All-Decade Team 2000-2009: Michigan Football (Offense)
The University of Michigan has had some great players come through the program this decade. That being said, here is my All-Decade team for the University of Michigan football program on the offensive side of the ball.
QB - Chad Henne (2004-2007) - A four-year starter that left Michigan as one of the all-time best, he was the second true freshman to start at Michigan. During his freshman campaign, he led the Wolverines to a Rose Bowl berth and ended his career with a stunning victory over the defending national champion Florida Gators. He is currently the starting QB for the Miami Dolphins of the NFL.
RB - Chris Perry (2000-2003) - He is sixth in Michigan history in yards rushed with 3,696 and 39 rushing touchdowns. He was a rock in the Wolverines backfield during his time in Ann Arbor.
He was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy his senior season and was the Big Ten MVP that season too. He was drafted 26th overall, first round, by the Cincinnati Bengals.
RB - Mike Hart (2004-2007) - A four-year starter along with Henne and is first in rushing yards with 5,040 and 41 touchdowns. He was named MVP of the team his junior and senior seasons.
He was named co-captain of the team his senior year. He was All-Conference his freshman, junior, and senior seasons. He was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in 2008.
WR - Braylon Edwards (2001-2004) - The last Michigan player to wear the No. 1 and well deserving of that honor. He was also the Biletnikoff Award winner as the best WR in the country in 2004. He left Michigan as the all-time leader in receiving yards with 3,541.
He also left as the all-time leader in touchdowns with 39. He won many honors at Michigan, including He is currently starting WR for the New York Jets of the NFL.
WR - Mario Manningham (2005-2007) - He left Michigan a year early for the NFL when Lloyd Carr retired at the end of the 2007 season. He is fifth all-time in receiving yards with 2,310. He finished with 27 touchdowns and is now playing in the NFL for the New York Giants.
TE - Bennie Joppru (1999-2002) - He was a fifth-year senior who was also a team captain. He is second in receiving yards for TE's with 800 yards and 8 touchdowns. He averaged just under 10 yards a catch.
He may have not been the best all-around TE, but he was solid in replacing Jerame Tuman, who is probably one of the best TEs to play for the Wolverines. He was an All-American his senior season and drafted by the Houston Texans in the second round.
T - Jake Long (2003-2007) - Jake Long is probably the best left tackle to play at Michigan, ever. He was the 2006 and 2007 Big Ten Offensive Linemen of the Year. He was a finalist in 2007 for the Outland and Lombardi trophy. He was named a Freshman All-American in 2004 as a redshirt freshman.
He was a consensus All-American in 2006 and a unanimous selection in 2007. He was the first overall pick of the Miami Dolphins in 2008 and named to the Pro-Bowl as rookie.
T - Jeff Backus (1997-2000) - In his senior season, Backus was named second team All-American. He also started 49 games in a row at Michigan. He was a first round draft pick by the Detroit Lions in 2001. He is currently playing left tackle for the Detroit Lions.
G - Steve Hutchinson (1997-2000) - According to the Bentley historical library, Hutchinson "capped an outstanding career with his selection as a consensus All-American in 2000 after earning first team accolades from CNN/Sports Illustrated during the 1999.
"Hutchinson, a two-time captain for the Wolverines, was a four-year starter and letterman at left guard. He made 45 career starts and did not allow a sack during his final two seasons. Hutchinson became the fourth player in Big Ten Conference history to be named to the All-Conference first-team all four years, joining Mark Messner as the only other Wolverine to achieve the honor.
"A native of Coral Springs, Fla., Hutchinson was named the Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year and was a finalist for the Outland Trophy Award. He was the 17th player selected in the first round of the 2001 NFL draft by the Seattle Seahawks."
Enough said. He is currently playing for the Minnesota Vikings, blocking for Adrian Peterson and Brett Favre.
G - Matt Lentz (2002-2005) - He was first-team All-Big Ten his junior and season seasons. He started 36 or 37 games and led the way for both Perry and Hart. He was undrafted in 2006 and played for the New York Giants, most recently finishing off the inaugural season for the California Redwoods of the UFL.
C - David Baas (2001-2004) - According to the Bentley historical library , "In his first season at the center position Baas was a consensus All-American and shared the Rimington Trophy as the nation's outstanding center. Baas started the season at left guard but moved to center at the outset of the conference slate and helped guide the Wolverines to a share of the Big Ten title.
"U-M's rushing offense gained 106 yards per game prior to Baas' position shift but finished the conference schedule third in the ground attack at 175 yards per contest. He was named the 2004 Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year and became the 12th player in U-M football history to gain All-Big Ten first team honors at least three times during his career.
"Baas shared the 2004 Rimington Trophy with Louisiana State's Ben Wilkerson. Baas was the only player in the country to be named finalist for two of the three awards presented to linemen. He was a finalist for the Outland Trophy and was on the list of candidates for the Lombardi Award. Baas was selected co-captain of the 2004 Wolverine team at the outset of fall camp.
"He entered 2004 rated as the nation's premier offensive guard entering the year by Lindy's Magazine and Athlon Sports Magazine. Baas started 39 career games along the Wolverines' offensive line, including 38 straight to end his career. He helped pave the way for 1,000-yard rushers three consecutive years (Mike Hart in 2004 and Chris Perry in 2002 and 2003)."
He was the first pick in the second round of the 2005 draft by the San Francisco 49er's. He has started every game this season at left guard for them.
Well that's my All-Decade team for the offensive side of the ball. Look for the All-Decade team for the defensive/special teams early next week.
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