It was a tough opener for the Appalachian State Mountaineers as they found their second visit to the Big House less to their liking than their first trip seven years ago. This time Michigan used superior size to manhandle the smaller Appalachian State lines and have their way running the football, which they did for 350 yards. Multiple Michigan running backs had 50+ runs and two had more than 10 yards per carry on the game.
The Appalachian State offense never really got going as they were shut down by the Michigan line or pressured by the Michgan rush. Kameron Bryant was sacked twice and managed only an 8/19 effort. When the game was out of reach, Taylor Lamb came in to try his luck.
Coach Brady Hoke sent in the Michigan second string in the third quarter, and App State saw some success against them, scoring their two touchdowns during that stretch. The score stabilized at 52-14.
Play of the Game
Any of the three touchdown passes from Devin Gardner to Devin Funches could be here, because they all demonstrated that App State did not have the size to deal with the Devin connection. The 6’6” Funches was just too tall. If I had to pick one, I would take the 34 yd touchdown late in the first quarter which demonstrated Funches’ speed as well as his height.
Were You There When…
App State put together its first scoring drive. App State went for it on fourth down in Michigan territory, and followed up with a touchdown pass from Kameron Bryant to wide receiver Simms McElfresh. That made the score 42-7, but at least showed that the Mountaineers were still trying.
Honorable mention goes to Brady Hoke of Michigan who challenged a failure to score by Michigan on a second down, with the ball on the one yard line, third down upcoming, and Michigan up 35-0. He lost that challenge.
I Want Him On My Team
Ronald Blair, DE.
Despite a tough Michigan offensive line, Blair managed to make a nuisance of himself on defense, sometimes being the only nuisance. He collected a sack in the second quarter on Devin Gardner.
No one said that this would be easy, and it went pretty much as advertised. Appalachian State can leave this game knowing that the line of scrimmage is important. If you can control it like Michigan did, you can win ball games. When Appalachian State faced the second string Michigan defense, they found they could control the line better. The Sun Belt will be more like the Michigan second string than the first string, but the Mountaineers now know there is a long way to go and a lot of work to put in.
Please like our Facebook page, here