Brandon's Blog: Homecoming, Memories and More

Oct. 28, 2011

University of Michigan director of athletics Dave Brandon will regularly offer his view on a variety of topics related to U-M and intercollegiate sports. All his posts, along with links to related content, will be available on his page,, and he is also on Twitter at @DaveBrandonAD

Homecoming means many things to many people.

It is a time to remember the wonderful days of college life -- a chance to visit the old dorm, a visit to a favorite hangout, an opportunity to see old friends and acquaintances. It is a time to reconnect.

Especially in Ann Arbor, Homecoming takes on a special meaning.

The autumn colors and weather bring a glorious look to our campus. Walking through campus and the Saturday celebration of a Michigan football game rekindle certain senses to help bring those special memories back to life for an instant.

Homecoming also highlights change. Some traditions have changed but so has the campus.

The new CS Mott's Children Hospital and Von Voigtlander Women's Hospital showcase our commitment to modern medicine.

On our athletic campus, the new and renovated facilities highlighted by Michigan Stadium, Crisler Arena, the new scoreboards, our Soccer Stadium, our new Golf Building, and many others showcase our commitment to be the Leaders and the Best in every way.

And while some of the homecoming traditions of the past have changed, the one constant here at the U-M is the homecoming football game and the activities that surround it. Michigan football is the focal point of the weekend.

Since it is a time for memories, it is also an appropriate time for special honors. The 1961 national championship swimming team is returning this weekend and many of 'Bump's Boys' from the 50s and 60s will be getting together on Friday night (Oct. 28) and again on Saturday prior to the game at Mortensen Plaza inside the Michigan Stadium gates. (Circumstances out of Bump Elliott's control prevented the legendary M player and coach from attending.)

Bonnie Mandich and her family will come to town as her husband and one of Michigan football's all-time greats -- Jim Mandich -- is honored posthumously with the Bob Ufer Award by the Letterwinners M Club at the Go Blue Homecoming Tailgate hosted by the U-M Alumni Association. (The award has been presented by the Letterwinners M Club member in recognition for his or her outstanding service to the University of Michigan Athletic program.)

Every football weekend is big, but Homecoming is something special. The Michigan family is coming home to visit. It is definitely the time to celebrate the past, present and yes, the future!!

Go Blue!

Additional note -- I would like to extend congratulations to Percy Bates, Michigan's Faculty Representative to the NCAA for the past 21 years, and Lisa Hass, one of our athletic trainers since 1991. The two will receive their honorary 'M' letters Saturday morning at the M Go Blue Tailgate from the Letterwinners M Club

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