Michigan State shuts down rival Michigan
East Lansing, MI (SportsNetwork.com) - The 24th-ranked Michigan State Spartans showed why they have one of the best defenses in the nation on Saturday.
The Spartans limited the 23rd-ranked Michigan Wolverines to minus-48 rushing yards in a 29-6 victory.
"Lot of negative-yardage plays," Michigan coach Brady Hoke said. "We've had a lot of respect for their defense all week going in to this game."
The Michigan State defense hasn't allowed a touchdown in three straight games, having yielded just nine points over that stretch. On Saturday, the Spartans held the Wolverines to 168 yards of total offense.
The negative-48 yards on the ground for the Wolverines set a school record for the fewest in a single game. The previous mark was minus-46 against Minnesota in 1962.
"(The other team hasn't) scored a touchdown in the last three weeks, so we really have been dominant. In modern football, you just don't see that very often," said Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio.
Connor Cook completed 18-of-33 passes for 252 yards, one touchdown and an interception for the Spartans (8-1, 5-0 Big Ten), who have won five in a row. He also rushed for a touchdown.
Jeremy Langford carried the ball 26 times for 120 yards and a score for Michigan State. Bennie Fowler caught six passes for 75 yards and a touchdown.
It was the Spartans' most lopsided win in the series since 1967.
Devin Gardner connected on 14-of-27 passes for 210 yards and an interception for the Wolverines (6-2, 2-2). He carried the ball 18 times for minus-46 yards.
Jeremy Gallon was limited to five catches for 67 yards. He had 14 catches for 369 yards and two touchdowns in a 63-47 win over Indiana on Oct. 19.
The teams traded field goals to start the game. Michigan's Matt Wile made a 49-yard field goal, while Michael Geiger made a 40-yarder for Michigan State.
The Spartans got another field goal from Geiger in the early stages of the second quarter. Tony Lippett's 17-yard catch on 3rd-and-15 helped set up Geiger's 44-yard kick.
Following a punt from each team, Michigan started from its own 22-yard line with six minutes remaining. Jehu Chesson's 58-yard catch led to Brendan Gibbons' 39-yard field goal.
Michigan State responded with a 10-play, 75-yard scoring drive. Cook completed three passes of at least 10 yards to move the ball to the 14-yard line. Fowler followed with a touchdown catch to make it 13-6 with 23 seconds left.
Geiger started the second half with a 35-yard field goal.
Still holding a 10-point lead, Cook was intercepted by Raymon Taylor late in the third quarter. The Wolverines failed to capitalize and went three-and-out.
The Spartans essentially put the game away with a touchdown on their first series of the fourth period. Trevon Pendleton and Fowler caught passes of 13 and 25 yards, respectively, to move the ball to the 9-yard line. Cook's 1-yard TD run on 3rd-and-goal made it a 22-6 contest.
On the ensuing Michigan possession, Gardner was intercepted by Darqueze Dennard. Langford delivered the final blow with a 40-yard TD run.
Despite the loss, Michigan holds a 68-33-5 series advantage ... With a reception on the game's first play, Gallon extended his streak to 34 straight games with at least one reception ... Michigan State finished with seven sacks.
11/03 01:46:46 ET