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March 13, 1962 - Image 7

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1962-03-13

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Darnton Eyes Last Bid for NCAA Title

l ~ (EDITOR'S NOTE: Election to the!
captaincy of a Michigan athletic
team is an honor few ever receive.
To the qualities of leadership,
sportsmanship, athletic ability and
intangibles that make a Michigan
captain what he is, The Michigan
Daily pays tribute. This is the sixth
of a series.),
When Bill Darnton qualified for
the United States Olympic swim-
ming team In 1960, it had been a
long jump for somebody who had
never been able to place any high-
er than third in his state high
school meet and didn't even get
an athletic tender to college.
And when Bill Darnton failed
for the third straight year to win'
an individual Big Ten title two
weekends ago, it seemed like an
even longer drop.
For Bill Darnton, captain of the
defending NCAA swimming cham-
pions, is a varsity record-holder,
a collegiate All-American, an
Olympian and, of course, one of
the best freestylers Coach Gus
Stager has had here.
And yet Darnton has never won
a race, either in- the Big Ten or
NCAA meets, and this is a subject
of no small concern to him. "You
might say it gets on my nerves,"
Darnton agreed.
All or Nothing
It wasn't that Darnton hadn't
gone into the meet with the idea
of winning-just the opposite. Sta-
ger pointed out, "Sometimes when
you go for first place you can lose
contact with the rest of the race
and fall all the way back to sixth.
"Bill's biggest holdup this year
Is that we've been sprinting him,
which hasn't helped his 440 any.
We just needed him to fill a gap
that we had, and so we haven't
done enough 440 work for him to
swim a good one."

So the result was that in the
440, Darnton's best distance ac-
cording to Stager, he went out
strong but faded behind four In-
diana men-Al Somers, Pete Sintz,
Mike Troy and Claude Thompson.
"I think all I really lacked there
was a couple of real hard 440's
in practice," commented Darnton.

"I hadn't swum a 440 for so long
I didn't really know where I was.
I sort of felt lost out there. In-
stead of trying to pace myself, I
thought I'd go out with Somers,
but his :58 split for the second
100 kind of disillusioned me. I
had to readjust what I was swim-
ming for."

In the 220, Darnton placed third
behind Michigan State's Mike
Wood, Indiana's Tom Verth and
"My times have been awful slow
in 'breaking' this year," put in
Darnton but he still hasn't given
up the idea of getting a win. He
just doesn't have much more time
to do it. "I hope I can hit a 'break'
this week," Darnton added. "I'd
like to be around 2:00 for the 220
in the NCAA meet (March 27-29),
but I don't know what that would
mean for the Indiana meet Satur-
day-maybe 2:02.
"I think 2:00 would win it in
the NCAA, but I don't know what
it will take to win the 440. I
haven't seen enough times of oth-
er swimmers," he commented.
So now Bill Darnton, in his last
chance at a collegiate title, has a
big job confronting him. Somers
and the rest of the Hoosiers will
be ineligible because of Indiana's
NCAA probation, but Southern
California's Murray Rose, an
Olympic gold medalist, will be back
to defend his titles in the 220 and
Rose Invulnerable?'
"For my part, I would love to
see Bill win a national champion-
ship," Stager added, "but Rose
has had a big jump on the rest of
the field."
But Darnton will have a num-
ber of things going for him.
First, he has a near-perfect
stroke which has enabled him to
place as high as second in Big
Ten or NCAA meets in the 220,
440 and 1500, and to swim one of
the 100-yd. legs on the freestyle
relay team that won in the Big
Ten meet last year.
"Coaches have felt for the last
two years when we took him down
to the big meets that he's got the
nicest stroke of all the great swim-
mers that were there," comment-
ed Stager.
One of the Few
"When Indiana was using the
'Breen' type of stroke (after In-
diana distance man George Breen)
-a kind of sloppy stroke-coaches
would say, 'gee, we're glad to see
that here's a great swimmer who
looks like a great swimmer'."
Second, as Stager points out,
"He's a good swimmer, but he's
also very, very smart. He wants to
learn to correct his stroke. He's
coachable and 'he loves to work.
"He's as hard a worker as I've
had here. He's religious in his
workouts. He gets irked if we

don't do enough or if he thinks
we've wasted a practice session."
Third, he's had enough experi-
ence now to be a good strategist.
Stager explained that when
Darnton came here from Flint
Central, "We could see he had tre-
mendous potential but we couldn't
get it out of him. He'd lose a race
by two or three feet and it wasn't
because he didn't try. It was be-
cause he hadn't had enough racing
experience. Now he's had that ex-
Darnton says he plans his race
around the man he's swimming
against. "I have an idea what my
splits should be like before I race
though," he put in. "For instance,
if I know the guy I'm swimming
against likes to go out slow, I try
to split my first 100 fast. So it's
more or less a combination of the
clock and the man's I'm swim-
Whether or not Darnton gets his
win in two weeks in the NCAA
meet, he says he will probably
quit swimming after the indoor
AAU meet later in the year.
The 1964 Olympics are too far
away for him, and he still has
mixed feelings about the 1960
games, when he qualified for the
800-meter relay team but came
down with a strep throat two days
before the swim-off in Rome to
determine who would race for the
"He tried in the swim-off and I
think if he'd been right he would
have made it," offered Stager.


LAST CHANCE-Michigan swimming captain Bill Darnton has
held at least a share of the 220-, 440- and 1500-yard varsity
freestyle records but has never won an NCAA or Big Ten title. He
gets his last chance in two weeks at the Columbus NCAA meet.

OSU Rifles Sweep Big Ten


Ohio State proved over the week
end that its victories in previous
matches were no flukes as they
dominated both divisions of the
Big Ten rifle championships at
TBucks TakIe
Top AP Spot
By The Associated Press
Ohio State's powerful Buckeyes
completed a two-season domina-
tion of the Associated Press bask-
etball rankings yesterday by cap-
turing top spot in the final poll
for 1961-62. ,
The Bucks have been No. 1
every week since they took the
spot in the pre-season poll of 1960.
During that span they have lost
only twice in 52 games, to Cin-
cinnati in the NCAA finals last
year and to Wisconsin two, Sat-
urdays ago. Going into this year's
NCAA championships they are 23-
Ohio State was overwhelming
favorite among the 43 voters on
AP's nationwide panel. The Buck-
eyes received 38 first-place votes
and five seconds. The remaining
firsts went to Cincinnati and Mis-
sissippi State, two each, and Ken-
tucky one.
OSU Swamps Indiana
Ohio State closed out its reg-
ular season Saturday by swamping
Indiana, 90-65. The Big Ten cham-
pions play next in the NCAA Mid-
west Regional Semifinal at the
University of Iowa Friday night.
The final rankings, with first
place votes.
1. Ohio. state (38) (23-1)
Z. Cincinnati (2) (24-2)
3. Kentucky (1) (22-2)
4. Mississippi state (2) (24-1)
5. Bradley (21-5)
6. Kansas State (22-3)
7. Utah (23-3)
S. Bowling Green (21-3)
9. Colorado (18-6)
10. Duke (20-4)

the ROTC rifle range last week
In three earlier matches this
year, the Ohio State sharpshooters
proved too sharp for their compe-
tition and swept the matches.
They proved their dominance once
again by rolling up 2825 points out
of a possible 3000 in the Big Ten
meet. The Buckeyes also took first
place in the individual competition
as Jim Foster edged Bob Harding
from Michigan State, 582 to 576.
Michigan is Third
Michigan was in sixth place at
the end of the three regular season
matches and surprised everyone at
the meet except Michigan sharp-
shooter Chuck Freese. Freese had
predicted that Michigan would
finish in third place and his team-
mates did not fail him.
Michigan edged its upstate rival,
Michigan State, by one point 2810
to 2809. The Wolverines also made
a strong bid for 2nd place, finish-
ing only four points behind the
Illinois team.
Michigan State was followed by
Purdue, which had 2795 points;
Indiana, 2760; and Wisconsin,
2727. Iowa, the eighth team mak-
ing up the Western Conference
Rifle Association, was unable to be
at the meet.
Rajzi Places Fifth
Louis Rajezi of Michigan placed
fifth in the individual matches,
with 571 out of a possible 600
points. In the individual matches,
as in the team matches, 20 shots
were fired from each of three posi-
tions; prone, kneeling, and stand-
In the team firing, Michigan was
led by Bill Vorbau, who garnered
573 points, and John Crossman at
To Please You!!
. Outstanding Personnel,
. '10 Barbers
. Good Service
near Michigan Theatre

Although this marked the end of
the low-caliber season, the Michi-
gan team is looking forward to the
high-caliber meets at Camp Perry,
Ohio in May. Fred Bleicher, pub-
licity agent for club, reminds all
students that the rifle team is
open to any student meeting the
NCAA requirements. The club
meets at 7:30 every Wednesday
evening at the ROTC rifle range
and all students are invited.


Tomorrow at 8
B'Nai B'rith Hillel Foundation Presents
Asst. Prof. of History
Lecture No. 3 in the Series
"An Inquiry into The Jew in Western Civilization"
All Are Welcome 1429 Hill St.


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Hot Tasty French Fries...10c
Triple Thick Shakes...20c
2000 W.Stadium Blvd.

Attractive research
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Low Temperature Physics
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careers Electronic Instrumentation
* Machine Computation I
.1 iMonday, March 19
I See your College Placement Officer t
r c for an appointment and further !

_________'N A _____x___

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