landing spot. will be interesting to see how he does.
Fun Question: Who would you bring back?
Jake Long. Just a needs based pick... For sheer excitement I'll take Woodson or Carter.
My head says Steve Hutchinson, but my heart says Brandon Graham.
Guard is one of our worst positions and Hutch is as good as it gets. Although I get the feeling defense wins championships and one offensive lineman can only do so much. So, I'd say it's a toss up between Graham, Woodley, or Woodson. As much of a difference maker as Woodson is and probably the best player UM has ever had IMO, I think one of the two pass rushers would make a bigger impact since I expect the secondary to be pretty good. But, if you took Graham or Woodley do you move Clark or one of them to the strong side because they all play WDE? I don't know, I'd probably try to get them both on the field at the same time as much as possible.
Graham could play a few spots on the line, just put the best 4 out there. I think a solid rush will put this defense into a top-15 unit. But Hutch could probably bump our YPC a whole yard and that has to be the top priority.
David Molk. We did not have a decent center since he left.
A reliable center would go a long way to calm my anxiety about next season.
Because Woodson is my favorite player ever. Wheatley because he doesn't even need an offensive line.
motherfucking gif motherfucker!
Bo,Ford... The world was a better place with them around!
We are loaded on offense, except for the O-line, which was a dumpster fire last season even with two tackles who got drafted. I'm willing to give the interior line the benefit of the doubt about being young and expecting one more year's experience for eveyone will be a big boost. But, now we have two rookies at tackle. The best LT in the program's history and #1 over draft pick the year he came out looks real tasty right about now.
Note: corrected subject to Long. Got my LTs confused.
Steve Hutchinson. No hesitation.
steve hutchinson. best player for the biggest need.
I would go with LaMarr Woodley, give me either Jake Long or Steve Hutchinson on offense.
Anthony Carter. Number 1 in your program and number 1 in your heart.
It's clear one O lineman can't help that much so I need some sacks for field position and an inexperienced o.
bc he's my hero
We didn't know that!
Tom Harmon. He literally could fill in for ever position.
even get an offer if he had the same athleticism/talent from his era and tried to compete in the modern era of sports? anyone have any idea how fast he was?
I'll have to track down the source, but apparently he broke 10 seconds in the 100-yard dash several times (hand-timed, but still). He might not win the Heisman today, but he'd be a coveted athlete. His height and weight appear to be 6-1 and 197 pounds, so he wouldn't be undersized for skill positions, either.
but he could def put on some more weight
Average height has been increasing for generations most likely due to improvements in childhood nutrition.
have nothing to do with individual heights. doubt harmon had issues with childhood nutrition.
Jake Long, and then just run HB Iso 40 times a game and watch Green/Smith/Isaac rack up a combined 250 yards as we win 20-7....I miss those days :(.
Boubicar Cissoko! Er, wait...... is he in jail??
I say Charles Woodson. I watched a big ten special on our 1997 team and our coaches that were interviewed about that amazing season said, in hindsight, never did losing one player make such a HUGE difference the following year.
Charles was one of those few BIGTIME players that always stepped up in big moments. Both sides of the ball. And special teams.
Woodson shutting down his half on the field would be awesome .... with Peppers on the other side ! and I would number them 2 and 2a
I will always say Denard.
I'd like to see Woodson suit up again.
Maybe if he came as the Threetidan combo...
It will always be too soon.
John Vitale, C
He was a good one. . .
I just like saying his name
Big Will Campbell
Maybe he would finally play to his potential. But probably at Guard
Long,schilling,Baas,schofield,Lewan. I don't care about the OPs rules. This is what I want.
The best OL coach we've ever had: Jerry Hanlon. Allow Funk to learn from the master.
I actually wondered, as I was reading, when we would see someone mention a position coach or something with some systemic impact like that, and I find myself attracted to this answer in particular given the OP's question. I think Hanlon, Nussmeier's scheme and the current available talent would produce something that was definitely serviceable, to say the least.
Hanlon was OL coach from 1969-81, and from 1988-1991, when he retired.
During his 17-year stint coaching the offensive line, Michigan had 16 All-Americans.
On top of that, Hanlon was QB coach from 1982 to 1987, and all he did was coach Michigan's last All-American quarterback, Jim Harbaugh, in 1986.
Now that's what you call "systemic impact."
YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Lot's of snark in this thread...
I'd have to say Jake Long. Biggest need on this team is still O-Line and not only was Long awesome but could also step up and be a team leader.
Jim Harbaugh in a player/coach role.
Get Molk back in center and straighten out this OL. I would say another position, Long being obvious, but we had a top line LT last year and it didn't seem to make that big of a difference then. Need to protect the middle!
Molk was an excellent player, but it seems like he did more than just play well. Line calls were probably part of it, but given his strength addiction (along with Mike Martin), seniority, and interview mannerisms, he was likely equally excellent getting asses in gear on the line.
I think he'd make an amazing grad assistant. . .
Vada Murray. Because he would still be with us. RIP.
Jumbo Elliot. Because I think his greatness is often forgotten or overlooked when Michigan fans talk about the great O-Linemen that have played in AA.
Denard. Put him at RB and he can make the running game work even with the terrible blocking that even the insertion of one past great OL like Hutch or Everitt couldn't fix.
I'm almost inclined to say BO in any way, shape, or form (administrator or coach).
We are 50-41 since his passing 7 seasons ago. In the previous 10 seasons. The University of Michigan football team was 96-26 (I believe). That really puts things into perspective about how important he was in Ann Arbor.
Finding a mammoth tackle has never been a problem for Michigan but having solid guard play has. Since Mike Hart was at Michigan RB play hasn't been the same and that has a lot to do with interior O-Line. Give me a stud guard all day, like Hutch, and watch the holes open.
Charles Woodson would certainly be fun but it isn't hard to argue that DB is the most stacked position unit right now. We need interior OL
Hot dog man needs to be in the student section hurling ballpark franks at undergrads in order to keep attendence high and ensure that fans stay even against teams like App state.
Part of my fond memories of my blissful naivity as a freshman in 2006. I just assumed we always bludgeoned people on the field, got to do the wave, and hot dog man would bless us all with airborne hot dogs. I was so naive
It has to be Woodson. You could make a case for Brady though.
Drew Henson for the senior year that Steinbrenner robbed us of...
Jake Long on offense to get that much needed upperclassman tackle and Woodson on defense.. enough said.
Steve Hutchinson. We need a good offensive line like Antonio Cromartie needs a vasectomy.
for the most part.
While reading through the different choices,I was wonderring when his name was going to be mention. Talking PITBULL in shoulder pads,as with everyone else who played on line with him too...his recuriting class was awesome. Bore MANY important players that went on to do big things,later on.
because it would put OSU into a tizzy.
Brandon Graham or LaMarr Woodley, easy. This defense lacks an elite pass rusher. Graham, especially, because his talent was wasted during hte RR years. He got double digit sacks on a defense with no secondary...imagine what he could do with receivers on the other team actually being covered.
Why would we need an elite pass rusher if we had Woodson on one half of the field and Peppers on the other?
Not too mention, Woodson is probably the best blitzing cornerback of all time.
This isn't directed at you, but I can't believe some of the answers on this thread. Molk? Really? That's who someone went with?
not for "Answers as If This Was Really Going To Happen"
would not be a very interesting thread.
A good deal of the fun is the diversity of the memories sparked by posters going "off the board" (in the game show Joker's WIld fashion).
Honestly I would be perfectly content if we could just go back in time and undo whatever tragic injury ended Christian Pace's career.
If you're going to play that game, you have to go Antonio Bass.
his speed at linebacker would be more useful nowadays with the more spread offenses
This is so fun.
Offense: OL Rueben Riley and WR Greg Matthews
Defense: DL Terrance Taylor and DB Troy Woolfolk
Both Riley and Taylor went drafted into the NFL and Woolfolk as well as Matthews went undrafted but eventually signed with the Cowboys and Bears in 2010 and 2012, respectively.
These would be great guys to have for Team 135!
I mean, I like all those guys but none of them were what I'd call standouts.
Greg Matthews? Out of all the great receivers we've had at Michigan you pick Greg Matthews who never came close to living up to his potential? To each their own I suppose...
Jim Harbaugh (as the coach)
Molk, Schilling, Hutchinson,etc.
I can't believe this has gone on this long and no one has even once mentioned David Cone.
I'd take Glen Steele in a heartbeat, but OL seems like the wisest choice. Denard Robinson just for the smiles though. Man, this is tough.
As an older guy, I'd have to go with Mark Messner. He was one bad dude on the D-line during the mid 80's. Talk about relentless, nasty and tough. I believe (please correct me if wrong) that he still leads UM in tackles for loss. He was a game changer on defense. Would be great to see him play again.
The guy has shown he can lead a team without receivers, backs, etc.
I agree with folks who would take an interior O-Lineman. Although Long was excellent, folks are right in that we had a top tier left tackle last season, and it didn't seem to help the line overall.
So I'd go with somebody in the interior but I'd also put a premium on leadership skills and being a player/coach rather than just raw talent. I'm not sure who that individual might be, but if there's only a dropoff of 5-10% in terms of talent from the #1 interior lineman versus the #2 interior lineman, but the #2 interior lineman also has excellent locker room/meeting room/film room leadership, I'd go with interior o-lineman #2 whoever that might be.
I think a lot of the guys we have in the o-line stable have raw talent. There's enough meat on those bones--certainly by the end of this summer.
What's partially lacking is that unit mentality, pride in work product, etc. and I think having a talented, experienced interior o-lineman who knows how to win and has leadership skils would go a long way in restoring some solid production and pride in that unit.
The D will hold it's own this year, and we could have a spectacular secondary. Our RB and WR corps could be unbelieveably good. When Gardner isn't suffering from PTSD, he's got the talent to light things up.
We just need a competent O-Line.
I can only dream what he could have done if he had stayed one more year. . .
Just because I think he's one of the 10 best players in CFB history.
It's definitely not as much of a need as Hutch or Long would fill though.
It would have to be Woodson number one and then Howard number two. They could affect more phases of the game and had the personalities to influence others.
What?!? Not one person says Denard?
Shoelace 4 life!!
Why would someone pick Denard if they could pick any player in Michigan football history?
I guess if that person was maybe an 8th grader, I could see them picking Denard because they would have no frame of reference at how great some past Michigan players were.
Obviously Woodson is pretty much the concensus #1 the for wins. You could go with Backus, Hutch or Long too. But the OP said i could choose whoever. Id rather watch a Denard play over any other player in Michigan history.
Id still loved to seen a healthy SR Denard with real weapons and and real oline. Even if that was at WR or RB.
answering was who could do the most good for the team under current scheme, etc., and then just toss one in for your favorite UM player of all time. Contrary to your thoughts we do have a frame of reference for the greatness of those who had come before. This is called the records book and is full of stats. Neither will I argue that Tom Harmon turned in the greatest one game performance in UM history, scoring in every conceivable way, both on offense and defense, punting for a 50+yd average for the afternoon and accomplishing this in Ohio Stadium makes it even more meaningful. We are aware that Oosterbaan never allowed a positive yard at his DE position and he was the Bennie on the receiving end of passes in an era that didn't exactly highlight the passing attack and give DCs nightmares preparing to stop it. So the frame of reference is there, and many understand completely had DR started a full four years instead of 3 and change, not only would he still hold the record for all time yardage gained, but he would have surpassed Mike Hart as UM's all-time leading rusher as well.
Most people did pick those they thought could best contribute to the present team and in adding their favorite player, many added CW. I personally listed either Jake Long or Dan Deirdorf as possessing the ingredient most needed by this year's team and opted for CW as my all time favorite. However, I definitely understand why many would choose Denard as favorite player. If you want to be honest with yourself, I challenge you to name another player that generated the excitement he did. And those two come from behind victories vs. that team from South Bend will be remembered forever just as surely as Tom's achievements vs. the Buckeyes will. Hell yeah, I'd take him back in a heartbeat.
Steve Everitt. A great center and still very passionate.
Completely transforms the defense.
I'm recalling a writeup on going to the 4-3 over that mentioned that it can be awesome if you have a dynamic 3 tech. I'll take Mike Messner and sit back and watch the mayhem.
Woodson. Not even close. He dominates in every phase of the game, and he completely changes your defense. He also brings the attitude and swagger that Michigan has been lacking essentially since he left.
Woodson. The answer is always Woodson. Put him on the field offense, defense, special teams it doesn't matter, playmaker.
Someone said it Denard-- ridiculous
Looking for that kick ass,inside prescence to solidify leadership on OLine.
Our OL is too broken for one man to fix. I would go with Mike Hart, as I think if anyone could run behind this o line he could. Maybe Tyrone Wheatley
I would bring back Gary Fucking Moeller.
best coach we ever had.
we've been above average minus a few years (2006, 1997, ...). In addition, 1997 was all with Moeller's players and Carr's teams seemed to consistently under acheive horribly.
Uhhhh... the guys that went on to play in the NFL were majority Carr recruits from the 97 team.
Carr was also Woodson's lead recruiter.
Moeller was a good coach, but talk about under achieving teams... Were we ever more than slightly above average under Moeller?
LOL... you're so completely full of shit it's laughable.
Two of the most frequently mentioned players here on the '97 team—Woodson and Hutchinson—played their entire careers under Lloyd Carr. Same goes for Ian Gold, Tai Streets, Rob Renes, Anthony Thomas, Steve Frazier, Chris Ziemann, Aaron Shea, James Hall, Daydrion Taylor, Clarence Williams, Josh Williams, Jeff Backus, David Brandt, Tommy Hendricks, Dhani Jones, Dewayne Patmon, and William Peterson.
This is in addition to guys like Marcus Ray and Jon Jansen who red-shirted as freshman and did not play in 1994, seeing their first game action under Carr.
everyone can chill out, I was misinformed. I'll tell my 5 year old self to take better notes next time
Just so we can all remember what passion looks like in Maize & Blue.
As others have stated, Woodson all the way.
Graham or Woodson
and placed your favorite player last, I will have to go with Jake Long or Dan Dierdorf. Jake obviously is amont our most famous OLmen because he went No. 1 in the draft coupled, of course, with a tremendous career in which he was named All Everything in regard to offensive line play. However, in tradition when Bo was listing some of his favorite players, he went out of his way to mention Dierdorf as being one of the best leaders he ever had on the offensive line. I don't know if Jake was as vocal as Dan in the huddle, but when it came to crunch time and the team needed to pick up a few yards, Dan would just say in a not so clean version, "Just run the damn ball behind me." And, of course we always seemed to pick up the needed yardage. So I am kind of torn between naming perhaps the best OLman we've had-hard to name one because we've had so many-against one who was probably equally great and a proven leader. This OL is so in need of a leader that can motivate the other 5. As to favorite, it would be Woodson or Denard w/o a doubt. Now those were two players that epitmotized excitement.
Denard.. It will always be Denard. Unless maybe Zack Novak can suit up and play linebacker or something.
Where's the old-school love? Perpetual All-American, 8+yds/carry, faster in the 40 than the olympic gold medalist of the era.
The linebacker position was invented by Minnesota.... to stop Heston.
Here's Yost (the original Fred Jackson?) on why he thought Willie Heston was the GOAT:
"1. He was the fastest starting back that ever lived. Heston could beat Archie Hahn every time at fifty yards, and Hahn was good for 9 4-5, then world's champion.
2. Heston was the quickest back for a shift or a thrust or a sidestep I ever saw. He was like lightning.
3. Heston was the most powerful runner of them all. Weighing 185 pounds, he was compactly built and struck with such terrific force that few could stand up before him. ...
5. He was never hurt.
6. He was equally great at ripping open a line or shooting through a broken field.
7. He made 106 touchdowns in four years. This would be equal to 636 points today. ... He gained over 500 yards from scrimmage in any number of single contests."
"A strong arm helped Willie, Sr., to move 'em. After cracking through that line the old arm would go out. You can still pick out men who used to play football against Michigan in '02 and '03, they say, because their faces seem just a little out of kilter. The straight arm in the old days sometimes wasn't so straight."
Would be Woodson, Edwards or Hutch, but honestly for this team it would be Brian Griese at QB because he would stay within himself and not make turnovers, while allowing a great defense and running game to control the game. This team leans too heavily on the QB after watching (no, literally watching) Denard blow defenses up and DG take over games...we need to be a running first and defense best team to win the BiG 10 and Griese would help that happen. Just sayin'.
Either Woodson (bona fide playmaker/swag master that'd bring the attitude to our team we've been missing for years), or someone like Jake Long or Steve Hutchinson to whip the O-Line into shape. We badly need someone on the O-Line with experience and solid leadership that can turn our boys into men.
No disrespect to our current O-Line, but a spade is a spade.
Fielding Yost. ....amassed a record of 165-29-10. Won 6 National Championships and 10 big Ten championships.
From 1901-1905 we outscored our opponents 2,821-42
"That's ancient history that doesn't even count"
-Every ohio fan ever.
but I've never seen a Michigan D Lineman play with the ferocity of Mark Messner. He was constantly blowing up plays by being in the backfield faster than opposing QB's could hand off or turn and throw. One man on the DL can make more of a difference than one man on the OL, so I'll go with Messner over any single O Lineman, despite that being the position of greatest need.
Others not mentioned above I'd like to see back, mostly so they could resume great careers interupted by injury, would include DB Tripp Welborne and RB Tony Boles. Those two were game-changers a quarter-century ago, both suffered career-ending injuries that nowadays could be repaired.
Still others I'd love to see back (whose Michigan careers were killed by injuries) would include Antonio Bass, Justin Fargas, and Matt Gutierrez. Bass because he was a fantastic athlete who potentially could have played several different positions at a high level. Fargas had one of the worst broken legs I've ever seen happen, yet he eventually came back after transfering to UCLA and played well there and in the NFL. Gutierrez was a victim more of bad timing than so much a bad injury; he was our starting QB going into '04 until a relatively minor shoulder injury benched him in favor of Chad Henne. Never ever got a chance to regain his starting job as Henne took advantage of his golden opportunity, but I was hugely excited before that season to see Gutierrez play. Went on to play as a backup QB for several seasons in the NFL after transferring out of Michigan to play 2 seasons for Idaho State.
One more (and i can't remember specifically why his Michigan career was so short) who I'd love to see back---David Bowens. Tremendously quick outside rusher who was also strong enough to be a force against the run. once he reached the NFL, I think he played mostly at ILB, and was very dominant there, too.
Gimme two: Dave Molk and Rob Renes.
For best all around player, Harmon, Oosterbaan or Woodson.
For best OL, Dierdorf, Hutchinson or Everett are probably best, with Molk a bit behind for C.
For personal favorite, Anthony Carter or Tyrone Wheatley.