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Outback Bowl: Former Bucs coach Dungy addresses Michigan team

Staff
Published:   |   Updated: March 13, 2013 at 07:37 PM
TAMPA -

Tony Dungy addressed the Michigan team Thursday before their morning practice at Jesuit High in preparation for the Outback Bowl.

"When you have a resource who understands about the game and preparing men for life, it's an advantage having him come in," Michigan coach Brady Hoke said.

Dungy, the former Bucs and Colts coach and current NBC analyst, knows Michigan sports information director Justin Dickens from Dickens' days working in Indianapolis.

"I've read his book, 'Quiet Strength,' and the fact that he's a believer and I'm a believer, it's awesome," Michigan senior DE Craig Roh said. "Really, the thing with Tony Dungy is that he puts everything into perspective.

"Football, it really is just a game. It's a platform to praise God, to show Jesus Christ through the way you play and if you get too wrapped up in achievements and whatnot, it will ultimately fail you. There are those who are at the top, the very tip-top, and they're still not satisfied.

"So, ultimately, it's serving people, the people around you rather than being obsessed with achievement. That's ultimately the most important thing."

Here's the kicker

Two of the past three Outback Bowls were decided by field goals in overtime, including last year's three-overtime thriller when Michigan State outlasted Georgia 33-30.

Michigan K Brendan Gibbons has some experience with that, having kicked the Wolverines to a win in last January's Sugar Bowl with a 37-yard field goal in overtime to beat Virginia Tech.

Gibbons didn't sit on that moment. Instead, he worked in the offseason to improve on his 76.5 field goal percentage from last season. The redshirt junior from West Palm Beach was 14-for-16 (87.5 percent) on field goals this season and perfect on 44 PATs.

"I wanted to come back even better than last year and I want to do the same thing next year," he said. "I want to finish this year on a good note. I wanted to be in better shape and be ready."

Gibbons is also excited for the chance to kick at Raymond James Stadium.

"I'm a big-time Tampa Bay Buccaneer fan," he said.

Noteworthy

This will be the 18th Outback Bowl, making Outback the current longest sponsor of any bowl game. … If South Carolina wins, Bloomin Onions will be free at Outback restaurants Jan. 2. If Michigan wins, the coconut shrimp will be free Jan. 2.

Roger Mooney

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