Tuesday, Oct 16, 2018
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McCrays have unique angle of Ohio State-Michigan rivalry


Michigan linebacker Mike McCray lines up against Florida on Sept. 2, 2017. McCray's father played at Ohio State, but he'll try to beat the Buckeyes in Saturday's rivalry matchup.


ANN ARBOR — There are 13 Ohio natives on Michigan’s roster. But none understand the rivalry with Ohio State better than senior captain Mike McCray.

The linebacker grew up a Buckeye fan, the son of a former OSU captain. McCray and his father, also named Mike, are the only father-son combination in the game’s history to captain rival schools.

McCray Sr. was 1-3 against Michigan. McCray II has yet to beat the Buckeyes.

“We are tired of going home and people talking about us losing to them,” said McCray II, a Trotwood native.

Despite captaining the 1988 Buckeyes, McCray Sr. is all in on Michigan, according to his son. It did take him time to adapt, though. During the recruiting process, McCray II came home wearing Michigan clothes, which resulted in an inquisitive look from his dad.

“I just told him I really liked it,” McCray II said. “He was a little surprised because that was my first time ever being up here. He was shocked a little bit, but overall just happy for me.”

Now, McCray’s final home game has already arrived. With one last chance to beat Ohio State, Saturday has added significance for McCray — not only as an Ohioan but as a Wolverine whose father captained the Buckeyes.

“It’s my last shot,” McCray said, “and I want to go out with a win.”

Contact Kyle Rowland at krowland@theblade.com, 419-724-6110 or on Twitter @KyleRowland.

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