Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Countdown to Kickoff - 25 days

October 9, 2004
Michigan 27 - Minnesota 24

There aren't too many times in my lifetime that Minnesota and Michigan faced off with the Gophers being the higher ranked team. In this 2004 match-up the Gophers were 5-0 and ranked 13th, Michigan was 4-1 and ranked 14th.
It was the first homecoming game after we moved into our house near the stadium. I think we had 15 people sleep here Friday night. And there must have been 50+ people here after the game since my Dad had gotten tickets for his sisters and some of their families for the first time.
Luckily all those people had something good to cheer about.
Michigan dominated all but the last 40 seconds of the first quarter. Trailing 10-0 Minnesota's Lawrence Maroney went 80 yards up the middle to put the Gophers within 3.
Michigan answered right back with a TD pass from Henne to Braylon.
After that the Gophers scored 17 straight points, taking over the middle third of the game and a 24-17 lead early in the 4th.
Henne, Edwards and Hart brought M back down the field, but a 6 minute drive stalled for a short Rivas field goal, Minnesota 24, Michigan 20 with about 8 minutes left.
Michigan's last hope started 87 yards away with just over 3 minutes on the clock. It didn't take long, with just under 2 minutes left, Henne hit Tyler Ecker on a short crossing pattern he broke free on the corner and turned it up for a 30 yard TD catch and run. The PAT gave M a 27-24 lead. The defense held and Michigan sneaked away with a tight victory on their way to a conference championship. Henne was so calm and cool on those last scoring drives, remember he was a freshman in 2004. Michigan had several close games during his run at QB. I believe Michigan won the majority of those because he was the better quarterback, not necessarily because M was the better team.

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