Nominee: Ron Kramer
"From East Detroit, Kramer became a two-time All-American and a nine letterman in three sports - football, basketball, and track. Led Wolverine grid scoring for two seasons and did the same in basketball. He was a star receiver, a fine punter, and placekicker, and a ball-carrier as well. Following graduation he embarked on a spectacular pro career with the Green Bay Packers and the Detroit Lions. He was named to the all-Pro team following the 1961 and 1962 seasons, as the Packers went on to win consecutive World Championships. Kramer finished his career with the Detroit Lions, following a trade involving their #1 selection in the 1965 NFL draft. In the long tradition of outstanding Michigan athletes, Ron Kramer deserves to be ranked among the best. A nine-time letterman (three each in football, basketball, and track), Kramer's credits include two consensus football All-American selections (1955-56), the retirement of his jersey number (87) by the Wolverines following his senior season, and the selection as basketball Most Valuable Player for three years standing. After retiring from football in 1968, Kramer was elected into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame in 1971. Later, in 1981, he was named as a recipient of the NCAA's Silver Anniversary Award in recognition of significant professional and civic contributions spanning 25 years after completion of his college eligibility." - Bentley Historical Library
Does Ron Kramer Deserve A Legends Patch?
Thomas Beindit - Yes
This was an interesting choice for me. Although I said Gerald Ford should not receive a Legends Patch because his jersey should stay retired, I firmly believe that Kramer should receive a Legends Patch. Obviously, Kramer has outstanding accomplishments, which his jersey retirement showcase. Along with this, he also doesn't have the off the field contributions of Ford, which made Ford's jersey situation so unusual. Ford achieved things that no other person from Michigan achieved in history. Kramer had amazing accomplishments, but he's not in the same situation as Ford. His role with the football program is that of a football player. This makes honoring and replicating his abilities something that an average football player can strive for in their career. Doing something like protesting racism or becoming President isn't something an average football player can accomplish, which makes Ford's jersey a different situation. Kramer's credentials speak for themselves. He not only had amazing abilities, but used them in a multitude of ways, which makes him a player that Michigan should honor with a Legends Patch.
Kyle Curtiss - No
Again, Ron Kramer had his jersey retired. I will always stand true to my belief that if a jersey is retired, than it should never be used again. Why retire a number anymore when years down the road, it could be used again for a numbskull reason. Ron Kramer's career history and statistics can always be used as a lightning rod for ambitions and expectations. Everyone in public can say what they want about honoring him with a Legends Patch for his jersey. I say NAY fools! His jersey is retired! That alone honors the man forever! Find some other celebration for our retired jerseys and the players who wore them, but stay away from using them on the field again.
Tyler Desy - No
I've actually had the pleasure of meeting Ron Kramer and he told me this great story. He told me about how every game day he would bring apples into the locker room for the players. He would talk to them and the players would always be like, who is that weird old guy hangin around in here giving us apples and stuff. Well, he overheard it and told them that he used to play for Michigan. One of them asked, oh what number did you wear? Ron replied 87. They said we don't have an 87....Ron replied exactly. The players were pretty much shocked and ate their words realizing the weird old man was Michigan Legend Ron Kramer. I think the legends patches are fine...but if a jersey is retired, it's to remain retired. Legends patches are a nice way to tribute players, but I don't think a jersey should be brought back out of retirement. That story I think gives a fitting argument to what I'm saying. The simple fact that when they realized they were talking to the man who wore a number now retired says a lot. It should stay retired, I believe that Michigan needs to do something around the stadium to honor retired jerseys...not bring them back and use them as patches. Keep them retired...they were done so for a great reason.
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