Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: Shane Morris Will Start for Michigan

Josh SachnoffContributor IIIDecember 26, 2013

Buffalo Wild Wings Media Day.
Buffalo Wild Wings Media Day.Photo Credit: Josh Sachnoff

Scottsdale, AZ—The Michigan Wolverines (7-5) will battle the Kansas State Wildcats (7-5) in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl on Dec. 28 at Sun Devil Stadium.

Much of the debate has been whether or not junior quarterback Devin Gardner will be able to start due to a turf toe injury. The injury could be worse than a simply turf toe injury, according to The Detroit News' Angelique Chengelis. 

Third-year coach Brady Hoke announced Thursday that true freshman Shane Morris will start at quarterback for the Wolverines. 

Morris has not started a football game since the beginning of his senior year of high school, and he has played in just two games for Michigan this season. 

In his two games against Central Michigan and Michigan State, Morris was five of nine for 65 yards and threw one interception. 

A big question is whether Morris would be able to run the same plays and game plan as Gardner. 

Morris stated, “I’m getting the full game plan that Coach Borges gives. Coach Borges is preparing me for that.” 

Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder will not change his game plan regardless of who starts at quarterback for Michigan.

"You don't change your preparation in regards to how you organize it," mentioned Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder. "What you work against is relying upon the opponent that you're going to play."

The Wolverine offense has struggled to get into the end zone for much of this year, and it could be in trouble against a talented Kansas State defense that is holding opponents to 23.7 points per game.

Morris will rely heavily on wide receivers Jeremy Gallon (1,284 receiving yards and nine TDs) and Devin Funchess (727 receiving yards and six TDs) in the passing game. 

Morris will need Fitzgerald Toussaint and Derrick Green to step up in the running game to take pressure off of the passing game as well. Getting small yardage on the ground on first and second down will benefit Morris when it comes to passing in short yardage situations on third down. 

Kansas State heads into the desert after winning five of its last six games, while Michigan has lost four of its last five games and hopes to avoid its first seven-win season since 2010.