All you need for a victory these days is a little magic. Michigan receiver Desmond "Magic" Howard was his ordinarily spectacular self in Saturday's 24-16 victory over Indiana at Michigan Stadium.
Howard scored all three Wolverine touchdowns, giving him 15 for the season. The first two catches were diving grabs in the end zone, and the third was a fingertip catch while being hit.
Howard provided additional fireworks with a 71-yard kickoff return. After Indiana had closed to within one, he caught the ensuing kickoff on the right side and followed the Michigan blocking wedge around the left sideline.
Eight plays later, Howard broke to the goalpost and made a leaping catch in double coverage for his third score.
"That doggone Desmond, he's a threat," Indiana coach Bill Mallory said. "I'm not saying he's got an 'S' on his chest, but he's damn near close."
As much as Howard's heroics, the defense won the game for Michigan (3-0 in the Big Ten, 5-1 overall). The Wolverines made some halftime adjustments, allowing the Hoosiers (2-1, 3-2-1) only a field goal in the second half.
The defense was not as effective in the first half. The much-improved Hoosiers' ball control game kept the Wolverine offense off the field for long periods of time.
The Indiana game plan also contributed to the Wolverines' difficulties. Often, the Hoosiers spread four receivers across the field, making coverage extremely tough.
Michigan's victory, combined with Illinois' loss, gives the Wolverines sole possession of first place in the Big Ten.
Text: Theodore Cox. Photos: Jeff Schrier/MHP.
If you've got photographs or other memorabilia of Michigan's past, please get in touch. MHP is especially interested in old pictures that you may have, even if you don't know what they are.