The performance of Michigan Wolverines quarterback Devin Gardner will determine whether the Wolverines will win the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl or not.
They will be taking on the red-hot Kansas State Wildcats. While the Wildcats finished the season winning five out of their last six, the Wolverines did the opposite, posting a 1-4 record in November. If the Wolverines want to win and finish their disappointing season on a high note, Gardner will need to be on top of his game. More specifically, he needs to be on top of his passing game.
Michigan’s running game is virtually nonexistent. Gardner has been most of their running game this season, and if the Wildcats put pressure on him and force him to run the ball instead of passing it, then the Wolverines won’t have much of a chance. If he can get the protection from his struggling offensive line, then he can make plays in the running and passing games.
He also needs to be careful of turnovers, which he struggled with early in the season but improved upon as the campaign went on with just one pick in the last six games.
His best receiving target is Jeremy Gallon. He has 80 catches this season for 1,284 yards and nine touchdowns. Gallon’s best game this season came against the Indiana Hoosiers when he set a Big Ten record with 14 catches for 369 yards. If Gardner can get the protection to connect with Gallon, the Wolverines have a good chance to win the game.
On the other end, the Wolverines’ defense needs to limit the big plays in the Kansas State passing game. If Gardner and the Wolverines can be successful in their passing game and limit Kansas State in that area, there is a good chance that the Wolverines could win the game and end their disappointing season on a good note.