The offense may have been a bit of a disappointment, but it didn’t stop Michigan fans from coming through the turnstiles in numbers not seen in quite a few years in Ann Arbor.
As previously reported, upwards of 60,000 UM fans showed up for the first spring game of the Jim Harbaugh era. According to mlive.com, that number is the highest turnout for a Wolverines spring game in at least two decades, presumably back to around the time that Gary Moeller was patrolling the sidelines.
From the website’s post:
It was the most well-attended spring game in at least the last two decades. Former coach Lloyd Carr usually ended the spring training period with “open practices” that only drew about 5,000 fans, while Rich Rodriguez held more traditional spring games, with attendance topping out at 50,000 in 2009.
During Brady Hoke’s tenure, the April game never drew more than 25,000 fans, as his style of a spring game was a mix of practice and scrimmage, usually with Hoke on the field coaching between plays.
The UM spring game is easily the leader in the clubhouse for drawing the most fans, comfortable surpassing the 14,000 that witnessed BYU’s version of the spring finale. With Alabama (April 18), Auburn (April 18), Nebraska (April 11), Ohio State (April 18), Penn State (April 18) and Tennessee (April 25), among others, still yet to conduct their respective spring games, UM’s time at the top of the attendance heap should be short-lived.
(Photo credit: Michigan athletics)