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September 08, 1994 - Image 61

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-09-08

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UJiz OMi'igan ailg New Student Edition

Section

Thursday, September 8, 1994

1r

High hopes,
expectations
await new 5
f,, K, so the guy with the
0 goatee is Howard. And
that's Webber?"
"Yeah, he's the best one."
"Oh. So
who's this one
again?"1
"That's
Jackson - he's
from Texas.h'
@nd so's King,
he's that one."
" And next to
him?" BRETT
"Rose. He's FORREST
real tall." Forrest
"Huh ... So Fires
these guys are
the best class ever?"
"That's what they say. I guess
*e',ll find out."
That was the first time I ever
saw the Fab Five in one of the now-
prosaic portraits. My guide to the
quintet was a fellow freshman. He
was from Michigan.
This was fitting, as at the time
there were only a handful of people
who could name the members of the
1991 Michigan men's basketball
recruits. That distinct ability
zlonged to either college hoops
junkies or residents of the state the
five would call home for the next
few years.
Oh, how that would change over
the ensuing months as the Fab Five
- all freshmen - started their first
game and won at Notre Dame, beat
Indiana at Crisler Arena, and started
together in the NCAA
*lampionship against Duke.
Well, get ready, because it looks
as if it could happen all over again.
The members of the Fab Five II, as
everyone seems to be calling the
1994 recruiting class, will surely
become known to the most
pedestrian of sports enthusiasts.
Maceo Baston
Travis Conlan
Willie Mitchell
Maurice Taylor
Jerod Ward
This is the next generation of
Michigan basketball - a difficult
promise to fulfill. And it becomes
especially unfair given the
accomplishments of the group to
which this one will eternally be
compared.
It is highly likely the Fab Five II
@ill never accomplish feats the
staqre of those made legendary by
the o ginal Fab Five. But if the
See FoRmsT, Page 6F

Wolverines land top

recruiting class;
flashbacks of Fab

5

By CHAD A. SAFRAN
Daily Basketball Writer
When Juwan Howard, Ray Jackson, Jimmy King, Jalen
Rose and Chris Webber came to Michigan in 1991, they were
considered one of the greatest recruiting classes of all time.
For two years the Fab Five dominated college basketball
headlines not only for their exceptional play, but for their
extraordinary actions as well. Many said there would never
be another class like that again. Michigan men's basketball
coach Steve Fisher is trying to prove them wrong, as he once
again brings the nation's top recruiting class to Ann Arbor.
Jerod Ward tops the list of blue chips joining the Wol-
verines. Winner of the Naismith Award as the national high
school player of the year, Ward was rated by many recruit-
ing analysts as the nations top prep senior. The 6-foot-9,
210-pound swingman narrowed his choices down to Cali-
fornia and Michigan. He told the press conference on the
day of his 18th birthday that he was going to be playing for
the Golden Bears this coming season before he went to bed
the previous evening. The Clinton, Miss. native, however,
said that he could not get Michigan out of his head.
At Clinton High School, Ward averaged 29 points and
10 rebounds en route to earning first team All-American
honors from USA Today and Parade magazine. He also was
a member of the McDonald's All-America team.
While many coaches would love to have just one
McDonald's all-star, a few can snare two. Fisher is one of
those few: Detroit Pershing star Willie Mitchell will also
come to Michigan in the fall.
Mitchell averaged 25 points, 11 rebounds, 8 assists, 4
steals and 6 blocked shots per game in leading the Pershing
to the Class A basketball finals this year. His efforts earned
him Michigan's Mr. Basketball Award for the 93-94 sea-
son.
Before deciding to play at MichiganMitchell narrowed his
choices down to the Wolverines and Michigan State. Despite
pleas from Magic Johnson-who coached Mitchell at Magic's
Roundball Classic in April--the 6-6 forward chose Michigan.
Maurice Taylor gave Mitchell plenty ofcompetition for the
state's Mr. Basketball trophy, averaging 29.9 points, 16.5
rebounds and 8.2 blocked shots per contest at Detroit Henry
Ford High School. Taylor committed to the Wolverines during
the early signing period in November 1993. Two others
followed Taylor to sign with the Wolverines last fall--Maceo
Baston from Dallas and Travis Conlan from St. Clair Shores.
Baston continues a line of Fisher's Texas recruits that
began with Rich McIver (who later transferred to Texas),
continued with Jackson and King, and extended to guard
Bobby Crawford in 1992.
Baston netted 25 points per game in addition to chipping
in 11 rebounds in his senior year at Spruce High School. He
teamed with Mitchell and Taylor on the West team at the
Roundball Classic, scoring 13 points (including 10 on
dunks) and grabbing 11 boards. Taylor earned MVP honors
in that game with 22 points.
The third early recruit was Travis Conlan, a 6-4 guard
from St. Clair Shores. He completes the Michigan trifecta
for the Wolverine coaching staff as he joined Taylor and
Mitchell on the Dream Teams of both the Detroit Free Press
and The Detroit News. His 21.5 points, 8.5 steals (best in the
state) and 7.5 assists, helped the Lake Shore Shorians to a
28-0 season and the Class B state title.
While this group may or may not have the impact of the
Fab Five, it already lacks something its predecessors had -
a catchy nickname. But don't worry, the players and fans
have all summer to come up with one.

EVAN PETRIE/Daily
Jimmy King, dunking, and Ray Jackson are now the only remaining members of Michigan's highly touted 1991 recruiting class. As the
Fab Five moves toward the NBA, a group of five highly acclaimed freshmen have arrived looking to have the same immediate impact.

INSIDE,

Wheatley postpones NFL for fourth year glory

BASEBALL 4F
Comeback from 1989 probation capped by second place finish at
last season's Big Ten tournament. The Wolverines fell just short
against Ohio State in the championship game, 9-7. By Ryan White.
GENDER EQUITY 2F
The athletic department planned to eliminate the men's gymnastics
team t& reach gender equity in athletics, but the team fought back.
By Josh Karp.
GUIDE TO SPORTS AT MICHIGAN 8F
A must-read for both the sports and non-sports fan. By Brent
McIntosh and Ryan White. : - --°

By KEN SUGIURA
Daily Football Writer
Like he has done so many times
before, Tyrone Wheatley turned the
routine into the astounding.
In a move startling just about ev-
eryone save the teammates and
coaches he had informed earlier, the
star tailback announced his intention
to return next fall for his senior year,
postponing his plans to enter the NFL
draft. Wheatley made the announce-
ment at a press conference at
Schembechler Hall in early January
following the Wolverines' win in the
Hall of Fame Bowl in Tampa, Fla.
"What I think is best for me is to
stay here at Michigan," said Wheatley
in his opening statement, setting of f a

GYMNASTICS 7F
Beth Wymer led the women's
gymnastics team to a fourth place.
finish at last season's NCAA

i

in his opening statement. setting off a >41k JIM

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