Northwestern was seconds away from winning consecutive games at Michigan Stadium for the first time since the 1934 and 1936 seasons.
The Wildcats failed to take advantage of the historic opportunity.
Cornerback Daniel Jones couldn't knock down Devin Gardner's 53-yard heave to Roy Roundtree that set up Brendan Gibbons' 26-yard field goal with 2 seconds left that forced overtime.
Gardner then ran for a 1-yard touchdown — easily scoring on a bootleg to the outside — in overtime and his teammates on defense responded with a stop to give the Wolverines a wild 38-31 win over Northwestern on Saturday.
"We can hang our heads, but I think we are a pretty good football team," Wildcats coach Pat Fitzgerald said. "We just needed to make one more play."
It looked like Northwestern (6-4, 4-2 Big Ten) had done enough to beat the Wolverines (7-3, 5-1) and earn a win that would've improved its postseason positioning.
Illinois 17, Minnesota 3: It wasn't pretty, but Minnesota was good enough in a win over Illinois.
In a battle of sluggish offenses, Minnesota running back Donnell Kirkwood did most of the work, rushing for 152 yards and two touchdowns. Kirkwood's 3-yard run in the third quarter broke a 3-3 tie. He scored on a 12-yard run late in the fourth quarter to clinch the victory, giving his team its fourth straight win at Illinois.
Minnesota (6-4, 2-4 Big Ten) became bowl eligible for the first time since 2009, and won for the second time in three tries. Illinois (2-8, -6) has dropped seven straight including 12 in a row within Big Ten play.
The victory was the first Big Ten road win for second-year Minnesota coach Jerry Kill.
No. 18 Nebraska 32, Penn St. 23: Taylor Martinez threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Jamal Turner for Nebraska's first lead, and the Cornhuskers overcame a double-digit, second-half deficit for the fourth time this season in a victory over Penn State (6-4, 4-2 Big Ten).
Ameer Abdullah ran for 116 yards on a career-high 31 carries, and Martinez finished with 104 yards as the Huskers pounded away on the ground on a windy afternoon at Memorial Stadium.
Drake 45, Butler 20: Mike Piatkowski threw for 366 yards and a career-high five touchdowns, helping Drake keep its Pioneer League title hopes alive with a victory over Butler.
Piatkowski, who was 29 of 40 with two interceptions, found Grahm Butler and Gary Scott for two scores each and Joey Orlando for one. Scott added 79 rushing yards and a touchdown for Drake (7-3, 6-1), which can tie Butler and repeat as Pioneer League co-champion with a win against Jacksonville next week.
Matt Lancaster threw two touchdown passes and ran for another for Butler (8-3, 7-1).
E. Illinois 39, SE Missouri 20:Erik Lora caught 15 passes for 178 yards, including a 43-yard score that gave Eastern Illinois the lead for good, and the Panthers went on to defeat Southeast Missouri (3-7, 2-5) for their fourth consecutive win.
Eastern Illinois (7-3, 6-1) clinched the Ohio Valley Conference championship with its win and Tennessee-Martin's 45-44 loss to Tennessee Tech.
Youngstown State 31, Western Illinois 7: Jamaine Cook rushed for 113 yards and two touchdowns and Youngstown State (6-4, 3-4 Missouri Valley) held Western Illinois (3-7, 1-6) to 142 yards of offense en route to a victory.