Michigan had already ticked off two of its four goals for the season: beating Michigan State and Ohio State. Now it’s time to validate another of those goals: winning the Big Ten championship.
Michigan may not have dominated possession time, but it did capitalize on its scoring chances. Purdue couldn’t, and settled for five field goals. That was the difference in the game. If Purdue gets even two more touchdowns, it’s a whole different game.
Michigan has now won 13 games in a season for the first time in program history. They’ll quickly start wondering who they’re going up against in the College Football Playoffs.
Finals: Michigan 43, Purdue 22
Mullings adds an exclamation point
-Q4 1:22: Mullings comes into the end zone to make it 43-22.
-Q4 5:07: Another field goal by Purdue makes it 36-22.
McCarthy with the dagger
-Q4 9:06: McCarthy to Ronnie Bell in the back of the endzone for the touchdown. Two-point conversion is good. It’s a three point game now, 36-19.
Will Johnson calls the game
-Q4 9:57: Will Johnson with his second pick of the game deep in Purdue territory. This is game, especially when Michigan scores here.
-Q4 10:07: Purdue forces a three-and-out after picking up a controversial face mask flag in third. To me it looked like a face mask. But unfortunately, Michigan trumps it.
Purdue turns a two-point game into a two-point game
-Q4 12:37: Purdue kicks another field goal. That’s the difference in the game right now. Michigan has four TDs, Purdue has kicked four FGs. It’s 28-19.
End of third quarter: Michigan leads Purdue 28-16
McCarthy throws a pickaxe
Q3 1:35: McCarthy with an armpunt for his third INT of the season.
Purdue settles for three again
-Q3 3:37: Michigan picks up a sack for third in the red zone and Purdue adds an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty at the end. Purdue bets on another field goal and it’s 28-16.
-Q3 7:38: Michigan fails to capitalize on turnover. They go three-and-out.
Michigan picks up sales
-Q3 9:29: Aidan O’Connell is picked up in the end zone by Will Johnson. Huge game there when Purdue was driving.
Donovan Edwards does it again
-Q3 10:32: Edwards scores again. This time from 27 meters away. This drive? 2 plays, 67 yards. 40-yard pass to Schoonmaker on the play before that. It’s 28-13.
-Q3 11:20: Purdue goes three-and-out. The second half of Michigan is already in full swing. Michigan hits the punter and the officials shout as they run into the kicker.
Michigan extends its lead
-Q3 12:25: Not long after, Michigan finds the end zone. Kalel Mullings hits it from a meter away. They are now 21-13 up.
-Q3 2:49: First play of the half goes 60 yards on a run by Donovan Edwards.
Second half is running
Michigan gets the ball to start the second half.
First half stats
McCarthy: 7-11, 90 yards, 2 TDs
Edwards: 11 rushes, 37 yards
Bell: 2 catches, 36 yards
Schoonmaker: 2 catches, 16 yards, TD
Loveland: 1 catch, 25 yards, TD
Halftime: Michigan leads Purdue 14-13
-Q2 0:51: Michigan goes three-and-out so Purdue gets another shot to lead with all three timeouts before halftime.
Purdue kicks another field goal
-Q2 1:23: Purdue has to settle for three again. Not a good decision from O’Connell in third place, throwing himself into double cover. The field goal is good and it’s 14-13.
Michigan takes back the lead
-Q2 7:05: McCarthy to Luke Schoonmaker for the 7-yard TD. Michigan takes the lead, 14-10.
– Q2 9:50: Michigan had to settle for three, but Purdue was sidelined in 4th and 6th to put it in 4th and 1st, and Michigan brought the offense back on the field and got the first down.
Purdue takes the lead
-Q2 13:39: Purdue has to settle for three after a bad trade causes a fumble on the 2nd down. The 33-yarder is good and Purdue has a 10-7 lead.
End of Q1: Purdue and Michigan were at 7
-Q1 1:55: Purdue responds with a three-and-out of his own. And they run a fake punt that’s successful. Payne Durham runs for first down.
-Q1 3:11: Michigan goes three-and-out. McCarthy had Ronnie Bell in the seam and Bell just couldn’t catch it. Straight from his fingertips.
Purdue captivates it
-Q1 4:54: Purdue responds with an impressive 92-yard drive. Devin Mockobee hits it from a meter away. We’re tied at 7.
Michigan strikes first
-Q1 9:11: Michigan scores first. McCarthy to Colston Loveland for a 25-yard TD pass. 7-0
-Q1 10:44: The call is lifted. That took a long time, but I think they got the call right on the field. Still hard to tell on playback. 2nd place for Michigan.
-Q1 10:44: Purdue challenges a catch by Roman Wilson. Decided a catch in the field. Difficult to say on repeat.
-Q1 12:59: Aidan O’Connell is fired by Jaylen Harrell in third and Purdue goes three-and-out.
Michigan wins the toss and postpones until the second half. Purdue gets the ball first. Here we go.
EN Mike Morris will not play tonight due to a lower leg injury. RB Donovan Edwards will play but still has that cast on his right hand.
Michigan is likely in the college football playoff regardless of what happens Saturday night against Purdue in the Big Ten Championship game, but better safe than sorry.
Running back Blake Corum is out tonight, but last week Michigan proved they can win without him. Michigan will once again have to rely on the big game against a Purdue defense ranked 33rd nationally in yards per game.
Of course, this will be a virtual home game for Purdue, since West Lafayette is just over an hour’s drive from Indianapolis on Interstate 65. If it has an edge in this game, it’s that.
Follow here for live updates from Detroit News contributor Matthew Scheidel.
Big Ten Championship
No. 2 Michigan vs. Purdue
▶ Kicking off: Saturday, 8 p.m., Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis
▶ TV/Radio: FOX/97.1FM
▶ Records: Michigan 12-0; Purdue 8-4
▶ Line: michigan to 16