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December 11, 1976 - Image 23

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1976-12-11

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Sunday, December 12, 1976


Page Fifteen

Sunday, December 12, 1976 THE MICHIGAN DAILY Page Fifteen

. But tI
as Bo I
Ten sc]

The tale o the '76 Wolverines
ontinued from Page 2) again sparked by Lytle's 129 total) and Leach's record-tying c r e d i t. One assistant, Gary tatively titled, "How to Win
he inconsistency vanished yards. "Maybe we are that season touchdowns pass mark Moeller, even rode the fame to Rose Bowls and Influence Peo-
began to author his Big good," the constantly self-criti- (13). an editorship in the recently -ple."
hedule. He carefully re- cal coach mused. Then came the long-awaited blase Illinois publication depart- If Bo's latest effort serves as
cted a defensive motif, But ennui s o o n turns to chapter, Bo's oft-told legend ment. any indication, this one could
newcomers like John amazement as Schembecler's of "The Grinch Who Stole New But Moeller's sticking around well top them all as Schem-
sy, John Anderson and style suffers its most stagger- Year's Day in Pasadena." to help write the next one-the bechler takes his rightful place
ing slip to date For perhaps the Ti dni ti n . i' B ' one we're allwaiting for-ten- at the tnnpof his art

Jerry Zuver around stalwarts
such as Greg Morton and Calvin
O'Neal, to rival any of his pre-
vio isworks.
That . proved ant opportune
move indeed. Bo's conference
tasks grew gradually more dif-
ficult, and he began to rely on
those old, reliable formulas he's
used with such previous success.
In addition to the revitalized
defensive mode, he dusted off
an old favorite, Rob Lytle, and
let him carry the tale through.
The ubiquitous Lytle, one of
the most powerful, though un-
heralded, characters in college
football, remained relatively
ignored through the early sec-
tions. But as opponents in-
creasingly keyed on Huckleby
and his and Davis' limitations
grew obvious, Lytle came on
to rip up defensive tackles
and record books alike in his
final appearances as a Schem-
bechler creation.
Lytle recorded his best day
ever with 110 yards against
Michigan State and followed
with 172 against Northwestern
and 175 versus Indiana. Even
Schembechler's use of a time-
worn Man vs. Nature theme in
the rain-soaked Indiana game
failed to dull his proteges' fan-
tastic feats.
Unfortunately, the narrative
began to drag a bit during these
sections. One often loses his
place as each page seems to
imitate its predecessor.
Schembechler does try to pro-
vide some comic relief with a
45-0, nationally televised romp
over a hobbled Minnelota squad,

11 IP w u c . U IA~oLl
first time ever; Schembechler
seems at a loss for words in de-
scribing what should've proven
a fairly simnle Purdue esca-
pade. Word has it he even con-
sidered refraining from com-
ment until his sense of artistic
duty prevailed.
At first, one thinks, "All
right, we've finally got some
excitement for a. change."
Such thoughts soon turn to,
"This is scary-TOO scary."
Finally, when Bo needed to
pull off the plot twist to cap
the drama, he simply lost con-
trol of his characters.
Lytle again sparkled with 153
yards, but committed a crucial
fumble. Senior wingback Jim
Smith, who with Lytle constitu-
ted half of Michigan's offense,
according to Bo, dropped an
easy touchdown pass. And old
reliable Bob Wood joined the
ranks of maligned Wolverine
kickers with a last-minute field
goal miss.
In a masterpiece of parrallel
construction, just as Schembech-
ler's latest h e a r t problems
shocked him, this catastrophe
woke up his team. Bo's disaster
occurred from overwork; his
team's, f r o m overrelaxation.
The gridders could only hope
they could imitate their coach's
One sensed the uspwing begin-
ning against Illinois. Bo, instead
of lapsing even further into his
old ways, came out throwing
with a crisp, audience-entertain-
ing piece. For anecdotes, he
tossed in Lytle's new career
rushing r e c o r d (3,250 yards

m ne ana tme agan,nos W,." .a r a
telling of this tale has kept
the reader in suspense but left
him flat.
But this season, Schembech-sto
ler rebounded from early me-
diocrity \with a surprise end-
ing to rival any of 0. Henry's.
In restrospect, the mundane w
events of the story's first half
served to set up the explosive
excitement which characterized
the latter portion. And once
again, Bo's old hands played a"
decisive role in the telling.
There was the defense, shut-
ting out the Buckeyes for the
first time since 1964. There was
Lytle, carrying the Michigan
offense with 165 yards and a
touchdown. There was Smith, .J
running wild on punt returns
and forcing exploitable defen-
sive overshifts.
And Bo even revived Russell
Davis, a Dickensian h i d d e n
thread inning throtgh the oar
rative, to grab two touchdowns'
worth of glory.
So Bo pulled it off at last andat
is still receiving the accolades .-..
he so richly deserves. Of comase,
his characters and co-writers a a.ia auan y
and editors deserve much of the Daily Photo by ANDY FREEBERG
NIKE Leather
PI acs jr n AH kwI
All Televised U-M Athletic Events
and: * Monday Night Network Sports Broadcasts
* Weekend Afternoon Broadcasts
In Vibrant Color on our 7' Advent TV
EAT, DRINK and ENJOY at the
611 CHURCH ST. (atS. University) 995-5955
"a. nrC- f



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