Nebraska defeated Michigan 17-13 Saturday at Michigan Stadium. The Huskers kept their Big Ten Championship hopes alive by handing Michigan head coach Brady Hoke his first home loss in three years as the Wolverines' head man. Here is a breakdown of what went well, what didn't, and other fun facts to satiate your Husker appetite:
Sack artists: The Huskers recorded a season-high seven sacks against the Wolverines, led by a dominant performance by defensive end Randy Gregory, who racked up a career-high three sacks for a loss of 14 yards. Zaire Anderson added two sacks from his linebacker spot, while Thad Randle and Avery Moss also got to quarterback Devin Gardner.
Picking up yards: Nebraska struggled moving the ball against the Michigan defense, finishing with just 273 yards of total offense (128 rushing, 145 passing). The Huskers were missing a large number of offensive starters, but they completed just 52 percent of their passes while averaging a paltry 3 yards per rush. Starting a freshman quarterback on the road with three starting offensive linemen out due to injuries isn't the ideal scenario, but this Husker team will need to be more efficient offensively with a matchup against Michigan State's defense looming.
By the numbers
3rd place: As in where I-back Ameer Abdullah now ranks on Nebraska's career all-purpose yardage list. With his 110 all-purpose yards Saturday, Abdullah now has 4,346 career all-purpose yards, trailing only Heisman Trophy winners Johnny Rodgers (5,586) and Mike Rozier (5,445). Abdullah also passed four former Huskers (Roger Craig, Rick Berns, Dan Alexander and Keith Jones) on the Nebraska all-time rushing list, as he pushed his career total to 2,500 yards.
Play of the game
Abdullah's five-yard touchdown reception from Tommy Armstrong Jr. with 2 minutes, 3 seconds remaining: Armstrong ran an option play to the left side of the field and pitched the ball to Abdullah, which was actually a forward pass, and the junior I-back punched in the score to give Nebraska the 17-13 lead. It was Abdullah's first touchdown reception this season.
Rushing in reverse: Nebraska held Michigan to negative-21 yards rushing in the game, the second straight contest that the Wolverines have been negative in that category. The negative-21 yards rushing ties for the sixth-fewest rushing yards allowed in school history and the fewest since Sept. 1, 2001.