Page 10 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, November 10, 1986
Offense rolls on
to Elliott Husar
By BARB McQUADE
Michigan's patchwork offensive line
won't win a prize at the county fair, but
the Wolverines don't seem to mind.
With two starters absent from the line,
Michigan filled the gaps in Saturday's 31-7
pounding at Purdue.
MARK Hammerstein, who usually
starts at strong guard, moved over to strong
tackle to replace John Elliott, out with a
persisting neck injury. Dave Chester took
Hammerstein's spot. Handling the duties at
quick tackle, Jerry Quaerna played in place
of Mike Husar, who missed the game due
to a knee injury suffered two weeks ago.
Elliott and Husar are expected to play next
The game of musical chairs hurts the
line's effectiveness, but the team is deep
enough to keep the music playing.
"Week after week, no matter who's in
there, no matter who goes down, there just
isn't that much of a dropoff," said
Michigan quarterback Jim Harbaugh.
"Without great players like Elliott and
Husar, you expect a little bit of a dropoff.
Good teams have to rise above injuries and
I was really proud of the way the guys did
that up front."
THE Wolverines threw out a solid
offensive attack, racking up 285 yards
rushing and 154 yards passing. But head
coach Bo Schembechler said the Michigan
ground game was not what it could have
been. "We didn't run through them,"'-he
Part of the problem may have been the
offensive line, particularly on Michigan's
opening drive of the game when it had to
settle for a field goal attempt from the 14-
yard line. The kick was blocked when
Purdue cornerback Rod Woodson snuck
through the line and got a hand on the ball.
"I think we lost a little continuity,"
Hammerstein said. "Early on it made a
difference until we made some adjustments
and got our nerves worked out."
AFTER that, the line was able to hold
its own. Of course, at 2-7, Purdue hardly
instills fear in its opponents, and head
coach Leon Burtnett's resignation
announcement Thursday had to take some
of the steam out of the Boilermakers. But
the Wolverines' talent takes them a long
way. Depth on the line and talent at other
positions can offset some of the gaps left
"They're so talented at the skill
positions," said Woodson. "They're like
robots. They don't have any big names.
They're just a solid team."
Burtnett said the injuries on Michigan's
line made a noticeable difference, but added
that the Wolverine offense was able to
"WE WERE able to play good defense
on them because of the injuries," the
Boilermaker head coach said. "It helped in
containing the quarterback at times, but
Harbaugh is unbelievable out there. When
there are no receivers open, he just takes
the football and runs with it."
Purdue quarterback Doug Downing
agreed that the Wolverines make do with
what they have in order to win.
"Bo Schembechler always gets the most
out of his personnel."
,Daily Photo by SCOTT LITUCHY
Michigan receiver Ken Higgins braces himself for a hit from Purdue's Tony Visco. Higgins enjoyed a big day with four receptions for 58
First Downs......... 24
Rushing Tries ....... 54
Net Yards Rushing .. 262
Passes: a/comp/in .. 20/14/1
Offensive Plays ...... 74
Total Net Yards ... 416
Fumbles no/lost 0/0
Penalties no/yds .. 4/25
Punts no/ave........ 2/52
Return Yardage ... 35
Interceptions no/yds .
Kickoffs no/yards ...
Punts no/yards ......
Time of Possession ..
SCORE BY QUARTERS
MICHIGAN ................... 7 17
PURDUE ..................... 0 0
0 M orris ..................
0-31 Perryman ...............
7- 7 Wilcher ..............
M-Perryman 5 run (Gillette kick)
M-Jokisch 4 pass from Harba ugh (Gillette kick)
M-Perryman 1 run (Gillette kick)
M-FG Gillette 36
M-Morris 2 run (Gillette kick)
P--Chaney 13 pass from Downing (Briggs kick)
Grant ................... 5
Downing ................ 5
MARK MY WBy Mark Borowsky
eon Burtnett is a nice guy. Nice guys, as another
Leon by the name of Durocher once coined finish last.
Purdue's head football coach resigned/was fired last
Thursday, having accumulated a career record of 20-33-
1, 2-6 this season.
But Bo Schembechler is a nice guy, or at least when
his team wins, and this season, that's all of the time.
And while Burtnett and company were flailing to their
seventh loss, the Wolverines were coasting to give
Schembechler his 165th win at Michigan, a 31-7
borefest that kept the fans begging for less. The win
tied Schembechler with Fielding Yost as Michigan's
all-time winningest coach. After the game,
Schembechler was subdued, but smiling.
IT SORT of goes without saying that you don't
have to be an English major to guess that afterwards,
the mood in the two lockerrooms was a study in
"Isn't it ironic that we're here (in reference to the
record) where coach Burtnett has just been fired and
they're changing coaches here again," Schembechler
said, with a literary astuteness that would make a
Shakespearian scholar nod in approval.
"No it wasn't tough emotionally," Burtnett said. "I
just wanted to go out and compete and we did that."
PURDUE competed, all right, but they didn't
exactly give Michigan reason to leave West Lafayette
besides lack of nightlife. Worse, the Boilermakers are
about as an exciting a football team as a fourth-place
USFL (hey, remember them?) squad. What was
perplexing was that Purdue wasn't fired up, gung-ho,
let's show we're behind the coach."You wonder how
they're going to respond," said Michigan quarterback
Jim Harbaugh. "If they have any character at all,
they're going to go out there fired up and try to win
one for the coach."
Hardly the case. Even though no one was confusing
the talent levels of Michigan and Purdue, one would
think that the intensity level of the Boilermakers would
reach the blue sky above Ross-Ade Stadium. Instead,
they were flatter than the Indiana plain.
For all the emotion Burtnett exuded at last
Thursday's press conference, his players lacked it
noi happy ending
"I WOULD never ask a team to play a game for
me," he said. "You play a football game for yourself
and to have fun. That's what I told them today."
"He (Burtnett) would never ask a team to win for the
coach," Purdue quarterback Doug Downing. "He's the
leader of the team, but we win for ourselves and our
Maybe the "play for yourselves" attitude what the
coach instilled in his charges, but it was still strange
that the Boilermakers didn't come to play.
"I THINK that with all the adversity that they've
(Purdue) been faced with they just gave up a little bit,"
defensive tackle Mark Messner.
Giving up a little bit against Michigan meant that
Purdue was doomed. While Purdue wasn't winning one
for the coach, it was behind him 100 percent in words,
"I don't think the players had anything to do with
the coach being fired," said the Boilermakers'
outstanding cornerback Rod Woodson, who did play
like something was at stake, intercepting a pass and
blocking a field goal. "It's the administration. I don't
think the administration knows a bit about football."
ALL THAT the administration has seemed to
notice is that Purdue is 2-7. It won easily against Ball
State. It struggled against Northwestern. It has lost to
the rest of its opponents by the cumulative score 259-
82. Purdue football 1986 is not creating pleasant
memories for its graduating seniors.
The scapegoat is the. usual one. Burtnett had
accomplished much in his four years at Purdue,
including a 31-29 win over Michigan in 1984 and a
Peach Bowl berth. He recruited the most sought after
high school quarterback in the country in freshman Jeff
George. But the past is soon forgotten. It's the present
Such thinking was greeted by a Schembechler tirade
on how it was a mistake to fire Burtnett. He ended it
softly, though: "I like Leon Burtnett. I like him a lot.
I always have."
It's too bad that the powers that be don't like
Burtnett as well. Nice guys do finish first sometimes,
but in West Lafayette, they follow old sports clich6s to
Daily Photo by SCOTT LITUCHY
Michigan's Andy Moeller (49) comes to the aid of fellow linebacker Andree McIntyre (54), who has Purdue's
Jerry Chaney in his grasp. The Boilermakers had little offensive progress on Saturday, as the Wolverines
coasted to a 31-7 victory in West Lafayette.
(Continued from Page 1)
"I thought their defense last
year was the best defense I've ever seen
since I've been in coaching. This
defense is getting close to that."
"(THE Boilermakers) realized in a
hurry that they weren't gonna move
the ball on us," said Wolverine tackle
Mark Messner, "and we weren't gonna
Meanwhile, quarterback Jim
Harbaugh threw for 154 yards in a 14-
we've got those completions on a lot
less attempts than anybody else has,"
said Harbaugh. "It's a credit to the
.diversity of talent on this team."
MICHIGAN'S signal-caller did
most of his damage in the first half
when the Wolverines jumped out to a
24-0 lead. Fullback Bob Perryman's
five-yard touchdown run capped an 11-
play drive that gave Michigan a 7-0.
Purdue could not handle Pat
touchdown. The senior from Buzzard's
Bay, Mass. has now scored twice in
three consecutive games. Mike Gillette
added a 36-yard field goal with seven
seconds left in the half, and Michigan
had all but shut the door. The.
Wolverines added another touchdown
on their first possession of the second
half as tailback Jamie Morris (91 yards
on 16 carries) scampered in from two
FACED with a 31-0 deficit, the
their historical "Spoilermaker" role.
CORNERBACK Rod Woodson
and linebacker Merkle Williams
combined for 24 tackles, and Woodson
set up the Boilermakers' only score
with his 10th career interception late
in the third quarter. He also blocked
Gillette's 32-yard field goal attempt on
Michigan's first possession. But the
preseason All-America could not stop
the Wolverines by himself.
Michigan took advantage of the
-aim ..-,. .rv