Michigan blog recap: Wolverines rout Hawaii, 63-3

Geoff Robinson
The Detroit News
Chris Evans picks up yards in the first half.

Despite an early interception from starting quarterback Wilton Speight, the result was never in doubt as Michigan dominated on both sides of the ball in route to a 63-3 drubbing of Hawaii.

The defense kept the Warriors in negative yardage and without a first down until the final drive of the first half. It kept Hawaii off the scoreboard until the start of the fourth quarter, when it took a 55-yard field goal from Rigoberto Sanchez to net the Warriors' first points of the game.

After Speight dusted off the early pick, he threw for three touchdowns and 145 yards on 10-for-13 passing.

Freshman Chris Evans was the surprising leader of the Michigan backfield, carrying the ball eight times for 112 yards and two scores. In total, the Wolverines piled up 307 yards on the ground compared to just 81 for Hawaii.

Amara Darboh, Jake Butt and Grant Perry were the recipients of Speight's touchdown throws.

Channing Stribling and Delano Hill both returned interceptions for scores during the rout.

The Wolverines offense outgained Hawaii, 513-232, with a lot of that yardage for the Warriors coming in a fourth quarter that took place with the game well in hand.

O'Korn out, Morris in

Shane Morris has taken over at quarterback for the Wolverines after John O'Korn led a touchdown drive powered by the run game.

Morris was allowed to open it up a little more, completing four pass for 47 yards and rushing for a first down inside the 10 with some nifty footwork.

Karan Higdon finished the drive off with a five-yard touchdown run to make it 63-3 with 7:15 remaining.

Michigan has scored a touchdown on seven consecutive drives.

Warriors get on the board

Marcus Kemp reeled in a 25-yard reception and Hawaii got into Michigan territory once again. The defense held strong, but Warriors kicker Rigoberto Sanchez busted out his big leg, drilling a 55-yard field goal to his team on the board.

With 12:30 left to play, it's now 56-3, Michigan leads.

Second stringers lead TD drive

Michigan nickeled and dimed its way down the field and fullback Khalid Hill finished it off with a four-yard touchdown run to stretch the lead to 56-0 with 18 seconds remaining in the third quarter.

Karan Higdon notched a 19-yard gain on the drive and freshman Eddie McDoom had a 19-yard end-around and an eight-yard reception.

John O'Korn was 3-for-3 on the drive for 16 yards.

Defense keeps shutout intact, O'Korn enters

Dru Brown used his arm and feet to get Hawaii down to the Michigan 25, but a run up the middle on fourth-and-short probably wasn't the best route to go, as Michigan stuffed the attempt and took the ball back for its offense.

John O'Korn has entered the game at quarterback for the Wolverines.

Michigan "picks" on new Hawaii QB

New Hawaii quarterback Dru Brown came into the game and threw an interception on his first pass that was called back thanks to a roughing the passer penalty. Well, three plays later, Channing Stribling made amends for his teammates mistake, taking a Brown pass to the house for Michigan's second pick-six of the day.

It's 49-0 with 10:51 to play in the third quarter.

Guess who?

Chris Evans got to the second level of the Hawaii defense and just took off, reeling off a 43-yard touchdown run for the second score of his young career to give the Wolverines a 42-0 lead on the first possession of the second half

Evans now has 112 yards and two touchdowns on eight carries.

I expect we'll see a lot more freshmen on the field and maybe even have a John O'Korn sighting in the near future.

Halftime stats

Michigan 35, Hawaii 0

Total yards: Michigan 280, Hawaii 86

Rush yards: Michigan 157, Hawaii -2

Pass yards: Michigan 123, Hawaii 88

First downs: Michigan 15, Hawaii 5

Hawaii gets on the board

Marcus Kemp reeled in three catches for 58 yards on the drive and Ikaika Woolsey looked prepared to lead the Warriors to the end zone after getting down to the Michigan 3-yard-line. After a bad snap and a big sack derailed those plans, Michigan was about to get off the field before a roughing the passer penalty gave Hawaii a fresh set of downs from inside the 10. Two incompletions later, the Warriors were about to settle for a 26-yard field goal attempt from Rigoberto Sanchez until the referees announced an intentional grounding penalty that ran the final two seconds off the clock and sent the game to halftime with Michigan leading, 35-0.

Hawaii picked up its first first down of the day and appeared to shoot itself in the foot with a 15-yard penalty for chop blocking on the very next play. Woolsey was able to hit Kemp with back-to-back big-gainers to get the Warriors inside the Michigan 35. Dylan Collie then reeled in his third catch of the drive to get down to the Wolverines 15.

The young gun is doing work

Chris Evans is the unlikely leader of the Michigan backfield right now, and now he's notched the first rushing touchdown of the season for the Wolverines, using his speed an nifty footwork along the sidelines for an 18-yard touchdown that gives Michigan an insurmountable 35-0 lead with 6:07 to play in the first quarter.

Evans has 69 yards and a touchdown on seven carries. Again, he's a freshman.

In Hawaii's previous drive, Ikaika Woolsey scrambled on third down and came up just short of the first down, forcing Hawaii, who hadn't picked up a first down all day, into a tough decision just short of their own 35-yard-line and trailing by four touchdowns. Coach Nick Rolovich decided it wasn't worth it to go for it, punting the ball back to the Wolverines.

Pick-six adds to defense's big start

The good news for the Hawaii offense is that things can't get much worse. After opening its drive with a delay of game penalty, Hawaii actually reeled off a five-yard run, but that's where the good times ended. Delano Hill picked off Warriors quarterback Ikaika Woolsey and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown.

With 10:36 to play in the first quarter, it's Michigan 28, Hawaii 0.

The train just keeps on rolling

After the defense forced another three-and-out, the offense went back to work, taking over at the Warriors 48-yard-line.

Chris Evans reeled off a 22-yard run to get the Wolverines down to the 11. Two plays later, Wilton Speight threw his third touchdown pass of the day, a five-yard strike to Amara Darboh, who was wide open in the back of the end zone.

That was a six-play drive that took less than three minutes. The Wolverines are rolling on both sides of the ball right now, outgainer Hawaii, 214 to -16.

Jourdan Lewis on the sidelines

Michigan standout cornerback Jourdan Lewis is dressed with helmet in hand, but he has not taken the field through the first quarter. There's no word yet on why Lewis isn't playing.

At the end of the first quarter, Michigan leads, 14-0. The Wolverines defense has been on fire, holding the Warriors to -17 yards in the opening frame.

Strong run game leads touchdown drive

After getting its passing game in order on the last possession, Michigan decided to do a little work on the ground, picking up 43 yards in the run game before Wilton Speight found Jake Butt for a 19-yard touchdown.

With 1:25 left to play in the first quarter, Michigan leads, 14-0.

De'Veon Smith ran twice for 16 yards, Ty Isaac ran once for 12 and freshman Chris Evans got three carries for 15 yards.

Receivers carry the load to take early lead

Wilton Speight's timing may have been a little off to start the game, but when in doubt, he found his pair of veteran receivers and moved the Wolverines down the field and to a 7-0 lead over Hawaii.

At the end of the drive, however, it was sophomore Grant Perry that hauled in a 12-yard touchdown pass.

Jehu Chesson turned in a 16-yard reception, a 21-yard reception and an end around for 15 yards. Amara Darboh had the biggest gainer of the drive, hauling in a quick-hitter and taking it 31 yards into Warriors territory.

The Wolverines moved 98 yards in less than five minutes. Speight appeared to find a groove as things got cooking.

Defense flexes its muscles...again

Hawaii started on the Michigan 38, but they weren't able to do anything. In fact, they went backwards again, netting -2 yards on the possession.

The Michigan secondary is glued to the Hawaii receivers right now. Ikaika Woolsey is going to have to throw passes with pinpoint accuracy today if the Warriors are going to get anything done against the Wolverine defense.

After the punt, Michigan takes over at its own 2-yard-line.

Speight in at QB, off to rough start

Wilton Speight came onto the field as the new Michigan starting quarterback and threw an interception on the Wolverines' first play of the game.

Not the start Jim Harbaugh envisioned her his quarterback, I'm sure.

Defense off to a fast start

Well, the Michigan defense is off to a good start.

Don Brown announced his presence as defensive coordinator by sending out a group that didn't give up a single yard on Hawaii's first possession. In fact, Hawaii lost a yard on its first possession.

Jim Harbaugh 2.0

Year two is about ready to kickoff in Ann Arbor, and Jim Harbaugh and Co. are expecting big things from this year's seventh-ranked Wolverines.

With loads of returning talent all over the field, the one question fans have coming into today is who will be the starting quarterback? Will it be Houston transfer John O'Korn or junior Wilton Speight, who guided the team to a dramatic victory at Minnesota last Halloween?

A lot of people assume it doesn't matter who the quarterback is, as Harbaugh proved last year that he can work his magic with the most unheralded of signal callers, turning Jake Rudock into a sixth round NFL draft pick.

Today's matchup with Hawaii shouldn't prove to be much of a challenge, as the Warriors are coming off a lengthy trip to Australia, where they dropped their opening game, 51-31, to California. Running back Paul Harris is the biggest offensive weapon on the team, and if Hawaii is to have any prayer, they'll have to be able to run the ball and bleed some clock.

The Wolverine defense should be prepared, however, as many have pegged it as one of the best in the nation. How the team uses multi-dimensional star Jabrill Peppers will be interesting to watch. He could also get some run on offense, but with such an easy schedule early in the season, it may be wise for Harbaugh to save those tricks for later in the season.