Braylon Edwards continued to solidify his status as possibly the top receiver in the country with six catches for 150 yards and a touchdown in No. 18 Michigan’s 30-17 win over No. 24 Iowa on Saturday in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Wolverines (3-1, 1-0 Big Ten) true freshman quarterback Chad Henne was solid in his Big Ten debut, throwing for 236 yards on 16-for-26 passing and the touchdown to Edwards. It was also his first interception-free game of the year.
On the ground, Mike Hart had 99 yards on 26 carries and a touchdown for Michigan.
The Hawkeyes (2-2, 0-1), on the other hand, had minus-15 yards rushing on the day. Starting running back Jermelle Lewis had 35 yards on 14 carries, but quarterback Drew Tate was constantly under pressure, losing 49 yards on 11 carries.
Through the air, Tate was 24-for-32 for 270 yards, with a pair of touchdowns and a pair of interceptions.
Michigan got five total turnovers off Iowa, who lost 44-7 last Saturday to Arizona State.
The Hawkeyes led 7-0 until early in the second quarter. But after a Garrett Rivas field goal, a 58-yard Henne-to-Edwards touchdown got the Wolverines offense going.
Henne’s one-yard run made the score 16-7 at halftime. A 7-yard Hart touchdown and a 25-yard interception return for a touchdown by Grant Mason rounded out the scoring for Michigan.
Purdue 38, Illinois 30
The Boilermakers stumbled but didn’t fall Saturday in Champaign, Ill. On the shoulders of quarterback Kyle Orton, No. 15 Purdue (3-0, 1-0) gutted out a closer-than-expected 38-30 win over the Illini (2-2, 0-1), who finished 0-8 in the Big Ten last year.
Orton, who has asserted himself as a strong Heisman Trophy candidate in the early weeks of the season, threw 35-for-50 for 366 yards and four touchdowns to make up for a vulnerable Purdue defense. He also ran for a touchdown early in the second quarter.
His favorite target for the day was Taylor Stubblefield, who hauled in 11 balls for 115 yards and three of Orton’s throwing scores.
On the other side, quarterback Jon Beutjer had a solid game for Illinois. Beutjer was 22-for-37 for 215 yards and three touchdowns.
The Boilermakers never trailed in the contest, but Illinois was either tied or within a touchdown for most of the first half.
Orton’s 34-yard touchdown pass to Stubblefield with 12:50 left in the fourth quarter made the score 38-23. Beutjer’s 26-yard touchdown to Jason Davis brought Illinois within eight points with less than five minutes to go, but the Illini would get no closer.
Wisconsin 16, Penn State 3
The Lions (2-2, 0-1) struggled mightily minus their top two quarterbacks in a 16-3 loss to the 20th-ranked Badgers Saturday in Madison, Wis.
Starter Zack Mills and backup Michael Robinson both left the game in the first quarter, leaving third-stringer Chris Ganter to struggle to a 5-for-22, 21-yard nightmare.
Mills injured his right shoulder on Penn State’s first offensive series. Robinson went to the hospital after a concussion took him out of the game later in the quarter.
The Lions offense managed just 157 total yards and was 1-for-13 on third down.
For Wisconsin (4-0, 1-0), fullback Matt Bernstein carried the ball 27 times for 123 yards to pace a slightly-more-impressive offense.
Bernstein got his chance with Anthony Davis out for the third straight week with an eye injury, Booker Stanley missing the second half with a foot injury and Jamil Walker hampered by a hurt shoulder.
The Wisconsin passing game was ineffective behind first-year quarterback John Stocco, who was 12-for-29 for 150 yards and two interceptions.
He rushed for a five-yard touchdown in the first quarter, and three Mike Allen field goals put the Badgers up 16-0 until late in the third quarter.
Michigan State 30, Indiana 20
The Spartans (2-2, 1-0) recovered from a 20-7 halftime deficit to defeat the improved Hoosiers 30-20 Saturday in Bloomington, Ind.
Michigan State quarterback Drew Stanton had considerably better luck running the ball than throwing it. He rushed 12 times for 134 yards and two touchdowns but threw two interceptions.
Indiana (2-2, 0-1) quarterback Matt LoVecchio was 12-for-22 for 153 yards, a touchdown and two picks, and the Hoosiers ground game struggled behind BenJarvus Green-Ellis, who had just 65 yards on 23 carries.
The teams combined were just 5-for-25 (20 percent) on third down. The Spartans racked up a total of 241 yards on the ground to the Hoosiers’ 105.
Indiana looked strong early in the nonconference season, including a 30-24 win over a top-25 team in Oregon. Consecutive losses to Kentucky and Michigan State, and a date with Michigan next week have them in trouble.
The Spartans are projected in the bottom half of the Big Ten after an 8-5 season last year.