U-M receiver Manningham to miss one game for violating team rule
October 3, 2007
BY MARK SNYDER and MICHAEL ROSENBERG
FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITERS
Michigan wide receiver Mario Manningham is not expected to play Saturday against Eastern Michigan after violating a team rule.
Multiple people with knowledge of the violation confirmed his one-game punishment.
U-M coach Lloyd Carr was unavailable for comment, and Manningham's grandfather, Gerald Simpson, said he was not aware of the penalty.
Manningham, a junior who leads the team with 29 catches for 402 yards and two touchdowns, has had an up-and-down season.
He had his best game against Northwestern last weekend with a career-high 10 catches for 123 yards and a touchdown.
But he hasn't been that productive all season.
Before the Notre Dame game, Carr said of Manningham: "I don't think he's played as well as he can."
At the time, Carr would not elaborate, saying, "that's part of coaching. We'll deal with that. He's done some very good things. I just think he's capable of playing better, and I'm confident he will."
Manningham did not start against Penn State but entered on the first series and drew some postgame attention after he did the "worm" dance on the field to celebrate the victory. A video of the dance has drawn more than 17,000 viewers on YouTube.
There were moments early this season when Manningham appeared to be out of sync with the quarterbacks.
On Monday, U-M quarterback Chad Henne identified what he felt was the biggest reason for the offensive inconsistency this year, without pointing out an individual.
"It was more getting on the right page with our receivers, them running the right routes, them going full speed at times and us making smart decisions -- putting the ball where it needs to be," he said.
Two other wide receivers -- Adrian Arrington and Greg Mathews -- have drawn significant praise from Carr this season for their work ethic and effort.