Book Review: Michigan Football: The History of the Nation’s Winningest Program


I approached this review with some reluctance. As an alumnus of the University of Michigan, my opinion of the Michigan Daily never quite matched the self-importance of its staff.

I read the Daily, I just don’t recall being impressed.

While the roster of national journalist who cut their teeth at the Daily is long and distinguished, I wondered how an entire book of columns from student journalists would hold up.

My concerns were unfounded. This is one of my favorite books about Michigan football.

From the very first excerpt covering the 1890 match of Michigan vs Albion, the text crackles with accounts from Daily reporters.

I’ve read just about every book on Michigan football available and it’s clear that the Daily articles were the primary source materials for many of them.

The book is chock full of interesting details from the history of Michigan football. Like a 1934 article that details the cost of each football player’s uniform- $73.65  (key items: shoes $12.50, shoulder pads $12, and helmets $10.50).

Or a 1946 student letter complaining about the shady practice of vendors requiring  students to buy a hot dog for 15 cents (!!) in order to get a warm soda- only to have the vendor circle back a little later and offer ice for 10 cents to cool the drinks.

Readers may be shocked to learn in a 1982 column that Bo Schembechler turned down a long term contract with Texas A&M worth millions while making $60,036 at Michigan.

The book covers every season through the most recent Sugar Bowl victory, with sections highlighting notable Michigan Wolverine players and coaches.

It is an outstanding addition to the library of any Michigan Wolverine fan!

Purchase Now!

Attached is a special excerpt covering the 1998 Rose Bowl.