Grades Are In: Khaleke Hudson's Emergence Bodes Well For Linebackers

After a disappointing start to his junior season, Khaleke Hudson had his best game of the year.

Defensive Line - 4

Without Rashan Gary not in the mix (out with an injured shoulder), the defensive line was relatively quiet. Senior Chase Winovich told 97.1FM in Detroit that Maryland ran away from him on all but one snap he was in the game, reducing his opportunities to make an impact (he finished with just three tackles, none behind the line of scrimmage, after entering play with 6.4 stops per game and 2.1 TFL per game). The unit ended up finishing with just two tackles for loss and a single sack - about right on cue with what Maryland was allowing (5.8 and 2.3, respectively) but well below the Wolverines' season averages of 9.4 TFL and 3.2 sacks per contest. Still, this unit helped keep the Terrapins' ground game in check and put enough pressure on the QBs to keep their numbers way down (more on that in a minute).

Season Grade: 4.3.

Linebacker - 5

A Maryland offense averaging 206.8 yards rushing per game and 6.2 yards per carry was held to just 141 yards rushing and 4.0 yards per rush by Michigan's front seven, with the Terrapins picking up 101 of those yards in the fourth quarter when the game was well out of hand. U-M flat-out stuffed this UMD offense on the ground, led by inside linebackers Devin Bush (six tackles) and Josh Ross (four), but the story of the game was the return to form of junior Khaleke Hudson, who had his first two tackle-for-loss outing of the season among his five stops.

Season Grade: 4.0.

Secondary - 5

This wasn't a dynamic passing attack -- the Terrapins rank 111th nationally in pass efficiency -- but holding QBs Kasim Hill and Tyrell Pigrome to a combined 7 of 13 for 73 yards and a pick is spectacular. No wide receiver had any mojo going, DJ Turner led UMD with two catches but didn't get his second until the fourth quarter, and the unit avoided the dreaded pass interference penalty that has plagued it all season.

Season Grade: 3.5.

Special Teams - 4

For the first time all year, the special teams showed a crack, surrendering a 98-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. The unit got serious after that, allowing just 21 yards on two more returns while freshman kicker Jake Moody forced four touchbacks on his next seven kickoffs. The return game showed a little pizzazz with 26- (kickoff return) and 17-yard (punt return) gains of its own, while sophomore placekicker Quinn Nordin was 2 for 2 on field goals. Save one mistake -- and it was a biggie - the special teams were again an advantage for the Wolverines.

Season Grade: 4.7.

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