Michigan football: 3 takeaways from first national title win since 1997

Michigan running back Donovan Edwards celebrates a touchdown against Washington during the first
Michigan running back Donovan Edwards celebrates a touchdown against Washington during the first / Junfu Han / USA TODAY NETWORK
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Michigan-Washington. 34. 485. Final. 13. 521

Rivals of Michigan football (me), shield your eyes. Michigan has won the national title for the first time since 1997 and it wasn't even really that close.

Michigan raced out to a 17-3 lead in the first half and everyone was ready to bury the Huskies, myself included. Things just didn't look good for Kalen DeBoer and Co. But things seemed to turn around quickly right before halftime as Washington scored to make it a 17-10 game and the Huskies got the ball back to start the second half.

However, an interception on the first possession by Michael Penix Jr. changed the trajectory of the game and all the momentum slipped toward the Wolverines.

From that point on, it was all Michigan en route to a 34-13 win at NRG Stadium in Houston.

Here are my takeaways from the Wolverines' national title win.

3. JJ McCarthy didn't need to do much

Coming into this game, all eyes were on JJ McCarthy. Would he be able to carry Michigan to a national title the way he did throughout the season to a Big Ten crown? Would he be able to clutch up the way he did against Alabama in the Rose Bowl?

Well, he didn't quite need to.

In fact, Michigan established the run from the get-go and it was all Blake Corum and Donovan Edwards from that point on. A 46-yard touchdown run by Edwards put the Wolverines on the board early and then he scored again shortly after to put Michigan up by two scores. After that, it was Blake Corum who reached the end zone and the game was out of hand thanks to the run game.

Edwards finished with 104 yards and two touchdowns on six carries and Corum had 134 yards and two scores on 21 carries. These two were the difference as McCarthy had just 140 passing yards on 10-of-18 completions. He didn't need to do much, but that's the theme of the season.