=== No. 17 Michigan feasts on Central Michigan ===
Ann Arbor, MI (Sports Network) - Devin Gardner threw for 162 yards and one
touchdown, while rushing for a pair of scores, as No. 17 Michigan demolished
Central Michigan, 59-9, at Michigan Stadium.
Despite being picked off twice, Gardner completed 10-of-15 passes, and gained
52 yards on seven carries for the Wolverines (1-0), who were coming off an 8-5
campaign in 2012 which included an Outback Bowl defeat against South Carolina.
"Well, I think to the offense itself, I think it's really important. I think
to have balance and when you have balance, you can run the ball," said
Michigan head coach Brady Hoke. "It just opens up so much of the play-action
game. And that's the one thing that Devin more than a lot of quarterbacks does
such a great job -- with ball-handling and play-action -- that it's a big part
of our offense."
Fitzgerald Toussaint crossed the goal line twice on the ground en route to a
57-yard, 14-carry performance, Derrick Green and Thomas Rawls added a rushing
TD apiece, and Jeremy Gallon registered a touchdown catch among his four grabs
for 47 yards.
Alex Niznak went 11-of-22 for 131 yards and was picked off once for the
Chippewas (0-1), who went 7-6 a season ago which ended with a Little
Caesars Bowl victory over Western Kentucky.
"I thought he did a couple of good things," said Central Michigan head coach
Dan Enos about Niznak. "He made some mistakes too as you would expect from a
guy in his first game, and they are a good defense. We will look at the tape
and see how he did. One thing I thought he did was he competed. He came in
there, and he competed. He had a great attitude; he was positive the whole
Starter Cody Kater left the game with a shoulder injury in the second quarter,
after going just 2-of-6 for 13 yards.
Ron Coluzzi's three field goals accounted for all the meaningful Central
Michigan offense. Andrew Flory totaled 79 yards on four receptions.
Michigan took control right away, as Dymonte Thomas blocked a Richie Hogans
punt, which Joe Reynolds recovered and ran 30 yards for the game's opening
Coluzzi's 23-yard field goal put CMU on the board two series later, but the
hosts responded with a six-play, 77-yard march ending on a 22-yard rushing
score from Gardner and a 14-3 lead.
The Wolverines went up 21-3 on the first down of the second quarter, as
Toussaint plunged in from the one to cap a 73-yard progression in 10 plays.
Jason Wilson later picked off Gardner, and Coluzzi split the uprights from 27
yards away, but Michigan roared back with a pair of end-zone forays. Gardner
found Gallon for a 16-yard TD strike, then took it in himself from four yards
out inside the final minute of the half, and the 29-point margin stood at
Toussaint's two-yard run produced a 42-6 margin for the hosts to cap their
first drive of the second half, then Green rolled in from the one and
Rawls contributed a five-yard jaunt to paydirt and it was 56-6 heading to the
A 33-yarder from Coluzzi opened the scoring in the final period, while Brendon
Gibbons later connected on a 30-yarder to cap the rout.
Michigan, which registered its 15th consecutive home victory, has won all four
lifetime matchups with CMU, including a 41-17 decision in their last meeting,
in Ann Arbor on Sept. 9, 2006 ... The Wolverines racked up the most points in
one game since ripping UMass by a 63-13 count on Sept. 15, 2012 ... Michigan
outgained their MAC foes by a 463-210 margin ... The Wolverines recorded their
highest-scoring season opener since whipping Ohio Wesleyan 65-0 in 1905 ...
Prior to the contest, UM announced that starting safety Thomas Gordon was
suspended for an unspecified violation of team rules.
09/01 01:40:03 ET