Page 16-Thursday, January 7, 1982--The Michigan Daily
Call them the "Old Men of the Big
Indeed, with the six-man recruiting
class of 1978--generally regarded as the
best class in the nation that year-now
seniors, the Golden Gophers of Mm-
nesota truly are the elder statesmen of
the Big Ten.
EVERYBODY RETURNS from last
year's 19-11 squad which advanced to
the quarter-finals of the NIT, with the
exception of rservte fITwardBen
Coleman, who transferred to another
Remaining intact is the entire star-
ting unit, with 6-4 senior Darryl Mit-
chell (8.9 pg) and 6-2 senior Mark Hall
(14.5 pp), who is academically
ineligible until the winter term begins
op hers tough .
"Right now I couldn't give you a star-
ting five until after we have played 10 or
12 games," Knight explains.
Knight's theory of using the pre-
season as a device for choosing a com-
patible five was proven successful last
season. During a rugged non-
conference season the Hoosiers took
their lumps with a 7-5 mark, but even-
tually went on to claim the title.
The Purdue Boilermakers, led by
second-year coach Gene Keady, return
three starters and seven lettermen
from last season's 21-11 squad which
finished fourth in the Big Ten and third
in the NIT.
The status of one of the top returning
starters is questionable, however.
Sophomore Russell Cross, who
averaged 16.9 points and 6.3 rebounds
per game last year and was the Big Ten
Rookie of the Year, has experienced
tenderness and swelling in his knee,
and may need surgery. Cross' injury
has caused Keady to become justifiably
cautious when assessing the Purdue
"IT'S (THE SEASON) on hold
because of Russell's status," he said,
"and we've moved people around to dif-
Keady isn't kidding when he says he
has moved people around. All three
returning regulars will be playing at a
different position than the one they
started at last year.
Keith Edmonson, a 6-5 starting for-
ward last year, will play at the guard
position. Edmonson was Purdue's
leading scorer last season (17.3 ppg)
but found himself at a height disadvan-
tage when trying to defend other Big
... 7-3 Gopher
in January, manning the guard
Co-captains Gary Holmes (8.2 ppg), a
6-10 senior and Trent Tucker (14.8 ppg),
a 6-5 senior from Flint, will once again
hold down the forward positions. Junior
center Randy Breuer, now 7-3 after
growing another inch in the offseason,
is the only underclassman in the star-
ting lineup and he returns as both the
Gophers' leading scorer and rebounder
with 15.2 and 5.5 averages per game
Top reserves for Minnesota include 6-
7 junior forward Zebedee Howell, 6-10
sophomore forward Jim Petersen 6-6
senior forward Andy Thompson
(brother of former Gopher great
Michael), and 6-9 senior forward John
If the Gophers can take advantage of
their tremendous size and wealth of ex-
... Iowa floor leader
Olson, "as good an all-around player as
there. is in college." Arnold was an
honorable mention all-Big Ten choice
last year, while averaging 11.7 points
OTHER RETURNING PLAYERS
who should contribute are guards Steve
Carfino, and Bob Hansen along with
forward Mark Gannon.
Iowa's other returning players are
forwards Craig Anderson and Jon Dar-
see, and guard Waymond King.
Despite the return of eight lettermen,
the Hawkeyes' success this year could
depend on a trio of newcomers. The
starting center for the Hawkeyes this
year will be prep All-American Michael
Payne who stands at 6-11 and 205 poun-
"PAYNE IS A good one, but he's a
forward playing center and staying
alive is his goal this year," said Olson.
The other two additions to the Iowa
squad that Olson expects to contribute
right away are 6-10 freshman Greg
Stokes and 6-9 junior college transfer
"We really need for Stokes or Den-
nard to come through, for us to be
anywhere near what people think we
can do," said Olson.
Like Michigan, Illinois has quickness
but rebounding remains the big
question for coach Lou Henson's squad.
As Henson noted, "it's pretty hard to
get your break going without the
IF THE ILLINI do get their reboun-
ds, their opponents could be in for a
tiring game. With a three-guard offense
of Perry Range, Craig Tucker and
Derek Harper, Henson finds himself
with perhaps the most speed in the con-
But after the loss to graduation of all-
time leading scorers Eddie Johnson
and Mark Smith, Illinois' Achilles heel
could be its frontline and depth.
"Depthwise we're very weak," Hen-
son said. "We're not counting on the
freshmen right now . . . they're still
playing like freshmen."
..Illini have the guards
IF THE FRESHMEN don't develop,
considerable pressure will be placed on
6-10 center James Griffin and 6-10 power
forward Bryan Leonard. Freshman
George Montgomery will be called on to
supply some added muscle up front for
Others off the bench include 6-2 Kevin
Bontemps, 5-11 Quinn Richardson, 6-7
Jay Daniels, and 6-7 Dan Klier.
Coming off a solid 21-8 year and an
NCAA berth, Henson is anxious for this
season. "On any given night we could
beat anybody, if we get our defense
going we'll do well," said the coach.
Range shared in his coach's op-
timism: "I definitely think we'll be a
Michigan State returns only two star-
ters from last year's squad, whichi
finished eighth in the conference 7-11,
13-14 overall), but Coach Jud Heath-
"cote has successfully recruited five
blue-chip recruits to pick up the slack.
Headlining the returnees is 6-2 senior
guard Kevin Smith, a playmaker who
notched 13.5 points and 130 assists last
season to earn him a spot on the all-Big
Ten second team. He is joined by fellow
returning starter Ben Tower, a 6-8
sophomore who was named the Spar-
tans' 1980-81 "most improved player."
6-2 high school All-American guard
Sam Vincent, brother of Dallas
Mavericxs' Jay,~ leads the newcomers,
whose ranks include a seven-foot
sophomore transfer, Kevin Willis.
"We could be a darkhorse contender
for tihe Big Ten titM," said:' Heathcote .
"We could. veryelwl « e as, taented as
x34.10 , .x .
Title is in the Cards
By BOB WOJNOWSKI
Hoyas, Hawkeyes and Shockers across the land are singing the praises
of tremendous freshmen crops, but look for a couple of old stalwarts to crash
their NCAA basketball championship parties.
Two years ago, the Cinderella rise of a young UCLA team was cut short
in the NCAA championship game by a Louisville squad led by veteran
Darrell Griffith. This season, the Cardinals return all five starters from last
year's 21-9 team which won 15 straight games before losing to Arkansas in
the NCAA Midwest semi-finals. Which bodes well for Louisville coach Denny
Crum and his band of slam-dunking demons, but means only a bad case of -
deja vu for the UCLA Bruins and their rookie head coach Larry Farmer.
The Cardinals and Bruins are arguably the most talented teams in the
nation this year, which never necessarily guarantees anything;but certainly
increases the likelihood of a rematch of the 1980 NCAA finale.
The cagey coaching of the Cardinals' Crum should be the boost that puts
Louisville over the top. UCLA is hampered by a bothersome investigation by
the NCAA into alleged recruiting improprieties, and by the umpteenth
rookie head coach trying to fill the shoes of the legendary John Wooden.
Louisville is led by senior guard Jerry Eaves, whose experience and
ball-handling expertise should nicely balance the rambunctious front line of
6-8 Wiley Brown, 6-6 Derek Smith, and 6-7 Rodney McCray. Add to this fear-
some foursome, returning starting guard Lancaster Gordon, top reserve
Scooter McCray, brother of Rodney, and two superb freshmen in 6-7 forward
Manuel Forrest and 6-5 guard Milt Wagner, and what you have is a basket-
ball team with sheer talent unequalled by anyone, except possibly the Bruins "
of UCLA. UCLA is led by potential All-American guard Rod
Foster and probably the deepest front line in the country.
The Bruins will be starting 7-foot
freshman Stuart Gray at center,
which enables 6-7 sophomore Kenny
Fields to move to power forward.
Fields will split time at the one for-
ward slot with 6-7 junior Cliff Pruitt,
while the other front court position
will be manned by 6-6 senior Mike
Sanders, the Bruins' leading scorer
of a year ago with a 15.4 ppg
average. In addition, the Bruins
have 6-7 junior swingman Darren
Daye and 6-3 junior guard Michael
4. North Carolina
5. Wichita State
The Michigan Daily-Thursday
g SPA CE GRM
FOUR F RE E TOK
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On those occasions that call for gre
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Choose from a broad selectio
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---- ---- -"~After last season's NCAA champion-
perience, they could very definitely be sht earod sthA A dyaspyons
the team to beat in the upcoming cam- ip it appeared that a dynasty was
paign. cropping up in Bloomington. But the
-BOB WOJNOWSKI loss of Isiah Thomas to the Detroit
Pistons and Landon Turner's unfor-
tunate car accident has forced Bobby
2 Io w a Knight to regroup his Hoosiers.
Indiana's main strength lies in its
Although the Iowa Hawkeyes backcourt combination of Randy Wit-
graduated their entire front line from tman and Jim Thomas. Wittman is
last season's '21-7 squad, condolences regarded by many as the premier
have not been pouring into Iowa City for perimeter shooter in the conference.
head coach Lute Olson. Thomas, meanwhile, surprised many
Despite the loss of Vince Brookins, with his solid play in last season's
Steve Krafoisin and Steve Waite, the NCAA tournament..
Hawkeyes return enough talent to WHILE THE backcourt is set, there
challenge for the Big Ten title. Six of are still some question marks up front.
Iowa's top nine players return in- 6-8 forwards Ted Kitchel and Steve
cluding first-team AP and UPI Bouchie appear to be the favorites for
swingman Kevin Boyle and guard Ken- the frontcourt while freshmen John
ny Arnold. Boyle averaged 10:'=poiht "Flowe s (6-10}4dn4Uwe Blab (7-2)',will
pr° aoe i yl &Ald is,'a'c ri ct t iteiid for the postposition.
... powerful sophomore
IF CROSS' KNEE heals, Keady will
move him from the post position to the
strong forward spot. Keady said that he'
changed Cross' position so the 6-10
sophomore "would have more freedom
for rebounding and doesn't get the hell
beat out of him on offense." If Cross'
knee needs surgery 6-7 sophomore Glen
Eifert will be the power forward.
Mike Scearce, the third starter to
change positions, will switch from the
strong forward, where he averaged 7.1
points and 5.4 rebounds a contest last
year to the small forward spot.
Keady, will go with the relatively.
inexperienced Ted Benson at center.
Benson, a 6-10 junior, saw only limited
action last season.
Playing opposite Edmonson at guard
will be senior Kevin Stallings, a back-
up for the Boilermakers last year.
Should the Cardinals or Bruins falter, there will be plenty of talented
teams ready to step in. Not the least of which is Louisville's cross-state rival,
the Kentucky Wildcats,
Kentucky is led by 7-1 junior center Sam Bowie, who will be out of action
until late December with a fractured tibia. Bowie will be ably replaced by 6-
11 sophomore Melvin Turpin, who will be adequately supported by a pair of
6-6 junior forwards in Derrick Hord and Charles Hurt. The guards are
superb; 6-3 junior Dirk Minniefield and 6-3 sophomore Jim Master.
When previewing the nation's top college basketball teams, one can
never discount Dean Smith's North Carolina Tar Heels, and this year is no
Smith's squad is loaded, but with only one senior in the starting lineup it
appears that the Tar Heels are a year away from winning it all.
That lone senior is 6-3 guard Jimmy Black, expected to be the Heels'
floor leader this season. Black will be directing an offense that features 6-9
sophomore Sam Perkins at center, and 6-7 sophomore Matt Doherty and 6-9
junior James Worthy at the forward positions.
Wichita State's Shockers have-added 7-1 freshman Greg Dreiling to an
already devastating front court that includes f-8 junior Cliff Levingston and
6-9 junior Antoine Carr, but the Shockers appear headed for an NCAA
probation which could dampen an otherwise bright season.
The Hoyas of Georgetown got three All-American freshmen, not the
least of which is the man everybody wanted, 7-foot center Patrick Ewing.
Ewing alone would have made coach John Thompson's recruiting season a
successful one, but he went out and added 6-7 Anthony Jones and William
Martin. The Hoyas also'return their leading scorer from last season. senior
guard Eric "Sleepy" Floyd.
The Hawkeyes also had a tremendous recruiting year, grabbing the top
high school player in each of three states: 6-11 Michael Payne of Illinois, 6-10
Greg Stokes from Ohio, and 6-2 Todd Berkenpas of Iowa. The Hawkeyes also
return their fine guard combination of seniors Kevin Bbyle and Kenny Ar-
If you've made it this far and still haven't found a team you like, try
these three sleepers on for size:
Georgia-led by sensational 6-7 forward Dominique Wilkins, who might
have been the first player taken in the NBA draft last year had he opted for
Alabama-Birmingham-which returns four starters from last year's
team which beat Kentucky, 69-62, in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Minnesota-whose starting five consists of four seniors, and whose fron-
tline averages 6-11.,
And if you're the betting type, the smart money is avoiding the following
teams like the plague:
Virginia-led by 7-4 center Ralph Sampson and little else.
Notre Dame-always long on heart but short on talent this season.
Arkansas-6-10 center Scott Hastings is not as good as the Razorbacks
think he is..
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