Since Desmond Howard became the first Michigan player to receive a Legends Patch, there has been much debate surrounding which players deserve the award as well. In an effort to settle some of the debate, we will be breaking down a former Michigan football player that we believe should be analyzed as a nominee for a Legends Patch. This does not mean our writers believe they should be formally nominated in some way, but only that their credentials should be reviewed. If you have an opinion please comment or contact our writers via Twitter.
Nominee: Rob Lytle
"Consensus All-American and named Chicago Tribune's Big Ten Conference Most Valuable Player in 1976. He gained 1,469 yards as a senior to set a Michigan record and broke the Wolverine career rushing mark with 3,317 yards. His honors include the John F. Maulbetsch Award (top freshman) and the Louis B. Hyde Award (team's MVP). He finished third in Heisman Trophy balloting. He set a conference record by rushing for 180 yards in just 10 carries against Michigan State, an unprecedented 18-yard per carry average. Lytle became an outstanding player with the Denver Broncos of the NFL." - Bentley Historical Library
Does Rob Lytle Deserve A Legends Patch?
Thomas Beindit - No
There is no doubt that Rob Lytle had a great career at Michigan and was one of the most important players for Bo Schembechler and the Ten Year War. However, I don't think he has those legacy characteristics that warrant him a Legends Patch. Yes, his stats are pretty impressive, especially considering the defensive era he played in, but there have been running backs that followed him at Michigan with more impressive numbers. Players like Rick Leach and Gerald Ford have that iconic legacy. Lytle was an outstanding player, but I'm not sure he great enough in either his onfield contributions or his legacy to warrant it. If you compare him to people like Gerald Ford or Jim Mandich, this becomes clear. Ford had an amazing legacy that nobody else can match. Mandich had superb play that put him into another class. Lytle was an outstanding player and Michigan man, but I'm going to have to vote no on this one.
Tyler Fenwick - Yes
The late Rob Lytle should be a familiar name to those of you keeping up with our honoring of the Ten Year War. Lytle had anything but little impact on the game for the Wolverines, and, at the time, he was really a shining star for the Big Ten Conference. Any time you have conference record to your name, it speaks heavily to the accomplishments of the individual. Gaining 180 yards in a single game would be tremendous in itself. However, getting those yards on 10 carries puts you in another universe. We are also talking about a guy who stepped in as a Freshman and had an immediate impact for Michigan, but still found ways to improve throughout his career, which is something the numbers alone indicate. My final point for Lytle is being named Team MVP. The other awards he has to his name are certainly great, and there is no doubt he had a lot to be proud of, but getting that kind of honor in a program like Michigan, especially considering this was in the heat of the Ten Year War, speaks loudly to the impact he made for the Wolverines.
Tyler Desy- No
I'm going to admit I'm pretty picky about the Legends Patches. I gotta go with No again on this one. Sure Rob Lytle did great things at Michigan especially during the Ten Year War, but does that offer him a Legends Patch? Sure, he had some great games, but he didn't win the Heisman. I've used this point before and I'll use it again only one player has a Legends Patch and that's Desmond Howard. Heisman Trophy, All-American. People know of his resume and that's who we are comparing these guys to. Until you give me someone of his caliber I'm going to say no. There are tons of guys that did great things at Michigan over the years and to pick a select few to stand out is going to be difficult. I can't say Yes to this because in my mind he didn't do enough to be in the Desmond Howard conversation.
All writers are entitled to their own opinion and those may or may not represent the held beliefs of Hoke's Mad Magicians as an entity. Readers are welcome to comment below or contact the writers via Twitter with their thoughts,