Bo Statue

A few quick hitters on the Bo Schembechler statue.  I spoke to the artist, Brett Grill, a few hours before the unveiling tonight – a few nuggets:

  • Grill was identified by a art consultant that the athletic dept hired, and selected after a review of 3-4 other candidates.
  • The only guidelines for the design were that Bo would be wearing an ‘M’ hat and no headset (on his head that is).
  • He created 20-30 models, with different ideas on the pose, etc.  He eventually created a scale model of the design selected.
  • He interviewed family, friends and former players (including Jim Brandstatter & Fritz Seyferth) to understand as much about Bo as he could.
  • His parents are Michigan alums – before the project his knowledge of Bo centered around watching him on TV as a child.  Before the project Bo was more of a caricature (the guy Grill recalled yelling on the sidelines).
  • Statue is 7 1/2 feet tall, made of bronze.
  • He used actual Bo era artifacts for the project – including the headset and the Rose Bowl watch.
  • One challenge was getting the contours of the jacket correct—he actually used a vintage jacket found on eBay to help get it right.
  • Grill is an associate professor at the University of Missouri. 

Dave Brandon’s blog has more here.


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  1. Love the details (80’s style Bo with head set, glasses, cap and jacket) but would have preferred the iconic arms crossed pose like this:


  2. My sense of Bo is that he would disapprove of the glorification of football (museums, statutes, $100m donations, luxury facilities, etc.) and of an individual (not the team or the university). But I didn’t know him personally and many involved did.

    Regarding the statue: Who makes a statue with sunglasses? What expresses about someone than their eyes? (Bo did not wear sunglasses that often.)


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