Michigan upsets Florida in Capital One Bowl

January 1, 2008 3:50:27 PM PST
Lloyd Carr went out a winner. Chad Henne threw for 373 yards and three touchdowns, Mike Hart ran for 129 yards and two scores and the Wolverines upset No. 9 Florida 41-35 Tuesday in the Capital One Bowl to win their first bowl game since 2003.

This one was special.

Michigan's senior class won its first bowl game in four tries and Carr ended his coaching career on a high note.

Henne, Adrian Arrington and Mario Manningham torched Florida's secondary all game. Arrington caught nine passes for 153 yards and two touchdowns, and Manningham added five catches for 78 yards and a score.

The Gators (9-4) kept it close thanks to four turnovers and plenty of big plays by Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow and speedster Percy Harvin.

Florida failed to convert a fourth-down play at its 25 yard line, and K.C. Lopata's 41-yard field goal put Michigan (9-4) ahead 41-35 with 2:21 remaining.

The Gators got another shot, but Tebow threw four straight incompletions to end any chance of a comeback.

The Wolverines dumped a bucket of water on Carr in the closing seconds, then players started jumping up and down and dancing around their retiring coach.

They also carried him to midfield. His players dropped him off and headed straight to the Michigan section for a raucous celebration - one they haven't had after a bowl game since beating Florida in the Outback Bowl.

"What they did in this game and this environment, well, I love them to death," Carr said.

Playing with a broken bone in his non-throwing hand and facing constant blitzes, Tebow was 17-of-33 passing for 154 yards and three touchdowns. He also ran 16 times for 57 yards.

Harvin ran 13 times for 165 yards and a touchdown, and caught nine passes for 77 yards and a score.

The Gators kept it close throughout thanks to Michigan's four turnovers.

Hart fumbled on the Florida 4 yard line in the second quarter, and Henne threw an interception near the goal line on the next possession.

Michigan started to pull away in the third. The Wolverines recovered the kickoff - a pooch kick the Gators couldn't field - and promptly marched to the 1. Hart's second rushing touchdown made it 28-14.

Tebow got Florida right back in it, though, driving the Gators 56 yards in 10 plays and capping it with a 1-yard scoring run.

Florida's defense continued to struggle, allowing Henne to move the Wolverines with ease. But Hart's second fumble - this one at the goal line - gave the ball back to Florida.

The Gators looked like they would stall, but coach Urban Meyer called for a fake punt on fourth-and-7 at the 23. Chas Henry threw to Aaron Hernandez for 15 yards, then Harvin gained 44 on a run and Tebow connected with Andre Caldwell for a 14-yard score that tied it up late in the third.

Michigan went ahead 31-28 early in the fourth, but another turnover gave the Gators great field position.

Henne's pass toward the left sideline was tipped by Jermaine Cunningham and intercepted by Mike Pouncey. Harvin scored on an end around five plays later to put the Gators up 35-31 with 5:49 to play. It was Florida's first lead since midway through the second quarter.

It also was short-lived.

Henne put the Wolverines ahead for good with his 18-yard strike to Arrington with 4:12 remaining. He was 3-for-3 passing for 61 yards on the four-play drive.