Michigan announced late Tuesday night that in addition to unretiring the No. 48 worn by former President Gerald Ford, it will unretire two other jersey numbers.
The team will unretire the No. 47 worn by Bennie Oosterbaan and the No. 87 won by Ron Kramer. Both men played end for the Wolverines, while Ford played center from 1932-34. All three men will be "honored in perpetuity" by having their names on a patch on the jerseys worn by future Michigan players, beginning this season. Michigan's coaching staff has yet to determine who will wear Nos. 47, 48 or 87 this season.
"The success and acceptance of the Desmond Howard Legend recognition led to conversations with the family members who had retired jerseys, several of whom were never recognized or celebrated in the appropriate manner," Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon said in a prepared statement. “The Ford, Kramer and Oosterbaan families want to see their family member honored in this way. We have yet to have any discussions with the Wistert or Harmon families. This program is about tradition and legacy and this is a unique way to recognize these great Wolverines."
Michigan honored Howard, the 1991 Heisman Trophy winner, during its historic night game against Notre Dame last season. Howard's No. 21 jersey will be worn by Roy Roundtree this year. Michigan is tentatively scheduled to honor Oosterbaan during its Sept. 8 game against Air Force, Kramer during its Sept. 15 game against Massachusetts and Ford during its Oct. 13 game against Illinois.
The lockers assigned to the three jersey numbers at both Michigan Stadium and Michigan's practice facility will reflect the fact that Ford, Oosterbaan and Kramer donned those numbers.
Michigan still will have retired jerseys for Tom Harmon's No. 98 and Francis, Albert and Alvin Wistert's No. 11, at least for now.