Who do you think gets vacant Legends numbers?

Submitted by Wolverine Devotee on April 16th, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Since the dead period is upon us now, I thought I'd try to generate some discussion on football.

Who do you think will wear the vacant Legends numbers? They are #21, #11 and #87. Plus #98 will be unretired at the night game. Unfortunately. 

My picks-

#21- Gallon

#87- Funchess

#11- Q. Washington

#98- No idea what their criteria is. I believe that number is sacred and never should be worn again. 

My theme for the Legends numbers is for them to make sense. Howard at WR, Kramer at TE, Wisterts at DT. 



April 16th, 2013 at 9:04 AM ^

I would definitely agree on Gallon getting #21. Not sure about Funchess or Washington though. I could see Washington getting #11 because it has been said that he has become quite a leader now, but seeing #11 on a DT would be weird (awesome, but weird).

No comment though on ol' #98.

Blue in Yarmouth

April 16th, 2013 at 9:14 AM ^

I don't like the idea of restricting the numbers to those who play the same positions. Having said that I would give them to:

11- Cam Gordon

21- Gallon

98- Q Washington

87- Dileo

To me, I think these legends patches should be utilized as motivation to live up to past hero's from UM, not simply given to the best players at certain positions. I also think they should ether go to seniors or freshman. Guys in the middle of their career should be given the opportunity to keep their own number and turn it into a new "legends" number. 

If you're a senior and have been a solid contributor and leader but really not a standout that would warrant your own number being honoured, you should be given one your senior year.

If you're a freshman of considerable hype and talent (and prove that once on campus) you should be given one to wear for your career as motivation for something to live up to. If you meet those expectations (or surpass them as it might be) you could have your name added to the patch in future years.

I think the middle years kids should be given the opportunity to make their numbers great and be given the opportunity to show that theirs should join the ranks of the legends. If it's clear by their senior year that they aren't, give the best of them the honour of wearing one for their senior year.

I guess an example would be if we got Peppers. Give the guy the #2 if he wants it right when he comes in if he shows during his fall camp that he has what it takes (and Harris the number one if he shows the same). Give them their entire career to prove whether their names should be added to the legends patch alongside those that are already there. 

Of course if they don't want the numbers and instead want the chance to make another number a "legend", let them do that instead. 

This is just my idea of how it should work and probably doesn't line up with most here, but that's how I would do it.


April 16th, 2013 at 9:15 AM ^

I sort of hope they give the already-issued ones to freshmen now that the initial ceremonies are over, so guys can stay with a number. The Hemingway/Roundtree/Gardner musical chairs were bad enough last year; I'm not sure my brain can process Gallon in 21.

98 is different and should go to an established, high-profile guy at the ceremony.


April 16th, 2013 at 9:15 AM ^

Gallon is obvious for #21. I'm not sure if they would give #87 to a true sophomore, but your guess is as good as mine. They might go the safety route like last year and give #11 to Thomas Gordon. It seems like you hear his name as a leader more often than Q. Maybe #98 goes to him.

I have a question about the legends patches. What happens when some player wearing one of the legends numbers becomes a Michigan all-time great himself? Just add his name to the patch?


April 16th, 2013 at 9:22 AM ^

#98 should go to someone who has a chance to throw a TD, run for a TD, catch a pass for a TD, intercept a pass, return a punt for a TD, and kick a field goal. All in the same game.


April 16th, 2013 at 9:36 AM ^

I am not a fan of giving these numbers out every year just to give them out. When Braylon asked for the #1 jersey, Carr told him to earn it. And he went out an earned it. If a Freshman/Sophomore wants a certain legends number, they should request it, and then go out and get it.

That being said, if Gallon wants #21, I think he should get it. Outside of that, I wouldn't be able to say who should get what number.


West German Judge

April 16th, 2013 at 9:47 AM ^

I'm not sure, but I have a feeling WolverineDevotte already owns/is planning to buy all those numbers in their home/away/alternate/practice jersey/patched/pre-patched/tie-dye/camouflage/corduroy editions.


April 16th, 2013 at 10:01 AM ^

Off topic, I'm assuming this Ace Williams/Terry Richardson thing has been posted and deleted, since the info is 7 hours old and I don't see it being discussed anywhere. Can someone confirm?


April 16th, 2013 at 11:14 AM ^

We could talk about it, or I could tell you guys all about how I met Kate Upton at a bar, we hit it off and then we spent 2 weeks flyng around the globe.

But there's really no need to talk about either one and how full of shit and figments of an imagination each story is

Michael Scarn

April 16th, 2013 at 10:04 AM ^


My guesses are:

#21- Jeremy Gallon

#87- Devin Funchess.  If not, I'd say Drew Dileo.  Hoke described him as a "football player," which I believe is the highest compliment that man gives.

#11- James Ross (don't forget Desmond Morgan was given Gerald Ford's 48 as a young buck, Ross already has a low double digit number, and Jake Ryan already has Oosterbaan's 47).  Other possible candidate - Funchess.

#98 - Wildcard pick - Dymonte Thomas.  Versatile, playmaker ability at several positions, high school RB, going to force himself into playing time early.  Other wildcard pick - Dennis Norfleet because:


April 16th, 2013 at 10:15 AM ^

if we're going to give them out every year. So every year we would take a notable player, and then change their number to the notable player who came the year before him? Half the fun of jerseys number is engraining them to players. 20 is Mike hart, 86 is Manningham, etc.

In 5 years we're going to be like "man that #21 WR was awesome. Who was that again? Hemingway? Roundtree? Gallon? Chesson? Harris? They all wore #21 in the last 5 years."

I'd rather remember Gallon as #10


April 16th, 2013 at 10:37 AM ^

I don't like the whole changing numbers thing.  We identify players with their numbers.  Hart 20, Henne 7, Manningham 86, Denard 16, Kovaks 32, Woodson 2, Desmond 21, etc.  Let players keep their numbers and make their own numbers into future well-known numbers. 

Also, this is annoying to fans who buy jerseys, as you may buy a Devin jersey only have have him change numbers next year.  Either keep your best players' numbers retired or just honor certain players with a patch.

SC Wolverine

April 16th, 2013 at 12:02 PM ^

For instance, the Kovacks number change for the bowl game was uncomfortable to me.  The guy made his mark as #32, then he is wearing some former player's number.  Likewise, now for Gallon.  He has made his mark here as #10.  Years from now when people are watching video of his UTL catch, will they be confused by the number he is wearing because he had to change it his senior year?  At least Jake Ryan changed early enough in his career, and to a linebacker number, that we can identify with him as 47.

Perkis-Size Me

April 16th, 2013 at 10:34 AM ^

Gallon makes too much sense to not wear #21. And I think Q-Wash and Funchess would make good choices for the other two. But as for Ol' 98, I don't know what the criteria would be, or if anyone on the team is really even worthy to wear that jersey. No disrespect to anyone on the team, but Harmon is the legend of legends, and the pinnacle of a man who could literally do it all on the football field.

The only person I could see who maybe gets the jersey is Lewan, but I don't know if he'll want to part with the 77 jersey.


April 16th, 2013 at 12:00 PM ^

No changing established players' numbers please.

It's okay if a true frosh has #11 or #21 or #87...that's the whole point of bringing them back. Giving them to current players should have been a one-time thing as part of the unveiling.

Mr. Yost

April 16th, 2013 at 1:26 PM ^

...Just make them stop.

I agree with unretiring numbers, I even agree with making one number be the prestigious number for that position (i.e. #1, #2, #77). But this forcing numbers on people and having to identify who should wear these legends jerseys is just too much.

For one, you'll never get a new legend if you keep putting your leaders and best in these numbers.

And two, what happens when you get someone who outperforms the legend that they're honoring? For example, what if we gave #11 to James Ross and he becomes one of the all-time greatest players in school history. Is it now the Wistert/Ross Jersey? Do you get two patches instead of one?

I've always said, don't retire ANY numbers. But build a monument park outside the stadium like Yankees Stadium and have statues, plaques, monuments, etc. Obviously this park should center around Mr. Harmon, with Des, Wood, AC, Mr. Ford, etc. all right there with him.

I just think it would be a cool attraction to get people to visit the stadium as well. A way to honor your history and people can learn and even interact with the past of Michigan Football. Also a great way to honor entire teams.

Moonlight Graham

April 16th, 2013 at 12:56 PM ^

Unless there's a sure-fire candidate, I'd rather they not force the issue. Last year was confusing, frankly, with everyone switching mid-season especially Kovacs. Morgan should keep 48 and JMFR 47 when he returns, I guess. Maybe move Butt from 88 to 87 next year. But does there need to be a 21 every year? I like Jeremy Gallon as #10. Maybe if we sign one more blue-chip WR, he and Drake can be 21 and 1 starting their sophomore year? 

Ron Utah

April 16th, 2013 at 3:16 PM ^

It seems like Ross makes a lot of sense for #11.  That would mean all of our starting LBs were legends...which, yeah.

Gallon is the obvious choice for #21.  That said, I'd really rather he didn't switch his number.  He is #10 to me.

I think Funchess is the right choice for #87.  If he is truly progressing as a blocker than he has a very good chance of being the best receiving TE in Michigan history.  If that makes any sense.

As for #98?  That jersey is sacred, and if it's going to be given, it should be given on the rare occasion that there is a player that deserves it...like a Woodson, Hart, or Howard.  That is a HOF jersey and should only be given to surefire HOFers...which is hard to tell until they're juniors, at which point they may have already established their own legacy.

I'm actually okay with the Legends thing, but only if it's done in the off-season.  Mid-season number switching blows goats.  Have proof.


April 16th, 2013 at 3:28 PM ^

Will always be #32 in my heart. I hate number switching, Jake Ryan has had 3 (39, 90, 47) in 4 years. That's almost 5% of the number of jerseys we've had in that time.


April 16th, 2013 at 4:31 PM ^

Not a fan of asking a kid to change his number to a former legend. Again how does he establish his own identity? Say woodson ends up with 98 instead of 2 through this process...I'd rather see an honor patch with that number prominently displayed to recognize the legend but let the kid earn his own number. I'd say there's a reason so few jerseys have indeed become legendary and it's not like the dillema is going to occur every season, but Kovacs is a prime example of a kid who maybe with another season as 32 could have created his own legend. He sure became a special individual and leader from walkon status.