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TCU shocks Michigan, becomes first Big 12 team to make CFP title game

GLENDALE, Ariz. — In the biggest upset since the college football playoffs began, No. 3-seeded TCU placed underdog status after beating undefeated No. 2 Michigan 51-45 in Saturday’s Fiesta Bowl. embarked on. The win continued TCU’s storybook season, making the Frogs the first Big 12 team to reach the title game during the CFP era.

A semifinal matchup highlighted by a 44-point third quarter between the two teams saw TCU lose an early 18-point lead, a pair of pick sixes, two fumbles and nearly 76 yards before and after. It was an event. A touchdown pass, he scored eight in just about eight minutes, a record 59-yard field goal, and the highest total scored in Fiesta Bowl history.

There were early signs of an explosive game. Injured Blake He started in place of Colm Donovan His Edwards stole a 54-yard run on the first play of the game, but the Reds scored a 4th-down try near his zone. was stopped, the Wolverines walked away with zero his points.

On Michigan’s next offensive drive, quarterback JJ McCarthy threw a Telegraph pass to the outside, which was picked up by sophomore safety Bud Clarke and returned for a touchdown. It was the Frogs’ third pick 6 of the season and they took a 7–0 lead.

The Frogs’ defense dominated the first half as Michigan entered the TCU red zone three times and scored just nine points on three field goals thanks to two big stops and a fumble on the 1-yard line by Edwards. was. .

Meanwhile, the TCU attack took advantage of the pace and speed of the air raids to move forward. A 12-play, 76-yard drive culminated in quarterback Max Duggan rushing into the endzone from the 1-yard line to make the Frogs 14–0 in the first quarter. Under coach Jim Harbaugh, Michigan allowed him over 14 points in the first quarter, and he only won once against Colorado in 2016, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.

On the other side of the ball, Heisman runner-up Duggan was going all out while Michigan couldn’t capitalize. Duggan wasn’t particularly accurate in the first half aerial battle, but danced on his feet to the first down and continued to push TCU downfield as the Wolverines struggled to ease his mobility.

No play showed that problem more than when Duggan came out of the pocket with 4:56 left in the second quarter to avoid a Michigan blitz and find Tay Barber for 6 yards and another 6 points. The touchdown he culminated in a 10-play, 83-yard drive that gave the Frogs a commanding 21-6 halftime lead that he had and pushed the Wolverines to their biggest deficit of the season.

Both teams came out of the tunnel after halftime like they were shot out of the cannon, combining a 44-point third quarter for a flea-flickering touchdown from McCarthy, a game from Michigan quarterback ‘s second pick 6, another Duggan and three touchdown drives in under three minutes.

McCarthy and Michigan, who had two of those drives, weren’t apart. But just as Wolverine was about to fight back, TCU continued to respond. did. The Frogs scored him 41 points in his three quarters. Over the entire season, the maximum points Michigan gave up in an entire game was 27, and back in last season, the maximum points the Wolverines surrendered in a game was 37.

After Michigan cut TCU’s lead to three points early in the fourth quarter, Duggan responded by throwing the game, as he has done all season. While facing an electrifying defender in his face and a long third down, Duggan found Quentin Johnston’s cross in stride. Johnston sped to the sidelines and until the end his zone he took 76 yards to put the Frogs back to his 10.

Another methodical Michigan touchdown drive by McCarthy again cut the lead, this time at 6 points with 3:18 remaining, setting the stage for TCU and Duggan. Frogs needed his two downs in the first to get the ball and end the game. They could only get one of his, and the Wolverines did a miracle by moving 75 yards in his 52 seconds.

With 25 seconds 4 and 10 with 35 seconds remaining, Michigan fumbled and recovered the ball, but it did not go past the first-down marker. His TCU assistant in the box upstairs his coach yelled, “Go Nutty!” All Duggan had to do was kneel down. The upset of the season, and the upset of the era, is completely over.


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