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March 01, 1979 - Image 9

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1979-03-01

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COACH FARRELL DISCUSSES FUTURE.

The Michigan Daily-Thursday, March 1, 1979-Page 9

Icers'
By BOB EMORY
and
DAN PERRIN
The 1978-79 WCHA playoffs begin
next week and eight of the ten con-
ference teams will be vying for the
league crown and a possible berth in the
NCAA Championships to be held later
this month. But for the last place
Michigan Wolverines there will be no
playoffs, no post season glory and
nothing to look forward to except next
year.
The Blue icers are concluding their
worst year since 1973 when the team
ended with a 6-27-1 record and a last
place finish. After guiding the team to
the finals of the NCAA Championships
during the 1976-77 season, current
} coach Dan Farrell has now suffered
back to back losing seasons.
Going into the final home and home
series with Michigan State, the
Wolverines own a 6-23-1 league mark (8-
25-1 overall) and sit seven points behind
the ninth place Spartans. In an ex-
clusive interview with Daily hockey
writers Dan Perrin and Bob, Emory,
coach Farrell expressed his views on
the season, what was good, what was
bad, and what Michigan hockey fans
might expect for the coming years.
THE DAILY: This year's team has
the poorest record of any Michigan
team you've coached. To what factors
do you attribute the team's lack of suc-
cess?
FARRELL: It starts with a lack of
scoring ability; I think we're averaging
three and a half goals a game. This is
the lowest scoring team we've ever
had. You can't succeed in this league
unless you're scoring at a rate of
around five goals a game. The main
reason for that is that we didn't have
(freshman Terry) Cullen, (freshman
Murray) Eaves and (junior.Dan) Lerg

seasor
healthy all year. With those centermen
in the lineup all season, we would have
scored much better.
Two, we haven't been as good defen-
sively. This is also because those three
kids have been out of the lineup; the op-
position has been controlling the puck
more than we have. All three of those
kids are good forecheckers.
The other reason is that our goalten-
ding is not nearly as good as I hoped it
would be. We've given up too many

1 one o
definitely played .500 hockey. Murray
Eaves was one of the outstanding
freshmen in the league until the time he
was injured (season-ending knee injury
Jan. 19 at North Dakota). He gave us a
'lot of offense and he did it without Lerg
and Cullen (knee and neck injuries,
respectively, in the second series of the
year. Lerg returned to action at the end
of December while Cullen was finished
for the year).
Terry Cullen would ha've been, if he
had played this year, one of the out-
standing players in this league. He
would have given us so much more of-
fense; he did everything well.
THE DAILY: You didn't mention the
inexperience on the team. With 20 un-
derclassmen on a 28 man squad, do you
think that contributed to the team's
losing record?
FARRELL: Obviously, the youth of
the club had something to do with the
record. I think with the three kids we've
mentioned in the lineup all season, they
would have given the youth a lot of
stability, even though two of the kids
are freshmen.
On defense, we used primarily
freshmen and sophomores all year and
Tim Manning (a sophomore) is the only
one with any experience. But I think
they're a good young defense and I ex-
pect them to be excellent next year. In
fact, we didn't see too many better
young defensemen in the league than
the six we've used all year.
THE DAILY: What has been the
major disappointment of the year for
you?
FARRELL: I think the major disap-
pointment to me is the injuries and that
goes hand in hand with the fact that our
record is not very good. But there's
nothing I could do about the injuries. I
would feel badly if conditioning had
something to do with the injuries but in
this particular case it didn't.

f pain.,
Truthfully, and I can say this with a
straight face, that Scotty Bowman
(Montreal Canadiens coach) wouldn't
have done a better job with this team.
THE DAILY: What about some
highlights of this frustrating season?
FARRELL: I think one of the main
accomplishments that we've done here
in spite of a losing season is we've kept
this team going week after week when.
we didn't have a heckuva a lot of things
to go with.
Mark Miller's been one of the best
captains we've ever had here. He's a
tremendous young man and he's played
super for us. He's worked very hard
and the coaching staff has worked very
hard to keep these kids going. When you
have a season like we've had, one of the
easiest things to do is to quits. That
gives me a great deal of optimism for
what we can do in another year with a
full lineup.
THE DAILY: Recruiting is very
important for the success of any college
sport team. What have you done in the
way of recruiting for next year?
FARRELL: We don't have any
recruited people for next year yet, but
obviously we're looking at a number of
people. I did not plan to recruit a
goaltender for next fall but based on the
season we've had, the recruitmeht of a
top goaltender is one of the areas of
concern.

problems

I think the defense is solid, there's
good young talent there that should get
better. Looking at forwards, we have to
get two good left wingers that can come
in and start next year.
Depending on Cullen (if he can
rebound from his neck injury) and
Lerg, who is a top candiate for the 1980
U.S. Olympic team, we are really up in
the air because we won't know if these
kids can play for us next year.
N'OTE: If lerg is selece'd to0 she ohrn pic
lear, .lit, wil nor playijr Michigan neuxt iYear.
We won't know until May or June if
Cullen can even attempt to come back
and with Lerg an Olympic candidate,
that really puts us in a hole. You can't
go out and recruit a center right now
based on what you've got coming back
because everybody in North America
knows the quality of our centermen.
This has'been a big problem. We're in
with a couple of great young kids who
are centermen and they (recruits) say,
'Gee, I can't come and play ahead of
these guys.'
THE DAILY: How do you plan to get
around this problem?
FARRELL: What we're trying to do
is possibly recruit a couple of kids who
can play center or wing. If Cullen and

Lerg do come back and are able to play,
then if we recruit a blue chip center, he
can play on the wing. We've got to be
flexible.
THE DAILY: Beyond recruiting,
what do you feel is the key to im-
provement for next year's team?
FARRELL: Number one, the
goaltending has to be better. Whether
that means the returning guys play bet-
ter or whether we bring in a top recruit
who is able to play better, it will im-
prove our defense and lower the num-
ber of goals against. Also, we've got to
stay healthy. We've never had injuries
like this in the six years I've been here.
THE DAILY: Finally, you've had two
losing seasons in a row and have not
made the playoffs either year. At this
point, do you feel any pressure on your-
self or your position as head coach at
Michigan?
FARRELL: I'd be trying to mislead
you if I said I didn't feel any pressure.
When you finish in last place you hear
all kinds of rumors, both inside and out-
side the city, about your future. A lot of
fans are disgruntled, obviously.
Very frankly, as far as I'm concer-
ned, they're just rumors. Unless I hear
otherwise, I plan to be back here next
year.

Dan Farrell

poor goals and that's been a major fac-
tor.I
So if you go over all that again, I think
that with another goal and a half a
game for us and a cutback of a goal to a
goal and a half a game that we've given
up because of poor goaltending, you'd
have an even situation.
THE DAIL't: How much difference
in the win-loss column would it have
made if Cullen, Eaves and Lerg had
been healthy all year?
FARRELL: I think we would have

HOOSIERS POSE BIG TEN CHALLENGE
'Title' waves or Blue?

By MARK FISCHER
Yes, once again, those nasty Hoosiers
are favored to take the men's Big Ten
swimming championship, which they
have won for the last eighteen years.
But don't cash in your chips too early,
for according to Michigan's diving
coach, Dick Kimball, "This will be one
of the closest Big Ten meets in years,"
and "It won't just be another battle for
second place."
But wait, you say. Why should In-
diana be favored anyway? After all, the
Wolverines beat the Hoosiers in Ann
Arbor less than five weeks ago in a dual
meet, 58-55.
That may appear to be sound
reasoning, but appearances can be
misleading. To begin with, the Big Tens
will be held at a "neutral" arena in
Columbus (Thursday through Satur-
day.)
MORE IMPORTANTLY, the affair at
Ohio State will be a championship, not a
dual meet. To win a dual meet, several
swimmers must take the top one or two
spots in most of the events from only
one other team; good individual per-
formers are needed.
To win a championship meet, on the
other hand, two or three swimmers
must finish in the top six in almost
every event, against nine other teams;
depth is needed.
As usual, Indiana has depth.
"They've got too many studs," says
Kimball. "We are strong individually,

but Indiana's got a major edge in dep-
th." The meet should nevertheless be
close, however, for there is stiff com-
petition throughout the league. The
major combatants for second place now
stand to be OSU, Wisconsin, Iowa, and
the Wolverines.
WHEN ASKED his team's chances,
the Blue diving coach replied, "It's
hard to tell. There are so many factors
- every school's got good swimmers
this year. Indiana may be beaten in just
enough races for a contender to pull
ahead."
An d that contender may well be
Michigan, who is enjoying a record of
thirteen and one. They have defeated
every Big Ten team they've faced,
which includes everyone but Iowa and
Northwestern. The sole loss came down
at the U. of Alabama back on January
4, but according to Kimball, his tankers
have improved greatly since then.
As noted, the Blue swim team have
outstanding individual talent, including
sprinter Bob Murray, defending Big
Ten champ Fernando Canales at the 100
and 200 yard freestyles, and diver Matt
Chelich, defending champ at the one-
meter board.
THEY WILL be faced with strong op-
position. In the sprints, Murray will be
toughly tested by Dave Culture, one of
the league's top 50-yard men. This
season, however, Murray has already
beaten Culture's best time. Canales will
go up against many strong freestylers,
notably those from Indiana, OSU, and
Iowa. Chelich will be most closely
SCORESI
College Basketball
Kentucky 82, Mississippi 77
Alabama 81, Florida 64
Georgia 75, Mississippi St. 72
N.C. Charlotte 88, Georgia Southern 71
Georgetown D.C. 73. Old D)ominion 52
Syracuse 83, St. Bonaventure71
Central Michigan 72, Bowling Green 66
NBA
Boston 122, New Orleans 112
Washington 124, Chicago 1i13
Milwaukee 139, Cleveland 117
N~IL
St, Louis 6, Detroit 5
Pittsburgh 5. Colorado:3
Atlanta 6, Toronto 4
N.Y. Rangers 4, Minnesota 4
Join The
Sports Stf

Daily rhoto by LISA UDELSON
FRESHMAN DEFENSEMAN Brian Lundberg outmaneuvers Wisconsin's Peter Johnson in a series played here two weeks
ago. The icers have had problems this season, and now sit in last place as the WCHA season draws to a close.

challenged by Ohio State's diving
squad. Fortunately, the Wolverines as a
whole are well-rested and healthy.
Thus, if everything falls into place, if
Indiana is beaten in enough races, and
if Michigan puts together a great effort,
they'll have a good chance to wrest this
year's Big Ten title from the perennial
champs from Bloomington.
Then again, if ifs were horses
everyone would ride for free.
UP'9
} to
hIie
Sidi4~i4
i~ ai
7 m'."-

SPOR TS OF THE DAIL Y

Red Wings get
(By The Associated Press)

the Blues, 6-5

D'ETROIT - Brian Sutter scored the
tying goal with 5:12 to play and set up
Bob Murdoch's winner with 1:06 left as
the St. Louis Blues offset Vaclav
Nedomansky's second straight three-
goal game and beat Detroit 6-5 in the
National Hockey League yesterday.
Sutter tied the score at 5 when he
deflected Bob Stewart's shot from the
point past goalie Rogie Vachon. Later,
he drew Vachon out of the net and fed
the puck to Murdoch, who found an
open corner.
Andre St. Laurent had given Detroit a
5-4 lead at 1:58 of the final period when
he stole the puck from Jack Brown-
schidle and skated in alone on goalie
Phil Myre.
St. Louis led 3-0 on first period goals
by Bernie Federko and Mike Zuko and a
second-period tally by Inge Hammar-
strom. But Detroit tied the score mid-
way through the second period on a goal
by Dan Bolduc and Nedonansky's first
two tallies.
The three-goal game by Nedomansky
was his third of the season and boosted
his team-leading goal total to 32. The
former Czechoslovakian National
Team star has 15 goals in his last 15
games.
It was only the fourth road triumph in
31 games for St. Louis, which has the
worst road record in the NHL.
Gibson reports
LAKELAND, Fla. (AP) - Kirk Gib-
son, the two-sport star from Michigan
State who became the Detroit Tigers'
hiacract hnnm.c. hn~a..n nea rnnnrnrI t

field wall.
Gibson, given a reported $200,000
bonus to forsake pro football for
baseball after just one season on the
Spartans' varsity, spent part of last
summer with Detroit Class A farm club
at Lakeland.
The Tigers' full squad of infielders
and outfielders is due to join pitchers

and catchers in camp today.
Under new manager Les Moss, the
Tigers will play their first exhibition
game March 8 at Lakeland against
Boston.-
* * *
Tech signs coach
ATLANTA - Georgia Tech is expec-

Still bargaining contract;
Yaz returns to Bosox

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. (AP) -
Veteran slugger Carl Yastrzemski, who
threatened two weeks ago to sit out the
1979 season because of a contract
dispute, reported to the Boston Red
Sox, training camp yesterday, one day
ahead of schedule.
The 39-year-old Yastrzemski had a
two-hour meeting with General
Manager Haywood Sullivan, then don-
ned his uniform and took batting prac-
tice at Chain 0 Lakes Park.
"I plan to continue to talk to Haywood
about working out an extension of my
contract through 1981," Yastrzemski
said. "I have never had any problem
negotiating with the Red Sox over the
years, and I don't expect one now.
Sullivan and I have been friends for 12
years and I trust his word."
"Carl and I will continue to talk about
an extension," Sullivan said. "I simply
told him it would be better for everyone

Atlanta," he said. "I have never had
any intention of going somewhere else
to play. I started my career with the
Red Sox and will end it with them."
Manager Don Zimmer talked with
Yastrzemski and then announced he
plans to change his starting lineup.
"My lineup will have Rick Burleson
leading off, followed by Jerry Remy,
Fred Lynn and Jim Rice," Zimmer
said.
"Then against right-handed pitching
I will have Yaz hitting fifth and Carlton
Fisk sixth. Against left-handers, Fisk
will hit fifth and Yaz sixth.
"Yaz is 40 years old and I figure I
might take some pressure off his back.
He agreed. He's still one of the most
respected hitters in baseball, so the
rival pitchers won't be walking Rice to
get to him."

ted to announce tonight that former
Atlanta Falcons Coach Norm Van
Brocklin has accepted a position on the
Tech coaching staff, The Atlanta Con-
stitution reported.
The newspaper said the announ-
cement is expected to be made at the
school's annual football banquet.
Van Brocklin, 53, was fired from the
Falcons coaching job in November 1974
after almost seven years in the job. He
also was head coach of the Minnesota
Vikings for six seasons.
Matthews tapped
CHICAGO - Guard Wesley Mat-
thews, who scored 54 points to lead
Wisconsin to two victories last week,
hag been named Big Ten Player of the
Week for his performance.
The six-foot sophomore from
Bridgeport, Conn., scored 31 points in
the Badgers' 66-65 triumph at Michigan
last Thursday. On Saturday, he scored
23 points and handed out 11 assists as
Wisconsin beat Northwestern.
For the week, he converted 22 of 36
field goal attempts, 10 of 13 free throws
and dished out 14 assists.
Honorable mention for player of the
week went to Mike Woodson of Indiana
and Gregory Kelser of Michigan State,
who both scored 53 points in two games.
Ronnie Lester of Iowa, who scored 31
points in a victory over Ohio State, also
received honorable mention.

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