No. 15 Michigan hangs on for 48-41 win over Indiana in 2OT
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) -- Michigan quarterback Jack Rudock kept finding ways to get things done when Indiana couldn't.
The fifth-year senior kept the Wolverines' Big Ten title hopes alive by forcing overtime with a touchdown pass with two seconds left in regulation, then threw two more on back-to-back plays. He finally got to celebrate when Indiana's Mitchell Paige couldn't hang onto a fourth-down pass at the goal line that would have forced a third overtime and No. 15 Michigan hung on for a 48-41 victory on Saturday.
The Wolverines (8-2, 5-1 Big Ten, No. 14 CFP) have won three straight since losing to rival Michigan State - but none was as nerve-wracking as this unexpected challenge.
Michigan entered the weekend with the nation's best scoring defense and third-best run defense.
But Indiana's Jordan Howard carried 35 times for 238 yards and two scores and almost led the Hoosiers (4-6, 0-6) to their first upset of a top 15 team since 2006. He scored on a 24-yard run with 2:52 left in regulation, then plunged in for the 2-point conversion to give the Hoosiers a 34-27 lead.
That was too much time for Rudock, whose 41-yard pass to Jehu Chesson got Michigan to the Indiana 2-yard line with 1:11 to go. On fourth-and-goal, Rudock hooked up with Chesson on a 5-yard TD pass to force overtime.
After Howard made it 41-34 on a fourth-down plunge from just outside the goal line, Ruddock threw a 21-yard TD pass to Jake Butt to force another overtime before finding Amara Darboh for a 25-yard TD pass on the first play of the second overtime to give Michigan the lead.
Indiana got to Michigan's 2-yard line on fourth-and-goal. But Paige bobbled the pass from Nate Sudfeld and safety Delano Hill knocked it away to preserve the win.
Michigan has now won 20 consecutive games in this series and still has not lost to Indiana since 1987.
The Hoosiers have lost six straight since winning their first four and have lost four times during that skid to top 15 teams.
Rudock finished 33 of 46 for 440 yards with a Michigan-record six touchdowns. Chesson caught 10 passes for 207 yards and four scores - all career bests - and his touchdown total tied the school's single-game record set by Derrick Alexander in 1992.
Howard demolished a defense that came into the game allowing just 80.6 yards rushing per game, while Sudfeld went 20 of 34 for 220 yards and one touchdown in his final college home game. Paige scored on a 51-yard punt return early in the third quarter and became the first Indiana player with two punt returns for TDs in one season in 25 years.