Michigan’s edge-of-your-seat 35-31 victory over Notre Dame, which marked the first night game at the Big House, was certainly special in a lot of ways, both to the fans and the U-M program.
As a result, Michigan athletic director David Brandon wants to help the players remember that night by allowing them to keep the retro-inspired jerseys they wore during the game.
“They love those jerseys,” Brandon told The Associated Press. “I walked out of the locker room, checked with compliance and got the go ahead. The reason they’re getting the jerseys is they really want them and NCAA rules allow us to do it because it was a special event and the cost was under a threshold.”
The jerseys are fun, and the intentions are good, but the immediate concern becomes the possibility of players selling those items for money.
And, honestly, it’s disappointing that it comes to that conclusion right away. But, that’s the reality because it’s been a problem on more than one occasion over the past year.
“I think some school has probably made that a point that you’re not supposed to do that,” said U-M defensive end Ryan Van Bergen. “So, I think it’s pretty clear that you’re supposed to just hold onto them. I don’t see anybody trying to get rid of those any time soon.”
I’m sure there are 20 Ryan Van Bergen’s to every kid who sees this as an opportunity to bank on what was a significant event in recent Michigan football history, but if a signed Denard Robinson retro jersey shows up in a tattoo parlor in the greater Ann Arbor area*, then Michigan looks bad, even if the idea was cleared by the NCAA at the time.
If Michigan really wants to commemorate the win without the risk, then make the jerseys a parting gift to the athlete once they leave the program or graduate.
(*note: just an example, people. Don’t freak out)