|Jehu Chesson, Devin Gardner, and Devin Funchess combined for a great day on Saturday.|
Let's see less of this guy on offense . . . Joey Burzynski. Burzynski's start was like a gold star for his efforts over the last several seasons, including fall camp. He tore his ACL last year, and he was filling in for the partly injured Kyle Kalis on Saturday. Kalis took over for Burzynski shortly after the game began, and the fifth year walk-on is less likely to play when Graham Glasgow returns next Saturday. Thanks for your efforts, Joey, but Michigan needs bigger and better linemen in there if they want to compete with the big boys.
Let's see more of this guy on defense . . . Desmond Morgan. There have been hints that Morgan will be relegated to the bench in favor of Joe Bolden, but I still see Morgan as the superior player. He did a good job on Saturday and needs to see a majority of the snaps at either MIKE or WILL linebacker.
Let's see less of this guy on defense . . . nobody. Michigan didn't get any takeaways, but they put pressure on the quarterback and generally tackled well. Late in the game, Appalachian State bled the clock by running up the middle over and over again, but that mercifully allowed the game to end quicker. If they insisted on passing, Michigan would have hurt the quarterback(s), picked off some passes, and scored more points.
Play of the game . . . Ben Gedeon's return of a blocked punt for a touchdown. There were so many big plays from Devin Funchess, Devin Gardner, Derrick Green, and De'Veon Smith, but those blocked punt returns are always exciting to watch. Linebacker Mike McCray tipped the punt, and Gedeon fielded it in mid-air. As soon as I saw #42 fielding the punt, I said to myself, "This is gonna be a touchdown." Gedeon was an excellent high school running back and could probably play that position in college for some teams. He did a nice job of weaving, tiptoeing down the sideline, and diving to stretch the ball across the front edge of the goal line for a 32-yard touchdown return.
Player of the game . . . Devin Gardner. Gardner was 13/14 for 173 yards and 3 touchdowns, plus he rushed 5 times for 9 yards. Best of all, he made good decisions, put appropriate helpings of mustard on his passes, and put the balls where only his receiver could catch them. His one misfire was a crossing route where the receiver was wide open, but it's tough to argue with those numbers.