That Kovacs play is just one of his clutch plays from the last few years. I'm going to miss that guy.
OFAAT: Northwestern Past
[Note on these posts: Yes, gifs are very bandwith-heavy, which is why we put all but one below the jump. There's not really a way around this that doesn't involve people having to click through to a new page for every gif, which isn't exactly ideal. If your page is lagging severely, try hitting 'escape' on your keyboard (unless you have Chrome, in which case you're SOL), which will stop the animation, then you can right-click and hit 'view image' to open each gif individually.]
We're expanding the MGoGifs beyond recapping each game; starting this week, we'll be taking a look ahead with gifs of great (or at least gif-tacular) moments from past games against Michigan's upcoming opponent. So, today's One Frame At A Time features Northwestern gifs of yore, and there's only one place to begin—Jason Avant's absurd one-handed catch in 2003's 41-10 victory.
First, however, I just want to thank everyone who sent in suggestions on Twitter, and also express my eternal gratitude to WolverineHistorian, whose videos provided the source material for most of these. The man is a treasure. And now, here's Avant:
[When you've finished watching that on a loop for, oh, 20 minutes, hit THE JUMP for the rest of the gifs.]
1992 (Michigan 40 - Northwestern 7) — This pretty much sums up Northwestern football pre-1995:
1997 (Michigan 23 - Northwestern 6) — Brian Griese slips the grasp of a blitzing linebacker and hits a wide-open Jerame Tuman for the touchdown:
1997 (Michigan 23 - Northwestern 6) — Charles Woodson undercuts, intercepts, sideline reacts accordingly:
1998 (Michigan 12 - Northwestern 6) — Justin Fargas slogs through rain, mud, tackles:
2004 (Michigan 42 - Northwestern 20) — Steve Breaston breaks a tackle, simultaneously changes direction, and then goes straight gazelle on a 66-yard punt return TD:
Bonus gifs, linked instead of embedded for bandwith-saving purposes:
- 1991 (Michigan 59 - Northwestern 14) — Desmond Howard's school-record 20th touchdown in a season and the NCAA-record-tying 30th career TD connection from Elvis Grbac to Howard comes on the first play from scrimmage.*
- 1992 (Michigan 40 - Northwestern 7) — A freshman Mercury Hayes with a pretty spectacular garbage-time touchdown catch from backup Todd Collins.
- 1998 (Michigan 12 - Northwestern 6) — Tom Brady hits Tai Streets for the game's lone touchdown.
- 2011 (Michigan 42 - Northwestern 24) — Jordan Kovacs with a critical fourth-down stop in an eventual come-from-behind victory.
- 2011 (Michigan 42 - Northwestern 24) — Will Campbell sacks Dan Persa, does Will Campbell things.
*This game wasn't televised, so of course WolverineHistorian compiled home video shot from the stands and the sideline and synced it up with the radio broadcast. Again, he's a treasure.
I did request this on twitter, and I'm sure you looked because it was awesome, and I don't know if there is video (I was at the game in Evanston)....
But near the end of the game Will made a great tackle on the Northwestern sideline, and then had to absolutely book it to the Michigan sideline due to a substitution while NW was in the hurry up. He was flying and it was awesome and hilarious. Postgame at the tunnel my friends and I congratulated him on the play and he said it was his best run of the day.
/cool story that maybe only I saw
You most assuredly were not the only one to see that hustle. I think he ended up eating turf once he got to the sideline? He definitely got a rousing round of applause from the Michigan crowd.
I, too, am quite bummed that there isn't video of it.
I don't have the torrent from that game and couldn't find the clip in a cursory look. If somebody else can locate it, however, I'm more than happy to make that gif.
EDIT: Found where it happened—LINK—but unfortunately you only see the very tail end of the run up in the corner of the screen. Bummer.
I can't seem to find it in here, but maybe someone else can.
Will makes a play on the northwestern sideline. Cut shot to Brady calling Will off the field, then it cuts and you can see the tail end of the run.
And that's Hoke cheering will to get off the field. Alas, it is a glorious run for a 330lb man to make.
Is Kovacs' jump from his freshman year to his junior/senior year one of the most improved performances you have ever seen?
The GIF collections are a good addition to the site. Thanks for putting these together.
The 1992 clip was pretty amusing, and a tribute to what Francis Peay left Gary Barnett in the way of technical skill and talent in a sense. That being said, the goalpost really just needs to pick up the bad snap and fight for some yards rather than just stand there.
Truthfully, I was hoping the punter was going to run into the goalpost.
I remember that Avant catch, I was there. They didn't show the replay on the scoreboards - one of several great michigan plays they somehow neglected to show. We booed... and since it was a Northwestern home game, that means half the stadium was booing.
I was at that game, too. We were seated about 20 rows up right on the goal line (basically right behind the camera). I remember standing up and yelling "OMG" while the NW fans in the vicinity sat on their hands. IIRC, it was a drizzly, grey, cold day and my wife, who was sick, asked if we could leave. I believe that TD made the score 34-10 so I agreed. By the time we got to the car, M was in scoring position and tallied the final TD. Great memory.
That first gif is one of my favorites of all time. Taco Pants had to be large indeed to catch a ball thrown out of Avant's range.
We use the term OFAT all the time when waiting forever for anesthesiologists to get a patient ready: "Obligatory Fucking Around Time."
Where are the fan shots from the second half of the 2008 game
I didn't actually combine the radio broadcast with the home movie footage of the 91 game. A friend of mine did it and let me borrow his copy.
But you can still refer to me as a treasure if you'd like.
I will. Seriously, thanks for all that you do.
Any chance you have a better version of this (2008 UM-NW):
Use the lightbox plugin you're currently using for YouTube videos. Link to each .gif file, and give that link a rel="lightbox" attribute. We click the link, the .gif pops up in a lightbox.
If you want to see what this would look like, run the following script from your browser's developer tools (Firebug, etc):
Then check out the linked GIFs at the end of the post.
That's probably what I'll do from now on—capture a still and then you can click that to open it up in the lightbox. Thanks for the suggestion.
I was at that game. The first half was played in a full monsoon. At half time, the walkways under the stands were flooded with a few inches of water. Soggy shoes got soggier. Just miserable, but thankfully not cold. A warm front came through with the rain. Who would have thought a kid from California was a mudder? Northwestern's field was trashed for the rest of the season after that game.