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January 31, 1979 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1979-01-31

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Page 8-Wednesday, January 31, 1979-The Michigan Daily

Electric gymnast
Tumbler Rothwell sparked by enthusiasm

Ask Nigel Rothwell about gymnastics
and he'll turn on a 300 watt grin that
just never burns but. The co-captain of
the Michigan men's gymnastics team
has a lot to light up about.
Besides tumbling for Michigan, the
dynamic all-arounder is also a member
of the Canadian national team. Tum-
bling on both teams involves competing
on a year-round basis for the Windsor
"It's more demanding competing on
both teams. You have to be careful how
you organize your training," said
Rothwell, who is also ranked as one of
the top competitors in the Big Ten.
Since Rothwell must have his
routines ready for competition year
round, little time is left for learning new
tricks. And while most college gym-
nasts spend their summer in training,
building up to the competitive season,
Rothwell must be on top of things all
year round.
Rothwell must be a master at
organiz ing his time, with college com-
petition, school, and some national
meets that overlap into the school year.
"It's a real project," said Rothwell.
"Every year I miss an average of one
moth of school. You get so far behind
it's incredible, but I'm really good at
getting my priorities straight," added
Rothwell, who is the only Michigan
gymnast presently competing on a
national level.
By competing nationally, Rothwell
has had the chance to see a side of com-
petition that most gymnasts never ex-
perience. "You get exposure to dif-
ferent judging, gymnastics and
politics," Rothwell explained about his
overseas travels.
An added benefit is that Rothwell has
travelled all over the world. He has
competed in places like England, Fran-
ce, Yugoslavia, Romania, Japan, and
China, just to name a few. International
competition has given the worldly
gymnast the opportunity for growth in
all aspects of his gymnastics career.
"You learn how to adapt to different
situations," said Rothwell. "Through
experience I've learned how to control
stress and anxiety better."
Controling tension is a key factor in
competing successfully. Practicing in
the controlled environment of the gym is
one thing, but while competing in front
of thousands of spectators just about

anything can happen. For Rothwell,
spectator stimulation gives him just the
boost he needs.
"In China we competed in front of
20,000 people for three nights in a row.
It helps me more. I get more
adrenalized," reflected Rothwell.
One thing Rothwell has never had
problems with is controlling excess
energy. As gymnastics involves
precision in every movement, over-
adrenalizing may cause the gymnast to

crowd and not your routine, you can get
sidetracked," said Rothwell.
"Anxiety is good to help motivate
you. You've got to control it but not
obliterate it," he continued.
"During Big Tens my sophomore
year I forgot what I was doing in the
middle of my floor-ex routine. I wasn't
thinking hard enough," said Rothwell.
But even though Rothwell bobbled a
few tumbling moves, he managed to
place second in all-around competition,

ch. Only a minor thumb injury has
detained his progress this . year.
Everything seems to be right side up
from here on in, except where Rothwell
chooses it to be otherwise.
And according to Loken, he may be
wise to do so. "Nigel has super upside-
down skills-standing on his hands,
presses-he's got a great feeling of in-
vertedness. The only thing that has kept
him back was when he had mono last
year," said Loken.

..........................msms2252aaEEEM MRe~in msa:ESEE~EESEE~ms.liM

£Qn'Pt4 '(the tzvzi41
By the Associated Press
Harper recalled
DETROIT-Defenseman Terry Harper has been recalled to the Detroit
Red Wings from the team's Kansas City farm club.
The NHL team announced yesterday that Harper would be in uniform
for the game against the Washington Capitals at Olympia Stadium here last
J. P. LeBlanc, another veteran Red Wing, also was called up from the
Kansas City team.
The Wings have won just one game in the past 17.
Harper last skated with Detroit on Nov. 26 in a 4-2 victory over the Los
Angeles Kings. Before that, he played in all 20 Detroit contests and was
credited with four assists.
General Manager Ted Lindsay said he hopes Harper will lend stability to
the Red Wings' young defense.
To make room on the roster, Lindsay says John Hillworth, who has seen
only limited action this season, will be sent to Kansas City.
Flyer canned
PHILADELPHIA-The Philadelphia Flyers, in their worst slump in
eight years, fired head coach Bob McCammon and his assistant, Terry
Crisp, yesterday and replaced him with Pat Quinn, coach of their Maine
farm team.
McCammon; who was in his rookie year at the helm of an NHL team, got
the Flyers' job when Fred Shero jumped to the New York Rangers at the end
of last season.
The Flyers, winners of two Stanley Cups under Shero, this season are in
last place in the Patrick Division and have not won in eight games, losing
three and tying five.
"We were really drifting. We just weren't improving," said Flyers
General Manager Keith Allen. "These are two guys (McCammon and Crisp)
I thought would have done the job. It wasn't a lack of hard work and
dedication, but for whatever reason they just weren't able to put it together.
It's a shame, but true."
Quinn, 35, a former Flyers assistant, will take over his new duties today
at the team's practice. His Mariners currently are tied for first place in the
AHL's North Division with a 27-13-7 record.
Allen said Quinn was the only candidate considered for the job.
Auburni slapped
AUBURN, Ala.-The NCAA apparently has levied a probation of up
to two years on Auburn's football team for recruiting violations, the Bir-
mingham News reported yesterday.
Word of the probation came to the university in a letter from NCAA's
Shawnee Mission, Kan., headquarters, the News said.
The NCAA has been investigating Auburn football and basketball
recruiting for several months. The alleged violations reportedly occurred
several years ago.

'For me it's fun. I get
fired up, and I just have a
really good time.'
-Nigel Rothwell

'Nigel enjoys perform-
ing, and radiates a pleas-
ant disposition. The judges
like to watch him.'
-Newt Loken

Nigel Rothwell
";:} :: r".v ;:::.r:.:;."..; .:.:.: ,.... .::::::::: :::.::::.v:::::.v::::-.v-,-:v::.-::- ::::.::::

go one step too far, thus throwing off an
entire routine.
But Rothwell just directs his extra
energy towards the crowd. "It's kind of
important to be responsive to the
crowd, like looking up and waving,"
said Rothwell.
"For me it's fun. I get fired up, and I
just have a really good time," said the
gymnast as he began to glow a few wat-
ts brighter.
But the spectators aren't the only
ones who are warmed by Rothwell's
electric performances.
"Nigel enjoys performing, and
radiates a pleasant disposition," said
coach Newt Loken. "The judges like to
watch him."
But, as Rothwell has learned from
experience, it's not a good idea to
become too involved with the crowd.
"When I first started I'd forget I was
doing a routine. If you think about the

qualifying for the NCAA's that year.
That marked the second year in a row
that Rothwell travelled to the NCAA's.
With dediction and motivation the
current continued to flow with him into
his junior year. But the connection was
broken at the beginning of the season
when he contracted mononucleosis.
"I just did absolutely nothing. It was
terrible," said Rothwell. "I just layed
around during Christmas and atrophied
like crazy."
Rothwell was out of competition for
about six weeks, and the remainder of
the season was spent getting back into
shape. "I never really did get in shape.
That's one reason why I didn't have a
very good season."
Now, in his senior year, Rothwell is
back at full strength, and training hard
for the Big Ten championships in Mar-

This year will be the all important
one for Rothwell. After gradution he'll
be concentrating all his energy towards
the World Championships in December,
and if all goes well, the Olympics in
But no matter what happens, the
easy-going Rothwell will take
everything in stride. And one thing is
for certain. He'll never have to worry
about blowing a fuse.

l '


One-two punch awaits tankers

This weekend, down in North
Carolina, the Michigan women's swim
team will face their toughest com-
petition so far this year.
The Wolverines are scheduled to go
up against North Carolina on Friday
night and N.C. State the following af-
ternoon. As head coach Stu Isaac put
it, "There's no rest for anybody this
According to Isaac, North Carolina
has the fourth best women's swim team
in the country, while N.C. State holds
the number seven spot. UNC boasts
Olympic caliber national champions on
its squad, including Jeana Layton,

Bonnie Brown, Nancy Hudock, and Ann
Marshall, an American record holder.
N.C. STATE has several swimmers
who are just about to crack into that
level of competition. Assuredly, both of
Michigan's opponents this weekend
"have got the top people." Thus, Isaac
said, "This will probably be the biggest
weekend of dual meet competition ever
for Michigan women's swimming."
The Blue tankers have no lack of
talent themselves. They are now 7-1 in
dual meet competition, losing only to
the Canadian national team champions,
and have beaten the three best teams in
the Big Ten: Wisconsin, Michigan
State, and Indiana. In fact, Isaac is

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counting on capturing a record fourth
consecutive Big Ten title.
Among the individual standouts on
this year's team are sophomores Mary
Rish (a top backstroker), versatile
Jody Ford, and senior freestyler Katy
McCully, who is having "her best
IN ADDITION are two women who
Isaac calls "the best one-two diving
punch in the country" - sophomore
Julie Bachman and junior Barb Wein-
stein. This pair dominated the Big Ten
this season.
Individual talent aside, the coach is
quick to stress that "the key to our suc-
cess is our depth. We're counting
heavily on many different people," he
said. "The only way we can possibly
beat either team is for everybody to
have a great meet."
Although 'Isaac admitted both
weekend foes will be extremely strong,
victories against both are within reach.
Michigan's women, should be well
rested, as well as psyched. "We've been
looking forward to it all year.
"We've got the national scores from
last year up at the pool and we've got
North Carolina and North Carolina
State lettered in red, and they (the
swimmers) have been looking at that
every day when they come into the pool,
so they know what they're trying to do.
We're really excited about it."
OF THE stronger team, North
Carolina, Isaac added, "I don't think
we quite have enough depth, enough of
the top people yet to beat them at the
Nationals (the most important inter-
collegiate swimming meet), but we do
have a chance to beat them in this dual
meet with our diving strength and our
good dual meet team. . . a chance to
surprise them if they're looking ahead a
The two weekend , meets are
especially significant in that they will
help prepare the Michigan squad for
the upcoming Big Ten championships
and the AIAW Nationals, the two
biggest meets of the year. "This will be
a good indication of how our girls will
stand up versus national caliber com-
petition," said the coach.
The trip narks the first time the
women have gone to joint dual meets
with the men's team, who are enjoying
an excellent year themselves.
As Isaac put it, 'It's going to be a fan-
tastic weekend for Michigan swim-
FWant tospend this


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