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December 07, 1975 - Image 12

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1975-12-07

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Page Four
total oul
Who would have believed it? Downin
Who would have predicted at were th
this time three months ago that for eve
the Wolverine offense would be came 1
as potent as it currently is? Who tion's t
would have believed that Mich- Mike
igan minus Dennis Franklin, Gil quick t
Chapman, Dennis Franks, Chuck his leg
Heater, Kirk Lewis, Rick White, game.
and Greg DenBoer would top Traber
last year's total offense figure in Sept
by over 50 yards per game? tion up
Certainly not I, and certainly Bo's sh
not Bo. Before the season, it freshme
was uncertain who would fill Mark S
these holes, and HOLES they plays.
were. The offensive line was the Perha
biggest question m a r k with surprise
Lewis, all-Big Ten tackle Steve was M
King, Greg Bartnick, Jim Hall Everyo
and Gerry Szara all injured. Gordon
SENIOR CENTER Jim Czirr a chanc
Ro -c r
We cook ours slowli
on South Univej
Don't Get FroE
Classes. 'lUll f
Away From the
Leases Ava ilab



Sunday, December 7. 1975

. _ _r ... , c;i


in offense jelled quickly


tput better than last year

phomores Bill Dufek, Walt
g and Mark Donahue
he only linemen available
ery game-and they be-
the nucleus for the na-
op rushing offense.
Kenn ably filled the
ackle spot, but fractured
prior to the Ohio State
Starting tight end Pete
withdrew from the team
ember, leaving the posi-
for grabs. It was used as
uttle spot with a pair of
en, Gene Johnson and
chmerge, bringing in the
aps the most pleasant
e in Ann Arbor this fall
i c h i g a n' s backfield.
ne knew Rob Lytle and
Bell were excellent tail-
but Lytle was not getting
ce to prove his real worth'

last year. Bo got them both into
action by moving Rob to full-
back-and what a move it was!
Ltyle gained 998 yards in 183
carries this year, an average of
5.5 per jaunt. He scored ten
touchdowns, the second on the
team only to the nation's lead-
ing percentage passer, Gordon
GORDIE BELL is nothing
short of sensational. If the re-
cent Ohio State game didn't con-
vince you of whom the best run-
ning back in the Big Ten really
is ,then either you're crazy, or
your last name is Griffin.
Bell's season statistics are as
follows: 1335 yards in 255 at-
tempts for an average gain of
5.4 yards per carry and 121.4
per contest.
The 5-9, 178 lb. senior from

comes out
g like a roast.

./ !

rly because we think you're worth it.
erst - J l a B
- --a
st Bite on the Way to
Towers Is Only Minutes
e Diag. 4 Month Winter
sitf Lrg

Troy, Ohio scored 13 touchdowns
and passed for one more. He
returned punts and kickoffs and
caught six passes while serving
as Michigan's captain. It's rum-
ored that he even served the
Gatorade at halftime, but that's
the only stat that hasn't been
For a change of pace, Bo
would let wingback Jim Smith
get in on the action. Smith,
probably the team's best ath-
lete, caught 24 passes this year,
averaging 23 yards per recep-
tion. He ran the reverse with
great success gaining 219 yards
in 26 carries, including a 77 yard
touchodwn s p r i n t against In-
Completing the backfield has
been freshman quarterback Rick
Leach. Leach had his ups and
downs this year, but towards the
end of the seaso} developed in-
to a poised team leader. Mark
SElzinga saw limited action as
ILeach's able back-up.
WHILE THE Wolverine pass-
ing attack was far from spec-
tacular, Bo went to the air more
often than in the past. The
team advanced 791 yards
through the air, with Keith John-
son accounting for most of those
aerials not caught by Smith or
Bell, but Bo is characteristical-
ly a rushing offense coach.
"There are three things that
can happen when you throw the
football," Schembechlr quip-
By now, Wolverine fans have
been thoroughly familiarized
with the notion that Michigan
football is synonomous with sol-
id defensive play. And some-
where along the way, the super-.
latives have become so mundane
from overuse that Roget's The-
saurus no longer serves its pur-
Nonetheless, a little enumer-
ation is necessary.
The Wolverines finished the
Big Ten season with clear mar-
gins over arch-rival Ohio State
in total defensive yardage yield-
ing 215.5 to 247.0 and 115.5 to
156.1 in rushing defense, for the
premiere conference rankings.
THEY ALSO placed five play-
ers on the All-Big Ten first
team and one player on the sec-
ond. One of those selections, co-.
captain and wolfman Don Du-
fek, was named All-American
by the American Football
Coaches Association.
The only apparent weakness,
in fact, is in the secondary.
Here Michigan bucked the odds
of that venerable axiom that
"three things can happen when
you pass, and two of them are
bad," by giving up an average
of 100 yards per contest, rank-
ing it seventh in the conference.
But now that the aroma of

ped. "And two of them are
So Bo had to rely upon Leach
to run his ground game, and
produce touchdowns. And the
result was production Henry
Ford would have been proud of.
The Wolverines ground up 3669
yards on turf, an average of
over 333 in each contest.
In leading the country, Mich-
igan out-rushed opponents by
2346 yards, almost 3 to 1. And
that includes OSU, Missouri,
Baylor and Wisconsin, all sup-
posedly with fine ground games.
THE ONE area where Mich-
igan lapsed cost them a perfect
season (among other things).
This Michigan team committed
far too many mistakes to be
champions. Leach threw ten in-
terceptions, compared to Frank-
lin's 1974 total of four. The team
fumbled 26 times, losing posses-
sion on 19 occasions - almost
twice a game.
Schembechier stresses the im-
portance of not committing what
he calls "the big mistakes."
When the Wolverines meet Okla-
homa on New Yeear's Day, the
offense, led by Gordon Bell,
Rob Lytle and Jim Smith and
the powerful front line, must
prevent these errors. If it does,
and the defense does its custom-
ary superior job, then Bo will
come home with fond memories
of more than one Miami.

WOLVERINE defensive backs Dwight Hicks (17) and Jim Bolden (22) sandwich bullish Pete!
Johnson of Ohio State in the annual cash for the Big Ten championship. The only apparent
weakness in Michigan's stingy defense is in th! secondary as it yielded 100 yards per game
this season. Although Oklahoma seldom pass s, they have capable receivers led by Tinker

t adit on:.
sweet roses has been relegated, But if Oklahoma decides to pass an
to a nostalgic pipedream, and Michigan may be in trouble. se
the oranges are looking juicier fac
and more tantalizing, the Wol- WHILE THE secondary, com- To
verine defense's greatest con- posed of safety Dwight Hicks Co
cern, is stopping the run not and halfbacks Jim Pickens, a sa
the pass. second team All-Big Ten choice, ga
and Jim Bolden, is vastly im- air
AND THE Oklahoma Sooners proved, it still has its problems.
provide a unique challenge with After two ties with Stanford dai
their precision Wishbone of-
The last time Michigan faced
a wishbone was in 1972 when
they squared off with UCLA and
'then against Michigan State
when Duffy Daugherty used it.
But Oklahoma's rendition of the
multiple option attack is prob-
ably the most refined and ex-
plosive in recent years.
"You can only defense the for-
mation in so many ways," mus-rt
ed Michigan coach Bo Schem- '
bechler, "and I think they (Ok-
lahoma) have seen themall.
Oklahoma knows how to adjust
to them, knows how to read
them and we've got an awful
lot of research to do in that
"We have to come up with
what we think we can do best
for our type of defense to adjust
to the wishbone attack," he add-


d Baylor, 'the aerial defense
emed to tighten up, but when
ced with accurate passers like
ny Dungy of Minnesota and
rny Green of OSU, it was the
me story retold; Michigan
ve up crucial yardage via the
r in both contests.
Overall, the defensive secon-
ry has picked off 11 passes

with Dufek, Devich and Pickens
intercepting two each, and has
broken up 29 others.
So unless Oklahoma can pick
a p a r t Michigan's secondary
when its running game stalls,
Barry Switzer's statement may
be correct. After all, Michigan's
5-2 alignment is called the Okla-
homa defense.

SO THE likes of All-Confer-
ence players Dufek, middle-
guard Tim Davis, end Dan Jil-
ek, tackle Greg Morton, middle-
linebacker Calvin O'Neal and{
their supporting cast, have their
work cut out.
O'Neal, a junior from Sagi-
naw, leads the squad in tackles,
having mauled opposing runners
134 times; 85 of them solo hits.
Linebacker Dave Devich from
Island, Indiana, is next with 130
tackles and Morton follows with
Although Dufek ranks only
seventh in knocking down offen-
sive backs and receivers, the
Ann Arbor native has corraled
three fumbles, has snared two
aerials, and batted down four
others. His aggressive play and
leadership have guided the Wol-
verines all year.
According to Sooner coach
Bar'ry Switzer, Michigan is best
equipped to defense his running
game, and that could be true.





Doily Photo by SCOTT ECCKER
FRESHMAN quarterback Rick Leach flips the pigskin out to Michigan's premiere tailback,
Gordon -Bell in the Wolverine's 62-0 rout of Nothwestern. Bell, named All-Big Ten this year,
scampered for 1,335 yards on 255 carries elevating him to number two on Michigan's all-time
rushing chart. Bell, Leach, Jim Smith and Ro) Lytle lead the Wolverines rushing attack-
one of the best in the nation.



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