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February 10, 1959 - Image 12

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1959-02-10

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[at Team Makes Illini
ourth Straight Victim


injury, veteran 130-lb. Rex Whit-
latch passed only four courses out
of five and is ineligible, while
starting 123-b. Fred Szymanski is
also injured.)
Michigan's three veteran grap-
plers, plus sophomore Dick Frone-
;zak, won three straight bouts to
lead the team in its three be-
tween-semester victories. Mike
Hoyles, one of the leading con-
tenders for the Conference 123-lb.
title, wrestled only 4 minutes, 29
seconds for his three victories.
Larry Murray, the squad's only
senior, won three straight to make
his season record 3-4. Two lop-
sided decisions and a Purdue for-
feit constituted his victories.
Heavyweight Fred Olin (5-1-1)
won once on a pin and twice on
decisions, and Pronczak racked up
three low-scoring decisions to
make his record 3-2.
Lead Foes
In Relays
Michigan's track team, rebound-
ing from last season's dismal
showing, proved to be the power-
house in two of the midwest's big-
gest early season meets during the
between-semesters break.
Wolverine stars dominated the
Michigan AAU Relays held at
Yost Field House, Jan. 31, then
went upstate to East Lansing and
became the class of the 36th an-
nual Michigan State Relays.
Outscores All Others
No team scores were kept at
either of the meets, but Michigan
took more places - both in relay
and individual events - in classy
fields of about 500 competitors in
each of the outings.
In fact, the Wolverines gained
more places at the 'MSU Relays
than all four of the other Big Ten
schools -, MSU, Ohio State, Wis-
consin and Purdue - combined.
The Wolverines' three first places
and four seconds bettered the
showings of any school, including
Big Eight powers Oklahoma, Kan-
sas and Missouri.
Tom Robinson, Michigan's
sophomore sprinter, turned in the
best time of the MSU meet as he
tied the world record in the sel-
dom-run 75-yd. dash. Withheld
from the Michigan AAU competi-
ion due to a leg injury, he came
back in the MSU meet with a
:07.4 clocking to tie the mark held
by several others, including Jim
Second World Mark
It was the second world indoor
best negotiated by Robinson with-
in a month. Just before his first
exam, he dashed through a 220-
yd. sprint at Chicago in :21.7 to
earn a record in that rare indoor
Eeles Landstrom, veteran pole
vaulter jumped 14'8" in both
meets for firsts. His vault in the
MSU Relays established meet and
Jenison Field House records.
Sophomore Les Bird was the
varsity's only other individual
winner in either meet, taking first
in the AAU broadjump at 23'5".
But Michigan's strength showed
up best in the relays. In the AAU
contests the Wolverines gained
three firsts and two seconds in
five starts. Then the following
week they added a first, two sec-
onds and a fifth at East Lansing,

The Two Arenas
THE RELATIONSHIP of athletics and scholarship, and the place
of sports on college campuses is brought to the fore at the end of
every semester when the inevitable list of ineligibilities is released for
the coaches and fans to read and suffer. No one is ever able to forget
that the academic side of the athlete must come first, or the athletic
side will not be allowed to come at all.
There are many things that must be borne in mind. First of
all, Michigan is trying to be - and all of the people that carry any
weight.are insisting that it be - one of the nation's best in both
academic and athletic endeavors. This is certainly credible, since
many claim that one should do nothing unless he is going to do it
BEST. However, being best in both academics and athletics is quite
The thing that makes it difficult, of course, is that high academic
standards obviously cut into the number of top-notch athletes that
are available. Not only that, but even the athletes that do have the
ability to meet the academic standards must also meet athletic
It becomes more and more difficult to meet the academic stand-
ards of the nation's best, and also field teams in the Big Ten, which
is the nation's best athletically. As the years pass more and more
schools, such as the Ivy League and Chicago, have decided to spe-
cialize in scholarship. Many others have settled for lower standards
and better athletics. But Michigan continues to battle in both arenas
-and the result is double pressure on those individuals who fight
for Michigan in the athletic field.
An Interest Besides .--
HE PRINCIPLE problem is that athletes are faced with the same
standards academically as all other students, but have the addi-
tional task of staying in top physical condition and going through
rugged practice schedules for each respective sport.
Even more important is the fact that an athlete has a special
interest aside from scholarship. Often, he is attending school more for
the athletics than for the academics. The fact that he is an athlete
is more important than being a student. The role that he fills as
an ahlete is simply a means of getting an education and preparing
for a future, or else the education is simply a means of participat-
ing in organized athletics - with the athletics being the means for
the future.
To those who feel that institutions of higher education should be
solely for education, this is a poor situation. But for those who want
to excel in both academics and athletics, this is necessary. The best
athletes - those that are needed if an institution is to excel - are
naturally athletically-centered, and they can never be expected to
rank academics equally or above athletics, which by their talents is
properly their calling in life. If one wants athletic excellence, one
must take with it athletically-oriented persons.
Thbse young men who fit perfectl'y the dual aims (academics
and athletics) are few and far between. There are some at Michigan
who are both honor students and All-American athletes, but one could
never achieve the aims of athletic excellence with solely these kind
of men - for not enough of them exist.
Face Double Standards...
THE DOUBLE pressure, naturally, means that often athletes don't
meet the academic standards. Thus they can't compete, and some-
times can't even return to school to continue the battle for eligibili-
ty. There are many sad sides to this situation. For one, the pressures
of recruiting and trying to compete in a league of Big Ten caliber
often means finding boys that barely meet the entrance standards,
and who are never able to meet the subsequent class standards.
Often teams will have more top competitors sidelined by academ-
ic ineligibility than they are able to field during a given season. Of
course, this happens in all schools and often some of the top sports
stories of the year - at least in the'effect they have on subsequent
Conference championships - are those of important ineligibilities.
If the present athletic set-up is to be continued (presuming with
no reservations that the academic level will be maintained) there
seems to be no solution. Athletes cannot be given special considera-
tions, at least no more than the present tutoring and excused class
periods for trips and special considerations for late work. The actual
level of proficieii-y and amount of contribution cannot be lowered.
If the dual standards are to be maintained, the athlete will have
to continue to be stretched between the two. Perhaps this is the
price that he must pay for the supposed glory that he receives from
the rabid American public.
A Rugged Tradition .. .
T IS CERTAINLY an unfair response when the fan becomes angry
with the athlete who failed to make grades. This is simply another
side of the publicity, which is certainly unfortunate. The non-athlete
who is on academic probation or who receives an E in a course is
not subjected to the great publicity that follows the same perform-
ance by an athlete. Before one is critical, he should ask himself
whether he - under the same circumstances of double pressure (not
just the single pressure that confronts most students) - could have
done any better.
It must be remembered that only a small percentage of the
athletes at Michigan are enrolled in any "easy" curricula. In the first
place, there are few, if any, really easy ones. And, secondly, the ma-
jority of the athletes are taking the same courses that all other stu-
dents take. Only about 15 per cent of the athletes are enrolled in
physical education, which is much easier-if for no other reason - be-

cause it doesn't demand such a split of interests.
Of course, the athlete can hardly be blamed if he does go in
the market for an "easy" field of study. He is often forced into it,
since he has to make a choice between the more difficult fields that
demand great time and concentration and his athletic activities. How-
ever, as long as he remains in Michigan athletics, he can't escape
the pressure of both athletics and academics. This is the dual task
that the school has chosen to set - and it is the 'M' athlete who must
perform both.


by Bud-Mor
1103 South University
* NO 2-6362 J
c o g. o sa n

- 4 ___


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