-Wednesday, March 26, 1980-The Michigan Daily
THE SEARCH IS ON
Orr 's gone, who's next?
(Continued from Page 1)
SOURCES WITHIN the Athletic
Department said that Frieder and Jim
Dutcher, a former Michigan assistant
and current head coach at Minnesota,
are the two leading candidates for the
"Bill (Frieder) has been our
assistant here during our best period of
basketball success," said Canham, "so
he's got to be in the top three." Frieder
joined the coaching staff in 1973 after a
highly successful career as head coach
at Northern High School in Flint.
Orr Frieder, in Washington attending an
all-star game featuring the nation's top
... greener pastures high school players, said he met with
Reading and Discussion
by Ohio Poet and founder of
Hiram Poetry Review
Author: WA TERCOLORS
Canham Monday morning after Orr
had decided to accept the ISU offer.
"HE (CANHAM) has indicated to me
that I'm a serious candidate for the
job," said Frieder, from his Twin
Bridges, Maryland hotel room.
"The thing I'm most concerned about
whenever I hire a coach, is that the
coach be familiar with the Big Ten and
the Midwest," said Canham. "That was
the major thing I had in mind when I
hired Bo (Schembechler).
"He (the selected coach) must know
the Big Ten. And he must have an idea
of what the University of Michigan
stands for." Canham said.
Canham added that Orr's
replacement would be named "within a
week to ten days." So that further
recruiting efforts are not impaired.
Michigan is currently pursuing two
high school All-americans -6-10% cen-
ter Tim McCormickof Clarkston, and 6-
4 guard Derek Harper of Palm Beach,
Florida. Both players appeared in the
Washington all-star game.
"WHEN YOU'RE working on just
two or three people, you're not going to
get hurt if you appoint a coach soon,
like in a week or two," said Canham.
When asked about the possible effects
of Orr's decision upon current
recruiting efforts, Frieder said, "I
don't think this is going to affect
recruiting at all."
Orr came within 20 minutes of win-
ning his first national championship
when his 1976 team met undefeated and
top-ranked Indiana in the finals of the
NCAA tourney.The Wolverines had
coasted to a 36-28 halftime lead, but the
taller Indiana squad roared back in the
second half to win, 86-68.
ON TWO OTHER occasions, in 1974
and 1977, Orr took Michigan to the tour-
nament's regional finale before it
bowed out of the tournament. Only two
weeks ago, the Wolverines were
eliminated by Virginia in the quarter-
final round of the NIT.
A three-time All-American at tiny
Beloit College, Orr began his collegiate
coaching career in 1959, when he joined
John Erickson's staff at Wisconsin.
Four years later, he assumed the head
coaching position at Massachusetts,
where he posted a 39-33 record in three
seasons. He joined the Michigan
coaching staff in 1967, serving as an
assistant to head coach Dave Strack.
When Strack resigned one year later to
take the athletic directorship at
Arizona, Orr was named to replace
Orr's teams have had the best overall
Big Ten record during the past ten
years. He was named the conference's
Coach of the Year in 1974 and 1977,
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Orr's resignation a.
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By SCOTT M. LEWIS f
Johnny Orr's sudden decision to leave t
his head coaching post at Michigan H
came as a surprise to all. No one,b
however, was more shocked by Orr's,
move than the Michigan players them-G
Usually when a coach leaves a school, w
he meets with his team beforew
revealing his decision to the media. Orr
followed no such course. A few players
were informed of their coach's plans
through classmates who had read The i
Daily or had heard radio reports. y
Others were contacted by members ofh
the Athletic Department staff, which it-
self was left in the dark until Mondayb
Marty Bodnar, a junior guard, said,
"I had no idea that something like thisr
would occur. On Monday, (my brother)h
Mark and I went down to meet with him t
and (assistant coach Bill) Frieder said a
that Coach Orr was busy. Fifteen .
minutes later, Orr walked in, so I knew a
he was in the building. It struck me as
sort of funny that he would do that. I
knew that something was up. But I ,
never thought it was this."
Bodnar does not believe Michigan's
recruiting efforts will be seriously o
hampered by the change in coaches. "A 0
lot depends on the recruit himself," hei
"I feel it comes down to whether thee
recruit is coming to the school becauset
of the coach, or because of the program P
and the school. I believe the school it-
self is most important. No, I don't thinka
(his departure) will have much of an ef-H
fect on the recruiting."
Bodnar's words seem to contain0
much truth, as it was business as usual
(for the recruiting corps. At the same
time Orr was being named head coach f
at Iowa State, Frieder was taking in the
Capital Cage Classic, a high school
tournament in Washington, D.C. which y
eatures the nation's top talent. Among
he participants are 6-10 Clarkston
standout Tim McCormick and.Derek
Harper of Florida, both highly coveted
Energetic sophomore forward Thad
Garner echoed Bodnar's surprise. "We
were still uninformed when the news
was released to the public," he said. "I
would say it kind of shocked me."
Garner reflected upon his first
meeting with Orr in his native Ham-
nond, Ind. "When I first met him, he
mpressed me as a Ray Meyer type,
you know, a really nice guy,"
he recalled. "And he still is. He's
especially, helpful to us outside of
Despite the initial feeling of surprise,
Garner said he can understand Orr's
move. "Everybody has to look out for
himself, and from what I hear, he got a
remendous offer," he said. "There's
also the possibility that he'll become
athletic director there. It's a good op-
portunity for him."
Speculating on the possibility of
Frieder assuming Orr's job, Garner
said, "There would be one or two
changes made. Everyone has his own
strategies which he has to develop. He
operates in basically the same way (as
Orr). Coach Orr had a lot of confidence
Freshmen Ike Person and Joe James
expressed both surprise and disappoir.-
tment. "I'm sorry that he left," said
Person. "We're going to have to forget
about it. We'll do what we have to do.
"He's a good coach, he's a nice guy.
He knows his game," Person aded.
James seemed personally hurt by
Orr's whirlwind action. "It came as a
surprise," he said. "I thought he was
going to stay here five more years and
inish out his contract."
But today, Michigan basketball's 12-
year Era of Orr is no more.
Johnny Orr takes a familiar pose - in conflict with referees. During his
twelve years as University of Michigan head basketball coach, Orr had more
than his share of run-ins with the zebras. Orr is leaving the University for the
head coaching job at Iowa State University.
/ full court
.. ,finally receives his due
By MARK MIHANOVIC
Just five months ago, I sat in Johnny Orr's office and listened as he
discussed the rigors of coaching basketball at the University of Michigan.
He repeatedly defended his past record, casting a glance time and again
at the dozens of trophies and awards tl)at adorned the room to drive home his
He lamented the "filthy business" of recruiting that major college
coaches were forced to engage in to remain competitive. "This is what I
have to deal with!" Orr exclaimed as he displayed a brochure with pictures
of the plush penthouses that Kentucky provide to its hoopsters before the
NCAA watchdogs put a stop to it.
He expressed befuddlement as to why he garnered much more respect
from sports writers in other areas of the country than he did from area
scribes such as Joe Falls.
And he wondered how good his 1979-80 team could be, what with the
minimal size, experience, and talent that he had to work with.
I was amazed at his apparent insecurity. Here was a man who had twice
been named the Big Ten Coach of the Year, a man who has twice received
national Coach of the Year honors, a man who had won two Big Ten titles and
came up one game short in a quest for the NCAA prize, a man whose 11-year
record at Michigan was 192-100. And he seemed to be trying to convince three
Michigan Daily reporters that he was a good basketball coach.
Orr convinced a lot of people of that fact this past season. Writers were
calling it his best coaching job. Fans started cheering when P.A. announcer
Howard King bellowed, "Michigan is coached by ... Johnny Orr ...
But the most important impression Orr made was on Iowa State Athletic
Director Lou McCullough, who was convinced enough to make Orr the offer
of his life, one'that he couldn't turn his back on. It's an offer that will make
the former dean of Big Ten coaches one of, if not the, highest paid college
coaches in the land. It's also an offer that Michigan's own A.D., Don
Canham, would never have matched.
He had to go
Orr's salary and fringe benefits at Iowa State more than triples his
yearly pay at Michigan of $33,665. There will be those who will criticize Orr
as a greedy opportunist who left Michigan in a lurch in the middle of
recruiting season. "His heart should be Blue, not gold," the self-righteous
But think about it. He has tripled his income. He has done what 99 per
cent of the red-blooded American populace would do in the same situation:
provide themselves and their families with a degree of economic security
during a time period in which that concept is becoming more rare by the
"But what about loyalty?" they will cry.
Loyalty is a two-way street. Nobody would have been worried about
loyalty to the coach and his family had those who were calling for his scalp
one year ago gotten their way. When one who has been as successful as Orr
perpetually finds his head on the chopping block, it becomes obvious that the
men in the coaching profession have to make it while they can.
Had Canham made a respectable counter offer, the loyalists might have
an argument. But how loyal is Canham being to Johnny Orr, the man and the
close friend, when he compensates hm on a level so much lower than that
which his free market value dicatates?
It's free enterprise, baby. The American way. Good luck to you, Johnny,
and spend in good health.
Frieder a good bet
As for the future of Michigan basketball, well, life goes on. Orr's seven-
year assistant, Bill Frieder, is a good bet to assume the reins, although
Canham wouldn't commit himself yesterday and said that two or three
others are under consideration.
As one might expect, the recruiting of Tim McCormick and Derek
Harper have become precarious propositions with Orr's departure, although
Frieder denied as much last night from a hotel room in Washington, D.C.,
where the duo and a host of others are competing in the Capital Cage Classic.
A reporter from the Palm Beach Post in Harper's home state of Florida
predicted that the coaching might give the All-America guard just the
impetus he needs to hook up with Florida's new coach, Norm Sloan.
On the other hand, McCormick has 'more or less been Frieder's recruit
all along, and if Frieder lands the jobthe Wolverines' chances to nab the 6-
10 center from Clarkston H.S. haven't been hurt all that much.
Meanwhile, there's a new guy taking over at Iowa State who has a lot of
work to do with a club that finished 5-9 and seventh in the Big Eight.
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