PageB8 -The Michigan Daily- Thursday, March 15, 1984
Shockers could put cagers in
By JEFF BERGIDA It doesn't take a quiz kid to figure out Valley Conference tournament. "It's great to play in a post-season
elcome to Jeopardy 1984. The that Gene Smithson's Wichita State MICHIGAN coach Bill Frieder knows tournament," said Smithson upon ac-
answer in the category of Shockers could put Michigan's season in that his big men will have their hands cepting the NIT bid. "This is good for
igan basketball is . jeopardy. full with McDaniel, currently our players, who've worked extremely
red, white and blue basketball, a They sport an 18-11 record and four averaging 20.8 points and an in- hard even during the two years they
Bond clock and an opponent that starters with scoring averages in timidating 13.2 rebounds per game. could not compete in post-season play." y vier g
double figures. Honorable mention All- "Xavier McDaniel is one of the Here's a look at how the teams match : .
likes to run and gun.
CONTESTANT number two responds
correctly: "What are three things that
the Michigan Wolverines have not seen
during the 1983-84 season that they will
have to deal with tonight at Crisler
Arena in the first round of the National
American Xavier McDaniel, who led
the nation in rebounding as a
sophomore last season, is Smithson's
best player. The 6-7 power forward
from Columbia, S.C., is coming off a
season-high 35-point performance at
Tulsa in the semi-finals of the Missouri
premier rebounders in the country,"
said Frieder, who will be coaching in
his second NIT. "He's a great player
around the basket."
Frieder accurately appraised the
situation when he said that his club has
a tougher first game than it would have
had in the NCAAs. While that tourney
sports such first-round lightweights as
Nevada-Reno, Alcorn St and Marshall,
the Shockers pose a legitimate threat to
WHILE WICHITA State has always
had a well-respected basketball
program, it was only after Smithson
arrived from Illinois in 1978 that the
school began to bask in the national
limelight. Over the past six seasons, the
Shockers have averaged twenty wins.
Detroit Piston first-round draft picks
Cliff Levingston and Antoine Carr led
the team past Southern, Iowa and Kan-
sas before it lost to LSU in the fourth
round of the 1981 NCAAs.
Immediately following that season of
unprecedented success, WSU was put
on probation and thus, despite records
of 23-6 in 1982 and 25-3 in 1983, this will
be its first playoff action since '81.
POWER FORWARD: Michigan's
Tim McCormick has struggled of late,
taking only three shots Saturday night
at Northwestern. Frieder is not trying
to butter up the opposition when he calls
McDaniel "a great player." Edge:
SMALL FORWARD: Shockers'
freshman Gus Santos has improved
throughout the year. The New York
native averaged 11.3 points a game in
conference play. Rich Rellford is still
inconsistent but the sparks of brilliance
are coming more often. Edge:
CENTER: Roy Tarpley has done it
all for Frieder this year. His opposing
number, Zarko Durisic from
Yugoslavia, seems to be overmatched
here. Big Edge: Michigan
POINT GUARD: Although Eric Tur-
ner can still be unstoppable at times,
his shooting has been way off the mark
recently. Aubrey Sherrod of WSU isn't
the passer that Turner is but his 15-
point scoring average makes up for
other deficiencies. Edge: Even.
SCORING GUARD: Junior Karl
Papke has an experience advantage on
Antoine Joubert, but the freshman from
Detroit Southwestern has come into his
own recently. Edge: Michigan.
Frieder says that his team is looking
forward to a high-scoring game after a
season in the defensive-minded Big
Ten. "We'd like to play a little quicker
game," he noted.
If Michigan can stand the pace of a
quicker game, look for another round of
Jeopardy '84 at Crisler Arena this Sun-
day or Monday.
As of 3;00 p.m. yesterday, about
5,000 tickets had yet to be sold for
tonight's first-round NIT game bet-
ween Michigan and Wichita State.
Sports Information Director Bruce
Madej said that the athletic ticket of-
fice, located on State and Hoover,
would be open all day today to ac-
comodate sales. The ticket office at
Crisler Arena opens at 5:30 p.m.
Final Regular Season
Michigan Basketball Statistics
By PAUL HELGREN
Daily Photo by DAN HABIB
Michigan center Roy Tarpley boxes out Wisconsin forward Cory Blackwell
in action earlier this year. The Wolverines are looking for Tarpley to do the
job again when they host Wichita State tonight in their NIT opening round
MICHIGAN.......... 28 719-1497 48.0 422-596 70.8 921-32.9 386. 1860 66.4
Opponents .................... 28 645-1407 45.8 424-600 70.7 830-29.6 288 1714 61.2
Tennis team looks to net 1 7th title
By ADAM MARTIN
Despite a few early losses, there is lit-
tle room for pessimism on Brian
Eisner's tennis team.
Coming into today's match with
Kalamazoo College, the Wolverines
have a record of 2-3.
BUT THAT doesn't phase 14-year
head coach Brian Eisner. He knows
better than to panic. "For 16 years
straight, we've won the Big Ten title,"
said Eisner, "and we expect to repeat."
Michigan has been a power on the
grass, clay, asphalt, Tartan or
whatever for so long that Eisner finds
little to frown about heading into the
1984 season. He knows, of course, that
the Big Ten gets tougher every year
and that this season's netters must per-
form well to claim the title one more
time. Eisner speaks with confident
about his team.
"A lot of mistakes have been made -
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mental mistakes, nervousness - but;
these things will get better. I'm con-
fident that with improvement, we will
EVEN in defeat Eisner radiates con--
fidence. Michigan lost its first match of
the Corpus Christi Tourney to a tough
North Carolina team, 6-3. Eisner con-
sidered the first loss a good omen
because of its positive elements.
"It doesn't make
any difference who
we play. It's not
other people, we
control our own
Michigan tennis coach
"We could have easily won this mat-
ch," he said. "Despite the loss, I was
Eisner was also satisfied after losing
a 5-4 squeaker to a top-notch Big Eight
"WE played better (than our previous
match)," Eisner noted. "We should
Then, following a 6-3 victory over
Tulsa, in which Michigan won six of
seven singles matches, the forces of
nature helped Duke down the Blue.
"I thought it was going to be real
close," Eisner said. "It was extremely
windy, and it wasn't a case of us really
being beaten. The wind got to us, we
SO A seemingly disappointing trip
gave Eisner reason to smile. He pointed
out that his club "played solid tennis
against good teams. We could have
very easily been 4-0."
The wins and losses themselves mean
little to Eisner. His team is ready to
face the competition ahead. And if
Michigan is to maintain its reign as Big
Ten champion, it must play its own
"It doesn't make any difference who
we play," Eisner said. "It's not other
people, we control our own destiny."
AND it seems Eisner's positive at-
titude has trickled-down to his team.
Senior Rodd Schreiber, for example.
One of the few players with much ex-
perience, Schreiber knows Michigan's
tradition of excellence.
"We never go into a match thinking
we're going to lose," he said. Schreiber
has played superb tennis in his three
years as a Wolverine and is prepared to
continue in '84.
"We have experience, we know how
to win," the Flint native said. "And we
know we're going to win. You can't
worry about losing because half of ten-
nis is confidence."
THE OTHER senior in the Wolverine
repertoire is team captain Ross Laser.
While more low-key than his team-
mates, Laser knows what it takes to
"We are a young team with a lot of
talent and fire power, but it hasn't been
tapped yet," Laser said. "It will have to
be tapped this year, if we're going to
As captain, Laser has his own plan
for Michigan. "I plan to lead the team
into their 17th straight Big Ten cham-
pionship, and enjoy it."
TO DO so, Laser will need help from
sophomores' Hugh Kwok and Jim Shar-
ton - two players without much ex-
perience. Unlike Schreiber, Kwok does
not overflow with confidence, but he's
aware of his priorities.
"We've got ourselves to worry about,"
said Kwok. "We've got to be sure of
our own games, and not worry about
who we play."
Netters open season, see page 7
Rounding out the top six are fresh-
men John Royer and Todd Cohen. While
not having much Big Ten experience,
Royer seems to be a typical Eisner
pupil - confident.
"WE'RE A very good team," Royer
said. "We work very hard and we have
a lot of natural athletic talent."
As for himself, Royer does not appear
to have the jitters of inexperience. "I
know I can compete at this level," he
said. "If I can play consistently day-in
and day-out, I'll be just fine."
With so much going for it, Michigan
still faces what looks to be an ex-
ceedingly tough conference. Accor-
ding to Eisner, Minnesota will offer the
strongest test, while Northwestern,
Wisconsin and Illinois should return
with clubs as strong or stronger than last
So even though Michigan holds 16
consecutive titles, there are no
cakewalks. But with its heritage of
winning, pessimism is not in the
NIT: It's time to put a
dead horse out o its misery
You say you can't wait for the NIT to really get rolling? You say you.mem-
orized the rosters, statistics and match-ups until you're seeing Tenn.-
Chattanooga season highlights in your dreams? You say you stayed up late
last night, furiously dialing Sportsphone every five minutes to find out the
results of the SW Louisiana-Utah State clash? You say you're anxiously
counting the days until the NIT championship showdown at Madison Square
Garden, March 26-28?
Go ahead and enjoy it, you exciting guy you. This year's NIT may be the
last of its kind - if we're lucky, that is.
The best thing that could happen to the NIT is a quick and painless death.
Oh sure, it would be nice if NIT could change its present format and become
a pre-season tourney or an NCAA-losers.tourney. But something tells me
neither of those things will ever happen. So the NIT might as well make 1984
its swan song.
The glory days of the National Invitation Tournament are long gone. With
the NCAA tournament bloating with each passing year, the NIT has become
superfluous. Next year the NCAA expands to 64 teams. Assuming the NIT
maintained its current format of 32 teams, there would be 96 Division-I
basketball teams competing in post-season play.
That's 96 out of 250 or so schools in a tournament. Do we really need that?
Can the winner in next year's NIT really take satisfaction in shouting, "Were
The answer is no. It's about time the brains behind the NIT saw the writing
on the wall. Back in the days when teams could compete in both the NCAA
and NIT tournaments, or when there were only 16-32 clubs in the NCAA, the
NIT made sense.There were enough good teams left to make an exciting
tournament. Even this year's NIT isn't too bad, what with 20 of toe selected
teams posting 18 or more wins. But take awaythe best 11, as will happen
next when the NCAA expands, and there isn't much left.
Some plausible suggestions have been made to keep the NIT afloat. One
idea is to have the 32 teams that lose next year's first round NCAA games
make up the NIT field. Five or 10 good teams get upset and you have a pretty
exciting tournament on your hands.
Don't. count on this scenario to ever materialize. First there is the NIT's
stubborn insistence that its tournament must not be just a "loser's" cham-
pionship. I don't know what the NIT calls itself now because I don't see too
many conference champions on its list of participants. It's obvious to any
avid hoop fan that the 32 NCAA losers would make up a far more interesting
tournament than anything the NIT could put together. But sometimes pride
gets in the way of logic.
A pre-season tournament sounds like a good idea too, but the NCAA, which
limits the number of regular-season games a team can play, could classify
the tournament games as "regular season."This would reduce the number of
other non-conference contests for the NIT participants and thus reduce their
TV and gate revenues. You can bet" athletic directors across the country
would just love that.
Also the NCAA probably would not be too excited to have another tour-
nament in competition with its own. Having what would be more or less two
identical tournaments in one year might take some of the lustre off the Mar-
ch classic. Scratch the pre-season idea.
That brings us to the only logical conclusion - put the NIT out of its misery
and pull the plug. It's the only humane thing to do.
But in the meantime wouldn't it be nice if Michigan could snag the last NIT
title. The Wolverines are down now and are in danger of receiving a rude
shock (sorry) at the hands of what is supposedly a tough Wichita State crew.
But if the Wolverines can survive today's game, they could make some
noise and maybe end up in the final four and then who knows? And that
would be a nice way, to remember the Nobody's Interested (anymore) Tour-
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Cincinnati 2, Detroit 1, 14 innings
Boston 11, Toronto 1
Milwaukee 7, San F'rancisco6.
Los Angeles 3, New York (AL) 1
California 6, Cleveland 5
Montreal 2, Baltimore 1
Minnesota 3. Philadelphia 1
Kansas City 4, St. Louis 3, 10 innings
Houston 6, Texas 3, 10 inningl
Chicago (NL) 10, San Diego 2
Seattle 14, Oakland 0
Tennessee 54, Saint Peter's 40
Philadelphia 92, Milwaukee 91
New Jersey 108, Phoenix 102
Washington 103, Boston 99
Kansas City 101, Atlanta 93
Dallas 105, San Diego 101
New Jersey 3, Washington 3
SWENSON, CRAWFORD & PAINE
- 69' y 'E