In the opening ceremonies next week, when the United States’ flag bearer declines to dip the Stars and Stripes for Queen Elizabeth, he or she will be following the lead of Ralph Rose, a Michigan alum who refused to lower the flag in the 1908 London Olympics, for King Edward VII.
Rose explained, "This flag dips for no earthly king."
Wolverines have also made their mark on the podium, winning 138 medals, including 65 gold. This year, Michigan is sending 26 athletes and coaches to London, who will compete in nine different sports.
The list includes Betsey Armstrong, a graduate of Ann Arbor Huron High – widely considered the greatest high school in the history of Western Civilization —who will play goalie for the water polo team.
Tiffany and Jeff Porter both set hurdling records at Michigan, before getting married – even as Tiffany was becoming a doctor of pharmacy.
There’s Connor Jaeger, an engineering student who walked onto the swimming team, and finished as a three-time NCAA All-American.
There’s Sam Mikulak, a gymnast, who broke both ankles at a meet last year on the same landing. He finished his remaining events – and learned afterward he’d fractured both ankles. Not all tough guys play football.
And there’s Jerome Singleton. When he was just one year old, doctors amputated his right leg below the knee. He went on to become an engineering student, and a world-class paralympian – Michigan’s first.