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September 09, 1988 - Image 19

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1988-09-09

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" Skrepenak fits nicely at 'M'

Greg Skrepenak has always had a
thard time fitting in. No, it is not
because of some flaw in his person-
-ality or anything like that.
. You see, Skrepenak is 6-8 and
weighs 320 pounds. Football cleats
I are only made in triple-X width
which is uncomfortable for his 17-
inch foot. His shoulder pads in high
school had to be brought in from the
JPhiladelphia Eagles. Go ask his
coach at GAR Memorial High
School in Wilkes Barre, Pa. how dif-
ficult it was to suit up the offensive
"I had a heck of a time getting
football gear for him," said
Skrepenak's high school coach Char-
lie Fick. "You don't meet many
people his size. In fact, we still have
his equipment stored because there
isn't anyone who can wear it any-
The one place, however, that
Skrepenak should have no problem
fitting in is the Michigan offensive
line. After battling Tom Dohring for
the starting role, it now seems that
Skrepenak has the inside track. If
Skrepenak gets the call against Notre
Dame tomorrow night, it won't
shock Wolverine fans to see such a
large specimen at the end of the line.
Last year 6-7, 305 All-American
gumbo Elliott stuck out.
But it won't be the first time that
Skrepenak's size will raise eye-
brows. Last summer when he rolled
into practice as a first-year player, he
lipped the scales at a Refrigerator-
"like 345 pounds. That probably did
pothing to help head coach Bo
Schembechler's heart condition.
"He was too fat," said offensive
line coach Jerry Hanlon. "While
'Greg is a big man, with big bones,
and a big body, that's just too much
~weight for anybody to carry. He
couldn't run around the field. Since
/ that time he has worked extremely
lard to get his weight down which is
hard for him to do."
In his very first workout with the
Wolverines, Skrepenak lost 11
pounds. Eventually, he got his
weight down to 308, but Michigan
still decided that it was best to
iedshirt him. The high school All-

'I fell on my back pretty
hard. Thank God I didn't
kill myself. Two chairs
went down in one night.'
-'M' tackle Greg
Skrepenak on sitting and
breaking two chairs

To come up to the line and yell out
my block is something new to me
that took a lot of adjusting."
Something else that took a lot of
adjusting to was not being the center
of attention. "Bo stressed that there
were no standouts here," Skrepenak
said. "You got down to earth pretty
quick. All the coverage and publicity
was evenly distributed. I learned to
accept that."
No longer was Skrepenak a big
star. Just big. So big that one night
last year, all the offensive linemen
gathered in Elliott's house. While
they all sat around a table and played
cards, Skrepenak got up to go to the
bathroom. When he came out and
went to sit down on a chair, it
cracked in half. He sat on the next
chair only to have the same thing
"I fell on my back pretty hard,"
Skrepenak said. "Thank God I didn't
kill myself. Two chairs went down
in one night."
With the way Skrepenak eats, it's
no wonder the floor didn't cave in.
"I just eat continuously," he said.
"I'll eat during a meal and come back
an hour later looking in the
refrigerator again. I'll snack through-
out the whole night. That's where I
gain my weight from."
Despite this, the coaches are still
pleased with his performance in
practice. He reported to camp lighter
this fall, a tribute to his maturity.
Thus, he has been better able to
handle the things he is supposed to
do. Yet, he still receives looks.
"Everywhere I walk, it's like eyes
are popping out and holy cow. It's
funny because it doesn't bother me
now. People always come up to me
and ask me 'How big are you? How
much do you weigh? What size is
your foot?"'
Big enough to clear holes for the
running backs. Heavy enough to bar-
rel over the defense. And enough
foot to fill Jumbo Elliott's shoes.
Is that a satisfactory answer?
Michigan Daily

The Michigan Daily - Friday, September 9, 1988 - Page 19
Chapter 8 for Blue?
BY STEVE BLONDER the athletic department not developing any new sources
The development of women's athletic facilities, and of income.
the athletic department budget were two of the issues "For now, we're in decent shape, but potential
discussed at last night's meeting of the Board in problems could arise. Here are the symptoms, and what
Control of Intercollegiate Athletics. we need to find is the cure," said athletic department
Phyllis Ocker, the associate athletic director in business manager Bob DeCarolis. "There's hope; the
charge of women's athletics, presented plans for picture is really not as gloomy as we're making this
changing Matt Mann pool into a varsity gymnasium. out to be."
The finished facility, which should be completed next The athletic department receives no funding from
year, will be used to house women's basketball and general university funds, and relies entirely on ticket
volleyball. revenues, fundraising, and other sources of income.
She said the new facility would "allow us to draw Ticket prices have been raised $2 this year in order
people, and have a full house all of the time." to increase revenues, but half of that income goes to
Ocker added potential recruiting disadvantages could the visiting team.
be incurred because the women's teams would not be "That 50-50 split kills us," DeCarolis added. "We
playing in Crisler arena. This would be balanced raised our ticket prices $2, but half of that goes to a
against the quality of the facilities, and the ability of Wisconsin or a Northwestern." The department is
the women's teams to have an opportunity to fill their looking to raise money through additional fund raising
arena. She also noted the women's teams would be able and new sources of advertising.
to play in Crisler for big games. The board approved the fiscal year 1989 budget by a
The news is not as promising for the athletic voice vote.
department financially. The department, faced with the Discussion of a petition to make men's soccer a
same financial burdens facing most major college varsity sport was tabled until next month's meeting in
athletic programs, projects a shortfall of over $5 order to give board members an opportunity to review
million by fiscal year 1993. This figure is based upon additional material.
Mets smash Cubs, 13-6, close
in on Eastern division crown
CHICAGO (AP) - Howard his fourth consecutive decision, start the seventh with a 6-5 lead and
Johnson had five of New York's allowing 10 hits in seven innings did not get an out, giving up three
season-high 20 hits, including a while striking out five. hits and three runs.
three-run homer in a five-run seventh Greg Jeffries hit a two-run homer, Singles by Mookie Wilson,
inning rally yesterday, as the Mets his fourth since being brought up Jeffries and Keith Hernandez tied it
beat the Chicago Cubs 13-6. from the minors on Aug. 28. He has and Strawberry singled off Drew Hall
Darryl Strawberry had a homer three three-hit games and nine extra- to load the bases.- Len Dykstra hitfa
and a pair of singles to drive in three base hits and seven RBI's. sacrifice fly and Johnson followed
runs and Dwight Gooden, 17-6, won Scott Sanderson, 1-2, relieved to with his 23rd homer.

American had a hard time accepting
the decision at first, but then realized
that he "really needed the year to
grow and mature."
He was afforded the opportunity
of sitting on the sidelines and
watching how the system operates;
how his position was supposed to be
fielded; how tomake the right block
at the right time.
Skrepenak now has the fortune of
lining up next to four fifth-year
seniors. Skrepenak is responsible for
making a call when he steps up to
the line of scrimmage indicating
what type of block he is to make.
The sooner that center John Vitale
shouts out the defense, the more
time Skrepenak has to make his call.
If he has trouble, guard Michael
Dames is next to him for help. Call
it experience.
"Having those guys really makes
a difference," Skrepenak said. "I
don't ever remember having that
much responsibility in high school.

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