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Favorite Bo stories from Hoke, Fred Jackson

11/17/2011

As part of our package of stories reflecting on the life and legacy of former Michigan coach Bo Schembechler, two of the Wolverines current coaches who knew him took time to tell their favorite Bo stories.

Michigan head coach Brady Hoke: “When I got hired here [as an assistant coach], he didn’t come back until we started spring football, and I can remember just talking football with him. He always wanted to know how your guys were doing, how they were playing and what you thought and then he would always give his two cents, which was more like a million dollars when you got something back from Bo as far as a critique. How he treated the kids when he was here, and he was so iconic.

“His former players, they had a significant reunion of Bo’s Boys and the 20-year period he coached, I think in 1999, they had a thing here on campus. It told you an awful lot when you saw how many guys came back and what kind of man he was and a leader and mentor and teacher and father.”

Michigan running backs coach Fred Jackson: "First time I met Bo, I was speaking at a Flint Optimist Club luncheon. I was the high school speaker, and he was the college speaker. This would have been in 1974. My first year at a high school and Rick Leach’s senior year in high school. This was the first time I met Bo. I'll never forget the feeling I felt when I met him because I had heard so much about him, the electricity in the room when he was introduced. I had an opportunity to talk to him right after I finished talking because he spoke after that. He told me he heard a lot about me from the Leach family, Leach’s dad, because he was recruiting Leach. He told me ‘One of these days, I promise you, you’re going to coach at Michigan.’

"I knew I loved coaching and that I was going to get here eventually because this was one of my ultimate goals. I didn’t know I was going to get here but in my mind I was going to get here because my ultimate goal was to coach here. When he said that, it was like icing to me. I remember it exactly. It was the first time I met the guy."