THE MICHIGAN DAILY
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1966
PAGE SIX THE MICHIGAN DAILY THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1966
By HOWARD KOHN
For one anxious minute-as,
Mike Bass flip-flopped through
the mud after an aborted tackle
atempt on an Illinois runner two
weeks ago-Michigan trainer Jim
Hunt feared that he had been
right after all ... that Bass had
used up his "borrowed time."
Michigan's lightweight roving
cornerman got up slowly, but he
was smiling through his mud-
Hunt, sitting on the bench, re-
turned the smile.. Bass wasn't
After' two years of making his
football fortune with a knee that
was secretly "screwed-up" . . . and
"living on borrowed time" as Hunt
once said ... Bass has just about
paid off the mortgage* on his
Two years ago, as a sophomore
substitute, Bass twisted his knee
while catching a runaway op-
ponent. During the next few
months, Bass told no one about
the pain in his knee.
"I compensated for it by favor-
ing my right knee in the same way
you favor a twisted ankle," Bass
explains, "But after awhile my
right knee became noticeably
smaller. The muscle around it has
just shrunk from disuse.
"But I wanted to play football
so much that I didn't tell anyone."
The off-size knee toned down
his ability to cut sideways but
Bass's breakaway speed and quick-
draw reflexes were enough to earn
long that I don't remember when leases, the Wolverine secondary
I started. It gets in your blood ... has only seven interceptions all
you don't know what to do when year.
you're not playing," is how Bass "We don't intercept a lot of
explains his love for the sport. passes but we knock a hell of a
Reducer lot of them down," he points out.
him a starting job last fall . . . a
job that he has never given up.
Ironically, the knee injury to
halfback Jim Detwiler which caus-
ed Rick Sygar's switch to offense
gave Bass his awaited chance to
"After that nothing could stop
me. Yop work so hard to get that
blue shirt that you'll do anything
to keep it," says Bass.
"There have been times after
games when I could hardly walk
from the pain. But by Monday it
always seem to be better."
Heaven and Hell
"I'll never forget that game,"
exclaims Bass. "It was one of the
few chances I'd had to play ball
that year and within three min-
utes I'd experienced one of my
most glorious -moments and also
the most bitterly disappointing
moment of my career."
"On the first play from scrim-
mage, I intercepted a pass . .. the
first one I'd ever intercepted in
a game. We then lost the ball and
I had to come back in, and that's
when I hurt my knee.
"Mike is an all-around superior
person," credits Hunt. "That's why
he's been able to do what he has
for two years.
It seemed to me at first that
his knee would be more vulnerable
in a game. But he hasn't had a
mishap which has kept him down
There shouldn't be any reason
why he can't stay as healthy as
he is," concludes the trainer.
WOLVERINE DEFENSIVE BACK MIKE Bass crashes into
Oregon State's Jerry Belcher in the season's first contest. Bass,
a senior, has been a fixture among the Michigan pass defenders
over the past two seasons, and is hoping to play professional ball.
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And one reason why he will:
"I want to play pro ball more
than anything else," explains the
180-pound senior who is majoring
in psychology. The friendly, easy-
mannered Bass is praised as "a
player who has never flinced from
meeting one of the most demand-
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ing jobs on defense" by assistant
coach Don James ... and " a guy
we all respect" by his teammates.
Bass covers pass receivers such
as John Wright of Illinois on
man-to-man, jams into the line on
power sweeps and generally pa-
trols his corner like a German
Shepherd with a dislike for all
In last week's game with North-
western he graded out as the best
Wolverine defenseman with a per-
centage of 89.
In an experimental psych test
-designed to test reflexes-Bass's
accelerated reactions completely
shot down the theory behind the
I've been playing football so
"Besides, it keeps your weight
When Bass began his role in a
Michigan uniform, he was playing
on the other side of the line. "I'd
hardly ever tackled anyone before
I came to Michigan."
"But I had more success play-
ing defense in my freshmen year
and I made the change," says
Bass also made a successful
transition to cornerman when
James incorporated the "Okla-
homa" defense at Michigan this
year. "He sat out last spring due
to an operation on the knee, so
his ability to move into the for-
mation is even more remarkable,"
Behind his accomplishments,
though-explains Bass- is "the
best backfield coach in the coun-
try . ..James."
"He treats you like a human be-
ing . . .-he makes you want to do
well. All of the players think a lot
of him. I know I do," adds Bass.
Bass' three backfield compan-
ions are Sygar, Rick Volk and
John Rowser (a backfield that is,
rated among the nation's best).
"We depend a lot on each other.
When one of us makes a mistake,
we know that it was partly the
fault of all of us."
Too Close for Comfort
"We're close to each other," says
Bass . . . and then adds, as an
afterthought, "Sometimes we're
too close." For all of its press re-
The Wolverines lead the Big
Ten in no fewer than seven of the
nine major categories.
Jim Detwiler tops the league
in scoring with nine TD's for 54
points. He also leads in kickoff
returns with a 27.3 yard average.
In other categories, Jack Clan-
cy leads in pass receiving with
47; Rick Sygar is the best punt
return specialist with a 20.9 av-
erage; Stan Kemp has a league
leading 39.2 yard average; and
linebacker Frank Nunley leads in
tackles made, with 30 solo and 55
assists for an.85 total.
Bass - the smallest one in the
backfield-doesn't have any inter-
ceptions. However, he did give
fastback Clint Jones of Michigan
State an afternoon of headaches
in the intra-state clash this fall.
Ironically again, Bass had
Michigan State as the number
two possibility on his list of col-
leges during his senior year in high
"Duffy (Daugherty) was quite a
recruiter," smiles Bass. "My girl-
friend was going to State at the
time and he tried to convince her
that she should convince me to
go there . . . a tactic that I didn't
Bass, impressed by the favorable
commendations of Michigan by
several of his hometown friends
from Ypsilanti (especially former
All-America end Lowell Perry),
finally chose Michigan over MSU.
"And if I had to do it over again,
I'd make the same choice."
Bass also married his pretty
Spartan girlfriend . . . whom he's
known since kindergarten . . . last
Aug. 6. She is now taking courses
at the University in addition to
working part-time to keep the
'She's Really Great'
"She's really great," compli-
ments her husband.
"There are times when I come
home from, practice intending to
study and instead fall asleep ...
and she wakes me up to make sure
I don't sleep on the desk all night.
"It is really hard to study dur-
ing the season, though. It makes
you turn against that old saying
about a sound mind and a sound
body . . . your body may be in
good shape but your mind has a
tough time catching up.
"I like being a winner, however.
That's why I do it. That old myth
about 'it's how you play the game
that counts' is really nonsense.
"That's why everyone will be
'up' for this week's game with
Ohio State. Besides, for many of
the' seniors it may be the last time
that they'll play on a football team
again," Bass concludes.
His unspoken afterthought: "It
won't be, though, for me."
Chicago 2, New York 2; tie
Los Angeles 124, Cincinnati 112
St. Louis 104, Detroit 101
Philadelphia 117, New York 108
Leslie A. Fiedler
30-42 in assorted inseams
"... contemporary society
threatens . . . acceptance
*"The Un-Angry Young Men"
January 5-25, 1967
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A Gift of Recorded Music
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Devastating floods in Italy have caused incalculable damage to works of art, archives and books in the museu
churches and libraries of Florence, Venice and other Italian cities. A disaster of this dimension is a crippling bl
to the welfare of the country and its people and Italy's losses diminish us all.
A national Committee for Rescuing Italian Art (CRIA) has been formed to gather support for the long and costly re
rations and replacements needed in the severely damaged centers of Italian culture. The University has gene rou
donated $1,000 as a gesture of institutional support. The undersigned members of the faculty urge that individual c
tributions of any size (tax deductible) be sent as soon as possible at this moment when Italy has suffered so great a
CHECKS SHOULD BE M
Send to the local representative o
Professor Marvin Eisenberg
Department of the History of Art
208 Tappan Hall
ADE OUT TO:(RIA, Inc.