September 17, 2017 Happy Birthday Anthony Carter!

1092 Michigan Football Team | bigbluefootballhistory.com
Captain Anthony Carter (#1) is shown above with the 1982 Big Ten Champion Michigan Wolverine Football team. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

The purpose of today’s post is to wish a very Happy Birthday to a special Wolverine named Anthony Carter. According to the Wikipedia article linked below, Anthony “AC” Carter was born on this day at Riviera Beach, Florida. Anthony grew up to be an outstanding athlete at Suncoast High School. He could have gone to any college of his choice, but somehow, Bo Schembechler convinced the talented Carter to come to cold Ann Arbor and play for a team that ran the ball, a lot! How Bo pulled this recruiting coup off is still one of the great stories in Michigan Football History!

Anthony Carter Michigan All-American | bigbluefootballhistory.com

Anthony Carter was Bo Schembechler’s only three-time All-American from 1980 to 1982. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

 

Anthony Carter arrived at Michigan in 1979, Freshman could play in those days, if they were good enough. Bo learned quickly that Carter was good enough. In fact, Anthony Carter was so good that he returned the first punt he ever touched for a 78-yard touchdown against Northwestern in his first game. Carter only started two games in 1979, but he played a lot. He caught 17 passes for 462-yards and 7 touchdowns! He averaged a mind-boggling 27.2 yards per reception. Wow! Of course, Carter made the winning catch/run play that earned a last-second win over Indiana on Homecoming Day in 1979. Anthony earned his first varsity letter in 1979 and he set his sights on bigger accomplishments in the future. Michigan posted a record of 8 wins and 4 losses that season and finished third in the Big Ten.

The talented Carter was back in 1980 and he was ready to do everything that Bo asked him to do, which was just about everything. Anthony started all twelve games at Wide Receiver. He also returned punts and kickoffs and carried the ball a lot on reverses and other running plays designed specifically for AC Carter. Carter put up big numbers across the board. He helped Michigan post a record of 10 wins and 2 losses and helped Bo win his first bowl win against Washington in January 1981. The record-setting Carter earned first All-Big Ten and first team All-American honors. He became the second sophomore to be named team MVP at the end of the season.

Anthony Carter tochdown vs Purdue 1982 | bigbluefootballhistory.com

Anthony Carter scores on of his two touchdowns against Purdue in 1982. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

Anthony Carter continued to play All-American level football during his last two seasons in 1981 and 1982. By the time he finished his career, he held almost every career receiving record in Michigan Football History and he made “jersey #1” famous! He finished his career as a tri-captain and a two-time Big Ten Champion. I don’t’ have enough space in today’s article to tell the complete story of this legendary player. However, I will cite some of his most famous “firsts” in keeping the 2017 theme of Michigan Football “firsts.”

  • Anthony Carter is the first man to return a punt for a touchdown on his first career punt return. (78-yards vs Northwestern in 1979.)
  • Carter became the first, and only, Michigan player to score a touchdown on the last play of a Homecoming Game in 1979 vs Indiana.
  • Anthony Carter is the first Michigan Man to post 19 kickoff returns in one season (1979).
  • AC Carter is the first player in Michigan Football History to catch a pass in 20 consecutive games. (1980)
  • Anthony Carter is the first player to catch a touchdown pass in 9 consecutive games (1980).
  • Carter is the first Wolverine to catch 14 touchdowns passes in one season. (1980)
  • AC Carter is the first Michigan receiver to record 3 straight 100-yard games (1980).
  • Anthony Carter is the first Michigan Man to post 19 kickoff returns in one season (1979).
  • Carter is the first Maize and Blue receiver to record 161 catches in a career.
  • Anthony Carter is the first Michigan receiver to record over 3k receiving yards in a career (3,076).
  • AC Carter was the first receiver to catch 37-touchdown passes in a career.
  • Carter is the first Michigan Man to record 14 games with 100-yards, or more, in a career.
  • Anthony Carter is the first M-Man to record 79 career punt returns and 904 punt return yards.
  • Carter is the first man to total 63 career kickoff returns and 1,606 kickoff return yards in a career.
  • Anthony Carter is the first African-American to earn team MVP honors at Michigan (1980 and 1982).
  • Finally, Anthony Carter is the first Michigan man to total 5,802 career yards in total offense. He had 339 touches (rushing, receiving, passing and kickoffs and punt returns) and averaged 17.1 yards every time he touched the ball! Nooooooooooooooobody ever averaged more yards per touch (over 300 touches) than Mr. AC Carter. Noooooooooooooooooobody!

Obviously, Anthony Carter had a spectacular career at Michigan. He did just about everything a Wolverine can do on the football field. He went to a successful career in professional football. He left Ann Arbor as Bo’s first, and only, three-time first team All-American. Congratulations Anthony Carter on your outstanding Michigan football career. Thank you for your contributions to the great history of Michigan Football. I hope you have a very happy birthday on your special day! Go Blue!

Thanks to “expressfan” for the memorable video of Anthony Carter’s last second touchdown vs Indiana in 1979.

For more information about Anthony Carter go to the following links:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthony_Carter

http://bentley.umich.edu/athdept/football/fbteam/1982fbt.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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