Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Tony Branoff, 1934-2012

Tony Branoff (image via Fanbase)
I was totally unaware of Tony Branoff's place in Michigan football history until recently, but as a young-ish Michigan fan who's pretty well versed on the last twenty or so years of the Wolverines, it's probably time that I delve deeper into the earlier names, traditions, and accomplishments.

Branoff passed away a few days ago, on December 20th.  He played halfback for Michigan from 1952-1955 and was an All-Big Ten player as a senior.  He finished his career with 1,299 yards rushing and 11 touchdowns; he also completed 6/18 passes for 2 touchdowns and 5 interceptions; caught 27 passes for 402 yards and 1 touchdown; returned 18 kickoffs for 415 yards; and returned 22 punts for 178 yards.  His best game was Michigan's 20-0 shutout of Ohio State in 1953, when he had 114 yards rushing and 1 touchdown, along with 1 reception for 9 yards.

Branoff ranks #38 in all-time rushing yardage at Michigan, which is two spots behind Jarrod Bunch and two spots ahead of Vincent Smith.

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