It wasn’t how Jake Long envisioned his senior season would start.
Following a 32-18 thumping at the hands of USC in the 2007 Rose Bowl, Long, along with fellow junior teammates Chad Henne and Mike Hart, decided that they had unfinished business to attend to at the University of Michigan. So each decided to return for their senior year in quest of a national championship.
The first test for Long and the Wolverines in 2007 wasn’t really a test at all. In the first week of the season, Division I-A Appalachian State was scheduled as a tune-up game, and no doubt everyone figured the Wolverines would roll.
The only thing the Wolverines rolled, however, was out of the stadium following a humiliating loss.
Appalachian State pulled off one of the biggest upsets in college football history, knocking off Michigan, 34-32, on the Michigan home field at the Big House. After just one game, the Wolverines’ season seemed lost and their hopes of a national championship were dashed.
All was not lost, however, as Michigan put together a decent year capped off by a 41-35 upset over Florida in the Capital One Bowl. And other than having trouble against Ohio State defensive end Vernon Gholston at the end of the season, Long dominated most foes and turned in a fantastic season.
While his senior season didn’t turn out quite like he expected, Long had a very successful career at Michigan. Some even believe he was the best left tackle in the program’s history, which is quite an honor, given Michigan’s rich history of producing top offensive linemen.
In 2004, Long was named to the Freshman All-American team. In 2006, he was a consensus All-American, as well as an Outland Trophy finalist (given to the nation’s top lineman). In 2006 and 2007, he was named Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year.
Looking ahead, some NFL scouts are drooling over his potential. He’s massive at 6-7, 313-pounds, and has a tremendous reach. He’s also very athletic, which will surely help him at the next level considering how fast NFL defensive ends tend to be.
Long was selected by the Miami Dolphins with the first overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft.
Long on the Web
Official Michigan Player Bio: Jake Long
The official website for the Michigan Wolverines recaps Long’s yearly accomplishments, as well as lists his stats and collegiate achievements.
Jake Long’s Wikipedia Page
Find an in-depth bio as well as interesting articles about Long at his Wikipedia page.
Scout.com Profile: Jake Long
Find articles, a bio, stats and more on Long at Scout.com.
NFL Draft Countdown: Jake Long
Find a bio, combine stats and a complete breakdown of Long’s strengths and weaknesses at NFL Draft Countdown.com.
Latest on Long
With his first pick as new GM of the Miami Dolphins, Bill Parcells decided to take Long with the first overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft. Long is expected to anchor the Dolphins' line at left tackle.
News and Commentary
Dolphins' hopes rest on Long
Discuss the Miami Dolphins' selection of Jake Long at the Scores Report.
Dolphins go Long: 'M' tackle goes first
With the first overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft, the Dolphins selected former Michigan tackle Jake Long.
Mann of Steel: Senior tackle Long could be best ever at Michigan
Long was arguably not only the strongest player on Michigan’s roster during his senior season, but also might have been the best tackle to ever play in the prestigious program.
Michigan LT Jake Long: Top 10 NFL Draft Pick
AOL Fanhouse contributor Michael David Smith loves what he saw out of Long this season and thinks he’ll easily be a top 10 pick in April’s NFL Draft.
The Rams Have to Go (Jake) Long
AOL Fanhouse writer Tom Mantzouranis notes that while the Rams have many needs, they might want to strongly consider Long with the second overall pick.
On his last game at Michigan:
"It's still weird to think of it as my last game. After the game and once I leave and not come back to Ann Arbor, it will really set in. I've had a great career here, I love Michigan and wouldn't trade my days for anything."
On what’s most important at Michigan:
“Beating Ohio State and winning a national championship.”
On if he ever beat Ohio State:
"I've beaten them once my red shirt year, but I really don't count that."