the Wolverine’s defense looked completely lost trying to maintain gap control against the Hoosier’s stretch plays. Michigan’s defensive line likes to fire off straight upfield at the snap. This works great against downhill runs like inside zone where they had great success Saturday. But versis outside zone firing upfield creates very wide running lanes when one defensive tackle flows down the line of scrimmage and another one doesn’t. The poor discipline made the job extremely difficult on Michigan’s linebackers. Matthew Godin (-5.3) and Joe Bolden (-3.6) were the two that struggled the most.
— Jourdan Lewis (+2.7) continues to look like the best cornerback in the nation. He had one interception called back by a penalty and another overturned upon review, but it was still a superb effort. He allowed only 38 yards on 3-6 targets.
QB Jake Rudock (+9.2)
WR Jake Chesson (+5.6)
DT Willie Henry (+4.4)
TE Jake Butt (+2.8)
CB Jourdan Lewis (+2.7)
— What a night for running back Jordan Howard (+6.3). The line played well, but Howard was picking up gobs of yards even when the blocking broke down. Howard averaged almost four yards after contact per attempt and broke eight tackles on 35 carries. He’s now among the top five graded running backs in the FBS this year.
— The Indiana secondary may have been overmatched talent wise, but there is no excuse for the amount of fakes the Indiana defense bit on and coverage busts they had on the back end. The main culprits were cornerbacks Rashard Fant (-5.7) and Tyler Green (-2.5). The duo allowed 99 and 134 yards respectively through the air and three combined touchdowns.
— Box score scouting might make you think it was Indiana’s top ranked offensive line prospect, left tackle Jason Spriggs (+1.0), paving the way for the Indiana rush attack. While Spriggs had some key blocks on the edge in overtime, he got tossed around quite a bit earlier in the game. The main offensive lineman pulling his weight Saturday was left guard Jacob Bailey. Since entering the lineup in week seven against Rutgers, Bailey has a +11.3 overall grade and has yet to allow a pressure. Quite the impressive start for the Junior.
LG Jacob Bailey (+7.0)
RB Jordan Howard (+6.3)
LB Marcus Oliver (+2.6)
DT Darius Latham (+2.5)
DE Nick Mangieri (+1.8)