Recap: Michigan vs Notre Dame 2018 - NinosCorner Sports | Efficient Sports Analytics...Successful, Relevant Data

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Recap: Michigan vs Notre Dame 2018

Recap:  Michigan vs Notre Dame
by B.R. Battle
Photo by Sporting News
If you did not watch this game, you were missing out on some great football.  Let me preface the analysis with saying that the numbers do not truly tell the story in this game.  The Michigan Defense was a below average bunch in the first half; however, their second half effort proved strong enough to hold the Fighting Irish offense to just 3 points over that time period.  Before we jump ahead to the defense, let's start with the offensive analysis.

Michigan's passing offense was more efficient than Notre Dame's throughout the game; however, Notre Dame excelled in completing explosive pass plays...5 plays to Michigan's 4, on a much smaller passing scale.  Notre Dame only attempted 24  passing plays, as opposed to Michigan's 38.  Of those 5 explosive plays, 2 of them resulted in Notre Dame touchdowns.  Additionally, the Notre Dame offense was aided in 3 costly penalties on 3rd downs by Michigan to extend 2 Notre Dame touchdown drives.
Although Michigan's passing offense was more efficient, their rushing offense was non-existent.  Michigan only tallied 58 yards on the ground at a 1.8 yards/carry rate.  Also, Notre Dame's star Quarterback, Brandon Wimbush's ability to make plays with his legs, was another clear advantage to the Fighting Irish.  Excluding sacks, Wimbush was able to amass 59 yards rushing (tops on his team) on 17 carries.

Although Notre Dame was able to get a 21-10 lead going into halftime, the Michigan defense shored itself up and dominated the Notre Dame offense in the second half.  The problem that existed was that the Michigan Offense could not capitalize on the great play of the defense.  During the second half, the Michigan offense a combination of 5 interceptions, fumbles, or turnover on downs.  Both defenses played well enough to win; however, Notre Dame's offense's explosive plays coupled with Michigan's 2nd half turnovers, was enough to tip the scales towards Notre Dame winning this contest.


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