July 7, 2017 Happy Birthday Eric Bush!

Michgian Football Team 1990 | bigbluefootballhistory.com
Eric Bush (#4) is shown above with the 1990 Big Ten Champion Michigan Wolverines. He is seated in the first row and is the second man from the right of the picture. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library.

Today is another great day to make a Happy Birthday wish to Michigan Man Eric Bush. According to the 1987 Michigan Football Media Guide, Eric Bush was born in Quincy, Illinois. He starred as a quarterback/defensive back at Quincy High School. He was the Illinois Player of the Year in 1986 and was a Super Prep All-American. He also played basketball and baseball at a high level and was a straight “A” student as well. Yes, this guy was everything that college coaches were looking for! He was one of the most heavily recruited players in the Class of 1986.

Eric Bush accepted a scholarship from Bo Schembechler and came to play for the Wolverine legend in 1987. As usual, there was plenty of competition at every position and Eric did everything he could to get on the field as a quarterback. He spend his time learning the Michigan football system and trying to get better. Bush did not earn any starts in 1987 and he did not earn a letter in his first season on the Michigan varsity football team.

Eric Bush Michigan Football | bigbluefootballhistory.com

Eric Bush earned three varsity letters and played on three Big Ten Championship teams from 1988 to 1990. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library.

After an injury to his throwing hand, Bush returned in 1988. However, the coaches thought that he would make a better contribution in the defensive backfield. Eric did not start any games as a DB, but he played special teams. He made 4 solo tackles and assisted on another for a season total of 5 takedowns. Bush earned his first letter on Bo’s twelfth championship team. The Wolverines ended the season with a final record of 9 wins and 2 losses and 1 tie and went undefeated in the Big Ten (7-0-1).

Eric Bush came back for his third year in 1989. It was also turned out to be the final year of Bo Schembechler’s legendary career. Once again, Eric did not earn any starts but he did record two  solo tackles during the season. He earned his second letter on a team that finished with a record of 10-2-0. The Wolverines won their second consecutive championship, and Bo’s last, with a perfect record of 8 wins and 0 losses.

Bush’s final year would be the first season for new Michigan Head Football Coach Gary Moeller. Once again, Eric did not start any games on defense. Instead, he continued to stand out on special teams. He finished with a career high 5 solo tackles in 1990. Bush earned his third straight varsity letter and his third consecutive Big Ten Championship in 1990.

Eric Bush isn’t one of the most famous players to graduate Michigan, but he left Ann Arbor with his head held high! He earned three varsity letters and three Big Ten Championship rings, so he did just fine. He is also connected to some interesting Michigan Football “firsts.” Check these out:

  • Eric Bush played on the first team to be coached by Gary Moeller in 1990.
  • Bush was also on the first, and only, Big Ten Football team (1990) to win a conference championship in every decade since the 1890s.
  • Eric Bush played in the first game in Michigan Football History against Mississippi in Michigan’s 35-3 Gator Bowl win on January 1, 1991.

So, Eric Bush is one more reason why Michigan Football is the winningest football program in the history of college football. I hope that Eric has a really Happy “Maize and Blue” Birthday today. Go Blue!

http://www.quincybluedevilsportshalloffame.com/eric-bush.html

http://bentley.umich.edu/athdept/football/fbteam/1990fbt.htm

 

Barry Gallagher

Barry Gallagher

Barry Gallagher is a self-proclaimed Michigan Football Archeologist. He spends a considerable amount of his time digging into the 138-year history of Wolverine Football. He is on a mission to share his findings with Maize and Blue football fans everywhere. He is the author of one book about Michigan Football titled "21-194-13 Michigan Football's Greatest Era". His second book titled, "The Legend of Bo Schembechler-How an Unknown Buckeye Became the Winningest Coach in Michigan Football History" was released on September 12, 2017. You can learn something about Michigan Football everyday by going to his website at: bigbluefootballhistory.com. You can also follow him on Social Media.
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