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September 12, 1986 - Image 16

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1986-09-12
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High yield quarterback:
arbaugh aims for national title

he Michigan D iI - Fri
Returning starters make defense .

The Jim Harbaugh story is just
beginning to unfold this season.
Barring an injury, the senior
quarterback could become the top
signal caller in Michigan history.
He set three single season,
Wolverine passing records in '85
as he became the first Big Ten
quarterback to win the NCAA
efficiency title.
He hit 145 of 227 pass attempts for
1976 yards and 18 touchdowns. He
also ran for four touchdowns. This
year, he is the main reason why
many pick Michigan to win the Big
Ten title and even the national
HEAD COACH Bo Schembechler
does not say much about his gem.
When he does, he says, "There is
no quarterback in this country that
I'd rather go into a season with
than Jim Harbaugh. It's just a
pleasure to coach Jim."
While he was in Chicago for the
Big Ten Kickoff Luncheon in
August, Harbaugh spoke to
Daily. Here are some highlights
from that interview:
Q. You're ranked No. 1 in the
country by Sport Magazine. Do you
think you have a chance to win the
national title?
A. "Yep, every time the score is

kept, you expect to win and we
expect to win every game we play. I
don't think a player is worth much
if he doesn't expect to win every
Q. You've seen a lot of Michigan
football. Is this the best balanced
Michigan team you've seen in the
last few years?
A."There's been some great
Michigan teams. I don't know.
Last year was a great team with a
great attitude. If we can match that
attitude -- with a desire to win --
we'll be pretty tough to beat."
Q. Theysay Bo Schembechler
has mellowed. He really enjoyed
last year, didn't he?
A. "I feel we all enjoyed last
year because our backs were up
against the wall. People were
telling us our players weren't as
good as the other players in the Big
Ten and that Coach Schembechler
was over the hill. Everybody had a
lot to prove. It was very satisfying.
We were very proud to win ten
games, but still we finished second
in the Big Ten, second in the
country. So getting to the Rose Bowl
and winnng the national
championship are two goals we're
going to try to get this year."
Q. How do you feel now that you
have a year under your belt?

Daily Photo by BRAD MILLS
A quarterback's job is never done, as senior Wolverine quarterback Jim
Harbaugh shows during Picture Day last month. Harbaugh returns as the
nation's most efficient passer in 1985.

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A. "I've been to Pasadena, so my
goal is to be the winning
quarterback in the Rose Bowl.
Hopefully, this will be the year."
Q.What about the schedule this
year. You're scheduled to play at
Ohio State on Nov. 22. How do you
think about that, or do you even
think about it?
A. "Of course I'.m thinking
about that. I've been thinking about
that since I was eight years old.
Playing against the Buckeyes in
Ohio State's stadium for the Big
Ten title -- that would be a dream
come true."
Q. Jim, what do you think went
into the extreme accuracy you had
last year?
A. "Well, every time a defense
met Michigan last year, they were
mostly concerned with stopping the
running game and rightly so
because we had great running
backs in Gerald White and Jamie
Morris. It made my job a lot easier.
Also, I didn't have to play against
that tough Michigan defense like
other quarterbacks in the league
had to."
Q. In the last three games of the
regular season, do you feel like you
had something going? Was there:
there something special happening
A. "Well, we were doing pretty
well. Things were falling into
place. It - was just one of those
things. I think John Kolesar made
a big difference. He really started
coming into his own towards the
end of the season and I give him a
lot of credit for those kind of
statistics that we were able to run
Q. Your father is a coach. How
much does that help you read the
defense and also how does it help
you deal with the media pressure?
A. "Well, the thing that has
helped me is that I've been around
football since I can remember. I've
always been interested in it and
competition has always been
See HARBAUGH, Page 16
'Thn(jf t Is'&hop
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Perhaps the only weakness in
this year's Wolverine defense may
be in the linebacking. Starters'Jim
Scarcelli, Jeff Akers, and Mike
Mallory have graduated, leaving
Andy Moeller as the only
returning starter.
The loss of Mallory, an All-
American and team captain, will-
especially hurt. But the defense is
so deep that it can reload instead of
rebuild. Michigan head coach Bo
Schembechler sees the problem but
does not appear overly concerned.
What, Bo worry?
'THAT'LL BE the key, whether
we can replace Akers, Scarcelli,
and particularly Mike Mallory,
who was a great leader and a great
linebacker for us," Schembechler
said. "(The replacements) will
have to do the job on the outside.
I'm sure they will; they'll be
They'll have to be alright,
alright, if Michigan is to match its
nation-leading 98 points allowed
in 1986. With a probable emphasis
on the run in the Big Ten this
season, the linebackers will be
inflicting their share of pain on the
likes of Lorenzo White, Larry
Emery, et al.
Inside linebacker Andy Moeller
is the son of defensive coordinator
Gary Moeller, but he would
probably rather be known as the
team leader in tackles last year
with 138. The 6-0, 222 pound senior
is the only returning starting
linebacker and will be calling the
defensive signals.
inherent with such duties does not
seem to bother him. What, Andy
"I don't look at any pressure at

being the only guy on the
linebacking crew returning," said
Moeller, a second team All-Big
Ten player in '85. "We have guys
that'll be there and come to the
There's no need to worry about
senior Dieter Heren, who often was
at the forefront last year. Heren
had a fumble recovery that led to a
touchdown against Notre Dame, a
key interception against Iowa, a
blocked punt against Michigan


State, and a game-saving blocked
field goal against Illinois.
The other outside linebacker
spot will be headed by Steve Thibert mUSic SHOP
(6-5, 230 pounds) who also saw
extensive action last season, 280 Briarwood Circle
linebacker. .oB N ood Mall
Andree McIntyre and Todd 7
Schulte will battle for the starting767
spot at inside linebacker vacated by

but there's no need to worry

There is nothing new under the sun, nothing
new in Michigan Stadium. -
With two of three starters back, Michigan's
defensive line will once again be quick, tough,
swarming. Nothing new.
AND IF the line can overcome the graduation of.
All-American Mike Hammerstein - no easy task
- the line could be actually stronger than in 1985.
It could be the strongest aspect of the Wolverine
defense on a team that emphasizes defense.
"I think we'll be a stronger defensive line
because we have two of the three starters back,"
defensive coordinator Gary Moeller said. "I
think that we can be better there."
The media (and opposition's) attention has been
placed primarily on tackle Mark MIessner, as in
"Don't Mess With Me." Polite and obliging off the
field, the All-American candidate is a terror on the
field, and at 6-3 , 248 pounds, is an amalgam of
speed and strength in the classic Schembechler
HE EVEN talks like a coach. Asked about what
it would like to be an All-American, he says, "I
don't try to think of that. We're team players,
every one of us. The awards that are given out

exemplify a great team."
Schembechler is a little more liberal in his
assessment of Messner.
"Mark Messner is destined to be one of the better
defensive players we've had here," said
Schembechler. "He's got all the attributes to be
really outstanding."
BILLY HARRIS stands all of 6-0, but at his
middle guard position weighs in at 270 pounds,
proportions that are reminiscent of William
Perry. Harris didn't carry the ball last year, but
his stocky build and great speed earned him
second team All-Big Ten. He is looking to
improve in his senior season.
"With Hammerstein leaving, that puts a lot of
pressure on me," he said. "I feel like I have to fill
in his (Hammerstein's) shoes a little bit, and play
a lot better than I did a year ago."
If Harris feels the pressure, Mike Reinhold, is
an able backup. "Backup," in fact, is not an
appropriate term for Reinhold, as he split time last
year with Harris.
The other defensive tackle spot is a battle
between seniors Dave Folkertsma and Jack
Walker, and sophomores Brent White and John



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All-American candidate Mark Messne
due last season.

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