On The Field For Pre-Game Warm-Ups

Submitted by UMAmaizinBlue on September 21st, 2010 at 7:10 PM

I recently won a pair of field passes for this Saturday's game against BGSU! So, after 5+ years at this wonderful University, I'll finally be able to fulfill a dream I've had since I watched my first Michigan Wolverines game: I'll be running through the tunnel with the players as they enter the Big House for pre-game warm-ups!


Now, this is not a "PRAISE ME" post. I have some serious questions, especially for those who have been on the field before during a game:


  1. Would I be allowed to/Should I bring a Sharpie to get signatures from the players (especially Denard since I'll be wearing my #16)?
  2. Should I just blend in and try not to get in the way at all, or would it be acceptable to schmooze with the players and coaches when I find an opportunity to do so?
  3. Is there a safe distance I should stand from Denard's dreads so as not to be destroyed by their awesome power?


Any and all suggestions would be appreciated. Also, I must give props to the School of Public Health for providing these field passes.


Go Blue!



September 21st, 2010 at 7:14 PM ^

They need to stay focused before the game. If you want to get an autograph while they are walking in or after the game, that's fine, but let them get through warm-ups without distractions.


September 22nd, 2010 at 1:36 PM ^

instead of a sharpie signing a football have them sign your bottle of FOCUS FACTOR.  then pass them out to the players as they pass you just before they jump up and hit the banner!  seriously that is a cool privaledge, hang out have a great time, GO BLUE!


September 21st, 2010 at 7:21 PM ^

Uh, that sounds somewhat ominous. Is SPH anticipating some sort of medical situation on Saturday?

(Just kidding — they're my biggest client!)


September 21st, 2010 at 7:38 PM ^

Your best bet on the pro-focus front is to try to blend in with your surroundings as much as possible, such as by disguising yourself as a giant stadium.

Trust the Process

September 21st, 2010 at 7:41 PM ^

Should I just blend in and try not to get in the way at all, or would it be acceptable to schmooze with the players and coaches when I find an opportunity to do so?

Is this really a serious question?  Seems pretty obvious to me...


Enjoy the field this weekend, but please stay out of the way :).


September 21st, 2010 at 7:50 PM ^

It was a serious question. As my dad always jokes, I revert back to a bright-eyed freshman going ga-ga like the first time I walked into the Big House whenever I get around players. 


I'm not sure you all made it clear enough, but I read between the lines to get the message. Point well taken: man-up, let the players and coaches do their thing, and enjoy the ride. 


[I'm still gonna stare, though...and possibly drool.]


September 21st, 2010 at 7:47 PM ^

You're going to be wearing a 16 jersey? You should run out to the huddle for the first offensive snap. It'll be hilarious; everyone will love your comedy stylings!


September 21st, 2010 at 7:49 PM ^

You should launch a sneak attack on the BG mascot. If Bobcat Bob can pummel Brutus, then you can take out Freddie Falcon or whatever he's called.


September 21st, 2010 at 7:53 PM ^

First, congrats.  You're going to have an amazing day.  Second, bring a good camera as you'll end up with some excellent photos.  So...on to your questions...

I don't know about the Sharpie.  I'm not an autograph guy, but I'd assume to skip the requests (although maybe you'll find a former player who would oblige).  As for schmoozing...you'll likely find that not an option as the team is pretty actively doing their thing.   During the game you'll have to stay on the end zone side of either 25 yard line, so you won't be mixed up with the team anyway (except when you decide to switch sides to check out the opposite angle).  Frankly, if you're anything like me, you'll be so excited to be on the field that you won't even think about the rest of it.

Just take it in and enjoy.  I hope you really do get to run out of the tunnel.  I've had field passes before, but I've always walked down through the stands.  Go Blue!  


September 21st, 2010 at 7:56 PM ^

I know everyone berated the "focus" before the game idea (even though when I played football I wanted to stay as loose as possible during warm-ups and this often included joking with the other players, but whatever), but I think this depends on whose autograph you want.  Maybe you don't want to disturb Denard (even though he seems like a guy who wouldn't mind at all) but if you wanted an autograph from, say, Ricardo Miller, he probably doesn't need to be all too focused before the game.  Same with someone like, say, Carvin Johnson. 


September 21st, 2010 at 8:07 PM ^

Did you play college football, in front of 100,000?  If not, I'm not sure how relevant your example is.

I think the bigger point is that you should just give them their space.  The pregame Is their time to get ready for the game, however they feel like.  Having a random gawker around can be awkward.  And even if a guy isn't likely to play, that doesn't mean he wants to pose for pictures right then.  They have to do enough of that crap after the game. 


September 21st, 2010 at 8:08 PM ^

Asking 18/19 yr olds for autographs as an adult seems kinda weird. I'd leave that to the kids. That being said, you won't even think about that when you're out there. Just soak it up cause its probably not going to happen too often. Let us know any cool/interesting things you observe if you think its worth sharing. Enjoy the experience..


September 21st, 2010 at 8:09 PM ^

I'm pretty sure RR would flip if he see's you bothering the players asking them for autographs during warm ups.  Just be thankful to have field passes and call it a day. 


September 21st, 2010 at 8:10 PM ^

The most important thing to keep in mind:


In my long-ago undergrad days I got into a pickup hoops game at with then-football players Curtis Greer and Mike Harden (among others). I was so petrified of accidentally tangling legs, stepping on feet, etc., that I turned in a horribly embarrassing performance. But I figured it was better to endure the jeers than be responsible for a torn ACL.


September 21st, 2010 at 8:13 PM ^

I think the smart thing to do is wait until they get the headsets on and go ask Rich Rod for an autograph. Then, find Mike Barwis when the defensive line comes off the field and he is giving them a talk. Ask him if he would mind taking a picture of you with the D-Line. I think he would really like to do that for you. Then ask if you can get a picture holding Denard's dreads.

What do you think??? Use common sense. You are a student or graduate of the University of Michigan aren't you? 


September 21st, 2010 at 8:33 PM ^

My kid and I are going - he's 10 and is going to be completely blown away. But I can't imagine we're coming in through the tunnel. Please update after the game so I know what to expect. 

Have a great time. If I were you, I'd just keep to myself and take it all in. 


September 21st, 2010 at 8:47 PM ^

Did it last year before the Penn St game. We walked down the tunnel  after the players went out for early warm ups well before kick-off. Curious to know if they will let you run with the players - seems unlikely. We were directed to the area on the sideline between the endzone and the 25 on the east side (non-flag pole end). It was great to see the players up close to get a feel for their size and speed as the ran some sprints. As others have said the players are focused and did not engage with people other than to acknowledge people saying "Go Blue". You will probably have a chance to chat with members of the athletic department that  are generally on the sideline before a game. You may want to become familiar with names and faces if you aren't already. We went up to our seats when the players went back to the locker (before they ran out to touch the banner). Enjoy it and bring the team more luck than we did last year.


September 21st, 2010 at 8:51 PM ^

...stay out of the way and blend into the background.  When I was in the Tri-Service Color Guard, I was on the field a lot. The only time I ever went up to a player was for one game when I had a conversation with one of my high school classmates on the IU team while he was stretching. 

Don't do anything to mar your experience.  Listen to your instructions and follow them.


September 21st, 2010 at 9:49 PM ^

That, as organized as orchestrating players, coaches, trainers etc. is during a football game, they are going to let you wander around the sidelines on your own without supervision, talk to players if you feel like it, shoot the breeze with coaches, and so on.  Everyone's got his job to do, without a lot of spare time.  I would not be surprised if you yourself are well- "coached" prior to going through the tunnel about what you can an cannot do.  You will probably be told where you can and cannot stand.

Remember one thing - take lots of pictures and post them on this site.  Thanks.

And I don't care what anyone else tells you - get Denard to sign your jersey. 


September 21st, 2010 at 10:08 PM ^

I've never had a field pass to a michigan game! You are quite lucky! I have had field passes to other big time schools though. Its a great experience. 


September 22nd, 2010 at 10:04 AM ^

I recommend staying out of everyone's way. I was a guest of the former AD with an all access pass once and no one on the field was bothering the players.  This is serious business, not some opportunity for you to interact with the players or coaches.  In fact, you even have to watch what you say, especially to the opposing team.  They can revoke that pass faster than they gave it to you. I issue this warning for your own good . . . Don't be "that" guy.


September 22nd, 2010 at 4:50 AM ^

Obv., don't bother players who are focused. But remember, . . . they are just people like you and me. (not quite, but you know what I mean.). Regarding autographs, I would plan on NOT getting any, but I would sure have the Sharpie in my pocket if the opportunity presents itself. Pics are good. However, if you don't have a real camera with a good telephoto zoom, I would find someone who could loan or rent you one. Tight photos are likely to be better, and a fast shutter (in terms of response) is helpful. Calling Sgt. Wolverine for help on this. I'd loan you mine, but I'm in the Chicago area.


September 22nd, 2010 at 8:47 AM ^

Don't bother anyone, but if somebody talks to you, it's okay to respond in full sentences and ask your own questions. It's not the Army.

Don't expect or ask for any autographs, but do carry your sharpie. I hear that Denard is a really friendly kid. Should he at any time come to introduce himself, it's probably not out of bounds to say, "Hey, would you like to sign my jersey while you're over here?"

Stay where you're supposed to stay and follow any and all rules they give you, and then enjoy the heck out of yourself. And remember, if you get an erection, that's normal.