ANN ARBOR, Mich. –Hassan Haskins ran for touchdowns the first two times Michigan’s No.19 had the ball and the undefeated Wolverines had to hang on to beat Rutgers 20-13 on Saturday.
READ: Where Does Michigan Fit Into Big Ten East As The Conference Game Begins?
Michigan (4-0, 1-0 Big Ten) opened the conference game by running the ball on his first seven snaps and Jim Harbaugh’s conservative game plan nearly cost him. After leading 20-3 at halftime, the Wolverines failed to land a first try on their first four possessions in the second half.
The Scarlet Knights (3-1, 0-1) rallied from a 17-point deficit in the third quarter to come close to seven early in the fourth, but Valentino Ambrosio missed a short field goal. On their next possession, they flipped it over on the downs and fell to 1 of 4 in the fourth down.
Michigan ended their drought without a first try late in the fourth quarter to put up a 47-yard field goal and a chance to win a two-goal lead, but Jake Moody missed it.
This gave the ball to Rutgers with 1:49 to play and no time outs. Two snaps later, quarterback Noah Vedral fumbled for his team’s first turnover of the season to seal the loss.
Michigan entered the game averaging 350.3 rushing yards to lead the nation and was limited to just 112 rushing yards. Blake Corum was limited to 68 yards – half his average – on 21 attempts and Haskins ran just 41 yards on 12 carries. Cade McNamara was 9 of 16 for 163 passing yards for the Wolverines.
Isaih Pacheco rushed for 107 rushing yards for the Scarlet Knights, who won their first three games for the first time since 2012. Vedral finished 18 of 31 for 156 yards with a touchdown pass to Aaron Young in the third quarter, starting on return that failed.
Take it away
Rutgers: The program hasn’t achieved a win over a ranked team since 2009, taking away any chance for coaches and players to return home proud of a moral victory.
Michigan: Throwing the ball early and has often worked well ahead of the Big Ten season, but the conference teams are going to force McNamara to throw more to beat them.
Michigan could stay where it is, or could possibly slide into the Top 25 AP after the lackluster victory.
Rutgers: Hosts Ohio State No. 10 next Saturday.
Michigan: Hit the road for the first time next Saturday to face Wiscons. The No.18 Badgers were beaten 41-13 by No.12 Notre-Dame.
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