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April 02, 1981 - Image 11

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1981-04-02

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The Michigan Daily-Thursday, April 2, 1981 -Page 1 i


gridders battle

for starting berths

Quarterback, left offensive guard, cen-
ter, wide receiver, inside linebacker,
outside linebacker, and defensive
tackle needed for the Michigan football
team. Previous experience necessary.
Fringe benefits include: national ex-
posure, travel to various midwestern
cities during the fall months and warm
ilnate on Jan. 1 of most years. Step-
piIg-stone to high-salary, structured
A number of players are currently
vying for these positions, as Bo Schem-
bechler is conducting interviews during
spying football practice. Of particular
intportance to the coach is the search
for players to fill the openings on the
defensive side of the line.
"The key to our success once again is
lat -the defense does," said Schem-
Wichler. "If the defense plays well,
we'll be okay. Even though we finished
with a flurry last year defensively,

three key guys are gone, (taking with
them) leadership, two great
linebackers and the best defensive
lineman we had. That's tough."
OPTING FOR THE two openings left
vacant by the graduation of Andy Can-
navino and Mel Owens are: Jim Her-
mann, Mike Lemirande, Rodney Lyles,
$en Needham and Carlton Rose.
Needham returns after a one-year
suspension only to find that his old
position no longer awaits him.
"We've moved Needham around a lit-
tle bit," said Schembechler. "He
played outside, and we moved him in-
side to see what he can do in there.
Needham's had a real good spring."
In the absence of the departed Mike
Trgovac, the two defensive tackle slots
should be manned by Cedric Coles and
Winf red Carraway. Coles and
Carraway split time at the tackle spot
opposite Trgovac during the latter two-
thirds of the season. Another defensive
tackle for the Wolverines is Tony
Osbun, who was moved from the offen-
sive line. However, his status on defen-

se is currently uncertain.
"WE MOVED TONY Osbun over the
defensive tackle, and I'm not sure I'll
leave him there," said Schembechler.
"If he comes back to offense, he'll be
the swing tackle."
Schembechler predicted that any in-
coming recruits who will make a con-
tribution next season will do so on
defense. "The one place where fresh-
men could help would be, particularly,
the defensive front and inside
linebacker. If we can get one or two
guys to be backup players there, that
would help us."
The big question on offense, for the
second year in a row, is that of who will
line up behind center to lead the
Wolverine attack. The leading conten-
ders are Steve Smith and Rich Hewlett,
although Schembechler said that he has
not narrowed the quarterback job down
to these two. The Wolverine mentor
added that he also "likes" David Hall
and Greg Powell. B.J. Dickey is also
back, after missing a year because of
his suspension, and has been "doing a

good job," according to Schembechler.
BATTLING FOR the vacant widev
receiver starting berth are Vince Bean,
Fred Brockington and Kenny Gear.
None of these three will provide .the
Wolverines with much experience
though, as they combined for only five
catches and 91 yards last season.
The most heated race for a starting
spot is underway at left guard, accor-
ding to Schembechler. The two players
embroiled in this battle are Stefan
Humphries and Rich Strenger.
The center position has been an in-
jury-plagued one thus far, as Jeff
Felten was banged up on Tuesday to
leave the Wolverines with only one cen-
ter (Tom Dixon). Another injured cen-
ter, Tom Garrity, is recovering from
knee surgery.
"TOM DIXON has looked good at
center as a sophomore," said Schem-
bechler. "I think he's going to be a good
football player, but I'm not conceding it
(the starting job). Felten's still in the
picture, and so is Garrity when he
comes back in the fall."
The center position is not the only one
where injuries have taken their toll. On
offense, Lawrence Ricks sprained his
ankle and Anthony Carter had a pulled
muscle in his thigh. A plethora of in-
juries has beset the Michigan secon-
dary, as three members have gone
down. Tony Jackson sprained an ankle,
Marion Body has been out of several
practices as a result of being banged
up, and Harry Gosier required surgery
for a knee injury. However, Michigan
has regained the services of one defen-
sive back, Stu Harris, back from his
knee injury.
Although the Wolverines have been
hampered by these hurts, they have not

been bothered by bad weather con-
ditions because of their new indoor
practice facilities.
"IT'S HELPED A lot," said Schem-
bechler. "Of the 10 practices thus far,
six have been indoors. That's how much
it's helped. We are never going to post-
pone a practice, and that helps."
Although the occurrence of practice
can now be considered predictable, the
same cannot always be said of the
status of players.

"I can say that there's a good chance
that Kurt Becker will be starting right
guard and be safe, and there are other
positions that would be like that," said
Schembechler. "But then there are
some where I could say this guy is star-
ting here at the end of the spring, and
that could change. Who would have
guessed that we'd play a freshman
(Jeff Shaw) at middle guard last year?
But I wouldn't bet my wallet that he'll
be the middle guard this year."

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'The key to our success on-
ce again is what the defense
does. If the defense plays well,
we'll be okay. Even though we
finished with a flurry last year
defensively, three key guys are
gone, (taking with them)
leadership, two great line-
backers and the best defensive
lineman we had. That's

Four Wolverine gymnasts to vie

tough. '

for national honors

There is no greater accomplishment
for a college athlete than to win a
national championship. Tonight
through Saturday afternoon, four
members of the Michigan men's gym-
nastics team will attempt to do just that
ats the NCAA Gymnastics champion-
ships in Lincoln, Nebraska.
The four Wolverine gymnasts,
Darrell Yee, John Rieckhoff, Marshall
arfield, and Kevin McKee qualified
r the tournament by finishing among
the. top eight performers in their
respective events in the Mideast
region and now represent the Maize-
and-Blue among the elite of college
Loken, this will be his 43rd national
championship meet, but he says that it
still has all the excitement of his first
,ie. "I'm very excited to get out there
nd see the guys in action," he said.
"The best talent in the country will be
there. It should be a great meet, and
I'm- really looking forward to being
Loken, in his usual manner, refrained
from making any predictions on the
outcome of the tournament but did in-
dicate that his gymnasts are ready.
"All four of the guys are healthy and
rarin' to go," he said. "They're eager,
hungry and want to do well. They've
*een working very hard for this and
would like to make a strong showing,
but they realize that they are up against
the best. There will be 80 competitors in
every event, all trying to reach the
finals - and only the top eight will
make it."
WHILE ALL FOUR gymnasts could

conceivably reach the finals com-
petition, the one Wolverine to watch is
team captain Darrell Yee on the still
rings, an event that he has dominated in
the Big Ten for the last three years.
' Yee performed in the NCAA tour-
nament last year, and Loken thinks that
the experience could prove beneficial
for his star performer. "Darrell has the
experience, and this should help keep
him calmer. This tournament is very
nerve-wracking for the gymnast, and
experience is always helpful," he said.
Yee agreed with his mentor, saying
that participating in the tournament
last season is a plus for him. "It'll be in
the same gym and with the same at-
mosphere as last year, and now I've
experienced it," he said.
"Also, I know what I did wrong last
year, so now I can improve on it. I'm
pretty psyched and feel that I'm both
mentally and physically prepared.
This is a big meet for me - my last one
- and I want to do well."
MICHIGAN'S OTHER gymnast with
previous NCAA tournament experience
is McKee, who finished ninth last year
in the floor exercise, barely missing the
finals. This time, McKee enters the
tournament ranked first in the floor
exercise in the Mideast region and can
also be expected to make a strong
Garfield, who qualified on the
parallel bars, makes his first trip to the
national tournament. He looks at
pressure as a positive factor, rather
than a negative one.
"Hopefully, the pressure will affect
me for the better," he said. "Because it
is such an intense meet, I hope it will
really get me keyed up.

rong elite
"I'm feeling pretty good about going.
I'm very enthusiastic but regret that
I'm not going as an all-arounder. Still, I
am excited."
The fourth Wolverine, pommel horse
specialist Reickhoff, has turned in
many strong performances this season
and could be the dark horse of the
Michigan group.
The tournament begins tonight with
the compulsory routines and continues
tomorrow night with the optional
routines. The top eight performers in
each event will then qualify for the
finals and a shot at a national cham-
pionship on Saturday afternoon.

-Bo Schembechler

Please return your survey response
as soon as possible.


. Gymnast Beckwith
qualifies for nationals

Michigan freshman Kathy Beckwith
will be the first gymnast ever to
represent the Wolverines in national
competition when she performs at the
AIAW championships in Salt Lake City
n April10 and 11.
Beckwith, with a season average of
35.75 in the all-around event, goes into
the competition ranked fourth among 24
individuals and 16 teams.
exuberant over the team's fine perfor-
mance at last weekend's MAIAW
regional championships, was notified
Monday of Beckwith's qualification.
Hyatt had confidence in Beckwith,
ut was not sure how many of the 24 at-
large bids would be extended to gym-
nasts also qualifying with their teams.
In the week ahead Hyatt will take
° Beckwith to a private gymnastics club
in Ann Arbor to train on the, same type
of equipment that will be used next
weekend in Utah at the national com-
By the Associated Press
The California Angels traded
slugging first baseman Jason Thom-

pson and picked up veteran right-
handed pitcher Ken Forsch in separate
deals yesterday, the final day of the in-
terleague trading deadline.
Kuhn vetoes trade
NEW YORK (AP) - A spokesman
for baseball Commissioner Bowie Kuhn
said last night two Pittsburgh Pirates
trades - in which Jason Thompson
went from the California Angels to the
New York Yankees - have been at
least temporarily blocked.

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