Michigan football cruises by Rutgers, as expected, 42-7

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PISCATAWAY, N.J. — Who needs revenge anyway? 

Shea Patterson threw for 260 yards and three touchdowns and No. 4 Michigan spent the day in control at Rutgers, breezing by the Scarlet Knights, 42-7, for their ninth straight win, remaining perfect in Big Ten play and in control atop the East Division.  

The Wolverines (9-1, 7-0) will return to Michigan Stadium for their final home game Saturday against Indiana. 

Smooth Patterson

Despite a significant wind for most of the day, Patterson was efficient and under control throughout the game in the pocket. 

He finished the game 18 of 27 for 260 yards and three scores, hitting Nico Collins on a wide open 36-yarder in the first half before putting together a few highlight-reel throws in the third quarter. 

On his 16-yard touchdown pass to Oliver Martin, Patterson scrambled out of the pocket on a broken play before throwing Martin open in the corner of the end zone. 

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Later in the frame, he dropped a perfect throw into the hands of Collins in the back of the end zone for a 10-yarder. 

Michigan’s offensive line protected well for Patterson the whole game, the Wolverines did not run him either. An easy day, no doubt. 

Donovan Peoples-Jones finished with five catches for 83 yards. Collins had three receptions for 56 yards and two scores. 

Defensive settle

U-M’s defense did get burned on one play in the first half, an 80-yard dash from Isaih Pacheco that saw a few blown assignments both at the line of scrimmage and on the back end. 

His touchdown run tied the game, 7-7, in the first quarter. Michigan scored the next 35. 

But other than that play, the longest Rutgers has had during its run as a Big Ten member, U-M’s defense had its way with the Knights throughout. 

Quarterback Artur Sitkowski was 2 of 6 for zero yards passing in the first half. The longest pass of the day came via a 19-yard throw from Pacheco on a halfback pass. 

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Michigan did see a few bumps and bruises defensively, as cornerback Lavert Hill left the game in the first half with an undisclosed injury and did not return. Defensive end Kwity Paye also left the game with an apparent arm injury. 

Starting safety Josh Metellus warmed up, but did not play. Sophomore defensive tackle Aubrey Solomon did not make the trip. 

QB shuffle

The answer to Michigan’s backup quarterback situation was delivered. 

After Patterson threw his third touchdown in the third quarter, U-M went to third-year sophomore Brandon Peters for the first series of the fourth quarter. It lasted one snap, as Chris Evans took a handoff 61 yards for a touchdown. 

True freshman Joe Milton took the next series. Milton has now appeared in two games this season and can keep his redshirt if he plays in only two more. But not more. 

The Wolverines lost backup quarterback Dylan McCaffrey to a broken collarbone last week. 

Neither Milton nor Peters attempted a pass. 

Big season

Senior running back Karan Higdon was mostly used only in the first half, but he did break the 1,000-yard mark. 

Higdon is the first Michigan running back to rush for 1,000 yards in a season since Fitzgerald Toussaint in 2011. He is the second since Mike Hart in 2007. 

With 42 rushing yards Saturday, Higdon will enter Week 11 with 1,005 yards. 

Contact Nick Baumgardner: nbaumgardn@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @nickbaumgardner.

Source : https://www.freep.com/story/sports/college/university-michigan/wolverines/2018/11/10/michigan-football-cruises-rutgers-expected-42-7/1961171002/