Blake Corum was the backbone of Michigan’s offense throughout the 2022 season.
Ranked the nation’s top running back by PFF with a 96.1, Corum has rushed 245 times for 1,457 yards with 18 touchdowns and has caught 11 passes for 80 yards and one more score. He accounted for 30.9 percent of his team’s total offense.
But at the worst point of the season, a week before the rivalry showdown between No. 3 Michigan and No. 2 Ohio State, Corum was injured in the first half of the game against Illinois. He returned briefly for a carry in the second half but didn’t appear for the rest of the game.
Heading into Saturday, his status in what is essentially a win-and-get game for the college football playoffs was up in the air as he continues to nurse a knee injury.
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What’s new on his status? The Sporting News has all the information on whether he will play against the Buckeyes on Saturday.
Blake Corum latest news, injury status
In the days following his injury, there was much uncertainty about Corum’s status. As Corum delivered turkeys he bought with his ZERO money on Sunday, he said his knee was fine and he would be back, according to The Detroit News’ Angelique Chengelis.
UM’s Blake Corum is using his NIL money to donate turkeys for Thanksgiving in Ypsilanti for the second year running
To his knee: “It’s good. I’ll be fine. I’ll be back” pic.twitter.com/AeC5T7OzKB
— angelique (@chengelis) November 20, 2022
On Monday, coach Jim Harbaugh said he had no update on Corum’s status, according to MLive, but one player appeared to suggest Corum wouldn’t play the Buckeyes.
According to Eleven Warriors’ Griffin Strom, Wolverine’s tackle Ryan Hayes was asked how confident the offense would feel moving the ball if Corum was out, after which he said everyone “will just step up with him.”
Full quote from UM OT Ryan Hayes when asked about his confidence in offense if they had to play without Blake Corum:
“We planned it. He’s a great player but I think everyone else will just come out with him and I think we’re up to the challenge.”
— Griffin Strom (@Griffinstrom3) November 21, 2022
What is Blake Corum’s injury?
At 1:39 in the first half against Illinois, Corum was tackled on the touchline and immediately grabbed his left knee. He was able to leave the field under his own power and went to the dressing room after the coaches came out to look at him.
A significant game here:
Blake Corum loses fumble and leaves game with injury.
Let’s hope star Michigan RB is doing well. pic.twitter.com/AaRQ7nwAXg
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) November 19, 2022
Corum jogged onto the field after half-time and came up with a lone carry in the second half but didn’t return.
After the game, Harbaugh said his knee was structurally sound and he was cleared to return on Saturday and the team will see where he is physically on Sunday.
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Michigan RB depth chart
Aside from losing the starter running back, Corum’s injury could significantly weaken Michigan’s fast attack.
Donovan Edwards, the backup running back, left Michigan’s game against Nebraska early and didn’t play against Illinois. He is second on the team with 70 carries, 471 yards and four touchdowns on the ground with 14 receptions for 179 yards and two additional scores through the air. Harbaugh grouped Edwards with Corum on Monday without being informed of their injuries.
If neither Corum nor Edwards can play against Ohio State, true freshman CJ Stokes would be next in line to handle the bulk of the handoffs. He has 53 carries for 268 yards and one touchdown.
Only three other running backs have at least five carries in 2022, including junior Isaiah Gash (19 carries, 101 yards, two touchdowns), student Tavierre Dunlap (nine carries, 46 yards), and senior Danny Hughes (six carries, 35 yards).
The absence of the top two running backs would be a major blow to the Wolverines. Michigan ranks fourth nationally in rushing yards per game (243.82), and 32 of the team’s 51 total touchdowns came on the ground. Michigan’s passing offense ranks 99th in the country at 208.8 yards per game.