Win should boost national perception 

January, 4, 2012
1/04/12
1:08
AM ET
NEW ORLEANS -- The victorious Michigan Wolverines wore T-shirts in the postgame that read, with all due respect to Def Leppard, "Pour some Sugar on me."

So just how far does a spoonful of Sugar go these days? It's all about perception, and Michigan's first BCS bowl win since a 35-34 overtime win over Alabama on Jan. 1, 2000, in the Orange Bowl goes a long way toward re-establishing the Wolverines' national reputation. It's a reputation that no doubt took some hits during the three-year tenure of Rich Rodriguez, whether or not the coach who replaced him believes it.

"Michigan never left," first-year coach Brady Hoke said after Michigan's 23-20 overtime victory over Virginia Tech in the Allstate Sugar Bowl. "Some people may have thought that way, but Michigan never left. What it [winning a BCS bowl game] means is we have a group of seniors who won 11 games. It's only the fifth team in 132 years of Michigan football to win 11. That's a significant task. These guys have grown as a team, and we've grown as a staff. There's a lot of love and respect that we have for each other.

To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

Michigan Outlook: 2014
Brian Bennett discusses the outlook for the Michigan Wolverines' football program in 2014.Tags: Michigan Wolverines, Braxton MIller, Brian Bennett, Devin Gardner
VIDEO PLAYLIST video