Michigan Wolverines: Ron Kramer

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Have you ever considered what a team consisting of the best Michigan players taken from all eras might look like? Who would you choose if you could pick only one quarterback? Only two wide receivers?

The three WolverineNation staff members -- plus two special guests, former Michigan tight end Bennie Joppru and former Michigan running back Chris Howard -- each drafted a starting 22 (11 offensive players, 11 defensive players), along with one kicker and one punter.

All of the participants were instructed to pick for a 4-3 defense; the offensive line with two tackles, two guards and a center; one quarterback, one running back, one tight end, two wide receivers, and a "flex" position that could be a second running back, second tight end or third wide receiver.

[+] EnlargeDenard Robinson
Michael Hickey/Getty ImagesWhere would you take Denard Robinson in an all-time Michigan fantasy draft?
This allowed for some offensive flexibility -- hello, offensive weapon Denard Robinson -- while not letting a team stack up on six running backs or four offensive tackles.

This obviously would lead to different strategies. Does someone believe Michigan is strong enough at quarterback that they'll wait until the end and pick among the quarterbacks not selected by the other four participants? What type of offense would you like to run? How do you deal with the old ironman-type players of Michigan's past, such as Tom Harmon, Bennie Oosterbaan and Ron Kramer? Where would you put them?

To be fair, we did a snake-order draft. That means at the end of the first round, teams went in reverse order for the next round. So the participant picking fifth also picked sixth to start the second round; the player who picked 10th to end the second round got to pick 11th to start the third round, and so on.

How would you draft? How did our general managers handle it? In a five-team draft with this structure, could a small run on players be a trigger for someone reaching for a pick, like in an actual fantasy football draft?

Our draft order went like this:

1. Former RB Chris Howard
2. Tom VanHaaren
3. Chantel Jennings
4. Michael Rothstein
5. Former TE Bennie Joppru

The full results of our draft, including team-by-team and position-by-position, will run on Tuesday, along with blogs from each of our participants on their strategies and how they felt about their teams. We also will ask you to vote in a poll in The Den for who had the best draft. Those results will run on Wednesday, along with a story on which 2014 commit could be a part of such a draft down the road.
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Michigan senior tight end Brandon Moore will wear the No. 87 Legends jersey in honor of Ron Kramer for the rest of the season.

"When you think of the history and tradition of this program and some of the great players like Ron Kramer, to carry on that legacy, that responsibility, is humbling," Moore said in a statement. "It's an honor to wear No. 87."

Moore, who used to wear No. 89, is injured and will not dress Saturday.

Kramer was a two-time All-American in 1955 and 1956 and a three-time All-Big Ten first-team player from 1954 to 1956. He mostly played tight end and on the defensive line for Michigan, but also saw brief stints at quarterback, running back and returning kicks and punts.

At Michigan, Kramer is eighth all-time in receiving yards among tight ends with 880 from 1954 to 1956.

Besides football, Kramer also played basketball and ran track at Michigan. He averaged 16.9 points a game for the Wolverines from 1954-57 in basketball and scored 1,119 points in his career, 38th all-time. Kramer is also Michigan’s all-time free throw percentage leader at 87.8 percent.

Kramer, who died at age 75 in 2010, was a first round draft pick for Green Bay in 1957 and played in the NFL for 10 seasons. He had 229 catches for 3,272 yards and 16 touchdowns during his career.

His jersey has been the third given the “Legends Patch” distinction by Michigan, joining the No. 21 from Desmond Howard last season (currently worn by Roy Roundtree) and the No. 47 from Bennie Oosterbaan (worn by Jake Ryan).

Top 5 TEs in Michigan history 

January, 30, 2012
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The tight end position is evolving at every level of football as more athletes learn how to play the combination receiving-blocking position that can cause so many matchup problems for opposing defenses.

At Michigan, there has been no shortage of NFL-bound tight ends in the school's history -- at least three Michigan tight ends have been drafted into the league in the last three full decades.

So who are the Top 5 tight ends in Michigan history? WolverineNation looked at the numbers, did some research and found out.


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