Michigan Football: Michigan at Michigan State — The Paul Bunyan Trophy
The annual Michigan-Michigan State game gives the winner state bragging rights, an inside track to a bowl game, and last, but certainly not least, ownership of the mammoth Paul Bunyan Trophy. The four-foot wooden statue, donated by then-Governor G. Mennen Williams in 1953, portrays the legendary figure astride an axe with feet planted on a map of the state of Michigan. Two flags-one with the Michigan ‘M’ and the other with the Michigan State ‘S’-are planted on either side of Bunyan.
Since the battle for the trophy began in 1953 with Michigan State’s inception into the Big Ten Conference, Michigan holds a 35-23 edge with two ties. Since 1970, Michigan has won 31 of the 43 games played between the two schools, including a 6-4 edge in the last 10 meetings. The first game for the Paul Bunyan Trophy was a disputed one for the Wolverines, who said before the Michigan State game that they would refuse the trophy if they won. There was no problem, however, as Michigan State won the initial contest, 14-6, in East Lansing. In 1954, Michigan was glad to take the trophy back when it defeated Michigan State, 33-7, in Ann Arbor.
Paul Bunyan Trophy Records:
Overall Record: Michigan Leads 35-23-2
Most Consecutive Wins:
Michigan 8 (1970-77)
Michigan St. 4 (1959-62, 2008-11)
Most Points Scored:
Michigan 49 (2002)
Michigan St. 37 (2004)
Brady Hoke Against Michigan State:
Saturday will mark Brady Hoke’s third contest against Michigan State as a head coach. In his first season at the helm of U-M, Hoke and the Wolverines fell at Michigan State, 28-14, at Spartan Stadium. Last season, U-M won back the Paul Bunyan Trophy, earning a 12-10 victory over the Spartans at Michigan Stadium.
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Written by GBMWolverine Staff
Go Blue — Wear Maize!