THE MICHIGAN DAILY
TUESDAY, APRIL 12,1966
PAGE EIGHT THE MICHIGAN DAILY TUESDAY. APRIL 12. 1966
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ALL-SPORTS TITLE CHASE:
'M' Matches Myths with MSU
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Some cynics claim that sports-
writers and sport fans are usually
dreaming about that point where
reality merges into fantasy any-
way, so why not have mythical
titles and trophies?
If teams from one school are
going to compete against teams
from another school, there is
bound to be a rivalry. And one
school is bound to claim that it
can do anything the other school
can do-and do it better.
Last year the Michigan Wolver-
ines had unparalleled success in
adding Big Ten championship
trophies to their collection, cap-
turing five conference titles and
finishing second in four more.
Scent of Roses Remains
The Wolverines started it off
with a victorious trip to Pasadena
on New Year's day and didn't let
up until the tennis team had out-
backhanded everyone on the
Behind Michigan, in the sha-
dows, had been perennial across-
state rival Michigan State.
Then this year, the Spartans
went to the Rose Bowl and sud-
denly the Jolly Green Giants were
first and Michigan was second.
Michigan State took two more
crowns after the grid season, in
wrestling and indoor track; while
Michigan came up with one in
basketball and one in gymnastics.
But when comparing the two
schools on a qualitative point sys-
tem, based on ten points for first,
nine for second, etc., the Spartans
lead the Wolverines 65-58 with
seven sports completed and four
yet to go.
Second and Third
Michigan State's average is 9.3,
or slightly better than a second-
place finish in each sport; while
Michigan's is one point lower at
There are, of course, other teams
in the Big Ten who do also win
championships. But for the past
three years, the two Michigan
schools have dominated the scene.
(Michigan annexed the title of all-
sports king also in 1963-64.)
This monopolistic trend has, in.
fact, deterred any attempts to
establish a title of All-Sports
Champion on a recognized criteria
in the Big Ten.
"The prime reason that the idea
have to be hired; and student in-
terest would have to be substan-
tial enough to support a team."
Most of these subvarsity sports
:tPYff.SifP~ir f h iYiV'iCt l
exisE as cuUs ac tine ukines
has been discarded is that such Michigan, for instance, has athle-
a declared championship would be tic clubs ranging from rugby to
just another method to compare sailing to skydiving.
the overall success, or failure, of The fact that grad students and
an athletic program. Those schools freshmen are usually members of
with the best facilities, resources such clubs is another stumbling
and geographical location would block in their fight to achieve
always be on top," explained Kay varsity status.
Schultz, Big Ten Service Bureau This is also part of the reason
Director. why Michigan does not have a
No Solid Ground fencing or cross country team.
Because of the Big Ten's in- MSU Still Leads
ability to set up a grading system But, if the Spartan perform-
which would give a fair represen- ances in these "controversial"
tative view of a school's athletic sports is discounted, a relatively
standing, the title has remained equitable comparison can be es-
Actually, even when comparing Michigan MSU
Michigan with Michigan State ,Football 7* 1
there are three flaws which be- Basketball 1 2
come difficult to implement in the Swimming 3
final judgment. The three dis- Hockey 2* 2*
crepancies-cross country, fencing Indoor Track 4 1
Wrestling 2 1
and soccer-are varsity sports for -Tie.
the Spartans but are not for the
Wolverines. tablished. And that puts Michigan
Currently, only cross country State ahead in the battle for an
and fencing have official con- elusive mythical title.
ference championship meets, since The Spartans have never been
MSU is the only Big Ten team able to lay claim to the feat of
with a varsity soccer team. overwhelming the rest of the con-
"But because there is no com- ference since they joined the
mon denominator on which to base conference in 1950. They have,
a title, there has been no attempt however, finished second behind
to establish any sort of definite Michigan for the last two years.
'first-place' trophy between Michi- Going into the home stretch,
gan and Michigan State," ex- with only golf, tennis, baseball and
pounded H. 0. (Fritz) Crisler, outdoor track yet to be decided,
Michigan's athletic director. it will again be a battle between
Assortment of Sports these two rivals. Only Michigan
"This situation exists all around has a chance to catch the East
the conference. Some sports are Lansing agrarian-turned-athletic
not played on a varsity level at company.
certain schools because of the dif- And even though the title-is only
ficulties they would present. The mythical, competition in the
teams would have to abide by championship meets for the spring
conference rules; facilities would sports should be somewhat more
have to be found; coaches would real than myth .
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