Saturday, September 11, 1976
THE MICHIGAN DAILY
Football, medicine: All in a
There is a program here at Michigan
r ailed Inteflex - an intensive, six-year cur-
riulum which combines undergraduate and
medical school studies and allows students
to trim two years off the normal time it
takes to becnme a doctor.
Inteftex students are noted for their
fiendish devotion to their schoolwork and
an equally fervent aversion to outside activi-
Then there is Kirk Lewis, an offensive
guard for Michigan with a powerful build
and a mind to match. For the past four
years, Lewis has somehow found time for
both football and Inteflex. He's excelled at
both, starting as a sophomore for Bo Schem-
bechler in 1973 and compiling a 3.44 grade
point average through four years of school.
Such a combination of brains and brawn is
Lewis missed all of last season with a
broken arm, hut stilt served as team cap-
fain. He's back this year to sise sip his last
year of eligibility, taking time off from Inte-
flex a wchile.
Daily S rts Editor Bill Stieg asked Lewis
about his remarkable career at Michigan, his
thoughts about football and his plans for
DAILY: It's not unreasonable to say
that varsity football and Inteflex are the
two most time-consuming activities on
campus. How do you do it?
LEWIS: That's what everybody asks
me. During the season, you've just got
to set priorities for what you want to
do with your time. For me, academics
and football come ahead of the social
life, although I don't like to neglect that
because I think that's an important part
of the university experience. If I have
studying to do after football practice,
that gets done before anything else. I've
been fortunate that I haven't had to
study much, so as a result I've been
able to play.
But to me, football is also a relaxing
thing, in that it's doing something other
than school. Some of my classmates, all
they do all day long is study and study
and study. It would be hard for me to
do that. It's easier for me to play foot-
ball and study.
DAILY: How much time did you
spend with the team last year when
you were injured?
LEWIS: I spent the regular amount
of time with the players. I was down
at practice when they were, and I went
work for Kirk Lewis
to the meetings and everything else, so
I was just like part of the team. So I
spent just as much time down there (as
when playing). But the time I saved
was when I got back from practice.
Usually you're so tired that you have
to catch an hour of sleep, or sometimes
you can't do anything - you just lay
there and watch TV. It's hard to func-
DAILY: When you were playing,
what was a typical day like, during the
LEWIS: Well, classes were usually
from eight to twelve, and then one to
three, and after that I was down at
football practice. We usually have meet-
ings prior to every practice to discuss
our plans for the day and put in any
adjustments for the opponent that week.
I WAS UNABLE to be at a lot of
those meetings, so I'd come in over
lunch hour and eat lunch with the coach-
es and go over the plan for that day.
Then we'd practice from 3:30 until six,
run up to the training table and grab
a bite to eat, and maybe by 7:30 I was
done with football. So that's about five
hours a day.
After that I had to go back and
study. Usually I couldn't take too much
time to study because I'd have to go
to bed early - I was too tired from
practice. I could get a couple hours
of studying in if I wanted to, but I didn't
always take the time.
DAILY: You said you've been fortu-
nate that you haven't had to study much,
and you say you don't always take the
time, yet you have a 3.44 grade point.
How did that happen?
LEWIS: I don't know ... I've been
able to get B's and A's - I've gotten a
C or two here and there - it's mostly
stuff that has come easy to me.
DAILY: What's the curriculum for
LEWIS: We start out with just basic
natural sciences - zoology, chemistry,
organic chemistry and stuff, and then we
"I get uset if people
label me a dumb jock
* It is kind of funny,
though. When t h e y
come wheeling in the
emergency room and
look up and see the guy
they just called a dumb
jock, they might get a
progress on after two years to a total wouldn't appreciate my being beeped
medical school curriculum, which is bio right in the middle of practice.
chemistry, microbiology, anatomy, phys- So I've just decided to take the whole
iology, pathology, pharmacology, things year off, take a few humanities courses
like that. You go ten months a year for that I hadn't been able to take. And then,
the first four years, and the last two hopefully, I'll do an externship or pre-
years you're on clinic, with vacation ceptorship type thing with a rural doctor
time dispersed throughout the year. in the second half of the year.
DAILY: Are you on schedule? DAILY: Do you get a kick out of
being a total refutation of the "dumb
LEWIS: I'm on schedule up to now, jock" stereotype? Some of your class-
but the rest of my classmates are on mates must hold some sort of prejudice
clinic. I've decided to take the next year against athletes in general.
off in order to play my fifth year of
football. It's impossible in the fifth year LEWIS: Yeah, I do kind of get a
at Inteflex - which is equivalent to the kick out of it. I know there's a stereo-
third year of medical school - to do type of the basic dumb jock. Depending
anything else besides medicine, unless on who I meet, I can tell them I'm a
it's something you can do at your leis- football player and I've got that going
ure, and football is not one of those for me, or I can tell someone else I'm
things - football is a discipline. a medical student and I've got that repu-
SO I'VE BEEN forced to take a leave tation, which is always good.
of absence. I could have taken the leave I like both worlds, and I consider
during the school year and just been myself a jock, but I don't consider my-
a half year behind, or maybe take some self a dumb jock. There are a lot of
clinics that wouldn't require my being other kids who aren't necessarily foot-
there all night and all day. Something ball players or varsity athletes who I
like internal medicine or obstetrics, consider jocks. Those are the people
you're on call every third or fourth I like - those who don't study all the
night, and there's no way I could be time. There are people in medical school
on call and be down playing football. who come to school in their cutoffs and
I could bring my beeper along, but Bo after class go shoot a few hoops instead
of hitting the medical library- Those are
the types I associate with.
I THINK THE "dumb jock" thing is
gone, because in order to play big-time
collegiate football the way it is now -
it's a very complex game - you've
got to study the game like you study
school, especially at Michigan. You have
to maintain the academic requirements
to be eligible. You can't be dumb and
I know there are still guys like that
(dumb jocks) and I think you'll always
have them. Maybe at some of the small-
er institutions that aren't as stringent
academically, you'll find a few more.
But at Michigan I don't think you can
say "dumb jock" anymore.
I get upset if neople label me a dumb
jock. For one thing, I don't think they
know what they're talking about. Then
again, sometimes I just have to look
the other way. Tt is kind of funny, though.
When they come wheeling in the emerg-
ency room and look up and see the guy
they just called a dumb jock, they might
get a little flustered.
DAILY: Bi-time football and medi-
cine offer striking contrasts. One breaks
bones, the other mends them. How do
you reconcile that in your mind?
LEWIS: I've never had much of a
DottymPhoto by SCOTT b R R conflict with that, When I play foot-
for e ssed last season with a broken ball, I play clean and don't do any-
for the '76 season, anid says MchEganE
See LEWIS, Page 19
KIRK LEWIS LEADS THE WOLVERINES onto the field for a game last year.3
arm, but still served as team captain. The med student-offensive guard is back I
a "super, super team."