AND EQUIPMENT may have evolved, but Michigan's winning tradition has remained
constant throughout the program's 128-year history. Players and coaches who
have graced the gridiron in Ann Arbor made (and left behind) their marks, from
Gerald Ford, who would become the 38th President of the United States, to Lloyd
Carr, whose 1997 squad earned diamond-studded rings to commemorate the school's
11th national title. Take a look at a few of the collectibles that make up the
history of the Champions of the West.
Well before he began his political career, Gerald Ford was a three-time
letterman for the Wolverines who earned team MVP honors as the starting center
in 1934, his senior year. In '94 Michigan retired former-president Ford's
number 48, making him the most recent of five football players to have been so
honored by the school.
Wins over Minnesota earn Michigan the Little Brown Jug, but the trophy isn't
quite as glamorous as the spoils awarded to the 1997 Wolverines after their
21-16 national championship-clinching Rose Bowl win over Washington State.
Though 46 years passed between the inaugural Rose Bowl, in which Michigan
stomped Stanford 49-0, and the Wolverines' next appearance, a blowout by the
same score against USC, little changed about the Maize and Blue's ability to
dominate. Michigan emerged victorious on its first four trips to Pasadena.