TEMPE, Ariz. -- The Michigan running game struggled once again this season.
The Wolverines went with a platoon of running backs, but were unable to get any push against the Kansas State front seven, as the KSU walked away with the easy 31-14 victory over U-M Saturday night in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl.
On the evening, the Michigan rushing attack would gain 65 yards on 15 carries. The Wolverines two leading rashers were quarterback Shane Morris, who had 40 yards on four carries – all coming on a 43-yard scramble late in the fourth quarter – and tight end Devin Funchess’ 14 yards on two carries, both coming on reverses.
The Michigan running backs would finish the game with 8-yards on nine carries.
With no running game, the Wolverines offense became one-sided, said Michigan coach Brady Hoke.
“It's always a factor,” Hoke said on the lack of running game. “Then you get down, you know, 21 6, so you got to throw it a little more. That hurt also.”
Hoke continued: “I think running the football has got to be a premium for us, and we didn't do that well enough. Then once we got down 21 6, we had to throw it a little more.”
Competing in his last game in a Michigan uniform, fifth-year senior offensive tackle Taylor Lewan said it “tough” seeing the run game struggle in his last start.
“Yeah, it was tough,’ Lewan said. “I think we had the least amount of running plays in any game I think this year, which (offensive coordinator Al) Borges is a good coach, he knows what he's doing.”