|The Wolverine Magazine cover taken from Biggs’ Instagram|
Rondell Biggs, former defensive end for the Michigan Wolverines, solidified a heavy senior class in 2006. Being paired with the likes of Lamarr Woodley, Tim Jamison, and more. The defensive line created a formidable force that lead the conference in quarterback sacks per game with 3.3 sacks per game.
Currently Biggs, a father of two kids, has grasped the ideals and principles of being a “family man” and “Michigan Man” and combined them into one life that he’s happy with. Still residing in the state of Michigan, he is currently working towards his Masters degree at DeVry University.
Biggs took some time to answer a few of my questions.
TBHR: Let’s start off with the easy question. Why Michigan?
BIGGS: It was the tradition. I grew up a Michigan fan which was key for me as I’m from the state. I was always a big fan of the tradition and the rivalry with Ohio State always stood out to me. I remember watching them in ’97 watching Charles Woodson win the Heisman and then winning a National Championship, that always stood out to me in my head during the recruiting process. I guess it’s somewhere I really dreamed of going.
TBHR: What made Coach Carr so well respected and liked around campus, and what made his teams commit to him so easily?
BIGGS: You get a sense that he really cared about you. Even after I left I remember running into him, I didn’t finish up my degree I was only six credits away, so he would always ask me “did you finish school? did you finish school?”, he wouldn’t even say hi (laughs) that’s the first thing he’d say to me. You can tell he always cared about developing us as young men and as football players. I think the players responded well to that and he did a good job of molding us into men, not just players.
TBHR: What is your greatest memory as player at the University of Michigan?
BIGGS: I would say probably in 2003 when we beat Ohio State and won a share of the Big Ten Championship. That was a big moment. I didn’t get a chance to play in that game but just being in that environment with them coming in ranked higher than us and kinda knocked them out of their National Championship hopes, that was a big moment and an exciting game for us.
TBHR: As a member of the 2006 Michigan squad, what were your feelings towards not getting a second chance to face Ohio State in the National Championship game?
BIGGS: It was very disheartening, and it still bothers me to this day we were so close to the National Championship game and it came down to a few plays. Then not playing the next week and I guess by the luck of the draw we get bumped out of the number two spot and not get to play. That was disheartening but we had control of our own destiny, we played a really good game but it just didn’t go our way that day.
TBHR: To build off that, how does it feel now knowing Alabama and LSU had another shot to face each other in a similar fashion like in 2006?
BIGGS: Yeah, that brings up some bad memories (laughs). It was pretty much the scenario. I guess the only knock on us is that we controlled our own destiny and it was the last game of the year. You can’t keep dwelling on it.
TBHR: Talk a little bit about the 2004 game against MSU. How incredible was that game to you and do you think Michigan will ever see as dominant of a performance by a single player like Braylon Edwards had against the Spartans?
BIGGS: We had some great battles with MSU, we never lost to them which was key to me. I’m from the state so I get to hear a lot from the Michigan State guys. That’s a stat I can throw out there. With Michigan, we are full of tradition, full of great players. You will definitely see more games like that, and more wins in the near future. I can guarantee that. Michigan State has had a good run, no disrespect to them at all. But Michigan will go back to their dominant selves in the rivalry.
TBHR: Under Brady Hoke, how long do you think it’s safe to say that Michigan is truly back? Like with your teams. Regular top-ten rankings, rose bowl appearances and Big Ten Championships.
BIGGS: Not long. I think they’re close to that stage, I’m trying not to get too far ahead of myself. I know he (Brady Hoke) is still new, still planting some of his seeds, and getting some of his players. The team is still developing so I don’t want to place too much pressure on them in the near future because there’s a great deal of work they can do and he’s done a wonderful job so far. Definitely soon, I like Coach Hoke. I had the pleasure of playing for him for one year. I like the choice of him as head coach ever since day one, I was pushing for him and that’s who I wanted. Even in the midst of the Miles and Harbaugh talk. I always thought he was a great people coach, people respond well to him. He’s very smart. I definitely see them being great in the next few years and the years to come.