Michigan 35, UNLV 7


12Sep 2023
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Michigan 35, UNLV 7

J.J. McCarthy (image via Paul Sancya at the Associated Press)

Defensive Tackle U. Michigan is putting together a nice crew of defensive tackles, and the least heralded one is the guy making plays most consistently, it seems. Sophomore Mason Graham made 5 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, and 0.5 sacks against UNLV, eating up the interior offensive line repeatedly. The Rebels ended the game with 61 rushing yards on 31 attempts, which includes sacks, but still . . . the middle was stuffed up all day. Kris Jenkins made 5 tackles and 0.5 sacks and Kenneth Grant made 4 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, and 1 pass breakup. The title of this section is a little facetious, but the defensive tackle play has been terrific.

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8Sep 2023
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Preview: Michigan vs. UNLV

(image via Las Vegas Sun)

Michigan had a disappointing week against East Carolina with 31 carries for 122 yards, which was just 3.9 yards per carry. There were too many plays allowed in the backfield, and that fell on both the blockers and the running backs. We all know Blake Corum (10 carries, 73 yards, 1 TD) and Donovan Edwards (12 carries, 37 yards) are stars, but the more interesting aspect will be how Michigan’s tackles look. Last week Michigan started Karsen Barnhart on the left and Myles Hinton on the right, but the belief is that La’Darius Henderson and Trente Jones will start at those positions, respectively. UNLV ranks #106 nationally in rushing defense (179 yards allowed in one game), but that might be a bit misleading. The Runnin’ Rebels allowed just 19 yards on 8 carries before things got out of hand against Bryant. UNLV’s leading tackler is 6’3″, 230 lb. Arkansas transfer Jackson Woodard, who had 12 stops last week. Cornerback Thomas Andersen (6’1″, 185) was second on the team in tackles with 8. Nickelback Jerrae Williams (5’10”, 185) had an impressive 3.0 tackles for loss last week alone in UNLV’s 4-2-5 defense.
Advantage: Michigan

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21Sep 2015
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Michigan vs. UNLV Awards

Jourdan Lewis

Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . 
Ty Isaac. This is not a new refrain for me, but it’s worth repeating. I think Isaac is the most talented back on the roster, and while his best career game did come against UNLV – which is not a quality opponent – it’s important to note that starter De’Veon Smith didn’t perform very well, either (13 carries, 33 yards). Meanwhile, Isaac had 8 carries for 114 yards and 1 score. Take away his 76-yard touchdown run, and he still ran 7 times for 38 yards (5.4 yards/carry). As things stand right now, Smith is averaging 3.9 yards/carry and Isaac is at 8.9, while Derrick Green sits at 3.5 and Drake Johnson has 5.2. Yards per carry is not the only measurement of a running back, but his primary job is to gain yards on the ground. Smith has 53 attempts this year, while Isaac has only 18. That’s too much of an imbalance.

Hit the jump for the rest of the awards for this week.
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20Sep 2015
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Michigan 28, UNLV 7

Ty Isaac on his way to a 76-yard touchdown

Hello, Ty Isaac!
It was nice to see running back Ty Isaac have some success on the ground yesterday. He ended the game with 8 carries for 114 yards and 1 touchdown, which came on a 76-yarder. (That stat line is oddly similar to De’Veon Smith’s 8 carries, 115 yards, 2 touchdowns against last year’s patsy, Appalachian State.) Isaac is not a burner and won’t make a ton of guys miss, but he can be a physical runner when he keeps his shoulders square, and obviously he has enough speed to run away from a lot of defenders. When teams start to pack the box against Michigan, there are going to be times where nobody’s left once you get past the second level. That’s what happened on Isaac’s long run. The 76-yarder was the longest run at Michigan since Denard Robinson’s 79-yard touchdown against Air Force in 2012, and it was the longest by a Michigan running back since Carlos Browns 90-yard score against Eastern Michigan in 2009. I predicted that Isaac and starter De’Veon Smith would go over 100 yards, but Smith only ended up with 33 yards on 13 carries (2.5 yards/carry).

Hit the jump for the rest of my post-game thoughts.
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