POLL: Do you like the "unretiring" of numbers?

Submitted by Mr. Yost on June 13th, 2012 at 11:03 AM

I know there is a thread on the announcement of Ford, Oosterbaan and Kramer being honored with "legacy jerseys" rather than a retired number. It's summer, and half the front page starts with "OT:" so it's not like I'm bumping too much Michigan Football related stuff by creating this survey.

I do not want to hi-jack someone else's thread. Also, I feel those threads have some good discussion on "who's next?" and "who's going to wear the new legacy jerseys?"

With that said, and feel free to explain why, or just leave a simple "yes" or a simple "no" --- do you like that Michigan is unretiring numbers in favor of the new Legacy Jersey?

Note: Once this thread moves to the 2nd page, I'll tally up the results and share the MGoPoll for those interested.


True Blue Grit

June 13th, 2012 at 11:57 AM ^

Although I get that numbers are getting in short supply in modern day large rosters, but the numbers were retired and should stay that way.  I feel a little better about it that the families of the players involved are OK with it.  Michigan can still decide not to retire any more numbers in the future and be fine with having enough of them for the roster.  But, I really feel strongly that Tom Harmon's number should never be used again.   Among the U-M legends, he's a legend.


June 13th, 2012 at 1:13 PM ^

Harmon IS a Legend among legends;  To me, his number is the most sacred.

And while I have no problem with someone else deserving of that number, I think Dave Brandon & I might differ on it's application.  I'd be fine if it only happened to get used every 20-50 years; I think Brandon wants to milk it's fame dry every year.

I like the unretiring/legends jerseys, but I fear that it's one more weapon in trigger-happy DB's marketing arsenal.


June 13th, 2012 at 2:15 PM ^

Doesn't mean they couldn't already be sold. But they weren't, because no one would buy them since no one knew who they were for. So selling them means people actually recognize them and have an interest in them...which was the point, right?


June 13th, 2012 at 12:01 PM ^

Yes I like the unretiring of the numbers. Personally, I would prefer to see my old number on the field being honored by a dedicated and talented player instead of forgotten while being hung somewhere in the stadium. This is a new tradition I am supporting completely. 


June 13th, 2012 at 12:02 PM ^

I'm generally very "get off my lawn" about change, but I'm on board with this.  Just please make the patches a bit less gaudy...


June 13th, 2012 at 12:07 PM ^

* - Disclaimer: As someone said in a reply to me yesterday when I went on rant about this when the unretiring of #48 was announced, the families are on board for this.  While I personally don't think these numbers should be unretired and that no one is worthy of wearing them, I cannot deny the fact it's something these alumni's families support and feel will better celebrate the contributions these men made to U of M.

So to answer your question, I do not like this, but with open arms, will accept this change anyways.

French West Indian

June 13th, 2012 at 2:50 PM ^

The families may very well be okay with it but do you and your family necessarily agree on everything?  Maybe if the retired legend themselves were okay with it but...oops, they're all dead now and don't get a say.  How convenient.

As far as we know, some of these legends may have despised their families.


June 13th, 2012 at 12:23 PM ^

No.  Would rather see some sort of "Ring of Honor" to display the number for all to see.  I fear that once these become un-retired they will also become un-special in fairly short order.


June 13th, 2012 at 12:23 PM ^

I'm quite conflicted on this issue.  Say we honored Tom Brady as a Michigan Legend (just pretend with me) this year and Denard was switched to #10 to honor that.  I wouldn't be okay with that because of how closely associated he is with #16 right now.  Plus, you'd be depriving him of his chance to make #16 a legend of its own. 

I mean, I do like "honoring" former players (especially when the families support it) instead of just retiring them, but are you just funneling all the great players into wearing these "legendary" numbers in their junior/senior years?

But then there's the problem of finding people worthy to honor these unretired numbers.  I don't support the idea of freshmen having them because A) The added pressure/exposure.  and  B)  They haven't done anything to merit it.

I dunno.  This is a really sticky situation and just leaving the numbers as "retired" is much easier.  I would support having one patch on offense (Desmond) and one patch on defense (Woodson).  Make them players who are sort-of recent but still absolutely legendary.  Plus, it solves the future problem of us trotting out 11 players on offense where half of them could be rocking patches.

I guess my final answer would be no, but there's definitely great debate to be had.


June 13th, 2012 at 12:26 PM ^

Lets say Roundtree has the greatest year in the history of football, he breaks all the records and wins the Heisman. Does he get added to the patch? How many names can fit on a patch?

100 years down the road with enough great players wearing the same number wouldn't the patch just keep growing in size till there is no jersey left instead just a big patch with names all over it.


June 13th, 2012 at 12:28 PM ^

I never knew Ford was 48 until this.  New kids wearing the number will keep their legend fresh in peoples' minds.  Especially since no where prominent was it displayed who was retired.


June 13th, 2012 at 12:29 PM ^

plays regularly.  

Also, anticipate that in the future you will have a "problem" if one of the guys playing in a Legends jersey becomes a legend in their own right.


June 13th, 2012 at 12:38 PM ^

I like the idea of seeing some numbers on the field that most of us have not seen in a long time if at all, but I am thinking that the players wearing the legend's number must have earned it.  Meaning no freshmen get the legend's number for starters.  I am sure other criteria would follow.  For instance...I am sure Snappy Snapperton may be one hell of a long snapper but would he ever rate the #48 jersey? 


June 13th, 2012 at 12:40 PM ^

Yes. People who knew nothing about some of these former greats will now have a better opportunity to learn their stories during the course of watching games. 

Class of 1817

June 13th, 2012 at 12:43 PM ^

I don't mind the Legends jerseys or the un-retiring of #s as much as I thought I would. Part of me does kind of feel like it bumps up against the Team mentality, but I think I can deal with that in order to honor the greats.

But man, definitely wish those patches were a bit more subtle. I feel like right now they're about as elegant as the Hail Halo that was wrapped around the stadium...which is about as elegant as being teabagged by a flatulent rottweiler.

The FannMan

June 13th, 2012 at 12:47 PM ^

Yes - provided the families are on board.  If the Harmon family wants 98 to stay retired, then it stays retired.  Period.  I think we all agree on that.  

Also, we all agree that the patches need work.  Six Zero - any way you or Charlie Blockham could get on that?

My humble suggestion is that the Legend jersy be stricly limited to: 1) current retired numbers (with the consent of the fmailies) and 2) past and future Hiesman winners.  That means, we would only have, at most, three more to give out, plus any Heisman trophy winners in the future.  

I would allow someone who wins the Hiesman while wearing a Legend number to have his name added to the patch he wore when he won, or to add it to a jersey he wore previsouly.  His option when he gets honored after he graduates.  So if Desman wins this year wearing number 48, he could add his name to 48 or put it on 16.  Remember, we have had only two winners in the last 50 plus years - this will not be a run away problem.  




June 13th, 2012 at 12:51 PM ^

But think the numbers thing should be issued to Fresh/Soph who have shown great potential on the field, in the class room, as a leader, etc...... Don't like the re-assigning numbers to guys during their senior year.....


June 13th, 2012 at 12:52 PM ^

that the formerly retired numbers should get statues circling the stadium in the concourse. Ford snapping (that really famous picture, on my phone so I can't embed) , the Wisert brothers all together, Harmon, etc. I feel like for the majority of the players there are pictures that are truly recognizable as a specific person. I think that would prevent the jerseys from "losing their mystique."


June 13th, 2012 at 12:53 PM ^

It is a way to connect the past to the present meaningfully and show that the traditions of Michigan football and the character of its past mean just as much now as then. Especially for generations who missed Harmon and the Wisterts, this serves as a great reminder of the deep and rich history of the program

Particularly, in the case of Gerald Ford, it also highlights what some of those who have passed this way have accomplished in life as well. Success beyond the field is a great tradition of ours as well.