TMD on Denard/What's your #1 Denard Memory?

Submitted by JeepinBen on January 2nd, 2013 at 1:26 PM

A nice article on Denard, and I think a great way to think about someone's career that just ended. As in, you can't. 4 years of memories don't fit on 2 pages.,0

As Helfand writes, we all have our "Denard Memory", ups and downs, etc. What's your #1 memory from his career?

I have to go with the ND fumble recovery TD. I was in that corner of the endzone and saw the fumble, saw him pick it up and run it right towards me and into the endzone... That's one I wont forget.

What's yours?



January 2nd, 2013 at 4:21 PM ^

esp. considering he achieved the near-impossible by being as good as he was without the benefit of all the reps, but if Gardner had been a bit more accurate on a few of those throws, we might have been looking at an all-time great performance by Gallon in the Outback.  Talking 200+ yards and 3TDs, maybe-- might have been up there with the Braylon Game.

Gob Blueth

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:18 PM ^

Mostly because I was checking my phone constantly during a wedding for this game after a long summer of anticipation.  When I saw that Denard was starting I got butterflies.  From then on I just continued to freak out every time I got updates about the amazing plays he was making.  After I got home I downloaded the game and watched it many many times.


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:34 PM ^

That whole game was great but the 92 yard (?) TD run really stands out. I still hear the announcers saying that no one would catch him even though he was still at midfield.

NOLA Wolverine

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:35 PM ^

Probably the Iso play he took for about 40 yards against MSU this past season on the last drive. That's the first time I can remember him having success against that defense.

Mr. Yost

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:35 PM ^

It was the epitomy of Denard. Shoelaces untied, nothing goes right...and BOOM the most unique player in Michigan HISTORY makes a play that leaves everyone picking up their bottom jaw off the ground.

Also the significance of just that style of QB hitting the field in a Michigan uniform. I hate adding race into the mix, but even though he wasn't the felt like history a little bit.

I don't think anyone could've imagined what would happen after that first play.

We'll miss you Shoelace.

Section 1

January 5th, 2013 at 8:11 PM ^

The first game of 2009.  Western Michigan in the Big House.  I wasn't quite sure who the Michigan fans were that day; Denard sealed the deal.

Remember that week; it was the week that the Free Press came out with Stretchgate.  Mark Synder's published prediction was that Western Michigan would beat Michigan in an upset.  Parents dropping off their undergraduate kids were doing interviews on local Detroit local tv news, saying that Michigan had been "disgraced."  That Rich Rodriguez had "disgraced" Michigan.

I had actually given away my east-sideline tickets earlier that summer, to family friends with Western Michigan connections.  But after what the Free Press did, I knew I had to be there.  For the first time in about 25 years, I drove myself to Ann Arbor and scalped a ticket.  It was in Section 23, right below the Press Box.  Perfect.  When Tate Forcier brilliantly freelanced an early touchdown, after the tentative crowd quieted down, I screamed up at the old press box (windows wide open on the hot day), "That one was for you, Snyder!"

By the time Denard Robinson (the kid who, but for Rich Rodriguez, would never have set foot in Ann Arbor) scored on his first touch of the ball, I could no longer hope to yell over the crowd noise.

All by myself in a party of 110,000.  One of my favorite days ever in Michigan Stadium.

Dutch Ferbert

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:38 PM ^

I was there. He was outstanding. Our defense played their worst game of the year, and he met the challenge.

Other than that, his first 2 ND games were damn special. And his first career touchdown was an eye opener too.


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:38 PM ^

Notre Dame 2010.  I was there with my buddy.  We kept saying he was due to break one for the distance and sure enough, next play he busts a run for 87 yards and the crowd goes completely silent.


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:38 PM ^

My Denard moment is at one of my Dad's track meets (Womens coach), and Denard came up to my Dad and I and said hello, and asked where my mom was so he could say hi. My Dad brought him over to her and the whole crowd pretty much swarmed him and asked for pictures. Upon my Dad realizing he made a mistake by bringing him into the crowd he tried to get him out of there but Denard said no and took pictures/signed autographs for about 15 minutes nonstop.

I can't ever remember seeing somebody with as much star power as him have no problem going out of his way to please so many people, and keep a smile on his face the whole time. Amazing kid.


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:40 PM ^

There have been like 20 responses, and people have mentioned at least 7 or 8 different moments that were their favorite.  That is just awesome.

State Street

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:41 PM ^

I'll never forget during the buildup to the MSU game in 2010 there was a news crew on campus interviewing people about their thoughts on the game outside of the Union.  While the reporter was busy picking out students out of the crowd to chat up there was Denard, smiling away joking with the guy that sells food out of a cart outside of the LSA building.  The guy is one of the best athletes in the game but never got caught up in the hoopla or took himself too seriously. 

And I can almost guarantee in thisday and age there will never be another like him. 


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:42 PM ^

Maybe one of my favorite memories is when he came to visit someone in West Quad (my Freshman year, his Sophomore year). He visited the girls who lived right next to me and all I could hear was them screaming. I thought they found a spider in their room so I went to check it out and Denard was there getting his picture with them. As he was leaving I saw him going down the stairs and quickly blurted out "Denard Robinson, you're my hero!" He smiled at me. It was enchanting.

The article brings up a good point. He probably won't ever remember that moment, but I sure will.


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:43 PM ^

And his post-game interview.

Responding to the student section being completely full 20 minutes after the game....

"The game's over!  Go home!"


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:44 PM ^

I can't pick an all-time favorite, but the most recent one was when he got sandwiched by the Ohio State defenders and just kept going for the touchdown. Physics, kids. Physics.


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:47 PM ^

First play from scrimmage for me.  I was at the game with a bunch of friends who didn't follow recruiting as much as I did at the time.  I had been talking him up, calling him the next Pat White since we signed him.  After that run, one of my friends says "yeah he's pretty good".  Needless to say it panned out.

Darth Wolverine

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:47 PM ^

My favorite moment from him is his performance in South Bend in 2010. I loved how excited those domer fans were, especially when they thought they had it won, and then Denard hushed the home crowd time after time.


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:51 PM ^

...his first play from scrimmage. He finished his run heading right for my seats in the south end zone. I was dumbstruck by what had just happened and he's never ceased to amaze me throughout the rest of his amazing career.

Great athlete, greater person. Man I want him in the same backfield as RGIII and Alfred Morris next year running in that full house pistol formation.


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:54 PM ^

the under the lights game in 2011 when the notre dame defensive lineman was grabbing his jersey and trying to pull him down but he stayed up and threw to Hemingway who ran it down to like the 10 yard line

Colt McBaby Jesus

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:55 PM ^

The fade to Roundtree to win the UTL. I was in that corner of the endzone, surrounded by a bunch of ND fans. After the catch I hugged my buddy and then turned around to look at their devasted faces. It was excellent.


January 2nd, 2013 at 1:59 PM ^

Probably the UTL game, but that first play from scrimmage is up there, too.  I remember thinking it was weird that we pulled Tate Forcier from the game when we seemed to be doing well offensively.  But then Denard took the snap, and . . . ah.

Honorable mention goes to all his appearances at the basketball games.  Very cool to see Michigan athletes supporting each other in person.

User -not THAT user

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:01 PM ^

All I know is that when he was on the field you didn't do anything else.  Had to go to the bathroom?  Hold it.  Empty beer?  Wait it out, promise to load a cooler or buy tallboys next time.  Out of dip?  Eat dry chips.  Out of chips?  You're probably eating too much anyway.

All of the obvious highlights have been noted, so I'll take a different route and say his keynote address at the B1G Kickof luncheon.  Dude is a very humble, private person.  For him to share as much of himself as he did under that microscope and he let everyone know how much his experience at Michigan meant to him was awesome.  I am proud that he is a Michigan Man and I am grateful that he has gotten a return from his time at the University that balances out all the memories he has given me as a fan of the program.  God knows he earned it.

Perkis-Size Me

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:01 PM ^

It's damn near impossible to pick just one, but the 2010/11 NDs probably top the list. I'd never seen one player just completely take over the game like that. The final drive at the UTL game was near divine.

Also, the 40-50 yd scamper he had against MSU this year near the end of the game. It was so gratifying to see him finally break off a long run vs that defense.


January 2nd, 2013 at 2:03 PM ^

... Or maybe the final drive against ND after he was named the starter over Forcier (I was wondering why we'd replace the guy who had led a few comeback drives the year before and that drives assuaged my fears). Go Denard, and Hail to a Leader and Best.


January 2nd, 2013 at 2:08 PM ^

Really tough to narrow down. The end of UTL sticks out the most to me because I was there, but that's more an awesome Michigan memory than an awesome Denard memory. There were so many times live when I watched him pull of a big run and I just smiled and laughed at how talented he was. It's funny actually, if we were up big against a bad opponent and one of our RBs pulled off a big run I would cheer like normal, but if Denard pulled off one of his ridiculous runs I wouldn't even cheer, just laugh. He was a truly special player.

Toby Flenderson

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:09 PM ^

It was the first game of 2010 with my dad. It was the start of school and my dad surprised me with tickets. We then saw denard absolutely destroy uconn. I reefer fom the game the second td and me thinking " he is something special"


January 2nd, 2013 at 2:11 PM ^

There are so many memories of Denard Robinson that will be cherished certainly, but one of the best for me, possibly because it turns out to be one of the most poignant in a way, was the rushing touchdown against Ohio State this year. I say that because it turns out it would be the last rushing touchdown he scored (or TD in general, I believe), and it was quintessential Denard Robinson - 67 yards, bouncing off and then getting away from defenders, and on a 75 yard drive that lasted all of two plays.



January 2nd, 2013 at 2:14 PM ^

I will say that in quite a few years of watching Michigan Football, I have never laughed as much as I have from the many times he broke into the open with nothing but grass in front and slower people behind. 


January 2nd, 2013 at 2:16 PM ^

Others have pretty much covered my favorite moments, but of the many great memories I have of Denard, one was the play this year against Alabama when he threw an interception and then launched himself shoulders-first at the defender who had the ball, bouncing off and nearly injuring himself.  It was a borderline crazy thing to do, but it was also a great example of the way he played the game. 

Huyge Cox

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:21 PM ^

When Denard came into my room in West Quad my freshman year (his freshman year as well) one saturday night.  We made a toast for him (but he didn't partake in the drinking).  Once again, one of those moments that he won't remember but I sure will.  What a guy.