Andrel Anthony, a true freshman from East Lansing, made his presence felt early for Michigan football against Michigan State.
The Michigan football team got the ball at its own two-yard line following an interception against Michigan State and it didn’t feel like a great situation.
Facing a third-and-five, Cade McNamara, the quarterback many Michigan football fans wanted to be benched in favor of five-star freshman J.J. McCarthy, recognized Michigan State was in man-to-man coverage and threw a dart to Anthony, who did the rest, taking it 93 yards for Michigan’s longest offensive play in 14 years.
This game is known for big plays especially early on. Michigan State set the tone last season with big plays down the field and back in 2018, Michigan football set the tone when Donovan Peoples-Jones scored a long touchdown and did the Paul Bunyan pose.
Anthony didn’t do that and obviously, there is a long way to go but for a team that is known for running the football, it’s hard to imagine a better start.
And for Anthony, it has to feel sweet. He’s from East Lansing and was rated as a three-star recruit. He was expected to choose Michigan State, but Michigan football made a strong push for him and landed his commitment.
He was also one of the guys practicing late after road trips to Wisconsin and Nebraska, throwing passes at 4 a.m. with McCarthy.
It looks like practice does make perfect and it’s hard to imagine a better way for Michigan football to start against Michigan State in the biggest game of the season.
The play also reminded me of another long touchdown pass to Mario Manningham against Notre Dame in 2006. That was the last time U-M beat a top-10 team and the Wolverines are off to a great start Saturday.