It’s seen as a sign of disrespect to the opposing program but Mike Sainristil’s decision to plant the Michigan flag at midfield of Ohio Stadium after the Wolverines’ rout over the Buckeyes was his way of vanquishing demons that have plagued U-M in this rivalry for years.
The first win in Columbus since 2000, Sainristil had big plans for what he was going to do if the Wolverines were able to reach the pinnacle during the last weekend in November.
Those thoughts had been kicking around his brain for quite some time.
“I was thinking about that since January,” Sainristil said. “Coming down here and having an opportunity to win this game at this stadium, first time since 2000. Last year, the only thing I was thinking about was fans rushing the field. This year, I was thinking about planting the flag. Speaking it into existence.”
He spoke it, loudly, with a message to show that the Wolverines are for real. No longer scared of the Buckeyes, Sainristil has been a key figure in changing the culture when it comes to rivalry games in the U-M program.
No longer showing fear, the Wolverines are now the ones instilling fear in others.
Sainristil credit Jim Harbaugh for a lot that, too.
“Being able to do that feels great,” Sainristil said. “(Jim Harbaugh) answered earlier about the rivalry changing, Coach Harbaugh is doing a great job to execute when this game comes about. Just preparing us for this moment.”
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