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Posted on Tue, Apr 26, 2011 : 9:55 p.m.

Michigan football legend Jim Mandich has died at 62

By Staff


Jim Mandich picks up yards against Ohio State in the classic 1969 game.

File photo

Jim Mandich, the man many remember most from the Michigan football team's classic upset of Ohio State in 1969 has died, according to numerous reports. He was 62.

An eight-year veteran with the Miami Dolphins, Mandich went on to become a beloved team broadcaster. He fought a lengthy battle with bile-duct cancer.

"His death closes a rich chapter in Dolphins history, for even though his catchphrase was his automatic response to callers asking how he was doing during healthier times, the words "never better" carry added meaning today," wrote Hal Habib in the Palm Beach Post.

Mandich caught 51 passes in the 1969 season, Bo Schembecher's first season as a coach with the Wolverines and one that included the 24-12 upset of Ohio State.

In a release from the University of Michigan, athletic director Dave Brandon remembered Mandich as "a Michigan Man in every way."

"He did so much for our football program and our university as a student-athlete, supporter, donor and ambassador of positive energy. After his pro career with the Miami Dolphins, he became an important leader in Southern Florida, helping the Dolphins and the Miami community in countless ways.

"Captain Jim Mandich led a team that changed Michigan football for decades to follow," Brandon said. "He was a legendary player and an even better person. He will be missed. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family as they grieve the loss of a great husband and father."

Here's the link to the full Palm Beach Post story.

Here's a link to an earlier interview Mandich did with WTKA's Ira Weintraub a year-and-a-half ago, in which he discussed '69, Schembechler and more Michigan football.

More reaction on Mandich's death came from Miami Dolphons chairman and fellow Michigan graduate Stephen Ross, who said in a written statement that: "There will never be another Jim Mandich. ... As a fellow Michigan Man, I cherish the time we spent talking about our shared passions for the Wolverines and Dolphins."



Fri, Apr 29, 2011 : 12:37 p.m.

Prehaps he'll be reincarnated as a Michigan quarterback

james Kurtz

Thu, Apr 28, 2011 : 11:22 a.m.

Having watched every home game in 68 and 69, it was obvious that Mandich was the glue that held this Michigan team together. He was as smart and tough as they come on the gridiron and deserves a memorial statue near the stadium.


Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 7:08 p.m.

Great clip of the 69 game vs OSU 1st Down. God bless and comfort the Mandich family.


Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 6:06 p.m.

I was down in Chicago visiting my sister and watched that great 69 game. My sister was dating a kid that had played his football for Indiana Hoosiers. That kid says to me," No way Mich. beats ohio state", Ha!

Lorain Steelmen

Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 3:47 p.m.

I remember Jim from school, as we both were at UM then. Wow, where does the time go!?! He was a wild guy, and a lot of fun. No question about him being a great 'Michigan man'..we have lost a great one! That '69 team, was one for the ages! All our thoughts and prayers, go to his family, and to the Wolverine community. Go Blue, Jim, Go Blue!

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 2:39 p.m.

RIP Jim Mandich. You are much beloved and will be missed.


Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 12:48 p.m.

jim mandich put solon, ohio, on the map and helped re-establish A2 as the place where championships were created. he was the prototype of the MICHIGAN captain.

Deb Anderson

Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 12:20 p.m.

Sad news but I'm imagining that Jim, Bo, and Cecil are doing some catching up right now. RIP #88.

Blu n Tpa

Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 12:17 p.m.

May his family take solace in knowing their husband, father, and friend, will be in the thoughts of thousands of the Michigan faithful. His premature passing will do little to lessen the memory of how he contributed to his community, where ever he went. He is Michigan! Go Blue!


Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 11:58 a.m.

This is very sad news. Jim Mandich was one of the greatest Michigan men ever. A great player, leader, community leader, and father. My condolences go out to his family. RIP Jim!


Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 11:52 a.m.

I agree with the comments on here, I just want to add say hello to Cecil Pryor for me.


Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 11:22 a.m.

Hail to Jim Mandich #88

1st Down

Wed, Apr 27, 2011 : 3:39 a.m.

Im sorry to hear this. Jim Mandich was one of the most true Blue Wolverines ever. I always think of the end of the 1969 game where he is being carried off the field in to the tunnel... <a href="" rel='nofollow'>;feature=channel_video_title</a> raising his arms in victory. RIP Jim Mandich #88 Go Blue.