Chicago Sun-Times
with Mark Lazerus

Michigan's Denard Robinson injured against Bowling Green

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When Michigan's Denard Robinson combined fo 502 yards of total offense -- including 258 yards rushing on 28 carries -- in the Wolverines' 28-24 victory over Notre Dame on Sept. 11, his resiliency was almost as impressive as his physical ability. It might have seemed like only a matter of time before a quarterback running 29 times a game would get hurt, but maybe not with Robinson. The kid could take a hit.

The inevitable happened on Saturday, as Robinson left Michigan's game with Bowling Green with six minutes left in the first half after suffering an apparent injury to his left knee after being tackled near the sideline on a 47-yard run. 

Robinson had already rushed for 128 yards on five carries  -- scoring on runs of two and 47 yards -- and completed 4-of-4 passes for 60 yards as Michigan took a 21-0 lead.
The extent of his injury was not known early Saturday afternoon.

Robinson's carries have been an issue since the first game of the season, when he rushed for 197 yards on 29 carries in a 30-10 victory over Connecticut. After Robinson had 28 carries against Notre Dame, it came up again. Coach Rich Rodriguez was able to joke about it at that time.

I told you all last week, we can't be running him 29 times again. We ran him 28,'' Rodriguez said in the post-game press conference at Notre Dame Stadium. 'Had he not scored on the last play, he may have had 29.

''Denard getting tackled by third-level players and the secondary is not as bad as the big guys up front. Sometimes he got tackled by the big guys up front, but a lot of times today I think it was second- and third-level players. And he's fast enough that htey don't get a whole lot of straight-on shots on him, I hope.''

It was hard not to cringe at Rodriguez' flawed explanation. It's the indirect shots from second- and -third-level players moving at full speed that often do the most damage. I don't think it was some hulking defensive lineman who nailed Robinson 47 yards downfield today.

Hopefully, Robinson's injury is not serious. But if it is, it will part of a bizarre trend with Notre Dame ties: Each of the three teams that Notre Dame has played this season has suffered a key loss.

Purdue wide receiver Keith Smith -- who led the Big Ten in receptions and yardage last year -- suffered a season-ending knee injury against Western Illinois the week after playing Notre Dame. Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio suffered a heart attack hours after the Spartans' victory over the Irish in overtime last week. And now Denard Robinson --  the one that might have the biggest impact on the college football landscape.

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This page contains a single entry by Mark Potash published on September 25, 2010 12:49 PM.

TJ Jones committed to Irish, but still likes Harbaugh, Stanford was the previous entry in this blog.

Attention to detail: Dayne Crist on the spot for Notre Dame is the next entry in this blog.

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