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Posted on Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 2:11 a.m.

Wolverine fans hit the streets to celebrate Final Four victory over Syracuse

By Kody Klein

Editor's note: This story has been updated to include information from Ann Arbor and U-M police.

Hundreds of people crowded into the University of Michigan's Diag Saturday night to roar and shout in raucous but mostly law-abiding celebration of the U-M basketball team's Final Four victory over Syracuse.

"It was nerve-racking," said Michelle Maxwell, a U-M alumnus. "I felt like my heart was coming out of my chest."

It's been 20 years since the Wolverines advanced to the men's basketball NCAA National Championship — and the fans were elated.


Jordan Morgan's dunk to seal the victory brought one Michigan fan to tears.

Melanie Maxwell |

"The basketball team hasn't done this well in I don't know how long," Maxwell said. "Unbelievable — I'm so proud of them."

Though the first half of the game ended with Michigan leading 36-25, Syracuse nearly came all the way back and trailed just 57-56 near the end of the game.

"Michigan was cracking a little," said James Griffiths, a U-M junior. "Syracuse was putting on a full defense, but we held on."

The throng of maize-and-blue-clad fans jumped and cheered in front of Hatcher Graduate Library, in the heart of the Diag. People perched on the shoulders of fellow fans led the crowd in spirited chants.

University of Michigan Police spokeswoman Diane Brown estimated the Diag crowd at between 1,200 and 1,500 revelers but said there were no incidents. Ann Arbor police also reported no incidents from the celebrations.

"They were just having a good time and we had no enforcement action to take. It went very well last night," Brown said.

"It was awesome," Maddy Stumpos, a U-M senior. "I cried, I laughed, I almost threw up. It was very high intensity. I felt nauseous since the start. I cried at the end when they slam-dunked."

As the night progressed, people came and went, passing through the Diag to get to State Street or South University Avenue. But the sentiment consistently chanted by the mob remained the same: "It's great to be a Michigan Wolverine."

Video from sports reporter Kyle Austin:

Kody Klein is an intern for Freelance reporter Sven Gustafson contributed to this story.



Mon, Apr 8, 2013 : 10:05 p.m.

and if they win Monday look out.

Robert Gordon

Mon, Apr 8, 2013 : 12:28 a.m.

You pompous Ann Arborites. Yes, students do stupid things, including burning couches. What really makes you think the student body here is any holier than most others, including the one 70 miles up I-96?


Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 10:58 p.m.

We do not burn couches in Ann Arbor! Hopefully, more celebration Monday night. GO BLUE!!!

music to my ear

Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 9:45 p.m.

I am really happy for the u of m,and they showed the united states, how to celebrate , with out violence, what a great bunch in A2 I am not a big fan. but happy for our state of mi and the college it was very close and they will have to be a little more on their game louisville is a little hungry too I belive the u of m is going all the way monday.

Terry Star21

Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 5:58 p.m.

Nice job Kody. Very well behaved crowd, no couch burning like they do in East Lansing. Trolls are here in force, five comments and four of them about article wording - ignoring the team being in the national championships and the great behavior of students. Very sad trolls.

Robert Gordon

Mon, Apr 8, 2013 : 12:30 a.m.

Trolls? Well behaved crowd? Well no more so than in East Lansing sad to say. Couches were burned in both places, but was late to report that.


Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 5:56 p.m.

Kody, Have you changed it? GRRRRRRREAT!

Cole Bertsos

Mon, Apr 8, 2013 : 6:34 p.m.

I've made the switch — sorry for the delay!


Mon, Apr 8, 2013 : 6:28 p.m.

No, a day and a half later, it's still wrong.


Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 2:36 p.m.

^ agreed. Really, please change the last sentence of the article ASAP.

Robert Granville

Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 1:50 p.m.

It's Good? What? How long have you been reporting here in Ann Arbor?


Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 1:15 p.m.

Great game -- loved it. Can't wait for the final. Louisville game was very good as well so it shold be a totally awesome final. Best wishes to UM - Go Blue.


Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 11:50 a.m.

Mmmm . . ."It's GREAT to be a Michigan Wolverine" is the way I think it goes. ("Great" = gooder than "good.")

Kody Klein

Sun, Apr 7, 2013 : 4:09 p.m.

Thanks for pointing out the typo.