Representing the 13 days until kickoff is a former No. 13 who went on to a great career after his time with the Gophers was done. Although Bud Grant is best known for his Hall of Fame coaching career in the NFL, his athletic accomplishments at Minnesota are definitely worth remembering.
Grant wore No. 13 in football and basketball.
Grant was a three-sport Gopher athlete. For Bernie Bierman's football team, he was an All-Big Ten (at the time, All-Big Nine) selection in 1948 and 1949. The FWAA named him to its All-America Second Team in 1949. Grant spent time on both offense and defense during his Gopher career. In the Gophers' game against Washington in 1947, he scored a defensive touchdown off a fumble recovery, leading to a 7-6 Minnesota win.
Wearing No. 13 for basketball as well as football, Grant excelled on the court as he did on the gridiron. He was the 1948 team MVP. He was also a valuable member of Dick Siebert's squad on the baseball diamond.
The Philadelphia Eagles drafted Grant in 1950, but he played for the NBA champion Minneapolis Lakers for a few years before eventually signing with the Eagles. He was a Pro-Bowler in the NFL, but switched over to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the CFL soon after.
Grant's coaching career began when he took the reins for the Bombers at age 29. The rest is history. He eventually went on to lead the Minnesota Vikings to 11 division titles and four Super Bowl appearances, and was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 1994.
Grant has remained connected to his alma mater. When the Gophers opened TCF Bank Stadium in 2009, Grant was an honorary captain for the game. That same year, he received the U of M's Outstanding Achievement Award.