yk To Captain rid Team in 1959'SP
LMER 'M' QUARTERBACK:
'an Pelt Sparks Winnipeg Cup Bid
n By JIM BENAGHFormer Wolverine Jim Van Pelt, passes, booted eight of 13 field ;
iadian football fans will have who almost was cut from the Win- goal attempts, kicked 26 extra!
eyes focused on a surprising nipeg roster, is the pass-master points and rushed for a 4.6-yd.
chigan quarterback this Sat- and ace kicker in the limelight average. In 13 g
hean terbak W innipe Ble after pacing his team to the play- Pesged 65 points ,
ers and the Hamilton Tiger-Pe seofVanPesproficient
meet to decide the Canadian The stubby field general has Bause Coan Bl d pro nt I
play, Winnipeg Coach Bud Grantj
sional championship. completed over 56 per cent of his moved former Iowa standout
Kenny Ploen to wingback, so he!
could get both' of his passers in
the game at once. The Canadian
:rules require five backfield men.
I i V. a nd Ploen held down the quarterback
post at the start of the 1958 sea-
ie Best Haircuts > son but was injured. Grant workedI
-a-with both Eagle Day, former Mis-
sissippi star, and Van Pelt at the
The latter got off to such a fast
Sanicuring By Appointment start that the Blue Bombers drop-
* ped Day and boosted Van Pelt
0 cover Ploen as number one man.
OU can get all this Since then, the Western titlists
Q at have won 12 of 14 games.
Versatile Van Pelt also handles
Mae a r kickoffs and is the second-best
punter. He has been cited by the
CoMer ThByers k coaching staff for his defensive
North University ability at halfback.
CROSS FROM HILL AUD. JIMT VAN PELT The new star is down 15 pounds
. puts Winnipeg in finals from the 198 he carried as a
* * * _-Wolverine last year and is rated
one of the hardest workers on the
Despite Van Pelt's fine play,
LA INCH PJackie Parker of Edmonton was
15given the edge in the all-star
balloting for the fifth straight
FREE DELIVERY Monday-Friday 7:00 P.M. -12 P.M. year.t
Saturday and Sunday 5:00 P.M.-12:00 P.M. However, another former Wol-1
WITHIN A TWO-MILE RADIUS verine was named to the all-star
team. Art Walker, a tackle on the
1954 squad, was selected as ani
Quickie C s ckie all-league defensive end.
This was the third time Walker
N02-9944 812 MONROE has been honored. He teams withl
Parker at Edmonton. ,
Players Choose Ptacek
Most Valuable of 1958
ny AL SINAI MVP's selected by conference
George Genyk, 200-lb. tackle of coaches and officials.
the Michigan football squad, has
been elected by his teammates to Ptacek, a senior, finished among
captain the Wolverines during the the top fifteen passers in the na-
1959 grid season. t,ion. He was burdened with the
Genyk, a junior, who played his bulk of the Wolverine offense after
high school ball at Pershing High a wave of injuries, which were to
in Detroit under Myike Haddad. aeo nuis hc eet
succeeds fullback John Herrnstein characterize coach Bennie Qoster-
and honorary captains Bob Ptacek baan's final season.
and Gary Prahst. Looking Ahead
Despite suffering from a pinched "I'm looking forward to the pro
nerve most of the year, Genyk draft next Monday," said Ptacek,
managed to play a total of 345 who definitely has his eyes set on
minutes and 45 seconds. His long- pro ball. Last year's MVP, Jim
est stint was 52 minutes against Pace, is now playing halfback for
Navy and his shortest was 21 the San Francisco 49ers.
minutes against Ohio State, when BKuce Baldwin, of Dearborn,
he was hampered by injuries. Michigan, was named senior man-
Ptacek Most Valuable ager of the 1959 Wolverines suc-
Quarterback Ptacek was voted ceeding Tom Hitchman in that
Michigan's Most Valuable Player post. New junior managers are:
by his teammates and is now Dick Devries of Grand Rapids,
eligible for the Chicago Tribune Fred Nemacheck of Bessemer, Joe
Silver Football award. This award Seeger of East Grand Rapids and
is given to one of the Big Ten's Jim Lanard of Philadelphia.
... new captain
ANNUAL GRID BATTLE:
Army Navy Renew Rivalry Saturday
By BILL ZOLLA
This Saturday Army and Navy
meet in their annual gridiron
spectacle in Philadelphia, and theI
battle will feature two fine teams.
The Cadets, second-ranked team
in the nation, have a record
blemished only by a tie with Pitts-
burgh midway in the season. The
Middies, despite numerous in-
juries, have suffered only two de-
Tuesday, Dec. 2
feats and have been rebuilding
since the beginning of the year.
The clash will pit two wide-open
offenses against each other. Army
has switched from its usual ground
game because of a manpower,
problem, while Navy under Eddie
Erdelatz puts up a pro-type of-
fense, as usual.
Backs Can Pass, Run
An array of top-flight backs
sparks the Army squad, almost all
of whom can pass. In addition, the
two halfbacks-Captain Pete Daw-
kins and Bob Anderson - provide
@ave a WORID of/FUNI
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26th ® TA 332 S.. Michigan Are.
Year woreat. mC. Chicago 4, HA 742557
one of the most dangerous ground-
gaining threats in college football.
The Midshipmen boast an ex-
cellent aerial game, based on the
throwing of quarterback Joe Tran-
chini. He passes mainly to his
backfield mates, especially half-
back Ray Wellborn, because the
injury plague has hit Navy hard-
est at the ends.
The Black Knights' answer to
Tranchini is a slim six-foot, 160-
lb. signal-caller, Joe Caldwell. Un-
derrated and overshadowed due to
the presence of Dawkins and An-
derson, Caldwell has developed
rapidly, showing his best form of
the season in the recent victory
Lonesome But Good
To add to Navy's pass defense
worries, there is Bill Carpenter,
the famed "lonesome end" who
seldom enters the huddles, but
always knows when the ball is
coming his way and rarely drops
it. Other able receivers include
short-side end Don Usry and all
Army will have to rely on its
superior first team throughout the
contest, while Navy has available
two balanced squads slightly less
talented than the Cadets' first
THE 1958 SEASON will go down in football annals as one of the
strangest years ever in the Big Ten and on the Michigan campus.
It was a year marked by innumerable upsets, and many broken records.
It was especially a year marked by surprise happenings on the Confer-
ence campuses. And lastly, it is a year that marks the end of an era
in Michigan football.
The 1958 season: Michigan 20, Southern California 19 (a fair
start, future unknown); Michigan 12, Michigan State 12 (a moral
victory, and good national ranking); Navy 20, Michigan 14 (a slip, but
the Big Ten is still ahead); Northwestern 55, Michigan 24 (what
happened?); Michigan 20, Minnesota 19 (a close call, but still a
chance for high Conference finish); Iowa 37, Michigan 14 (a good
try, but Hawks are too tough); Illinois 21, Michigan 8 (the roof fell
in); Indiana 8, Michigan 6 (the roof's still falling); Ohio State 20,
Michigan 14 (another good try, but good tries don't count.) 1
Two victories, six losses, and one heart-rending tie-adds up to
the worst season since 1936. Eighth place in the Big Ten standings-
the worst since that same year. Then the head coach leaves, moving
"up"' to a new position. It begins to look like the old "farewell" story
that faces every major college head coach when the losses begin to
outnumber the victories.
But it isn't. Really, it is just a big misfortune.
In The BigTen.. .
LET'S LOOK at the Big Ten first. Iowa won the title, and will be
visiting the Rose Bowl come New Year's Day. But the fact that the
Hawkeyes sewed up the title with three weeks still lefti In the season
isn't a true indication that they are supreme. It took Ohio State to
show that no one would go through the Big Ten unblemished.
Everyone lost a game before it was over, and any team in the
league can show by comparative scores that they are the BEST. Even
lowly Michigan State, resting in the cellar, can add up scores to show
that they are better than Iowa: Michigan State lost to Wisconsin by
only two points, while Wisconsin tied Ohio State and Ohio State beat
Iowa by 10. That makes MSU eight points better than the Hawkeyes.
But while one can argue that Iowa isn't the best in the Big Ten,
others are claiming that the Hawks are actually the best EVER In the
Big Ten. Nevertheless, it seems a pretty sure bet that the 1958 Big Ten
is one of the toughest, balanced and best leagues to ever hit the
national college gridiron., The national rankings will show that; and
the only reason the Conference teams aren't higher is that they stab
each other in the back every week.
And at Michigan..
NOW BACK TO MICHIGAN. It was the worst season in 22 years,
But it could have been different. Let's recall those six defeats-
there was only one of them that Michigan didn't outplay the opponent.
In every other case the Wolverines ran up and down the field, but
failed to score enough to win. If it weren't for the Northwestern en-
counter, Michigan's total offense for the year would be superior in
yards-gained to the total opponents' offense.
Obviously, then, it would have taken only a few breaks-a few
times when the tide went the other way-for Michigan to have a
winning record. It was the clutch plays, like the final drive against
Ohio State and the recovered fumbles against Indiana and Michigan
State, that didn't come through. But, then, such reminiscing does no
good. The scores are in the record book, and they can't be changed by
an armchair quarterback now.,,
As has been said many times-it was the same old problems every
game; a poor defensive backfield that never learne the lesson, in-
juries to key players that seemed to occur at just the wrong times, and
a perennial failure to take advantage of opportunities.
... And for Individuals
THE RESULTS of these woes are obvious-the team didn't win
games. But the deeper woes are of a more individual sorts. Take the
injuries, for example, and consider what it means to the person in
volved. Captain John Herrnstein, picked as a sure bet forAll-American
honors when only a sophomore, wasn't able to finish out what could
well have been one of the greatest careers in Michigan sports annals.
It is still uncertain if he will be able to compete in baseball thi spring,
and a professional career in either football or baseball is questionable.
Then there is the recognition on all-star teams that certain Michi-
gan players deserve, but will fail to get because the Wolverines have a
poor team record. Bob Ptacek, on a winning team, could well have
been an All-American quarterback. No one will ever know, but just
consider what he has accomplished with a losing squad. And don't
forget Gary Prahst, the other end of one of the most successful passing
combinations since the famous "Benny to Bennie" duo of the late
1920's. But neither of them will receive their due recognition.
And perhaps the man who suffered the most, and who certainly
should have had better breaks, is that coach who looks like he is
either backing out or being forced out. Really, it's simply a case of a
man retiring from a position that he has held very successfully for 11
years. A position where he feels that he had done his job for Michigan,
and from which he decided that he was ready to move on. The tragedy
is that he decided last spring, and then his final football team didn't
produce. And he looks like he is backing out. Unfortunate is the only
word-because Bennie Oosterbaan would never back out of anything-
not when the name of Michigan is at stake.
From this writer's standpoint, the only pleasant remnant of the
1958 season is this simple fact-there couldn't be a better team in
the Big Ten cellar; and that's for sure.
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