One week after losing at home to Illinois, Michigan almost got beat by Indiana at Bloomington, Ind.
The 15th-ranked Wolverines withstood the upset bit and won, 34-31, by batting down a desperation pass in the end zone on the game’s final play Saturday.
After Michigan’s Hayden Epstein kicked a 20-yard field goal with 18 seconds left to play, Indiana quarterback Antwaan Randle El had time to run two plays and get in position for a long pass into the end zone intended for Jerry Dorsey.
Michigan, 6-2 overall and 3-2 in the Big Ten Conference, avoided losing a third consecutive regular-season game for the first time since 1967. The Wolverines lost to Michigan State two weeks ago.
Michigan’s Anthony Thomas had career highs of 42 carries and 197 yards.
Indiana (4-5, 3-3), losing its 10th in a row to Michigan, battled from a 17-0 second-quarter deficit to lead, 24-17, on a nine-yard pass from Randle El to Dorsey with 12:06 to play.
After the Wolverines took a 31-24 lead on a four-yard run by Thomas, Randle El, who threw for four touchdowns to set a school record of 16 for the season, kept the upset bid alive by hooking up with Dorsey for a 70-yard touchdown pass play with 4:59 left to make it 31-31.
A 15-yard face mask penalty on an incomplete pass and a holding penalty helped set up Michigan’s winning field goal.
No. 11 Wisconsin 35, Northwestern 19--The Badgers, who had 1,065 total yards in their previous two games, managed only 296 against the Wildcats but still won at Evanston, Ill.
Ron Dayne rushed for 162 yards and two touchdowns for Wisconsin (7-2, 5-1), and Jamar Fletcher returned an interception 93 yards for a score.
Wisconsin, which had allowed only a total of 350 yards in its last two games in routs of Michigan State and Indiana, gave up 347 to Northwestern (3-5, 1-4).
Wisconsin won its fifth consecutive game and remained one game behind unbeaten Penn State in the conference race.
No. 18 Purdue 33, Minnesota 28--Coach Glen Mason got booed twice, first for playing it safe and then for risking it all, as his Golden Gophers (5-3, 2-3) lost to the Boilermakers (6-3, 3-3) at Minneapolis.
Mason ran out the final two minutes of the first half and then tried an onside kick with nearly three minutes left in the game.
Purdue quarterback Drew Brees, who completed 28 of 41 passes for 283 yards and two touchdowns and gained 51 yards on seven rushes, took a knee three times in the waning seconds of the game.
No. 21 Ohio State 41, Iowa 11--The Buckeyes (6-3, 3-2) won by the biggest margin this season as they coasted past the Hawkeyes (1-7, 0-5) at Columbus, Ohio.
Ken-Yon Rambo caught seven passes for 179 yards, scored one touchdown and set up two others to key Ohio State’s offense. The defense did its part by intercepting three passes.