College hockey fans looked on with awe last season as Matt Hunwick and Jack Johnson notched 30 and 32 points, respectively. To have one defenseman who can contribute so much to an offense is rare, and to have two is unheard of. Or is it?
During the dog days of Michigan hockey, the 1979-80 Wolverines found themselves mired in fourth place at the end of the WCHA season despite being led by one of the most prolific scoring lines in NCAA history. The Farrell Fivesome – named for then-Michigan coach Dan Farrell – combined for a staggering 338 points.
The line was anchored by two defensemen who have lived in relative anonymity in Michigan hockey history, John Blum and Tim Manning. Manning became captain of the following year’s team, and Blum enjoyed a healthy career in the NHL, but their contributions to the Farrell Fivesome are often forgotten. The two combined for 101 points that season – more than the combined total of all eight Michigan defensemen last season.