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January 12, 1977 - Image 7

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1977-01-12

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Jariuory 12, 1 977


Jar~uary 12, 1977 THE MICHIGAN DAILY

Page Seven

Sfull court

Whe e



®B p


Cagers come through ...
..fans don't
THOSE ATTENDING Michigan's victory over Wisconsin Satur-
day witnessed a very disillusioning performance. But it
wasn't the team whose performance was disillusioning - it wast
the fans.
As the buzzer went off for half time some "fans" thought the
Wolverines' play deserved one of the lowest form of spectator1
abuse: the booing of the players as they left the court.
So once again Michigan's fans have proven themselves
spoiled rotten, and unable to cope with the fact that their
team can't be perfect all the time.
This axiom is especially true in basketball. It is not only
a game of inches, it is a game of millimeters. The slightest im-
perfection in a shot causes it to be off the mark, and no player
can always be on the mark every performance. A basketball
player, as opposed to a football or hockey player, has a much
more difficult time controlling the fae of his performance in a
given game.
Veteran basketball observers realize this, but Michigan fans
have a long way to go until they become experts.
This is the first year that tickets have been difficult to ob-
tain. Only because of Michigan's performance in last year's1
NCAA tournament did the fans flock to the game this year.
Had Rickey Green missed his crucial shot in the first
round against Wichita State - ala Kupec the year before
against eventual champion UCLA - the Wolverines would
have received less pubicity in the preseason publications,
and in turn would attract meager crowds similar to last
But Michigan basketball fans only support a winner, and
they consider a winner a team that does well in the tournament,
notwithstanding its play during the regular season.
It is these fair-weather fans who will be satisfied with noth-
ing less than a national championship for the Wolverines. What
they fail to realizeis that only one of hundreds can win the
title, and just finishing in the final four or eight characterrizes
a successful, season.1
The fans of the Vanderbilts and Providences around the
coun ry avidly support their team no matter what its record.E
They realize that their team may occasionally fail. Michigan
fans have yet to realize this.
This is unfortunate not only for the fans and the coaches,
but especially for the players.
Before the season, the players were heartened by the1
tremendous sale of season tickets, and they couldn't wait
to play in front of throngs of cheering fan-, in Crisler Arena.
But the fans have been anything but tha this year, and the
booing of these college athletes has disheartened them.
These athletes receive no .money for their participation in,
athletics. Although they receive full scholarships, so do many
other students who don't participate in ahletics. In addition,
they must devote their time while in school to basketball and
school work must take a back seat to athletics.
Granted, many athletes profit in the long run because of
the publicity they receive while in college. But, more often than
not, they lose out on an education that a non-athlete receives. 1
That the fans chose to display this scorn upon amateurs,1
their peers, is a disgrace indeed.
The team needs fan support at home if they are to be suc-
cessful. This is what the home-court advantage is all about.-
When the' fans perked up Saturday, so did Michigan.
"They really gave us a lift in the second half,," said Dave
This isn't to say that everything that the team does war-
rants cheer, but on the other hand, the cri. ics should put their
responses into perspective, and remember who they're reacting
to and the reasons behind it.1

You'd think that a person who is bright,
articulate and aspires to be a social work-
er wouldn't have the desire to turn into
"an animal in a hockey uniform."
You'd also not expect to find a black
man playing hockey.
Bill Wheeler, a sophomore, on the Mich-
igan hockey team, is an exception to both
these stereotypes. He started skating at
the age of five and began playing hockey
a year-and-a-half later.
WHEELER PLAYED pee-wee and ban-
tam in Ecorse, Michigan, and continued
with junior hockey in Detroit where he
a tracted the attention of Michigan coach
Dan Farrell.
Wheeler was named most valuable
player in a Junior "B" Tournament and
was recruited by hockey powers Michigan
Tech, Brown, St. Louis, and Michigan.
He chose the Wolverines because of both
its academic and hockey traditions.
While "Wheels" - as his teammates
amiably call him -has very diversified
interests such as music, plants and talk-
ing to people, he has very definite views
about hockey.
"YOU TALK TO PLAYERS off the ice
and they're really nice. I just think you
turn into an animal when you put your
uniform on," Wheeler said.
Incompatible with the stereotyped
hockey image, Wheeler would like to be-
come a social worker and dispel the im-
age of the stupid. brutal player.
"It's a battle of strength, it's a real

r:W A uniq
smart game. A lot of people get the idea
that hockey players are stupid, but they
aren't," said Wheeler.,
"As far as violence in hockey, I think
it's getting out of hand. A good clean'
check is okay, but high sticks, spearing
and slashing are just out of the question.
"When you hit someone you don't try
to hurt them, but you hit them hard
enough that they feel it," Wheeler said.
"WHEELS" DOESN'T consider himself
a fighter or a violent player. "I'm more
of a skater, I'm not a physical player, but
I'll hit someone just to let them know
they're in the game," he said.
Wheeler is the first black player in
Michigan hockey history. Blacks in hockey
down through the years have been a rar-
ity and right now there are only two in
the National Hockey League.
He downplays the whole situation, how-
ever, and refuses to let race problems
stand in his way.
"I was really worried about that my
freshman year, how the players would
accept me. but I get along really well
with all of them. There's a pretty good
rapport," said Wheeler.
"I USUALLY GET a cheap shot on the
ice now and then because I'm black, but
it's settling down more now compared to
junior hockey where there was verbal
abuse from fans and coaches," he said.
When asked if he was bothered by the
lack of a black following in hockey, Wheel-
er was indifferent.

Midwest Division
"It's not really that bad because I don't W
look in the crowd when I'm playing. It nDETROIT..........
would be better if blacks did come and Indiana...........20
experience a game, then they might be Kansas City ........18
awakened to the sport of hockey," he 14iag . ...12
said. Pacific Division
Los Angeles..........25
WHEELER WANTS TO LET his per- Golden State.........20
formance on the ice remove any doubts Sea ttle...............22
Phoenix, .......15
about his playing ability. "When I first Atlantic Division
got here, I did get a lot of publicity just aw
because I was black," he said. Just be- Pe. Knicks..........19
cause I'm black doesn't mean anything. Boston...............19
-P T A .3-7L. -- ...,' :. T A,. Buffalo "............ 15

G Norris Division
¢ IW L
Montreal 31 5
7 Pittbrgh . 17 17
Los Angeles.. . 14 19
DETROIT .. 13 23
IWashington . 12 25
Adams Division
Buffalo..........26 11
1 Boston........... 26 13-
51 oronlto .. . 20 17
10 Cleveland...... ...12 24
- Patrick Division
3 w L
3 Philadelphia 25 9
8 N.Y. Islanders .... 25 9
Atlanta...........19 16

S 6
S 6
I 6
S 7



If I didn't
want the
this year.
the team1

have the credentials, I wouldnt
is pleased with his stats so far
Currently, "Wheels" is fifth on
in goals with nine, and has a

N.Y. Nets.......12
Central Division
Cleveland ..... ,.......23
Washington..... 19
San Antonio.........20
New Orleans........ 19
Atlanta. .....13
Yesteriay's Result
Boston 105, Houston 101

16 --
16 1i
18 3
19 3
20 4
28 11

total of 14 points in 17 games.
In terms of goals for himself, Wheeler
is realistic. "This year I wanted to aver-
age two points a game. That started out'
to be really tough, so I lowered it down
to maybe one point a game," he said.
WHEELER REALLY enjoys hockey and
likes the traveling that goes with it. The
only drawback Wheeler finds with col-
lege hockey is the lack of publicity from
the media.
"We get lost in the shuffle with football
and basketball. The networks don't cover
college hockey," said Wheeler.-
Thinking about his future, Wheeler has
it covered from every angle. "I'd love to
nlay pro hockey if the opportunity arises.
I'd sure jump on it, but if it doesn't, I've
got other things I can fall back on, I
won't be heartbroken," Wheeler said.

N.Y. Rangers .. .. 16 16 12
Smythe Division
St. Louis.......... 17 20 5
Chicago .... 14 22 6
:Minnesota......... 10 21 9
Vancouver.........12 29 4
Colorado'.........10 23 7
Yesterday's Results
Toronto 2, Pittsburgh 0
Boston 3, Washington 2

Los Angeles 101, Cleveland 99
Chicago 93, Phoenix 119
Philadelphia 117, Kansas City 115
Washington 120, Milwaukee 109





By CUB SCHWARTZ number one rival since we do
Mcia woe b anot play in the Mid-American
The Michiglan women's bas- Conference," she said.
ketball team built up a com- "Sims played a fine game,"
fortable thirty point halftimee is finally
lead and coasted to an easy 95- *ett said Borders. "She deserves,"
68 victory over Eastern Michi- ttghp shdsshesaid.
gan last night at Crisler Arena.
NIGHT EDITORS: "We also had some very
Led by Lydia Sims' 24 points MILLER, LEWIS well-executed assists," she
the Wolverines placed five & GOLDMAN continued. "Finally all the
players in double figures. work of the past three weeks
Coach Carmel Borders used is beginning to pay off."
all eleven players, each break- "The fast break worked es- Muriel Bedford led the Hurons
ing into the scoring column, pecially well tonight," said bor- Mieh 26 points, 17 com n s
in gaining Michigan's first vic- ders. "The teamwork made it s.h26 points, 17 coming in the
tory of the year against three go. andod period. Denise Woods
defeats. Ian Donna Travis netted 12 and
"We also pushed the ball' in 16, respectively, for the losing
The Wolverines took command the early going which wore Icause.

Melinda Fertig, Theresa Con-
lin, Kathyleen Young and Na-
tasha Cender joined Sims in the
double figures column for Mich-
In the Varsity-Reserve contest
Eastern Michigan claimed a 63-
56 victory in overtime after
Wolverine Kathy McHugh hit the
first of a one and one to deuce
the game in regulation time.
The Varsity squad's next
game is against Purdue Satur-
day at 7:30 in Crisler Arena.
"Purdue has four starters re-
turning and pretty good height,"
Borders said. "It should be a
really good game."

Pulitzer Prize Winner 1973
Author of UP COUNTRY
Poet and
K umin

of the game from the start,
jumping out to a 24-12 lead half-
way through the first period.
From there they reeled off 18
consecu'ive points to place the
game on ice.
The Hurons attempted a come-
back in the second period, net-
ting 10 straight points before,
Michigan could score, but a pair
of steals by Sims and a pair of
buckets by center Kathleen
Young returned the momentum
to Michigan.
Borders attributed the victory
to the success of the fast break
and the improved rebounding of
her team.

them down. Then with a thir-
ty point "'"- going into the
second period, it made the go-
ing a little easier," she said.
Eastern used three varsity
players in the earlier Varsity-
Reserve game, which also wore
them down. There is nothing in
the rule book which prevents
this in women's basketball.
Huron coach Kathy Hunt was
not disappointed with the per-
formance of her team in its first
game of the year. "Michigan is
our major opponent and our
-' --_-_-

NCAA tables controversial
Dwiston I realignment plan
By The Associated Press in at least eight varsity sports, ence, the NCAA's largest allie
MIAMI BEACH, Fla. - The including football and basket- member.
NCAA tabled its controversial ball, and maintain performance Division I schools such as t-
reorganization plan yesterday, standards in all eight sports to San Francisco, Marquette an
thus erasing in 10 minutes a keep their Division I standing. Providence have highly ranke
proposal which was in the works Of the 247 Division I member basketball teams but do not pl
for almost a year. schools, only 137 play major col- varsity football. Another T
THE ACTION as the annual lege football. Twenty basketball school, N
NCAA business session got un- vada-Las Vegas, is classifie
der way was a victory for many THE MOVE to table the is- Division II in football.
big-time basketball schools, es- sue came at the request of Pe- "We know some form of r
pecially those without Division ter A. Carlesimo, athletic direc- organization must come abou
I football programs. tor at Fordham. He had the but this isn't it," Carlesin
Under the plan, a school
would have had to field teams! support of many schools in the said. "Let them go back ai
1 Eastern College Athletic Confer- include the basketball schools.




Find What You're
Looking For in
The Classifieds







::: i

I -dmmmmm

The Top 20
By United Press International
1 San Francisco (31) 1;-0
?.Cincinnati (1) -.. . 10-0I
:. Kentucky (1) ..... ...9-1
4. Alabama (1). ......12-0
5. No'4h Carolina (1). 10-12
6. MICHIGAN 9-1 . L
7. Nevada-Las Vegas (1).13-1
8. Wake Forest .... .....i-1
9. Marquette.... ...... . 9-
10. Arizona . .11-1
11, Minnesota (1) .. . 10-0
12. U.C.L.A.. . ......11-2
13. Purdue 8-3
14. Louisville........9-2
15. Oregon.........11-2
16. Arkansas ............... 10-1
17. Tennessee .............. 8-2
18, Providernce........11-2
19. (tie) Holy Cross ..10-1
19. (tie) St. John's N.Y. ... 9-2

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Academy of American Poets,
Bain-Swiggett, & Gutterman
Poetry Awards
Wednesday, January 12, 4 p.m.
Rackham Amphitheater


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