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Michigan smothers Maryland

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Desmond Morgan fits perfectly in the middle of a Michigan defense that is fulfilling its quest to be aggressive and ornery.

Morgan had nine tackles and an interception, part of a dominating defensive performance by the 22nd-ranked Wolverines in a 28-0 rout of Maryland on Saturday.

In winning its first Big Ten opener under coach Jim Harbaugh, Michigan (4-1, 1-0) picked off three passes and limited Maryland to 105 yards. It was the second straight shutout for the Wolverines, who have allowed a total of 14 points in their last four games.

“There’s definitely an attitude,” said Morgan, a senior inside linebacker. “There’s a D that we want to be, and that D is kind of nasty and mean and known for stopping the run and making big plays.”

The Wolverines checked all the boxes on that list in notching a second consecutive shutout for the first time since 2000.

Morgan intercepted a pass in the first quarter and was a major reason why the Terrapins (2-3, 0-1) finished with 29 yards rushing after averaging 196 over their first four games.

“Des Morgan, every time you looked up he was flying around, playing physical,” Harbaugh said.

Michigan led 6-0 at halftime before pulling away with two third-quarter touchdowns.

After Jake Rudock connected with Drake Johnson for a 31-yard score, wide receiver Jehu Chesson took an inside handoff and sprinted down the left sideline for a 66-yard TD.

That made it 21-0, a deficit way too formidable for Maryland to overcome.

Caleb Rowe went 8 for 27 for 47 yards and three interceptions before being replaced by Oklahoma State transfer Daxx Garman.