This Week in Michigan Football: at Penn State
Blake Countess

Oct. 9, 2013

• Wednesday Press Conference: Coach Hoke | Devin Gardner
• Player Interview: Chris Bryant
• Player Feature: Drew Dileo
Full Game Notes PDF | Game Central
Wednesday Coach's Radio Show audio (Live, 7-8 p.m., Ann Arbor Pizza House)


This will be the 17th meeting between the two schools, with Michigan holding a 10-6 series advantage. Penn State has won the last three meetings after U-M won the previous nine contests.


The Wolverines have compiled a 5-3 record against the Nittany Lions at Beaver Stadium but have dropped the last two games played at the site. Beaver Stadium is the nation's second-largest stadium in the country with a capacity of 107,282.


• WR Jeremy Gallon has posted a reception in 31 straight games.

• QB Devin Gardner has recorded at least one rushing touchdown in nine consecutive regular-season games.

• K Brendan Gibbons has converted 123 straight PATs, which rank second in program history behind J.D. Carlson (126, 1988-91).

• LB Desmond Morgan has tallied at least four tackles in 20 straight regular-season games.

• The Michigan defense has not allowed a rushing touchdown in six consecutive games dating back to last season's Outback Bowl.


• Sophomore quarterback Denard Robinson set the Big Ten season record for rushing yards by a quarterback in U-M's 41-31 loss at Penn State on Oct. 30, 2010 at Beaver Stadium.

• Robinson racked up 381 yards of total offense, completing 11-of-23 passes for 190 yards and one touchdown and rushing for 191 yards on 27 carries with three TDs.


• In senior/junior quarterback Devin Gardner's last 10 games at quarterback, Michigan has made 38 trips to the red zone, scoring touchdowns on 32 of those trips.

• The Wolverines were 5-of-5 in the red zone in last week's 42-13 victory over Minnesota, with Gardner accounting for two of those scores (one passing, one rushing).

• In U-M's 41-30 victory over Notre Dame on Sept. 7, the Wolverines were 4-of-4 in the red zone, with Gardner accounting for all four scores (three passing, one rushing).

• In total, Gardner has accounted for 22 of U-M's 32 red zone touchdowns over the last 10 games.

• Through five games, Michigan has scored on 20-of-22 red zone opportunities (91%), including 18 touchdowns.


• Four of Michigan's 12 regular-season opponents posted 10+ victories in 2012 -- Ohio State (12-0), Notre Dame (12-1), Northwestern (10-3) and Nebraska (10-4).

• Six of the Wolverines' 12 regular-season opponents received bowl bids in 2012 while compiling a 52-27 record (.659 winning percentage)

• U-M faces arguably its toughest stretch in November, going up against four consecutive Legends Division foes, including three on the road -- at Michigan State (Nov. 2), vs. Nebraska (Nov. 9), at Northwestern (Nov. 16) and at Iowa (Nov. 23) -- before concluding its regular-season slate by hosting Ohio State in the 110th edition of "The Game" on Nov. 30.


• Last week against Minnesota, Michigan posted its first turnover-free game since its meeting vs. the Golden Gophers on Oct. 1, 2011 (26-game span).

• DB Blake Countess is tied for the lead in the FBS with 4 interceptions. Countess is the first Wolverine since Donovan Warren in 2009 to record at least four interceptions in a season.

• Saturday will mark Brady Hoke's first encounter against Penn State as a head coach.

• U-M has generated 28 offensive plays of 20+ yards through five games this season, 17 20+- yard receptions (6, Devin Funchess; 5, Jeremy Gallon; 2, Jehu Chesson; ; 2 Fitzgerald Toussaint; 1, Drew Dileo; 1, Joe Reynolds) and 11 20+-yard runs (5, Devin Gardner; 4, Fitzgerald Toussaint; 1, Derrick Green; 1, Dennis Norfleet.

• Through five games, U-M ranks first in the Big Ten and 11th in the nation in the category, converting 36 of 67 third-down attempts (54%).

• Funchess' 15 catches through five games match his number of receptions from last season, while his 296 receiving yards already surpass his 2012 output (234 yards). Funchess' performance against the Golden Gophers marked his second career 100+-yard performance of his career.

• U-M ranks ninth in the nation in rushing defense, allowing only 90.4 yards per game on the ground. The Wolverines have not allowed a 100-yard rusher through five games.

• Michigan is 8-1 all-time in games decided by overtime, including a 4-0 record in overtime games played at Michigan Stadium.

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