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October 21, 1994 - Image 11

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-10-21

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

vs. Colorado College
Today and tomorrow, 7 p.m.
Yost Ice Arena



at Illinois
Tomorrow, 3:30 p.m. (ABC)


Ilhm set to spring another upset
*Wolverines face difficult challenge in Illinois defense


Daily Football Writer
How many wake-up calls can one
squad be expected to give another?
Illinois did more damage to Michi-
gan (2-1 Big Ten, 4-2 overall) than it
probably should have done the past
two seasons. The Illini (2-1, 4-2) tied
Michigan at 22 in 1992 and beat the
,olverines, 24-21, last season. Illi-
nois was a tremendous underdog in
both matchups and came away from
Michigan Stadium with positive re-
The two teams line up againsteach
other at 3:30 p.m. tomorrow at Me-
morial Stadium. Even after lastweek's
loss to Penn State, No. 11 Michigan is
bound to be cognizant of Illinois'
old on the Wolverines.
"Illinois has a great defense -
one of the best in the country," Michi-
gan quarterback Todd Collins said.
"We never seem to score a lot of
points against them."
Illinois coach Lou Tepper tried to
downplay the game's importance.
"Michigan's not a red-letter
game," he said. "We've had success
',e past two years, but prior to that it
sed to be ared-letter game. We would
focus on Michigan for 10 minutes a
day in spring practice."
But after limiting Michigan's
All-American tailback Tyrone
Wheatley to just 56 yards on 15

carries in last year's game, the Illini
knew they could compete with the
"I think we have their respect
now," Illinois linebacker John
Holecek said of the Wolverines.
"When you beat a team 10 years in a
row (Michigan went 8-1-1 in the de-
cade leading up to the 1992 game),
you tend to overlook the opponent."
Illinois' linebacking corps
(Simeon Rice,
Kevin Hardy,
Holecek and
Dana Howard)
lead the nation's>
No. 2 defense.t
of what is widely
collection of line- Howard
backers in the
country. After last week's 10-tackle
performance in Illinois' 47-7 blowout
of Iowa, Howard now has a team-high
77 stops.
"I think Dana is the premier candi-
date for the Butkus Award," Tepper
said. "He has the ability to turn games
around. He's really come along as a
pass rusher. I've coached a number of
NFL players but I don't think there's
been anyone better than Dana,"
Rice (36 tackles, 12 sacks),
Holecek (33 tackles) and Hardy (36
tackles) are not too shabby themselves.

To say the least, Wheatley and
Tshimanga Biakabutuka should en-
counter difficulties with Illinois' 3-4
"By far, Illinois is the best defen-
sively we've seen and the best we'll
see all year," Michigan coach Gary
Moeller said.
On offense, Illinois relies on jun-
ior quarterback Johnny Johnson. Af-
ter a rocky 1993 and difficult 1994
early on, Johnson has found some
"Last year it was like spinning a
roulette wheel. Now (Johnson) is
one of the more consistent quarter-
backs in the country," Tepper said.
"He takes control of the huddle and
the audibles. His efficiency has sky-
rocketed. I'm proud of the way he's
come along."
Johnson ranks fifth in the nation
and second in the Big Ten in pass
efficiency with a rating of 155.1. He
is also in the midst of an interception-
free streak of 168 pass attempts, dat-
ing back to last year. For the season,
Johnson has thrown for eight touch-
downs and 1,205 yards.
"He was inconsistent earlier in the
season," Moeller said of Johnson, "but
now he seems to be making a lot of
So if Johnson continues to make
plays tomorrow, Michigan can hardly
be surprised.

Tyrone Wheatley and the Wolverines look to break a two game winless streak against the Fighting Illini. Illinois won
last year's game 24-21 and the schools tied 22-22 two year's ago.

Defense gives Wolverines advantage over Illinois

Daily Football Writer
If Michigan was waiting to break
outofits wait-'till-the-second-halfscor-
ing trend, Saturday's the time. Since
Illinois has allowed its opponents an
average ofjust over two points in the
entire second half, the Wolverines must
make some major changes.
Here's how Michigan stacks up
gainst the Illini defense, and against
he other parts of Illinois' game:
Michigan running game against
Illinois rush defense:
This is a dream Big Ten matchup.
Tailbacks Tyrone Wheatley and
Tshimanga Biakabutuka have com-
bined for 1,020 yards and 13 touch-
downs. Wheatley is averaging two
Vl-time leader in touchdowns with 48.
Illinois, however, has the second-
bestdefensein the nation behind Wash-
ington. The Illini also feature four re-
turning starters at the linebacker posi-
tion, three of whom who are Butkus
Award candidates for the nation's top
Inside linebacker Dana Howard is
the team's top rush defender and one of
oe best in the nation. The All-Ameri-
can inside linebacker has 77 tackles, 40
of them solo. Howard's 522 career
tackles leads Illinois' all-time list.
Just how good is he? Howard has
more than twice as many takedowns as
any one of his fellow defensemen, who
make up one of Illinois' best defenses
of all time.
John Holecek, a preseason Butkus
andidate, will line up at the other
inside position. He has 33 tackles in
just four games. His backup, David
James, has 30 tackles in six games.
Michigan passing game against
1llinois pass defense:

1' %-OF

Two words: Simeon Rice.
TheIllinois linebackerhas amassed
12 sacks in six games for -81 yards.
That'smore than Michigan tailbackEd
Davis has rushed for this year.
Rice also has 13 tackles for loss
for a total of 85 yards. With him
posting those kinds of numbers,
there's a good chance Rice will add
to Michigan quarterback Todd
Collins' eight-sack total.
Outside linebacker Kevin Hardy,
who has 36 tackles, joins Rice on an
Illinois squadranked 11thinthenation
in pass defense.
Collins has passed for over 200
yards in 13 games, a Michigan record.
But Illinois will be his toughest test to
This battle's deciding factor will be
the ability ofMichigan receiversAmani
Toomer and Mercury Hayes to get
Illinois running game against
Michigan rush defense:
The Illini have two fairly solid run-
ning backs of similar ability. Freshman
Robert Holcombe has three touch-
downs and is averaging 73.8 yards per
game; sophomore Ty Douthard has
five and averages 70.8.
The experience edge goes toMichi-
gan, which boasts two proven inside
linebackers. Captain Steve Morrison
led the Wolverines with 15 tackles
against Penn State. He also leads the
team in tackles with 66.
Just two tackles behind him is fel-
low insiderJarrett Irons, whose sopho-
more status hides his team-leading tack-
ling performance last year.
Michigan's defense has coming
under fire recently. Look for these two
to take responsibility for that criticism,
beginning with stopping the Illinois

Illinois passing versus Michigan
pass defense:
Collins isn't the only Big Ten QB
racking up yardage: Illinois' Johnny
Johnson is averaging just over 200
total yards per game.
Michigan, on the other hand, ranks
ninth in the Big Ten in defense, largely
due to lapses in the secondary that have
allowed several big pass plays.
Illinois receivers Jason Dulick and
Jasper Strong lead the Illini with three
and one touchdowns, respectively.
If his foot is completely healed,
Michigan outside linebacker Matt
Dyson could have his best game of the
season. Look for Jason Horn, whose
four-sack total leads the team, to bother
Johnson as well.
Special Teams:
On kickoff returns, Illini Marquis
Mosley is averaging 28 yards, five
more than Michigan leader Seth Smith.
But since the Wolverines' longest re-

turn is Hayes' 47-yarder against Notre
Dame, they're due for a long runback,
maybe for a TD.
Michigan Field goal kicker Remy
Hamilton is 14 for 17 through six games.
Considering Michigan's difficulty scor-
ing touchdowns once in the strike zone,
Hamilton's consistency may make the
difference Saturday.
Overall advantage:

University of Michigan
School of Music
Thursday-Sunday, October 20-23
Life Sentences, by Richard Nelson
Group Theatre of Michigan, directed by John Russell Brown
Trueblood Theatre, Frieze Building
Thurs.-Sat., 8p.m.; Sun., 2p.m.
Tickets: $10 general, $7 with U-M ID; $4 students (764-0540)
Thursday-Sunday, October 20-23
The Glass Menagerie, by Tennessee Williams
Theatre and Drama Production
Tickets: $16, $12, students $6 (764-0450)
Power Center
Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2p.m.
Friday, October 21
PLEASE NOTE: Edward Parmentier's faculty harpsichord recital
has been postponed until next term
Dance Guest Artist Series: Heidi Durning
Tickets: $8, $5 (763-5460)
Betty Pease Studio Theater, Dance Building, 8 p.m.
University Choir
Jerry Blackstone, conductor
Works by Mendelssohn, Martini, Finzi, Chorbajian, and others
Hill Auditorium, 8p.m., free
Tuba-Euphonium Ensemble
Fritz Kaenzig directs both light-hearted and serious music for brass
Recital Hall, School of Music, 8 p.m., free
Saturday, October 22
Wind Ensemble Classics
U-M Wind Ensemble; H. Robert Reynolds, Gary Lewis, and Dennis
Glocke, conductors; Michael Webster, guest conductor
* Kurt Weill: Little Threepenny Music
* Paul Hindemith: Konzertmusik, op. 41
" Igor Stravinsky: Symphonies of Wind Instruments (1947 version)
" Antonin Dvorak: Serenade for Winds, op. 44
Rackham Auditorium, 8 p.m., free
Sunday, October23
Michigan Chamber Players: Music Inspired by Martha Graham
For the Martha Graham Centenary Festival, U-M faculty perform:
" Aaron Copland: Appalachian Spring (chamber version)
* Zoltan Kodaly: Lamentations
" Gian Carlo Menotti: Errand into the Maze (Stephen Rush, solo
pianist; Stanley Sussman, guest conductor)
Rackham Amphitheatre, 4 p.m., free
Friday, October 28
OctubaFest '94
Euphonium/tuba recital: W. Roy Mitchell's Jazz Suite for solo tuba
and rhythm, Strauss's Horn Concerto on euphonium, and more
Recital Hall. School of Music. 8 p.m.. free

Featuring more than 275 vibrant,
colorful objects from 17 countries.
The Toledo
Museum of Art
2445 Monroe St., one block off 1-75
Organized by the Museum of American Folk Art, New York
The exhibiton and its national tour are made possible by


oa tie e


*- . *
What o expct o

1994 Ohio Forum of the Ohio Humanities Council
in collaboration with The Humanities Institute
of The University of Toledo


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