12 -- The Michiaan Daily - Wednesday. Januarv 7 1987
BARB'S -B __
IiI7' BARBS --
Journey to Pasadena...
...sends Blue to earth
E vena new year couldn't change the same old Wolverines
who managed to lose their seventh Rose Bowl in eight
tries under Bo Schembechler.
You can offer plenty of excuses. Michigan had to contend
with a noisy crowd from Arizona State, which received 41,000
tickets to Michigan's 21,000. The Wolverines were
unac.customed to playing on natural grass. The were farther
from home than the Sun Devils. They were still dizzy, from
the flying Dumbo ride a Disneyland.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. We've heard it all before. Michigan
mauls the Big Ten and then meows its way home from
Pasadena. Call it a jinx. Call it bad luck. I call it a team that
just wasn't as good as everyone thought.
Bo was able to hide some of his team's weaknesses in a
not-so-tough Big Ten, and had us believing these guys could
beat anybody north of Miami, er, ah, Penn State.
It's easy to forget just how close some of those games were
during the regular season. When Michigan nipped Notre Dame
24-23, Schembechler said his defense was questionable. The
Wolverines gave up 455 yards in that game. But "W's" made
people ignore that one along with Florida State and Iowa. And
after a gutty performance beat Ohio State, the Wolverines were
suddenly an unstoppable force.
Until they journeyed to California.
The question marks came out of the closet as the Michigan
defense surrendered 381 yards and 22 first downs to Arizona
State. The Wolverine offense was able to muster only 225
yards and 13 first downs.
"We just didn't play a very good second half," said a
scowling Schembechler. "It was a combination of offense and
defense. The offense had opportunities, but we'd run three
plays and punt."
One aspect of Michigan's game that had been concealed
throughout the season was its speed - or lack of it. Not that
any of the Wolverines had been confused with Carl Lewis, but
playing on artificial turf, Michigan had looked deceivingly
quick on film compared to Arizona State, which plays on
On the same natural surface, however, the Sun Devils
zipped past the Wolverine defense like arms to Iran. They were
gone before anyone noticed. At times, Arizona State was lined
up to snap the ball before Michigan was out of its huddle.
"We thought the Michigan defense was a little sluggish,"
said Sun Devil head coach John Cooper.
But the defense can't take all the blame. The Wolverine
offensive line was nothing more than a spaghetti strainer.
Quarterback Jim Harbaugh was harassed all afternoon by
Arizona State's pass rush. And by failing to create the holes,
Michigan's line denied its own running game in the second
"(Harbaugh) couldn't do much because he didn't have time
to," Schembechler said. "If you want to be critical, be critical
of the line. They played lousy."
That comment couldn't smart any more than Michigan's
time of possession. The Sun Devils controlled the ball for
35:28, the Wolverines, 24:32. In the third quarter, Michigan
held the ball for only 2:38 and was outscored 6-0. During the
regular season, Michigan dominated the third quarter,
outscoring its opponents 106-29.
It's hard to admit the Wolverines aren't so mighty after all.
For the fans, there's a matter of pride at stake. On New Year's
Eve in a Westwood, Calif., restaurant, the banter was typical
as students from each side argued the merits of their schools.
"Arizona State blew away the Pac-10 this year."
"Yeah, well we play real football in the Big Ten."
"So what, we go to school in the sun all year."
"Yeah? Come see me when you need a job."
The last jab did not mean the last laugh for Michigan fans.
They were forced to swallow their pride as time expired on the
game clock. But don't expect the loss to go down easy for Bo
or the Wolverines. It just makes them more anxious than ever
to silence their critics.
"When you win, there's a tendency to be complacent,"
Schembechler said. "When you lose, you get mad and you
Maybe it was that stupid Dumbo ride.
can't keep up
By MARK BOROWSKY
Special to the Daily
PASADENA, Calif. - Before the 1986 Michigan football
season began, nobody was questioning the ability of the
Michigan defense. It returned seven starters from the record-setting
squad of 1985, and Bo Schembechler teams are always tough on
Well, not always.
"Coming out of the Notre Dame game, I didn't think we had a
defense to do the job," Schembechler said the day after his troops
had been trounced by Arizona State 22-15 in the Rose Bowl. "I've 4
got to make some player adjustments and they may be some
The one Schembechler mentioned was moving flanker John
Kolesar to defense. Totally rad, man.
The move is unlikely, but it illustrates Schembechler's
concern with the state of his defense. Speed kills, and Arizona
'State fatally shot up the Michigan offense with quickness. The
Sun Devils featured the quickest defense the Wolverines had faced
all year, and it showed.
THE WOLVERINE defense couldn't respond in kind.
Michigan's defensive line and linebackers couldn't keep up with
Arizona State's offense, and the Sun Devils capitalized by getting
big gains on misdirection runs and short passes.
"They're (Arizona State) a little better football team because
they are a little quicker, and I say that without reservations,"
Schembechler said. "When it came to a team of enormous talent,
we were a step behind."
"Michigan is a great
team, but we were quicker,
especially on defense," said
radiant Sun Devil coach 4
John Cooper. "I also felt
that we were in good
control of their running
game. I felt that the only
way that they could score
CHY was on a big play on the
On the other side of the
ball, the speed obviously
turned the Michigan
defenders' concentration Hicks
into frustration. ... mysteriously absent
"A couple of guys got away from me once," said senior
Michigan linebacker Andy Moeller. "I can't really speak out
because I didn't have a great game.
"We blew it. I dropped an interception; a touchdown went
through Doug Mallory's hands. We busted our balls. What can I
THE touchdown that got past Mallory left many of tihe
103,168 spectators speechless. Starting in place of Ivan Hicks at
safety, Mallory let Jeff Van Raaphorst's four-yard touchdown p
slip through his hands in the back of the endzone and into flank "
Bruce Hill's grasp.
The play left those wondering: why wasn't Hicks in the game?
A regular starter all season, Hicks' absence was conspicuous, for
he was in uniform and standing on the sidelines. It was rumored
Hicks was not playing because of a disciplinary problem, but
Schembechler may have had another reason.
"Ivan Hicks didn't play because Doug Mallory played,"
Schembechler said, stating the obvious. "He's (Mallory) a good
player." He later emphasized that he felt Mallory and Hicks were
equal in talent.
"I know what happened, but I can't comment," said Moeler.
"You'll have to talk to him about it."
Hicks was unavailable for comment.
Hicks or not, however, the Rose Bowl confirmed the wor
fears of Michigan fans. The defense was simply not th
dominating force it was last season, and for that reason th
offense was often called upon to carry the team. And if th
Wolverines are to win the Big Ten next season, the defense wil
simply have to catch up.
Daily 'photo by SCOTT LITU
Doug Mallory started the game at strong safety in place of Ivan Hicks, whose absence in th
lineup went unexplained by Michigan head coach Bo Schembechler.
Total Offen~sive Plays
Avg. Gain per Play
Third Down Cn'v
No. Yards TD)
1 15 0
3 59 0
3 23 0'
4 4'7 0
1 b 0
1 22 0
6 104 0
3_ 34 0
4 30 2
1 4 0
1 1~0 0
1 11 0l
16 47 1
7 410 _ 1
23 112 0
7 2. 0
2 9 0
UT AT 'Tort. Lj
e rtsma 10 t 11 '2
utyre 7 3 10 1
es 9 0 9
4 4 8 4
*Atr 5 2 7 Q
it 4 3 710
cold 4 2 6 0
eft 5 6 0
Rory 3 2 5 0
Sun Devils' Cooper
a turn lgin lieligh
By BARB McQUADE
Special to the Daily
PASADENA, Calif. - After
the game, he was drained and down.
He did not look like the same man
who had been the media's darling
just days earlier.
"Let's make this quick," snapped
Bo Schembechler as he entered the
press room after Michigan's 22-15
loss to Arizona State. His team
had lost by only a touchdown, but
he knew it had been worse than
that. The clock had struck 12 for
the Wolverines and the Sun Devils
had been kind enough to clean it.
Schembechler was curt and
short. He answered some questions
and eluded others.
Just three days earlier, the 18-
year Michigan head man had held
court at the Wrigley Tournament
House in Pasadena before a room
full of reporters, many of whom
were not familiar with his
preachings. What had been billed
as a press conference with
Schembechler and Arizona State
head coach John Cooper had turned
into the Bo Show, with Cooper
taking a back seat and adding only a
few comments now and then.
independent teams, national
championships, and the Big Tenis
lack of success in the Rose Bowl.
The reporters couldn't write quickly
enough. Bo had a fresh audience;
and he was having fun.
See BO, Page 13.
iii tiV irk
championship and a victory of
*'The selection of ASU quarterback