ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Michigan football overcame a late blown lead against Penn State on Saturday in Happy Valley, bouncing back to earn a massive victory and keep its Big Ten title hopes alive.
Penn State dominated the first quarter of the game, but managed only a 3-0 lead thanks to a botched fake field goal attempt. Michigan capitalized and went into the half with a 7-6 advantage.
The second half got off to a promising start, with Michigan driving straight down the field and Roman Wilson catching his second touchdown pass of the game. That 14-6 lead held until midway through the fourth quarter.
The Nittany Lions had an answer, though. Converting on three fourth downs, including one from the 2-yard line, Penn State scored and picked up a two-point conversion to tie the game.
On the ensuing drive, Cade McNamara fumbled the ball back on third and long to set up a go-ahead field goal for Penn State. Jordan Stout drilled a short field goal to give the Nittany Lions a 17-14 lead.
It felt like another typical big-game letdown for Jim Harbaugh’s team.
But McNamara had an answer, hitting Erick All on a short route across the middle for what turned into a 47-yard touchdown pass.
Unlike two weeks ago against Michigan State, the defense held, stopping Penn State on fourth down and giving the ball back to the offense. McNamara picked up a big third down and 1 and Hassan Haskins sealed the win with a first down run of his own.
Haskins finished the game with 156 rushing yards on 31 carries, and added 45 yards on five catches.
McNamara completed 19 of 29 passes for 217 yards and three touchdowns.
But Michigan’s two best players were the stars once again. Aidan Hutchinson racked up 3.5 sacks while David Ojabo tallied two of his own. In the end, that was enough to hold Penn State to 17 points and secure the win.
Michigan improved to 9-1 on the season, and will head to Maryland next week.