When was the last time a quarterback wore a number like 98?
You’ll see it tonight if you watch Michigan host Notre Dame.
Wolverines quarterback Devin Gardner donned the jersey in honor of Michigan’s first Heisman winner, 1940 recipient Tom Harmon, who was officially recognized as a Michigan Football Legend in a pregame ceremony.
Gardner will wear the famed No. 98 jersey for the remainder of his career, switching from No. 12. A Michigan Football Legend patch over the left upper chest will be affixed to the No. 98 jersey worn by Gardner and all other future players donning Harmon’s jersey number.
“It’s difficult to say how honored I am to wear No. 98,” said Gardner. “You see Tom Harmon photos and prints all over our building. Knowing all of the things he accomplished on the field for this program and then representing our country, and to have the opportunity to speak to his family today, it’s kind of surreal. I’m extremely humbled and blessed.”
Harmon is widely regarded as the most talented player in Michigan history. He rushed for 2,134 career yards, completed 100 passes for 1,304 yards and 16 touchdowns, and scored 237 points, all while starring on defense and handling kicking duties. Twice during his career (1939 and ’40) he led the nation in scoring, an achievement that remains unmatched today.
Harmon’s No. 98 is the final formerly-retired Michigan football jersey number brought back into circulation.