Michigan Wolverines Football: 'Cade McNamara Doesn't Get Enough Credit'
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Pat Fitzgerald: I Don't Think Cade McNamara Gets Enough Credit

Michigan football quarterback Cade McNamara led U-M to a 33-7 win over Northwestern, but it wasn't sexy. It was good enough to improve the Wolverines to 7-0, however, and he made a fan in Wildcats head coach Pat Fitzgerald.

McNamara's long throw was only 18 yards, and he completed 20 of 27 for only 129 yards. But he also led U-M to 12-for-20 conversions on third down and didn't turn it over.

"They were exactly what we thought they’d be ... real physical on both sides of the ball, two backs that are as good as anybody in the country," Fitzgerald said. "I don’t think their quarterback [McNamara] gets enough credit. I think he’s poised; I think he does a really good job taking what the defense gives him.

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Michigan Wolverines football quarterback Cade McNamara led U-M to a 33-7 win over Northwestern
Michigan Wolverines football quarterback Cade McNamara led U-M to a 33-7 win over Northwestern (AP Images)

"I think the receivers can take the top off. The tight ends are long, can run. Their back end can fly around — I love the way their back end plays. They’re in unison. They've got really talented guys in the kick game."

In short, Fitzgerald said, 'they were as advertised,' and he was the one who said earlier in the week the Wolverines would be the best team his had faced 'by far.' The Wolverines rushed for 294 yards on Saturday, led by Blake Corum's 19 carries for 119 yards and two touchdowns and Hassan Haskins' 23 carries for 111 yards and two scores, and that proved to be the difference.

“They’re the best rushing offense in the country for a reason,” Fitzgerald said. “They’ve got a great offensive line, really good tight ends, and they’ve got a two-headed monster at running back that’s as good or better than anybody in the country. They have great talent, great scheme, and they executed pretty darn well today."

He wasn't pleased with his team's tackling technique and gap fits, but he credited the Wolverines for their play. D.J. Turner's interception and Cornelius Johnson's blocked punt were huge plays in the game.

"Credit Michigan,” Fitzgerald said. “I thought they had a great second half, and they were able to take advantage of, quite frankly, some of our misfortunes — not protecting a punt, not tackling how we had in the first half, and then not being able to finish or sustain drives, putting our defense in a tough situation.

“I'm proud of the way our guys came up here to fight. Michigan is an outstanding football team. Credit Coach Harbs [Jim Harbaugh] and his staff. But we have a lot to play here for moving forward, and we’re going to need our students and our fans next week when we come back home.”

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