State College, Pa. — So where does Michigan go now?
Logically, it moves on to its next game at home against Indiana.
Realistically, at the midway point of the season and two games into the Big Ten schedule, there are more flaws than probably most expect from a team that was unbeaten and ranked No. 18 before losing 43-40 in four overtimes Saturday at Penn State.
For the last several weeks, after his team barely edged lesser opponents Akron and UConn, Michigan coach Brady Hoke praised his team for its resiliency.
That resiliency was tested again Saturday night. And this time, after battling from a 21-10 halftime deficit to take a 10-point lead midway through the fourth quarter, Michigan failed to do what it had found a way to do all season — finish.
"It hurts," quarterback Devin Gardner said. "A lot of adversity happened in this game. We fought back. It just wasn’t enough."
Michigan couldn't find a way to hold the lead, slipped into a more conservative mode offensively, and it couldn't find a way to take advantage of opportunities in overtime.
"The biggest thing you take from it, we had all kinds of opportunities at every position," Hoke said. "As coaches, we had opportunities. We're all in this together, and we all have to make sure we're taking advantage and executing when those opportunities come."
Hoke doesn't finger point. But he was right that there were breakdowns throughout.
The process now is pretty simple. Examine, correct, recover and move on. That's easier said than done, especially with a younger team that can't seem to put together a complete game.
One of Hoke’s captains, Jake Ryan, said the right things after the game. Heads must stay up, there's a game against Indiana ahead. After that game, Michigan gets its second bye before a tough five-game stretch that kicks off at Michigan State.
Hoke knows how hard a loss like this can be.
"To lose in overtime, if you let it take a toll, it will," he said.
If there is an area that seems to be a clear-cut concern, it's the offensive line. It sustained a blow in the second half when All-American left tackle Taylor Lewan was knocked out of the game with an undisclosed injury.
That forced right tackle Michael Schofield to the left side, Erik Magnuson filled in at right tackle and Chris Bryant, in his second start at left guard, was replaced by Joey Burzynski.
"(We'd) better take a hard look at it," Hoke said of the offensive line. "It wasn't good enough, there's no question."
Michigan made a change to the offensive line combination coming out of the bye before last Saturday's game against Minnesota. Graham Glasgow moved to center from left guard, and Bryant replaced him at guard.
While Hoke said Lewan is OK, the offensive line as a whole is not.
"I don't think it's a toughness thing," Hoke said. "I think we have a hard time sometimes targeting at times, or combo-ing off the blocks well enough."
But it wasn't all about the offensive line. Opportunities were missed throughout, and a hole was dug early because of turnovers.
Still, the players seemed ready to move on.
"We’re not going to let this determine the rest of our season," senior receiver Jeremy Gallon said.
This will not be about a different sort of resiliency than the one Hoke had been talking about this season. Michigan found ways in previous games to finish and win. Now, the Wolverines are coming off a loss and must prove resilient in this situation.
"I was happy with how they kept fighting," Hoke said. "You can keep fighting, but you can fight a little better. You've got to make the punches count a little more."