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November 19, 1987 - Image 9

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1987-11-19

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

I

Women's Volleyball
vs. Illinois
Tonight, 7:30 p.m.
IM Building

SPORTS
Thursday, November 19, 1987

Hockey
vs. Western Michigan
Tomorrow, 7:30 p.m.
Yost Ice Arena
Page 9

The Michigan Daily

Under control

leer Copeland gains new confidence

By JULIE HOLLMAN
Although hockey players sometimes appear to race
around the rink with recklessness and misdirection,
Todd Copeland is one player who skates through life in
control of his actions and environment.
Whether it is on the ice, in his apartment, or in his
decision-making processes, Copeland strives to take
command. When he is on the ice, the Michigan
defenseman steps into a confident and vocal role in
trying to guide his teammates.
"He talks a lot out there," said teammate Alex
Roberts. "He likes to tell you what to do. He likes to
take charge."
The certainty the Wellesley, Mass. native
demonstrates while playing hockey is a new found
benefit to his game.
"HE'S IMPROVED since last year in that he
gained experience and confidence. He has a little more
presence," said head coach Red Berenson. "I look at
him to become a key young defenseman."
But Copeland did not gain this heightened self-
assurance by accident. He developed it during the
summer when he participated in the Olympic Sports
Festival in North Carolina. After a strong performance
at the North Carolina camp, Copeland was one of 30
players selected to try out for the Olympic team in
Lake Placid. Although he was dismissed in the last cut,
Copeland appreciates the opportunity he received to
play with some of the best amateurs in the country.
"I knew I was going to be cut because I knew what I
was up against," said Copeland. "But I played really
well and it was a great experience. I was very proud of
that."
This past summer was not the first time Copeland
played on an Olympic-related team nor was it supposed
to be the last. Last Christmas he competed on the U.S.
Junior National team. During the tournament in
Czechoslovakia, Copeland collected a goal and two
assists. The Junior team again invited Copeland to play
over this coming Christmas.
COPELAND TURNED down the National team
to stay with Michigan during its Christmas
tournament, demonstrating his control over what he
wants and what's best for him. By remaining with the
Wolverines over break, Copeland will give up personal
stardom and the opportunity to be a key contributor for
the Junior team.
"It was a tough decision," he said. "But the thing
was, I didn't see that I was going to gain more from
one or the other, so I had to go with my stronger
feelings toward my school. I think this team can go

some where and I want to be a part of it."
His choice to play in a maize and blue jersey over
Christmas is not the first time Copeland has stunned
people with an unorthodox decision. As a highly touted
high school player from the East, hockey recruiters
expected him to stay in the Boston area, the home of
several high-powered programs.
His choices narrowed down to Harvard, Boston
University, and Michigan. Coming from Belmount
Hill High School with a graduating class of 60 in
which close to 10 go to Harvard and half go to Ivy
League schools, the pressures on Copeland to stay in
that academic environment were great. However,
Copeland wanted to be different.
"THE WORST thing I did was take a visit out (to
Michigan) because I liked it," he said. "I knew I wanted
to live in New England later in my life, so for four
years I wanted a change."
"I was surprised but happy to learn that Todd was
coming to Michigan," said Berenson. "I knew though,
that when he makes a decision, he's mentally tough
enough to stand by it."
After making such an unusual decision and after
having his name tossed around for the Olympic team,
Copeland entered his first year with a lofty reputation
and hefty pressures. But Copeland has a firm grip on
his situation and the progression of his game.
"I knew coming in that I would get a lot of
attention and that it really .wouldn't show that I
deserved it," he said. "But I think I've handled the
pressure. I know, though, that I have to improve. I'm
not happy with my total game yet."
COPELAND ALSO has a hold on his goals for
the future. As a second-round NHL draft pick of the
New Jersey Devils, Copeland is sure he wants to take a
shot at professional hockey. But if that does not work
out, he would like to go into business as a stock
broker.
Copeland's business inclinations started as a child
when he displayed the talents of a shrewd businessman.
"I've always been a numbers kind of a guy," he said.
"Whenever we had raffles as little kids, I always sold
the most candy bars. I sent out letters to all my father's
friends asking them to by tickets."
Selling raffles is not the only hard work Copeland
has done. He has worked hard at the rink and in school
to get where his is now.
"Everything gels together best when I'm working
hard at school," he said. "When you learn to budget
your time and you have control over your routine, I
think the hockey comes out on top."

Dolly Photo by JOHN MUNSON
Michigan defenseman Todd Copeland rushes up the ice under the watchful eye of Michigan State's Don Gib-
son.

THE SPORTING VIEWS

Columbia...
ann

Icounting

By MICHAEL SALINSKY
ITHICA, N.Y. - Home, away, hot, cold, wet,
dry - Columbia's football team has lost 'em all...
for almost four full seasons now.
The Lions fell to a slumping Cornell squad
Saturday, 31-20, in a game that was not nearly as
close as the score indicates.
The loss extended Columbia's major college
record losing streak to 40 games.
But surely this team must consist of proud
student athletes, capable of playing a decent football
game despite always falling short.
Although the Lions, competing with Ivy League
students, without the benefit of preferential
treatment, fit the "student" part of the bill, there was
little indication Saturday of much athletic prowess.
COLUMBIA ATHLETIC director Al Paul
says that there is an "albatross" around the neck of
the football program.
Saturday in Ithaca, the Lions played like each
player was carrying'around his own albatross. The
running game was non-existent, the passing game
was pathetic save for a few prayer passes, and the
special teams were often humorous - or sad
depending on your point of view.
Two Saturdays ago, THE STREAK almost ended
against Dartmouth. Ironically, Columbia which
boasts a proud soccer tradition, lost the game on a
missed 36-yard field goal by all-Ivy League soccer
player, Kurt Dasbach, with 19 seconds remaining in
the game.
A long history of futility, capped by 16
consecutive losing seasons and now, THE
STREAK, have prompted some to call for drastic
measures. Peter Alfano, of the New York Times,
recently urged the school to consider a move to
Division II or III.
THE LIONS HAVE failed among their peers,

0 0 .rtF L/EA

argued Alfano, "There are no Michigans on their
schedule.
"If success is a worthy goal in the classroom,"
Alfano said, "then why not try to succeed in
athletics as well?"
This argument is twice faulty. First, someone
has to lose. If all sub-par teams started dropping to
lower divisions, the upper divisions would soon be
empty. Second, you do not succeed in the classroom
by dropping into easier classes; you try harder in the
ones you're in.
Columbia will get better. They can't get any
worse. The Lions should stick it out where they are
in the spirit of competitiveness and in respect of
tradition. In the meantime, here are three reasons the
Lions should hold their heads high.
1) THE COLUMBIA freshmen team finished
the season at 6-0 with a 14-13 victory over Cornell.
2) Columbia gridders live and practice in New
York City. Division rivals toil away in cultural
centers like East Hanover, New Haven and Ithaca.
Traditional football powers must live in places like
Lincoln, Nebraska; Tuscaloosa, Alabama; and
Columbus, Ohio.
3) The Lions appear to be more students than
athletes as compared with other football teams, but
maybe that's the way it should be. At Michigan we
deride other schools that openly flaunt NCAA rules
but rarely question whether, even when following
the rules, our football team is more
"professionalized" than a team representing a fine
university should be.
Sure winning is a noble goal but it is not
everything. And the fact that student-athletes
represent their college, first and foremost, suggests
that they should be students first and athletes second.
The principles that winning isn't everything and
that student-athletes should be students first are
exemplified by no team better than Columbia.

STEVE MARTIN JOHN CANDY
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What he really wanted was
to spend Thanksgiving with his family.
What he got was three days with the turkey.

NL ump dies
LAKELAND, Fla. (AP) - Dick
Stello, a National League umpire
since 1968, was crushed to death
yesterday when the two cars he was
standing between were hit by another
car, the Florida Highway Patrol said.
Stello, 53, of Pinellas Park and
Benjamin Suddarth, 48, of Seminole
were talking between their parked
cars when the vehicles were rear-
ended along two-lane State Road 33
north of this Central Florida town,
the FHP said. Stello was killed
instantly.
The third car was driven by James
Guynn, 69, of Polk City, said an
FHP duty officer who refused to give
her name.
Stello was the first-base umpire
in this summer's All-Star Game.
He worked his first N.L. game in
September 1968 and joined the
league's regular staff in April 1969.

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