Today is a great day to wish happy birthday to a Michigan Wolverine named Patrick Lyall. Patrick “Pat” Lyall was born on this day in Adrian, Michigan. He grew up to be an excellent athlete at Adrian High School. As a lineman, Lyall was big enough and good enough to earn a scholarship offer from Coach Lloyd Carr. He was also smart enough to take it.
Patrick Lyall enrolled at Michigan in the fall of 2004. He did not earn any starts in his first year and did not earn a letter. The Wolverines finished with a record of 9 wins and 3 losses. Michigan posted a record of 7 wins and 1 loss in the conference and tied for the championship. So, Pat Lyall’s Maize and Blue football career was off to a solid start in Ann Arbor.
Lyall came back ready to contribute more in 2005. Even at 6 feet tall and 289 pounds, he was still a little light for Big Ten play. Pat Lyall did not earn any starts in 2005 and he did not earn a letter. Michigan slipped to 7 wins and 5 losses. It was the worst season in Lloyd Carr’s tenure. Michigan went 5-3 in the conference which tied them for third place. It was not a year to remember for Pat Lyall or his teammates.
During the 2006 season, Pat Lyall continued to be down on Michigan’s offensive line depth chart. Once again, he probably worked hard in practice, but did not earn any playing time or a letter. The good news was that Michigan posted record of 11 wins and 2 losses in 2006. Michigan finished with a record of 7 wins and 1 loss in the conference which earned them a second-place finish.
Everyone was expecting great things from Michigan in 2007. Unfortunately, Appalachian State and Oregon did not believe all the pre-season hype about Michigan. The Wolverines lost their first two home games for the first time since 1959. Michigan was now on a four-game losing streak dating back to the last two games of the 2006 season. It was time to see what the Wolverines were made of.
As it turned out, Co-Captains Mike Hart and Jake Long knew that Michigan was a very good football team. They picked their teammates up and led the way as the Wolverines won eight straight games. Michigan was right in the middle of the race for the Big Ten title with two games remaining in the season. Unfortunately, they lost the last two games of the regular season to Wisconsin and Ohio State to finish second in the Big Ten. Lloyd Carr had announced his retirement earlier in the season and the Wolverines sent him out on a high note with a 41-35 win over Florida in the Capital One Bowl.
So, Pat Lyall and his teammates did not win the conference championship in their final season. Although he never started a game, Patrick Lyall hung in there for four years. He lettered in 2007 and earned his “M” Ring. Lyall was part of some pretty good football teams and played on a Big Ten Champion in 2004.
So, thanks to Patrick Lyall for his contributions to the long, long Maize and Blue line that dates back to 1879. Happy Birthday Pat. I hope you have a great day on your special day today. Go Blue!
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