Michigan football fans fuel economic boost in Ann Arbor ahead of championship game

Conor O'Neills Irish Pub Ann Arbor
Posted at 10:20 PM, Dec 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-02 23:15:35-05

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (WXYZ) — Ahead of a Big Ten Championship football game appearance, Ann Arbor shops and restaurants are packed with Wolverine fans.

Whether it’s shirts, hats or Michigan jerseys, businesses like The M Den are scoring big with fans. They have three levels of apparel and other gear that’s been selling quickly.

“I love the team. They did a great job. My husband was cheering them on the whole day,” one fan told 7 Action News.

Another fan added, “Bought some football gloves for my son, and we’re a huge Michigan family.”

Some Michigan fans told us they are still hopeful for more winning. The Wolverines will take on Purdue Saturday.

“There could be a national title this season. There’s definitely been a huge boost, maybe between 30 and 40 percent because everyone, with having the winning season, the energy is just so palpable,” The M Den manager Rose Balzer said.

At nearby Conor O'Neills, it was also a crowded scene with Michigan fans packing tables to eat and drink. Some are regulars, but there were also a lot of new faces and more expected on game day.

“It’s huge. Michigan football drives a lot of business into town annually. We missed having them in town when they were playing with empty stadiums. To have them come back strong winning, people celebrate the wins. They don’t celebrate the losses.” manager Brendan Murray said.

It's was Midnight Madness on Main Street, with shops open late and folks taking in the holiday lights, sales and music.