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January 22, 1981 - Image 7

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Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1981-01-22

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/

SPORTS

e Michigan Daily
First
dyear
cage r
adjusting
to Big Ten

Thursday, January 22, 1981

Page 7

By JON MORELAND
Among the illustrious group of Big Ten cen-
ters-Russell Cross, Randy Breuer, Ray Tolbert, and
Steve Krafsicin-that Tim McCormick has faced
through the first four games, of the conference
season, he has yet to find a pushover. And he won't, at
least for another week, as Illinois' Derek Holcomb
and Ohio State's Herb Williams present further
challenges to the highly-touted freshman.
McCormick is in the process of learning the ways
of the Big Ten basketball world from these less-than-
amiable instructors. But in his role as a backup to
starting center Paul Heuerman, the 6-11 McCormick
couldn't have found a more talented collection of non-
professional teachers.
As the Clarkston native readily admits, "The Big
Ten is so much more physical than the games I
played in high school.
"Last year I'd watch those guys almost in awe, and
now I'm playing against them," he added.
It is the foremost adjustment that McCormick has
had to face since he left Clarkston High School for a
big-time basketball battleground. He noted that his
opponents in prep circles weren't exactly the caliber
of player McCormick is quickly getting used to.

"It was pretty rare when I'd face someone that big
and strong," said McCormick. "Now it seems like
everyone we playhas guys that size."
While the size and talent of his current foes have
served as an indoctrination to the rigors of conferen-
ce play, McCormick has nonetheless managed to
come a long way as a player since his Wolves were
defeated in the semifinals of the state Class A tour-
nament last March.
McCormick and Heuerman spent long hours over
the summer running, lifting weights, and con-
ditioning for the season that awaited them. Heuer-
man also showed the freshman a move or two on the
basketball court.
"He (Heuerman) is so good at using his height,"
said McCormick of the 6-8 pivotman. He's helped me
on both offense and defense."
The next phase of McCormick's preparation was
the beginning of the Wolverines' formal practice
sessions. First-year coach Bill Frieder ran his troops
hare .r than his predecessor, Johnny Orr, had. Even
-, veterans were pushed to the limits. And McCor-
mick's knees were temporarily pushed beyond their
limit; the physical toll absorbed by windsprints and
fast break drills forced him out of a few days of pre-
season workouts.

But when phase three of preparation-the noncon-
ference games-rolled around, McCormick was
ready. He used these contests as a way of gradually
easing into the "big game" situations he would soon
encounter.
"(The nonconference games) helped me a lot," he
said. "It would have been too big of a jump for me to
go right from school into the Big Ten., It was better to
have a gradual buildup of competition."
The buildup reached a peak in Michigan's second
conference game. Heuerman found himself in early
foul trouble and McCormick was called upon to con-
front Minnesota's huge front line, which included the
7-2 Breuer. In 40 minutes of play, McCormick "turned
into the type of player we've been waiting for," ac-
cording to Frieder.
"I knew I could do it," said McCormick of his 13-
point, seven-rebound performance (Breuer mustered
only six points in the game). "But I was glad I had the
opportunity to prove myself to the coaches and
everyone involved with Michigan basketball."
. Such improvement, of course, could carry the
Wolverines closer to the upper echelon of the Big Ten
and into the NCAA tournament-just one more step
up the competitive ladder.

McCormick
... learning quickly

MICHIGAN FACES NOTORIOUS FRONTCOUR T DUO:

"rCagers, Illinois set for shootout
. TL1n.t'a y Ui 1 1Id L1I' U1l LU

Cager's Corner

"ef

By MARK FISCHER
Keep your eyes open, folks, because
tonight the most dangerous front court
duo of Big Ten hoopdom - alias Smith
and Johnson - is coming to town, and
the mob from Illinois is backing them
up.
Wanted in at least seven Midwestern
states on miscellaneous counts of
deadly shooting, assaulting the boards,
ball stealing and conspiracy to beat the
other team, the 6-8 pair of seniors
lmost always work together.
BOTH ARE ARMED with scoring
-guns, and should be considered ex-
tremely hazardous to opposing teams.
The muscular, board-crashing Johnson
Ex M
By RON POLLACK,
He was a reaI plaver here and captain of

(a.k.a. Eddie) is the big gunner this
season with a 17.8 scoring average so
far, while the smooth ballhandling
Smith (a.k.a. Mark, 15.2 ppg. 55 per
cent from the floor) provides the shar-
pshooting.
The two can be recognized by the
numbered, orange and blue "Fighting
Illini" tank tops that they always wear
when they do their dirty work. If spot-
ted, report to Michigan sheriff Bill
Frieder.
You see, Coach Frieder and his
Wolverine cagers will be in charge of
corralling these two "bad" boys and
their mob when Michigan takes the
floor against Illinois this evening at
Crisler Aerna.

CORRALLING THE 11-2 Illini is no
easy task,, however. The 15th. ranked
Illinois hoopsters, currently tied for fir-
st in the Big Ten with a 3-1 conference
mark, are coming off two strong home
victories over Minnesota (80-76) and
Purdue (87-65), with their only loss at
Indiana.
The Illini lead the league in offense by
a significant margin, and, as Frieder
said, "they like to run and put it up.
They're not patient. They put it up and
go strong on the boards."
With forwards like Smith and John-
son, and interchangeable centers like 6-
11 defensive specialist Derek "the In-
credible Holc" Holcomb (6.7 ppg) and
6-10 James Griffin (9.5 ppg), Illinois

_egrainy aes nave the ability co" go
strong on the boards."
BUT UNTIL ILLINOIS coach Lou
Henson snagged freshman guard Derek
Harper from the clutches of Michigan
recruiters, the Illini had a little trouble
running. The 6-4 Harper (8.2 ppg) gives
them the quickness they need to im-
plement that part of their game and,
along with 6-1 junior college transfer
Craig Tucker (11.8 ppg) and 6-4 junior
Perry Range (7.6 ppg), helps to make
up an excellent backcourt trio.
"They've been playing extremely
well," said Frieder of the visiting Illini.
"We're not going to be able to run with
them because they're so talented and
they're also so very big."

MICHIGAN (11-2, 2-2) ILLINOIS (11-2. 3-1)
40--Mike McGee, 6-5 Sr. (22.5) F 42-Mark Smith, 6-8 Sr. (15.2)
45-Thad Garner, 6.7 Jr. (8.9) F 33-Eddie Johnson,6-8 Sr. (17.8)
15-P. Heuerman, 6-8 Sr. (8.2) C 13-James Griffin, 6-10 Jr. (9.5)
34-J. Johnson, 6-4 Sr. (15.0) G 22-Perry Range,6-4 Jr. (7.6)
24-Marty Bodnar, 6.3 Sr. (6.2) G 12-Derek Harper,6-4 Fr. (8.2)
GAME TIME: 8:05 p.m., Crisler Arena.
Tv/RADIO: WKBD-TV (Channel 50); Radio Stations WWJ-950. WAAM-1600, WPAG-1050,
WPAG-1050, WJJX-650, and WUOM-91.7 (FM)
EXPECTED CROWD: 13,000
TICKET AVAILABILITY: $5 tickets still on sale. For more information, call the Michigan
Athletic Ticket Department at 76440247.
THE ILLINI. . . enter tonight's game clinging to a share of the Big'Ten lead. Last year Illinois and
Michigan split their series, both teams winning at home. STRENGTHS: Lou Henson's forward
combination of Eddie Johnson and Mark Smith is, quite likely, the finest in the country.
Michigan's front line must contain the pair of 6-8 seniors.
WEAKNESSES: Inconsistent play from the pivot position, and erratic shooting, by Range and
Harper (who had an 0-10 afternoon from the field against Indiana a few weekends ago).

star Logan flying

ike an

f

the team. As great a player as he is, he's an
even greater person. He was the kind of guy
who on Friday nights (before games) when
you stopped by his room he would be reading
the Bible. '

voted to the Pro Bowl two years run-
ning and this Sunday will participate in,
pro football's most important game of
the year (Super Bowl XV) when he lines
up-as the Philadelphia Eagles' starting
strong-safety.
Although Logan is . now among the
upper echelon of defensive backs in the
NFL, there was a time when he did not
stalk opposing receivers. Upon
enrolling at Michigan, Logan was a
highly-touted tailback, but was moved
to the secondary in order to utilize his

talents which were not being put to use
while he was relegated to the bench
behind other more talented backs.
As Logan's level of success will at-
test, the decision to change his position
proved to be a wise one. "He's a
tremendous hitter. He was always a
195-200 pound player who was very fast.
He really blossomed when we moved
him to defensive back. He's deceptively
fast and a hard tackler. When he hits
you, you're hit," said Schembechler.
Following his senior year, Logan was
drafted in the third round by
Philadelphia, a team whose failures on
MUpdate
the playing field usually outnumbered
its successes. "I was full of joy that I
was drafted. When they told me I'd
been drafted in the third round, it was
-like the first round to me," said Logan.
"My main concern wasn't going to a
winning or losing team. My main con-
cern was just to contribute whatever I
could to win or upgrade the program."
Under head coach Dick Vermeil's
direction the Eagles have progressed
from league doormats to the point
where a victory over Oakland in the
Super Bowl will make them world

champions.
This possibility in mind, Logan had
these thoughts: "I'm just thankful that
the Lord allowed me to be here through
the lean years, and allowed me to be
here when we're at the cream of the
crop. It's a great feeling to be in the
Super Bowl regardless. But there's a
deeper feeling when you've gone
through the lean years and didn't get
there (the Super Bowl) right away. It's
a very humbling feeling and I'm
grateful to the Lord."
When Philadelphia encounters
Oakland, Logan believes that the
Eagles' secondary must "play con-
sistently and play our best within the
realm of the defense and have one of
our better games. I'll have to give my
best and get the job done. That's all you
can do is to give your best. You can't
give anything else if you've given your
all. If you don't get the job done, you're
only satifaction is to know you've given
your best."
Following the. Super Bowl, Logan will
be playing in the Pro Bowl, an honor of
which he is fully appreciative. "I'm just
thankful the Lord allowed me to stay
healthy and play the calibre of ball
which mirrored the attention of your
peers and coaches which vote for you to
play in the Pro Bowl. Once again I'm
thankful to the man upstairs. All credit
goes to him first," said Logan.
As is evident by this comment, Logan
is an extremely religious man. Outside
of football, some of Logan's-devout ac-
tivities include "evangelistic type

Eagle
work, spreading the Bible and learning
more of the Lord's work." In Logan's
life, "the Lord's work comes first."
Although Logan's talent on the
gridiron has given him tremendous
satisfaction, football has also been
fulfilling, offr the playing field. As a'
result o his being a footballdplayer,
Logan is looked up to by numerous
youths, a fact that gives him an oppor-
tunity to work with such individuals.
"One of the most satisfying things
outside of football is to help kids, to
have an opportunity to talk to them and
to lead them. This has been one of the
most gratifying parts of football," he
said.
The combination of Randy Logan's
athletic prowess and outside activities
makes him a credit to the NFL or as
Schembechler said, "Randy's the kind
of guy you know you can count on ...
He's just one of those guys you knew
was going to make it.

Correction
A story on synchronized swimmer
Ruth Pickett which appeared in yester-
day's Daily incorrectly stated that
Pickett had won the Broadrick Award
as the nation's most outstanding syn-
chronized swimmer. The award is ac-
tually entitled the Broderick Award.
The Daily regrets the error.
IN SCORES
MONDAY
Baskptball
Independent
Irradicators 38,8D.A.'s Office 36
Big Dogs 66. Old Gang 18
Superman & Co. 48, ASCE Basketeers 31
Duramaters 38, Wizards 33
M*A*S*H 36, A Bushmen 26
Nationwides60, Late Entry 42
Mad Cats 84. Wham Jammers 27'
Fraternity
.A,
Chi Phi 35, Theta Chi 20
Evans Scholars 29, Kappa Sigma 22

FORMER MICHIGAN GRID standout Randy Logan, shown here on the field
where he won his initial stardom, will be among the starting Philadelphia
Eagles in this Sunday's Super Bowl.

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