IOWA CITY Once again, Michigan coach Lloyd Carr used trickery to kickstart his offense.
Using a play he used to call when he coached in high school, Carr called the rarely used “fumbleroosky”.
“I got it because Stanford ran it against Michigan, I think in the 1971 Rose Bowl,” Carr said. “What made me nervous is I saw Northwestern run it today on T.V. before we left the hotel and I said we better run it pretty soon here because pretty soon they are going to be watching it.
“The ball was snapped to Walter Cross who put it between B.J”s (Askew) legs and then Walter ran around the right end and John Navarre ran around the right end. I don”t know if it is a single-wing play or not, but that”s a gimmick play.
“I think it has some real deception to it. Marquise Walker was lined up as a wingback to the left and at the snap of the ball, he took off running to his right and after Walter handed the ball off to B.J. he faked a handoff to Marquise.”
Michigan has used deceit in all of its Big Ten games thus far.
The Wolverines also ran four reverses to sophomore receiver Calvin Bell.
Staying focused: Michigan”s win not only preserved its spot in first place in the Big Ten, but it also got the Wolverines back in the hunt for the Rose Bowl.
Coming into the game, Michigan was ranked seventh in the BCS poll, just a fraction of a point behind Texas.
Saturday, three teams ranked ahead of the Wolverines Oklahoma, UCLA and Virginia Tech all lost.
What”s more, Michigan”s schedule is stronger than Texas”, making it likely that if the Wolverines win out, they would pass the Longhorns.
But the Wolverines are remaining focused on winning the Big Ten, and seeing what happens when their regular season is over.
“We just have to worry about the Big Ten right now,” Walker said.
This is especially applicable with a road game with in-state rival Michigan State next on Michigan”s schedule.
“This was a big game, but I”m quite sure on the plane (defensive coordinator) coach (Jim) Hermann is going to be doing plays for Michigan State,” senior linebacker Larry Foote said.
Going for it: Down six points with only a couple of minutes to go, and needing to go 90 yards, Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz knew that his Hawkeyes would need a big play if they were to score on their last drive.
So facing fourth-and-one on Michigan”s 39-yard line with one minute remaining, Ferentz called a gutsy pass play, rather than opting for a run and a likely first down.
Iowa senior quarterback Kyle McCann spotted an open receiver but was hit as while he threw the ball, causing him to overthrew his teammate.
“We talked about that at the timeout there because they stopped the clock,” Carr said. “I thought it was a good call. We got an excellent pass rush there. I saw Shantee Orr and Larry Foote came free and he got hit just as he released the football which was a big time play.”
fiesta, fiesta: Fiesta Bowl representative Brian Hill was in attendance for Michigan”s 32-26 win over Iowa Saturday.
Because the Rose Bowl is the BCS national title game this year, the Big Ten champion is not contractually obligated to a specific bowl game this year, so long as it”s one of the four BCS games the Orange, Sugar, Fiesta and Rose Bowls.
Michigan will only play in the Rose Bowl if it is ranked No. 1 or 2 in the BCS poll released at the end of the season.
“I am impressed with both teams,” Hill said after the game. “Hard to beat a Saturday afternoon of football in the Midwest.”
Saturday was the first time Hill or any representative from the Fiesta Bowl had seen the Wolverines.
Representatives from the Citrus and Alamo Bowls were also in attendance.