Don Canham's widow: "His legacy is going down the drain"

Don Canham's widow: "His legacy is going down the drain"

Submitted by translator82 on October 1st, 2014 at 9:43 AM

MLive spoke with Don Canham's widow and it's obvious she's not happy with what's happening at Michigan.

Recently, the widow of the “father of modern college athletics directors” has begun to add her voice to the chorus expressing concern that the powerhouse built by Canham is in jeopardy of losing its luster.

“I’m just devastated that his lifetime at the school—he was there for 50 years as a student, a coach and an athletic director—to see that his legacy is going down the drain, that’s what I’m angry about,” Margaret Canham-Keeley said.

It's worth a read to see that even Canham, who was an innovator his time, got some pushback but obviously ended up being a pioneer as an athletic director. 

1986 UM Indiana flashback - Knight on Canham

1986 UM Indiana flashback - Knight on Canham

Submitted by k.o.k.Law on March 10th, 2013 at 11:33 AM

(If you want to skip my reminiscing, scroll to the end and click on the link for Bobby Knight good naturedly ripping into Don Canham after the final game of the 85-86 basketball season, Indiana at UM)

We won the Big Ten hoop title outright in 1984-85, and I wanted to see the games the next season.

Cheap bastard that I am, I asked a friend in the athletic department how he could get me in for free.
Well, I could assist another of his drinking buddies and guard the press parking lot, making sure only those with proper passes entered the reserved section.  The requirement was to be there at least an hour before gametime, then we could watch the game from the tunnel.

This was after the first Fab Five, Paul Jokisch, who went exclusively to football, Robert Henderson, Butch Wade, RIchard Rellford, and Roy Tarpley.

Both title teams went on to disappointing second round exits in the NCAA tournament, but enough of that.

Bill Frieder emphasized offensive efficiency, and we set a second consecutive record for team field goal percentage, 51.6%.

The Scott Skiles led MSU team swept us, the home loss ending a 24 game home win streak, and we lost one other conference game, at Minnesota, which ended the still record 10 game road winning streak.

But, Indiana came in with the chance to tie us for the title with a win.

For the only time in my memory, standing room tickets were sold, so the paid attendance was over 14,000 at a time when Crisler sat 13,609.

We crushed them.  The outcome was never in doubt.  We even had a five on zero fast break.

I had a video camera, the early edition, about two feet long, not counting the protruding microphone.  

With the demise of Dr. Strange Hayes, Bobby Knight was the reigning Big Ten villain.

I was hoping for some fireworks after the game, so I brought my camera, with tripod, and set it up in the room then used for post-game pressers.

Believing it is easier to get forgiveness than permission, I shared my plan with no one.

My pass entitled me entrance to the room, and I just tried to make sure none of the media bumped into my camera.

As luck would have it, during Knight's remarks, Don Canham entered the room and stood almost right behind the camera. 

When Knight noticed him, he directed some pointed comments his way, that, well, look at the tape, put on line by the inestimable Wolverine Historian.

1986 post-game press conference