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Oct. 24, 2009
ANN ARBOR Mich., October 24, 2009 - Penn State delivered its most complete performance of the season with an emphatic 35-10 victory at Michigan for its second consecutive decisive win over the Wolverines.
The Nittany Lions improved to 7-1 overall and 6-1 in road games over the past two seasons. Penn State held its sixth opponent to 10 points or less in the first eight games for the first time since the 1973 season. Penn State posted its second-highest point total in the Michigan series, trailing only the 46 points in 2008, to secure Joe Paterno's 390th career win.
The Nittany Lion defense was superb. Michigan entered the game leading the Big Ten in scoring at 37.3 ppg and was held to a season-low 10 points, 27 below its average. The Lions held Michigan to a season-low 250 yards, 176 yards below its season total average of 426.6 ypg. After Michigan's initial drive of 70 yards, Penn State held the Wolverines to 96 yards on their next 11 possessions.
Michigan entered the game leading the Big Ten in rushing at 235.0 ypg, but was limited to 110 yards on 40 carries (2.8 avg.). After gaining 36 yards on their first possession, the Wolverines were held to 74 rushing yards the rest of the game.
Navorro Bowman made a game-high 11 tackles for his second double figure tackle game in the five full games he has played this year. He also had a sack, recovered a fumble in Penn State territory and grabbed his first interception of the season (second in career), returning it 13 yards into UM territory.
Sean Lee made three tackles in limited duty, increasing his career tackle total to 276, good for No. 6 in school history. He moved past Brandon Short (273), Shane Conlan and John Skorupan (274). Josh Hull made 10 tackles, including 2.5 TFL for minus-10 yards, for his sixth double figure tackle game of the season.
Daryll Clark was superb in directing the Nittany Lions to their first win in Ann Arbor since 1996. He was 16 of 27 for 230 yards, with a career-high tying four touchdown passes and no interceptions. He threw touchdown passes of 10, 60, 11 and 17 yards, leading Penn State to 396 yards, 34:38 in time of possession and its most points at Michigan Stadium.
Clark has thrown eight touchdown passes and only one interception in the last four games, all Penn State wins.
On a beautiful 60-yard scoring strike to Andrew Quarless, Clark became Penn State's career leader with 55 touchdowns responsible for (36 passing, 19 rushing). Clark posted his 11th career game with 200-plus passing yards tying him for third all-time in the school record books. Penn State is 10-1 when Clark passes for at least 200 yards.
Graham Zug made a career-high three touchdown catches on the day, the first Penn State player to catch three in a game since Deon Butler vs. Michigan State last season. Zug had five catches for 59 yards. Derek Moye tied his career-high with six receptions for 53 yards.
Evan Royster gained 100 yards on 20 carries for his 10th career 100-yard rushing game (fourth this season). The Nittany Lions are 10-0 when Royster hits the century mark. He also made two catches for 24 yards.
The Wolverines took the game's first possession 70 yards in 11 plays to grab a 7-0 lead. Brandon Minor scored from one yard out with 3:49 elapsed in the contest.
The Nittany Lions took their first possession 63 yards on just four plays to knot the score. Daryll Clark connected with Derek Moye on a pass for a first down and then Evan Royster burst through the right side for a season-long 41-yard game to the Michigan 8. On second down, Clark hit Graham Zug in the end zone to complete the 1:56 drive. Collin Wagner's PAT kick made it 7-7 with 9:17 left in the first period.
Penn State forced a punt on Michigan's second possession and immediately was on the move. An 18-yard completion from Clark to Zug took the ball to the UM 47. An eight-yard completion to Moye took the ball to the 17. Wagner connected on a 34-yard field goal to make it 10-7 with 3:58 left in the first period. Navorro Bowman grabbed his first interception of the season, returning it to the UM 40. But, the Lions were forced to punt. With Michigan backed up on its own two-yard-line, a shotgun snap to Tate Forcier sailed through the back of the end zone with 4:39 left in the half, giving Penn State a 12-7 lead. The safety was the Nittany Lions' first since Jared Odrick's safety vs. the Wolverines last year.
Graham Zug returned to free kick to the PSU 40. On first down, Clark hit Andrew Quarless in stride and he broke free for a 60-yard score to make it 19-7 with 4:26 left in the half. The catch was the longest of his career and he finished with two receptions for a career-best 91 yards.
Michigan kicked a field goal with :09 left in the half to make it 19-10.
The Nittany Lions took the second half kickoff and quickly extended their lead. Chaz Powell took the kickoff 54 yards, a season-long for Penn State. On first down , Clark hit Quarless on a 31-yard catch and run. Clark then hit Zug in the end zone from 11 yards out to make it 25-10 with 12:48 left in the third quarter. Clark's two-point pass was incomplete.
The defense then forced its second turnover, as Josh Hull and Bani Gbadyu combined on a fumble hit that Nick Sukay recovered at the UM 22. On second down, Clark rifled a 17-yard scoring strike to Zug with 7:55 left in the third stanza. Wagner's PAT kick made it 32-10.
Later in the quarter, Jeremy Boone had just his second career punt blocked, giving the Wolverines the ball inside the Penn State 30. But, Jack Crawford forced Carlos Brown to fumble and Bowman pounced on the pigskin at the Penn State 20.
After another Michigan punt, the Lions took possession at their own 20 late in the third period. Penn State proceeded to take 10:06 off the clock, using 18 plays to advance to the UM 12, where Wagner connected on a 29-yard field goal to conclude the scoring. The drive was Penn State's second scoring drive of more than 10:00 this season.
Penn State was 5 of 5 in the Red Zone vs. the Wolverines and is 22 of 22 inside the 20 the past six games with 17 touchdowns and five field goals.
Penn State visits Northwestern on Saturday, Oct. 31 for the first meeting between the schools since 2006 . Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. CT/4:30 p.m. ET at Ryan Field in Evanston and will be televised by ESPN and heard on the Penn State Sports Network and www.GoPSUsports.com The Wildcats are 5-3 (2-2 in Big Ten) after their last minute, 29-28, win over Indiana, rallying from a 28-3 deficit.