By: Senior Writer Andy Andersen
It always seems unfair to pick out favorite Michigan Football games, as over the years so many of them have provided an outstanding entertainment to the millions of Wolverine fans that have enjoyed so many successes at home and away.
Lance has limited the commentary to only the last twenty-five years. Fortunately that window provides plenty of scenes to recall with pleasure, and a significant few that stunned so badly that most Michigan fans would rather forget them. They won’t get mentioned here. And it excludes the most unexpected M victory ever: M over OSU in 1969.
Even without that, my first three great games are all games against Ohio State.
The first would be the 1997 Michigan/Ohio State game. It doesn’t get better that that. Charles Woodson shining on offense and defense on his way to becoming the first defensive player to win the Heisman, provided a lifetime memory. His 78-yard punt return for a TD sealed the victory. This game featured a great home crowd, great stakes, great performances, and great results. A Big Ten Championship and a berth in the Rose Bowl happened via this 20-14 M win. Without this win a National Championship doesn’t happen. Woodson had also provided window dressing with his great interception in the 1997 win over MSU, which didn’t make the list because it was not an especially great game, but I have never seen anything more athletic than that Woodson interception against the Spartans. Never.
Second comes the 1991 Desmond Howard Heisman pose in the south end zone after the 93-yard punt return to seal the deal in an outstanding 33-3 rout. At the time I thought that DH was hamming it up excessively with his dramatic Heisman pose. Time has proven Desmond right and me wrong. This has provided an enduring film clip of a fine Michigan moment. This one led to a Big Ten Championship, but a loss in the Rose Bowl clouded any National Championship hopes. That doesn’t diminish a great win and a great player’s shining moment. The crowd went nuts. Additionally, the Howard “catch” against Notre Dame for a last minute game winner could easily be included in the this list of top five fan moments and games.