Page 10-The Michigan Daily- Thursday, November 19,1992
Tovar the Terrible
OSU senior is latest in a long line of great Buckeye linebackers
by Mark Podolski
Ohio State Latern
When Ohio State linebacker
Steve Tovar walks off the field at
Ohio Stadium for the final time
Saturday against Michigan, he will
undoubtedly be remembered as one
of the greatest linebackers ever to
play at Ohio State.
Along with Chris Spielman,
Randy Gradishar, Tom Cousineau
and Marcus Marek, Tovar has con-
tinued the legacy of great OSU
He will leave Ohio State fourth
on the all-time tackle list behind
Marek, Cousineau and Spielman,
and possibly could become the first
Buckeye ever to win the Butkus
Award, given annually to the na-
tion's premiere linebacker. Tovar
has 393 tackles for his career enter-
ing Saturday's game.
But first things first for the senior
from Elyria, Ohio. He not only
wants to leave Ohio State known as
one of the Buckeyes' all-time greats.
He wants to beat Michigan - a feat
he has never accomplished.
"I want this one bad," Tovar said.
"This is the most I've ever wanted a
game in my career. I think I'd give
up the Syracuse game to get one on
Perhaps the thing Tovar might
have on his side is a true understand-
ing of what an Ohio State-Michigan
game means, something he did not
have early in his collegiate career.
A moment which might have
helped him understand this rivalry
was when former Ohio State
linebacker Derek Isaman played in
the 1989 Ohio State-Michigan game
with a broken hand.
"When I was a freshman that
made a big impression," Tovar said.
"I never really understood it. I al-
ways knew it was a big game, but
you never really knew until you're
there. You know seeing guys like.
Derek playing hard when for the last
couple years we've been over-
matched talent-wise and two out of
the last three have been really close.
That just shows the heart of the
game and the
of the ball.".
players on both sides
The fact that no one seems to
give the Buckeyes much of a chance
in this game is also a motivational
factor for Tovar.
"We have everything to gain. We
don't have anything to lose, every-
body expects us to lose by 12 points
(7 1/2) or whatever it is anyway," he
Tovar was recruited heavily out
of high school by many schools and
did consider Michigan before com-
mitting to Ohio State. It's a move
many would regret considering the
number of Rose Bowl appearances
(three) by Michigan during Tovar's
stay at Ohio State.
"I don't ever resent not going to
Michigan and coming here," he said.
"I could have played at a Michigan
or another school, but this is where
I'm happy at and I wouldn't take it
back for anything."
As far as the Butkus is con-
cerned, Tovar seems to be peaking at
the right time. Last week against
Indiana might have been the senior's
finest outing of the season when he
recorded 11 tackles, a sack, an inter-
ception and a blocked punt.
But Tovar knows the voters of
the award do not look at just one
"They choose the finalists on the
whole season, and I think if they had
to choose it on one game that
wouldn't be fair," he said.
If Ohio State coach John Cooper
could vote for the award, Tovar
would win hands down. This week
Cooper gave Tovar the highest
honor a defensive player could ever
get from a coach of Cooper's experi-
"Steve Tovar is the best defen-
sive college football player I've ever
been associated with," he said.
Overall Tovar has made 113 tack-
les, two interceptions, two sacks and
two blocked kicks.
"I like my chances and I'll just
have to see what happens," Tovar
All the awards in the world won't
make a difference if Ohio State does
not beat Michigan, Tovar said.
The reason being: "You're only
as good as your last game and that's
what you will be remembered the
Last weekendG in
weakened B1g Ten
by Michael Rosenberg
Daily Sports Writer
This weekend's Michigan State-Illinois game will determine who gets
a bid to the Holiday Bowl. These are the potential scenarios for this
1) If the Spartans win, they go to San Diego.
2) If the Illini win, they go to San Diego.
3) If Illinois and Michigan State tie, either Indiana or Wisconsin goes
to San Diego.
4) If a=b, and b=c, then a=c, except after e.
But this is not just about the Holiday Bowl. This is about the Thrifty
Car Rental Holiday Bowl. Ooooh. Too bad those folks at Thrifty can't
rent the Holiday Bowl a good team.
Big Ten officials say that the bowl game will be a good one. Nearly
every one else on the planet disagrees. It all depends on whether you see
the stadium as half-full or half-empty.
Here are this weekend's games, all of which, due to NCAA rules, must
Michigan St. (5-2 Big Ten, 5-5 Overall) at Illinois (3-3-1, 5-4-1)
Michigan State versus Illinois. Winner gets a trip to San Diego and a
free upgrade from a compact to a midsize.
The Spartans are led by "Wind" Mill Coleman, so called because he
supposedly runs like the wind, although personally I have never seen
wind run. Saturday, Coleman will play flanker, quarterback, long snapper
and left outside linebacker during nickel situations in the latter part of the
third quarter, and next year he will serve as Bill Clinton's chief of staff.
Last week, the Illini went nuts when they tied Michigan. If tying is like
kissing your sister, then Illinois reacted like its sister was Cindy
Michigan State 24, Illinois 14.
Indiana (3-4, 5-5) at Purdue (2-5, 3-7)
Indiana is an outstanding team. The Hoosiers have great depth, and a
fine leader in senior Calbert Cheaney. As for Indiana's football team,
that's another story.
Purdue coach Jim Colletto has done a fine job with the Boilermakers
this year. He has transformed them from a team that embarrasses itself in
front of the country every week to a team that still loses every week, but
is no longer embarrassed, because nobody pays attention.
Indiana 13, Purdue 6.
Wisconsin (3-4, 5-5) at Northwestern (2-5, 2-8)
Wisconsin crushed Minnesota last week, thereby confirming the new
wisdom of the Big Ten: I think, therefore I can beat Minnesota.
Northwestern has excellent academics.
Wisconsin 31, Northwestern 13.
Iowa (4-3, 5-6) at Minnesota (1-6, 1-9)
If Iowa wins, the Hawkeyes will probably go to the Copper Bowl. If
Minnesota wins, the Hawkeyes will probably go to a psychiatrist.
Iowa 74, Minnesota 2.
Sell it . . .find it.!
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