Backup QB Peters helps spark Michigan past Rutgers
Running back Karan Higdon scored two touchdowns and sophomore quarterback Brandon Peters sparked Michigan in his first extended playing time as the Wolverines defeated Rutgers 35-14 on homecoming Saturday in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Peters replaced ineffective senior John O’Korn (3-for-6, 13 yards, interception) in the second quarter and engineered three consecutive touchdown drives. He finished 10-of-14 passing for 124 yards and a score.
Higdon rushed for 158 yards on 18 carries while running back Ty Isaac ran 14 times for 109 yards as Michigan (6-2, 3-2 Big Ten) totaled 334 rushing yards.
The Wolverines bounced back from last week’s 42-13 loss at No. 2 Penn State by defeating the Scarlet Knights (3-5, 2-3) for the third straight time by a combined 162-30.
Wide receiver Janarion Grant scored on a career-long 65-yard run for Rutgers, which had its first two-game Big Ten winning streak snapped. Quarterback Giovanni Rescigno was 8 of 16 for 101 yards.
Michigan scored first when fullback Khalil Hill capped a 13-play, 80-yard drive — kept alive by a fourth-and-1 conversion at the Wolverines 41 — with a 1-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter. The Scarlet Knights answered three plays later with Grant’s burst.
Peters entered with 7:01 left in the first half and was 3 of 3 for 37 yards on an eight-play, 77-yard jaunt that culminated with Higdon’s 10-yard TD run, giving Michigan the lead for good. Peters displayed a nice touch on his first career TD pass — a 20-yarder to running back Chris Evans — to make it 21-7 with 23 seconds left in the first half.
The Wolverines’ defense forced a three-and-out to begin the third quarter; four plays later, running back Kareem Walker burst into the end zone from the 5. Rutgers answered with running back Gus Edwards’ 2-yard touchdown run before Michigan restored its three-touchdown lead when Higdon exploded for a 49-yard TD run with 14:10 remaining.