Last Thursday at Big Ten Media Days in Chicago, Jack and Tom Crawford visited with University of Michigan linebacker, Joe Bolden. While admitting he would probably “try to make less of a scene,” if he had to do it all over again, he felt that last year’s “Stakegate” incident was overblown.
I believe it was blown out of proportion. (It was) simply motivation for my team. Nothing more, nothing less. I know some things were said about how they scored that last touchdown. To me, I’m a competitor. In the fourth quarter, time is running out, I’m not gonna take a knee. I’m gonna run the football.
Bolden was asked if he took offense to MSU scoring that last TD on the ground.
Not at all. I respect Coach Dantonio for that. And, you know, that’s just playing football. If I’m the head coach of a team. I have the same opportunity and I’m playing my rival. You don;t necessarily like each other, but you respect each other, I’m running the ball too. . . . You know, people have their own thoughts on it. To me it blows my mind that it was actually that big of a deal. . . . I was just trying to motivate my team and I think some people took offense to it.
They also talked about the low expectations from the media and some fans about how Michigan will finish in year one of the in Harbaugh era (7 or 8 wins?). When Tom Crawford told Bolden that he predicted the Wolverines would win their first ten games this season, Bolden said (we assume tongue in cheek?) this year’s Wolverine squad would go 15-0 and win the National Championship.
It (the 7 or 8 win expectation) makes me laugh to be honest with ya. . . . You gotta go 15-and-0 to win it all right? OK, then we’ll go 15-and-0.
You can hear the entire interview in the clip below: