Page 8- The Michigan Daily- Thursday, January 16,1992
Spartan spikers come to CCRB
Wolverines hold their home opener this weekend
by Ken Su gura
Daily Sports Writer
I was in the UGLi Tuesday, looking for an open table, when the red
corner of the USA Today sports page caught my eye (actually, both eyes). I
thought to myself, "Self, who needs to study economics when there's a
sports page to be read."
With utmost care and attention, I flipped through this most sacred of
journals. Finally, after some America's Cup coverage and a Monica Seles
feature which I neglected to read, I came to the box scores and statistics on
the last page. I like to roam around this page because there are so many
scores here that you can't find most places.
For instance, the good folks at USA Today include soccer scores from
Europe, so I can follow my favorite team, Tottenham Hotspur (Okay, I
admit; Tottenham isn't my favorite club. It is a great name though, isn't
it?) On this day, however, I came upon the voting for the AP Male Athlete
of the Year, won by Michael Jordan. Now, being from Chicago, I could
write for days extolling the virtues of Mike, but I envision broken bones
and a significant amount of agony if I do, so I won't.
The focus of this column-is who isn't in the voting, and the order of the
whole thing. My first problem - Sergei Bubka, the best pole vaulter and,
in my opinion, the best track and field athlete in the world, finished eighth.
Sergei cleared 20 feet this summer, the first human ever to do so, and
basically, like he does every year, owned pole vaulting. Yet, he finished
four points behind Jimmy Connors. Don't get me wrong, I certainly don't
hate Jimmy. But all he did was make it to the semifinals of one tournament.
Granted, it was the U.S Open, but he did have an easy road to get there. He
didn't set any records; he didn't even win a tournament, for crying out loud.
Hear me cry AP writers, I want more Sergei votes!
And another pretender above Sergei: Nolan Ryan. It's a given he's an
incredible pitcher. But wouldn't it make sense that the best pitcher in
baseball, whether it be Tom Glavine (one scrawny point) or Roger
Clemens (the big zippo) should be ahead of him? The name of the award is
'athlete of the year', not 'athlete we'll all tell our grandkids about.'
And my last gripe with the dopes at AP. Not a single point for the best
swimmer in the country and possibly the world. I won't mention his name,
because we all here at Michigan should know who he is. In this palindromic
year, he reset a world record not once, friends, but twice. Two times! Let's
look at the clowns ahead of him. Specifically, race car drivers Rick Mears,
Michael Andretti, Dale Earnhardt and Harry Gant.
Sure, they know their way around a stick shift, but are these guys
athletes? And even if they are, what did they do to get votes? Certainly not
set two world records, or anything comparable. The only way I'd vote for a
race car driver is if he or she did a "Dukes of Hazard" jump to win the Indy
I'll vote for Super Dave Osborne before I vote for Rick Mears.
And how about second-place finisher Mike Powell, the long jumper
who broke Bob Beamon's long-held record. It was a great jump, I'll be the
first to admit it, but if he's going to win something, it's 'Athlete of the
Long Jump.' Powell, so far as I know, hasn't done a whole lot the year
Well, I've said my piece. I guess I can forget about an internship at AP.
by Dan Linna
Daily Sports Writer
Although life on the road has
been kind to the Michigan men's
volleyball team, the Wolverines are
eager to open their home season
tomorrow against Michigan State at
7:30 p.m. at the CCRB.
Michigan State has won the
Midwest Intercollegiate Volley-
ball Association championship the
last three years and that alone makes
this a big match for the Wolverines.
"For the past few years, us and
Michigan State have been two of the
top teams in the Midwest," sopho-
more Tony Poshek said. "It is more
than the intrastate rivalry that
makes this a big game. To beat State
would give us a shot at bragging
rights for the Midwest.,,
The Spartans lost their veteran
setter to graduation last year but
still have four returning players
from the championship team.
"We can beat State," junior
Steve Arellano said. "We'll all
have to play well. State is about as
tough a team as we are going to have
to play in awhile."
The Wolverines' weekend con-
tinues Saturday against Wisconsin
at the IM Building at 7:30 p.m.
Michigan has faced Wisconsin
twice this year. In the preseason Big
Ten tournament, the Wolverines
took both games from the Badgers,
but split two games when they met
at the MSU Comeback Classic.
"Wisconsin is a must-win match
for us," senior Curt Schroeder said.
"We're at home against a team we
should beat. It would be very disap-
pointing to lose to them."
Michigan has been hobbled by in-
juries lately, but it appears that the
club will be at full strength when
it takes the floor tomorrow.
Arellano and Poshek didn't travel
to Western Michigan last Sunday
but should be ready to play this
"We are still a bit rusty,"
Michigan coach Tom Johengen said.
"We are trying to continue to focus
on playing together. We want to
make sure that we put forth a good
team effort where everyone is sup-
porting each other. When one person
can pick another one up, the team
tends not to dwell on mistakes."
While Johengen has stressed that
the Wolverines need a strong team
effort to do well this year, he has
made it no secret who the team de-
pends on in a tough situation.
"Mike McCune is probably our
most important offensive weapon,"
Johengen said. "If we need a point, a
lot of times we will set up a play
for Mike. "
"Mike is definitely a key,"
Arellano said. "If he can out play
the opposing middle hitter, we have
a really good shot. When he is
blocking well and hitting well he is
a force. You can go to him every
time and he'll get a kill."
While Michigan is still looking
ahead to its best performance on the
court, the team has already earned an
invitation to the Collegiate Club
Nationals this April in Buffalo.
However, the taste of early season
success hasn't clouded the team's
view of reality.
"In the past we could be used to
winning 85 to 90 percent of our
games," Johengen said. "We'd like
to be able to match that, but parity
is taking over our league. We have
been one of the top teams for the
last few years, but now other teams
are improving and it will be much
Michael Jordan continually flies
past defenders in the NBA and
also flew past pole vaulter Sergei
Bubka in the AP Male Athlete of
the Year Award voting. A small
travesty in the mind of at least
one Daily sports writer.
Bay area Giants hope I
to head for San Jose MICHIGAN-
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - The
San Francisco Giants unveiled on
Wednesday a fourth and final plot
to escape from their windy prison in
Candlestick Park. This time, the Gi-
ants are making a break for San Jose.
"I feel confident for the first
time that the home (needs) of the
Giants will be satisfied," owner
Bob Lurie said during a news confer-
ence. "We have struggled through
this process for what seems like 100
years ... but I feel good about this. I
can't wait to see the first shovel in
Thwarted by a lack of voter sup-
port in three previous tries, the Gi-
ants hope this time to move into a
proposed 48,000-seat, $185 million
stadium in northern San Jose by the
beginning of the 1996 season. Again,
the move will be up to the voters.
The Giants, who would change
their name to the "San Jose Giants,"
have been looking for several years
for a San Francisco Bay area alterna-
tive to Candlestick Park, where the
team has struggled with icy winds
and fog since 1960.
Their Candlestick Park lease ex-
pires after the 1994 season.
"I have said that it has been my
desire all along to keep the team in
the Bay area, and we're going to do
it," Lurie said. "All the factors
needed for a good ballpark are here."
Asked if this would be his final
bid to keep the team in Northern
California, Lurie said, "It's the last,
and the best."
The Giants were unsuccessful in
three tries at the initiative process.
San Francisco voters rejected sta-
dium proposals in 1987 and 1989. In
November 1990, the 15 cities in
Santa Clara County failed to ap-
prove an initiative to build a sta-
dium in the city of Santa Clara.
The Giants and the San Jose city
council reached agreement on a 30-
year lease Monday night after
months of "tough, protracted, no-
nonsense" negotiating, San Jose
mayor Susan Hammer said.
She promised a campaign to con-
vince voters to approve spending for
the stadium. The initiative will
probably appear on the June ballot.
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All this, and a better world to show for it.
Maybe you can't afford not to volunteer.