After a surprising first quarter in which both the Spartan and Wolverine defenses controlled the game, both offenses broke out as expected in the second quarter.
Michigan took a 3-0 lead on a 34-yard Seth Broekhuizen field goal, but then the game opened up. The Spartans and Wolverines traded touchdowns midway through the quarter, resulting in a 14-10 Michigan lead. But the powerful MSU running game asserted itself from there, highlighted by a 41-yard touchdown run by Le’Veon Bell that gave the Spartrans a 17-14 lead. Dan Conroy added a 38-yard field goal to stretch the MSU lead to seven points.
The Wolverines had a chance to cut the lead to four before the half. Denard Robinson connected with Martavious Odoms for a 48-yard pass with three seconds remaining in the first half. But MSU blocked a 42-yard field goal attempt by Broekhuizen.
MSU’s defense has largely kept Michigan’s running game in check. Robinson gained only 49 yards on 12 carries in the first half, while tailback Michael Shaw added 42 yards on five carries.
Robinson has thrown for 140 yards, completing 11-of-15 passes with one touchdown. But a first quarter interception by MSU’s Trenton Robinson in the end zone killed a chance for Michigan to take an early 7-0 lead.
For the Spartans, Edwin Baker has rushed for 90 yards on eight carries, including a 61-yard touchdown run. Bell has carried twice for 44 yards.