Ten years ago this week, perhaps the greatest upset in college football history took place. Many college football fans had never heard of Appalachian State before the FCS school showed up at the Big House in Ann Arbor and left with a win over No. 5 Michigan. I spoke with players, coaches from both teams, as well as members of the media who covered the game, to compile an oral history of the 2007 shocker. The story appears on Michigan’s Scout page as part of a new longform venture called “Deep Blue.”
At a house party in 2008, Jason Gingell was talking about the University of Michigan’s upcoming Pro Day. He hadn’t done so well in his private NFL auditions, and this would be his last chance to impress a team. “What position do you play?” a sophomore girl asked. A different girl answered for him: “He’s the asshole who missed the kicks against Appalachian State.” Gingell quickly exited the party.
Three years ago, when I saw the press release announcing Michigan vs. Appalachian State: The Rematch, I figured it was a sick joke. “We look forward to facing Appalachian State again,” Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon said in the release. We? Is he speaking on behalf of Appalachian State fans? Because no Michigan fan is looking forward to this game. We think it’s a terrible idea.