Michigan Fooball

By: Jonathan Crockett


I am going to inform you on the legacy of Michigan football by telling you about when the school and program started, who the greatest players are in the history of the program, and what schools provide as the greatest rivals for Michigan.

The Start of the University of Michigan and Their Football Program

  • Start of the School

The University of Michigan officially began on August 26, 1817 when it opened its doors to future wolverines to be.

  • Start of the Football Program

About 60 years after the establishment of the University of Michigan in 1879 the school was able to put a football team together and started competing at the intercollegiate level. This was a time when football was starting to take off as a nation wide sport so conferences arose and before you knew it, in 1896, Michigan was a member of of the Big Ten conference.

Heisman Winning Michigan Football Players

Tom Harmon (HB)

The first Heisman winner in Michigan history and 6th all time was Tom Harmon when he won it in 1940. His stats of that year will show you why he won this award:

  • He rushed for 852 yards in 191 attempts
  • He had a 4.5 yard rushing average
  • Had a total of 6 rushing TD's

Desmond Howard (WR)

This 2nd Heisman winning player out of Michigan was a very standout player that was always making big and memorable plays for the maize and blue but his stats are what won him the Heisman.

  • 985 yards in 62 catches
  • 15.9 yard receiving average
  • 19 total TD's
Greatest punt return ever! Desmond Howard Heisman Pose

Charles Woodson (CB/WR)

It was rare, and still is rare to find a player that plays on both sides of the ball but to find a player like Woodson that could dominate on both sides of the ball was very hard to get:

  • 45 total tackles
  • 5 tackles for a loss
  • 4 defensive TD's
  • 231 receiving yards on 11 catches
  • 21 yard average
  • 2 offensive TD's

University of Michigan's Most Historic Rivalries

Michigan vs. Ohio State

Sometimes referred to as "The Game" The Michigan, Ohio Sate football game is viewed as one of the most historic rivalries as it dates all the way back to 1897. These games usually have a lot riding on them too as they usually decide who will win the Big Ten. And apparently with such a high competitiveness level the Michigan and Ohio State has gained a lot of popularity, so much that espn 2000 rated this rivalry as the best in American sports.

Here are some numbers on the all time rivalry:

  • 110 games have been played sense the first in 1897
  • All-time series: 58-47-6 With Michigan in the Lead
  • Longest winning streak is 9 games in a row by Michigan (1901-1909)
  • Current win streak belongs to Ohio State with 4 games in a row (2012-present)
  • Largest Victory: Michigan 86, Ohio State 0
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Michigan vs. Michigan State

Even though this rivalry isn't viewed around the country like Michigan and Ohio State is, it is still a game that is year in and year out a meaningful and exciting game. These games usually decide rankings within the Big Ten and sometimes even decide who will make the Rose Bowl.

Here are some stats from the rivalry:

  • 108 total meetings from their first official game in 1898
  • Paul Bunyan Trophy series is 35-26-2 in Michigan's favor
  • All-time series is 68-35-5 in Michigan's favor
  • Current win streak belongs to M. State with 4 years in a row (2013-present)
  • Longest win streak belongs to Michigan with 14 years in a row (1916-1929)
  • Largest victory: Michigan 119, M. State 0

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Concluding Statment

After listening to this presentation I hope you have learned more about when the school first opened and when its football program started, who the Heisman winners were that attended the school, and who the greatest rivals are to the University of Michigan football team.