Typically within the first conversation of meeting me, I will naturally mention that I’m a very proud graduate of the University of Michigan. (With the block “M” tattoo to prove it.) Not only did I receive a world-class education from the best public institution in the nation and meet lifelong friends; but like every Wolverine alumni, I’m a true blue Michigan football fanatic.
Despite my relentless dedication to my alma mater, I admit that since moving to Washington I haven’t exactly been 100% up-to-date on everything going on in Ann Arbor. It is no secret that the Wolverines haven’t exactly been at the top of the college football food chain in recent years, but it was especially frustrating watching it every Saturday and not knowing why true Michigan faithful would allow this to happen. My answer eventually came in book form.
“Arguably the nation’s greatest public university and its greatest college football program can both be found on the same campus in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Michigan students, lettermen, alumni, faculty, and fans take a great deal of pride in that unique combination—and they watch the source of their pride very closely. They believe it’s not just Michigan’s victories that matter—on and off the field—but the values behind them that are so important, values that place a premium on community, achievement, and integrity. When they feel those values are threatened, they rise to defend them.”John U Bacon | Endzone: The Rise, Fall, & Return Of Michigan Football
Enter John U. Bacon. Ann Arbor native, Wolverine alumni, distinguished author, the ultimate insider source on anything and everything UofM. (When ESPN confirmed that Jim Harbaugh was indeed returning to coach Michigan, Bacon was their source.) Sure, I had read a few of his previous sports books; Bo’s Lasting Lessons and Fourth and Long to name a few. But it wasn’t until I
read devoured his latest works did I transform into fan girl status. The detailed account of the rise and fall of Michigan football accounted every reason for the teams tragic status in recent years, while his eloquent testaments of what it means to be a Wolverine especially tugged at my heartstrings. (I may or may not have even cried once while reading it.)
Once I closed the back cover on Endzone, John U. Bacon instantly became my favorite author of all time. So when the D.C. Alumni Association hosted a Washington stop on his book tour, I naturally jumped at the chance to meet him. Bacon is as witty and eloquent in person as he is when writing. (He was also nice enough to take a picture and sign a few books with me!)