Former Michigan Athletes of the Week: Mario Manningham and the Super Bowl Wolverines

Tag: Super Bowl XLVI

9Feb 2012
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Former Michigan Athletes of the Week: Mario Manningham and the Super Bowl Wolverines

One, two . . . yep, that’s two feet. And a legend is made. Mario Manningham.

Eight former Michigan athletes were represented on the biggest stage of all this Super Bowl Sunday in SB XLVI, which, of course, was won by the Giants, 21-17. Here’s a recap of each player’s performance in order of their impact on the game:

Mario Manningham: In a microcosm of his season, Manningham had a rough start, but came on strong late. In the first half, he was targeted only one or two times and failed to haul in a catchable deep ball. In the second half, however, Manningham came up with the play of the game and was targeted four straight times during the game winning drive. Manningham finished with five catches for 73 yards, with most of that coming in crunch time, and announcer Chris Collinsworth called Manningham’s 38 yard reception “one of the greatest catches in Super Bowl history.” Yeah, it would have been better if Manningham had announced that he were from Michigan rather than his home town, but it seems hard to fault him too much for that.

Tom Brady: It seemed that most Michigan fans were rooting for a Patriots’ victory. If New England had won, Brady would have forever been in the conversation as the greatest quarterback of all time. It’s fair to say that Brady remains in that conversation, but his performance on Sunday didn’t exactly make a compelling case for naming him the greatest quarterback ever. Brady went 27-for-41 in the game for 276 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Although he certainly didn’t get much help from his receiving corps, Brady never looked dominate and only put 17 points on the scoreboard.

David Baas: The starting center for the Giants, Baas’s offensive line blocked for 114 rushing yards and allowed three sacks.

Zoltan Mesko: Zoltan dropped three space emperor punting bombs for an average of 41.0 yards and a net average of 37.7.

Carson Butler: Signed to New England’s practice squad on January 26th, Butler did not participate in Super Bowl XLVI; however, he’s a New England Patriot and the Patriots played in the Super Bowl, so we’re going to count him.

Honorable Mention: Jim Harbaugh may have narrowly missed out on a trip to Super Bowl XLVI, but he was still named the AP Coach of the Year, the first time a 49ers coach has won the award since Bill Walsh.

25Jan 2012
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Michigan Well Represented in Super Bowl XLVI

Seven former Michigan athletes are represented in Super Bowl XLVI, which will be played between the Giants and the Patriots in Indianapolis on February 5th.  New York Giants wide receiver Mario Manningham (2,310 yards and 27 touchdowns from 2005-07), center David Baas (Rimington Award in 2004), linebackers coach Jim Herrmann (65 career tackles from 1980-82) and running backs coach Jerald Ingram (191 career rushing yards from 1979-81) are former Michigan athletes.  New England Patriots punter Zoltan Mesko (42.5-yard average from 2006-09), Tom Brady (5,351 yards and 35 touchdowns from 1996-99), and Ryan Mallett (892 yards and 7 touchdowns in 2007) are former Wolverines, too.

Tallying only the players, Michigan is in a six-way tie for third on the list of most well-represented schools in Super Bowl XLVI, trailing Boston College (6) and Rutgers (5). (For what it’s worth, a article only gives Rutgers credit for four players, putting Michigan and its five acquaintances in the #2 spot.)  With 22 players on the rosters of the Giants and Patriots, the Big Ten is second only to the SEC (23) as the most represented conference.