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BY MIKE LUCAS Senior Writer


MADISON, Wis. — The late, great Luther Vandross had "One Shining Moment" at Western Michigan University. One and done. He left school after one year to get started on his music career.

Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh got his master's degree at Western Michigan while serving as an assistant to his dad, Jack, who was the Broncos' head coach between 1982 and 1986.

The late John Saunders played hockey with his brother at Western Michigan before transferring to Ryerson University in Toronto. A pro's pro, he was a stellar journalist for ESPN and ABC.

The "Bulldog" — right-handed pitcher Jim Bouton — was a mainstay with the Broncos before embarking on a Major League career with the New York Yankees. He later authored "Ball Four."

Greg Jennings, a product of Kalamazoo Central, caught 238 passes for 3,539 yards and 39 touchdown during his Western Michigan career. In 2006, the Packers drafted Jennings in the second round and he went on to a solid seven years in Green Bay with 425 catches for 6,537 yards and 53 touchdowns. Just don't ask him about Aaron Rodgers.

Western Michigan also can claim a billionaire (Alec Gores), a country western singer (Josh Gracin), a baseball executive (Dave Dombrowski) and a toolman (Tim Allen).

One of the Broncos' greatest football players was a Cheesehead.

John Offerdahl was born in Wisconsin Rapids and attended high school in Fort Atkinson. Ignored by major college programs, he made a name for himself at Western Michigan, the only school to offer.

Offerdahl, a bio-medicine major, had a school-record 694 career tackles, including the single-season record of 192 during his sophomore year. Offerdahl even had his No. 49 retired.

A two-time All-American linebacker and a member of the MAC Hall of Fame, Offerdahl was selected to five Pro Bowls with the Miami Dolphins and earned a spot on the Dolphins' Ring of Honor.

Outside of football, Offerdahl scored as a businessman with bagels, notably Einstein Bros.

Another former Western Michigan defensive player has also had success off the field. That would be Terry Crews, the original Old Spice Guy. (Isaiah Mustafa is "New" Old Spice Guy.)

Crews may be better known today as Sergeant Terry Jeffords on "Brooklyn Nine-Nine."

The 6-foot-2, 245-pound Crews, a Flint, Michigan native, was an All-MAC defensive end for the Broncos and an 11th-round draft pick of the Los Angeles Rams. He played 32 games on four different NFL teams.

Crews also played in Camp Randall Stadium. It was a memorable game for Western Michigan. And for Crews, who recovered quarterback Otis Flowers' fumble inside the Broncos' 5-yard line. In the 1988 season opener, Western Michigan shocked the Badgers, 24-14, behind quarterback Dave Kruse, who passed for 247 yards and a touchdown, and Rob Davis, who rushed for 136 and two TDs.


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