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There's no place like home

Published October 10, 2004

Michigan Stadium. The Big House. It may be the most widely
recognized sporting facility on the planet. Since 1927, more than
35 million fans have gathered at the corner of Main Street and
Stadium Boulevard to watch the football team. And they usually
leave happy: the Wolverines’ record there is 377-103-15.
During the early ‘20s, Fielding Yost, Michigan’s
football coach at the time, realized that his team needed a larger
stadium to play in. Though Yost was met with opposition early on,
eventually the stadium was built for a cost of $950,000. Michigan
Stadium has seen its seating capacity increase six times, rising
from 72,000 to 107,501, and has had 184 consecutive sellouts.
Though it has a reputation of not being a very intimidating place
for opponents, when the fans start rocking, it creates an
atmosphere unlike that of any other venue. “Michigan Stadium
is just a special place,” linebacker Roy Manning said.
“To play there is just a great feeling. We only get to play
here about six times a season, and we want to win here more than
anything.”

— Sharad Mattu

 

This University is all about continuing tradition. So it’s
fitting that women’s cross country coach Mike McGuire can
watch his team practice in the Indoor Track Building and recall his
glory days as a Michigan athlete. “My favorite memory is when
I won a three-mile race in 1976,” said McGuire as he
remembered the day he set a Big Ten record for that race, just two
years after the facility opened as the Indoor Track and Tennis
Building in 1974. It was recently renovated in 1997 when the tennis
courts were removed and the building was dedicated entirely to
Michigan runners. When the weather’s nice, McGuire leads his
team outdoors to Ferry Field (pictured), right next to the IM
building. Originally constructed in 1906 as the varsity football
field, Ferry turned in its goal posts to focus solely on track and
field in 1927. It wasn’t until 1935 that Jesse Owens of Ohio
State set three world records and tied one other at the Big Ten
Championships in Ann Arbor, introducing the world to Ferry Field.
Years later, McGuire had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet
the legend at this historical spot. “In 1974, they held a Big
Ten outdoor meet there and they honored Jessie Owens at the
meet,” McGuire said. “It was 39 years after he had
broken four world records on the same day and I got a chance to
meet him and get a picture taken with him. A generation ahead of me
would always talk about the great day that he did
that.”Owens’s records have now been broken, but the
memory of his achievements remains in the heart of every athlete
that steps onto the track at Ferry Field in hopes of following in
his footsteps.

— Katie Niemeyer

 

Overlooking the Big House, downtown Ann Arbor, and the entire
Michigan campus, the 18th hole at the U-M Golf Course offers one of
the finest views around. Considered one of the most challenging and
best courses in NCAA play, it was designed by Alister MacKenzie in
the late 1920s and officially opened for play in 1931. The first
event took place when the Wolverines defeated Ohio State 15-3 in a
men’s golf match on May 13th, 1931. Some of MacKenzie’s
other works include Augusta National, home of the Masters, and the
Ohio State golf course. The course was renovated from 1992 to 1994
— the clubhouse was refurnished and new lockerrooms were
added. In addition, the course itself was restored to its original
luster through improving the bunkers and adding more landscaping.
“By having the girls practice here on a continuous basis it
really prepares them for all of the tournaments that we play in,
and if they can play our golf course well, they can play any course
well,” Michigan women’s golf coach Kathy Teichert said.
Located across from Chrisler Arena, this par 71 golf course is open
to all current students and is home to both the men’s and
women’s golf teams, as well as the cross country teams.

— Sara Livingston

 

The Michigan Soccer Field was constructed jointly with Phyllis
Ocker Field Hockey Field in 1995. It is a little known fact that
the roots of the two venues stretch deeper into the history of
Michigan athletics than any other. Used as a parking lot for
football games before its current formation, there was, at one
time, more than tires and tailgates rolling over the hallowed turf.
The site was once home to Regents Field, the stomping ground of
Michigan coaching legend Fielding Yost’s national champion
“Point-A-Minute” football teams near the turn of the
20th century.