Huskers lose big to Michigan in Big Ten opener

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ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) -- Karan Higdon ran for 136 yards and a touchdown in the first half to help No. 19 Michigan build a huge lead and it coasted to a 56-10 win over Nebraska on Saturday.

The Wolverines (3-1, 1-0 Big Ten) led 20-0 after the first quarter and 39-0 at halftime.

The Cornhuskers (0-3, 0-1) are off to their worst start since 1945. They have lost seven in a row dating to last season for the first time since 1957.

Michigan rested Higdon, who missed the previous game with an injury, in the second half. Quarterback Shea Patterson played only the first series of the second half, giving Dylan McCaffrey an extended opportunity to play.

Patterson was 15 of 22 for 120 yards with a 5-yard TD pass to Zach Gentry midway through the second quarter that put the Wolverines ahead 30-0.

Fullback Ben Mason ran for three touchdowns -- for a total of 6 yards -- to match the number of times he had scored previously.

Nebraska quarterback Adrian Martinez was cleared to play after missing last week's loss to Troy because of a knee injury. The freshman was 7 of 15 for 22 yards with an interception and he lost 12 yards rushing.

Martinez batted down the football from the end zone after his first attempt on a play was deflected back to him, giving Michigan a safety and a 39-0 lead.

While trailing 56-3, the Cornhuskers had lost more yards due to penalties (66) than they had gained on offense (61) early in the fourth quarter.

Nebraska finished with 39 yards rushing and 93 yards passing.

THE TAKEAWAY
Nebraska: First-year coach Scott Frost has quite a challenge ahead of him trying to turn around a once-proud program.

Michigan: Momentum is on the Wolverines' side after winning three straight games by lopsided scores after opening with a seven-point loss at Notre Dame.

POLL IMPLICATIONS
The rout and three straight wins may help Michigan move up a little in the poll.

UP NEXT:
Nebraska: Hosts Purdue, which was winless until beating No. 23 Boston College 30-13 for its largest margin of victory against a ranked team since 1999.
Michigan: Plays at Northwestern, which will have two weeks to prepare for the game after losing 39-34 to Akron. The Wildcats (1-2) opened the season with a 31-27 win over the Boilermakers.

Postgame Notes:
· The crowd of 111,037 is the third-largest ever to see a Nebraska football game, trailing only crowds of 113,18 (2011) and 112,204 (2013) in Nebraska’s two previous visits to Michigan Stadium. Today’s game marked the seventh time in school history Nebraska has played in front of a crowd of more than 100,000 fans.
· The loss gave Michigan a 5-4-1 edge in the all-time series between the schools, including a 4-2 edge in Ann Arbor.
· Nebraska dropped to 5-3 in Big Ten openers since joining the conference in 2011, including 1-3 in conference openers away from Lincoln.
· Sophomore cornerback Dicaprio Bootle had five pass breakups, setting a career high in breakups. The five breakups tie for the third-most pass breakups in a single game in Nebraska history and for the most by a Husker in a Big Ten Conference game. The last time a Nebraska player had five breakups came in 2012, when Stanley Jean-Baptiste had five breakups at Northwestern. Bootle has seven pass breakups through three games this season, one more than any Husker had during the 2017 season.
· Receiver Stanley Morgan Jr. caught three passes for 61 yards in the game. Morgan caught a pass for the 29th straight game and caught at least three passes for the 15th straight game.
· Junior linebacker Mohamed Barry had a second-quarter sack for the first sack of his career. Barry finished the game with a game-high 11 tackles, including a career-high three tackles for loss.
· Sophomore safety Deontai Williams recorded his first career interception in the fourth quarter.
· Junior running back Wyatt Mazour scored on a 3-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter, his first career touchdown.
· Freshman place-kicker Barret Pickering connected on a 35-yard field goal in the third quarter, his longest of the season.