Do You Know The True Story Behind Desmond Howard’s Famous ‘Heisman Pose’ Touchdown against Ohio State?
A few weeks back, Desmond Howard was one of the guests on the Manning-Cast of Monday Night Football on ESPN2, and typically, the guys watch the game, comment in more of a casual conversation setting via satellite feeds, and tell some great stories from when they were playing the game.
While Desmond Howard was on, they talked about one his most famous moment while in college at Michigan - "the pose" against Ohio State. We all thought it was Howard being cocky, and showing off against the Wolverine's biggest rival. But the real story is actually kind of embarrassing.
In 1991, the Michigan vs. Ohio State game was pivotal for who would win the Big Ten that year. Michigan came in heavy favorites, and during the game at one point, the Wolverines were up 17-3. Howard took a punt return 93 yards to the house, and not only catapulted Michigan to the win, but basically wrapped up all he needed to win the Heisman Trophy that year.
That's why we TOUGHT he did the pose at the end of the punt return.
Turns out, though, it almost never happened, and he never intended on doing it. In fact, he had plans to do something completely different.
The summer before the '91 season, Howard said he was dating a gymnast, and she taught him how to do a backflip. So, Howard thought when the moment was right, he would break out the backflip on the one-yard-line, and flip into the endzone.
"So here we are: Michigan, Ohio State, The Game. The biggest game in college football. This was my opportunity, but as I was running down the field, I was second-guessing myself. Should I do it? Yes? No? If you do it, and mess up, you will be on Sports Center for the wrong thing.
So at about the eight-yard-line, I chickened out. Then I crossed the goal line and I was like 'okay...' -- boom, I did that... and the rest as they say is history."
So there you have it... Desmond Howard's iconic Heisman pose in 1991 was... completely unintended, all because he was scared to do a backflip to impress a gymnast.
As COOL as that would have been, though... the Heisman pose certainly served as a precursor for what was coming his way soon.
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