(Saturday, September 5th)
Final Score: Michigan 31, Western Michigan 7
Ann Arbor, MI (Sports Network) - Tate Forcier threw for 179 yards and three touchdowns in his debut, leading the Michigan Wolverines past the Western Michigan Broncos, 31-7, in the season-opener for both programs at Michigan Stadium.
Forcier, only the third true freshman to start an opener for Michigan (1-0), looked comfortable and completed 13-of-20 tosses, while adding 37 rushing yards on 11 carries. Fellow freshman quarterback Denard Robinson saw time as well and rushed 11 times for 74 yards and a score for the Wolverines, who are coming off a school-record nine-loss campaign in 2008. Junior Hemingway was the main target with five catches for 103 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the win.
Tim Hiller completed 22-of-38 pass attempts for 259 yards and a score for WMU (0-1), although he was picked off twice. His favorite target was Juan Nunez, who caught seven passes for 151 yards and a touchdown.
The Wolverines wasted little time getting on the board, as Forcier tossed a 28-yard touchdown pass to Hemingway just under five minutes into the contest. Later in the opening quarter, Robinson scurried 43 yards to paydirt for a 14-0 lead at the end of one period.
Michigan extended its lead early in the second quarter, when Forcier found Kevin Koger on a seven-yard scoring strike. Jason Olesnavage hit a 44-yard field goal midway through the frame and Forcier threw a 44-yard touchdown pass to Hemingway late in the period, as the Wolverines took a 31-0 lead into the intermission.
Following a scoreless third quarter, WMU finally got on the board courtesy of a 73-yard touchdown pass from Hiller to Nunez. It would cap the game's scoring.
Michigan rolled up 439 yards of total offense, including 242 on the ground, as the team didn't appear to be distracted by this past weeks allegations against head coach Rich Rodriguez. The second-year Michigan head coach was first accused of having his players log too much practice time and he was later mentioned in a federal lawsuit over his involvement in a real estate investment that went bad.
09/05 19:45:14 ET