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September 08, 1994 - Image 66

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

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Page 6F


high hopes





Team made.
on and off
the court
A funny thing happened on the
way to the national champion-
Well, make that several funny
things. And no
In facttchigan
team was sc
busy making RACHEL
headlines off BACHMAN
the court, its Bach's Score
on-court ex-
ploits seemed
like a sideline
to the real story.
For those of you who missed an
episode or two, here's a recap, month
by month, of what went down.
The players swagger dejectedly
at Media Day, like people who didn't
want to let on that they'd lost some-
thing very valuable.
Looking on the bright side,
though, the aging Fab Five recruit-
ing class --now in its junior year -
didn't lose the farm when fellow
Wolverine Chris Webber left for the
NBA. They gained one thing: a 6-
foot-10, 255-lb. vacancy under the
Sophomore Dugan Fife, who has
yet to sink a college basket, claims
the fifth spot. As a local newspaper
says, the starting lineup is "like Pub-
lic Enemy with Jim Nabors singing
Slow month.
Coach Steve Fisher's prayers are
answered - long distance - with a
6-8 center from Senegal. Illegally re-
cruited by Wake Forest, freshman
Makhtar Ndiaye is free from wrong-
doing and ready to play for Michigan.
And he's a shot blocker. Southeastern
Michigan begins to salivate.
Says Fisher: "I thought we'd never
have anyone after the Fab Five have
so much written about them before
they even shot a basket."
The Fab Five. Learn it now, fresh-
men: They're the exception to every
U Just when we think the Wol-
verines are invincible, Juwan
Howard and Jimmy King are side-
lined by the chicken pox, of all
things. Michigan fans wait with
bated breath. Will they be back
soon? Will they regain midseason
form? Will they resist the urge to
The answer on all counts: yes.
After a road loss at Minnesota's
Fire Trap Arena, Howard returns.
King is back a game later. The Wol-
verine faithful heave a collective
sigh and put away the baking soda.

The Wolverines go from trouble
with their immune systems to trouble
with the law. King, Ray Jackson and
walk-on Chris Fields are nabbed lift-
ing several cases of beer from an Ann
Arbor convenience store. They are
sentenced to community service
hours, probation, fines and the cries
of Michigan State fans wearing empty
beer cases on their heads.
Their actions spark the debate:
What are we more sick of, alcoholic
jokes or Tonya Harding?
For the second time in a year,
Jalen Rose is questioned by authori-
ties about his alliances to known
drug dealers.
Was he ever caught ... using
drugs? Nope. Selling them? Uh-uh.
Even possessing them? No. Kind of
makes us wonder: if a tree falls in a
forest and no one is there to hear it,
will the feds say Jalen pushed it?

Howard and Rose off to the
NBA in search of dreams

While laughing here, Michigan coach Steve Fisher couldn't have found Juwan
Howard's announcement that he was entering the NBA draft funny.

Daily Basketball Writer
Michigan men's basketball coach
Steve Fisher taught math when he
was a high school coach/teacher. The
arithmetic was easy this spring when
the Fab Four (originally the Fab Five
before Chris Webber, NBA rookie of
the year, left in 1993) lost two of its
members to the professional ranks.
On consecutive days, Juwan
Howard and Jalen Rose announced
their decisions to forgo their senior
year and become eligible for the NBA
draft June 29 in Indianapolis.
Howard and Rose were the focal
points of the Wolverines' offense this
past season, finishing first and second,
respectively, on the team in scoring.
Howard also led the team in rebounding
at 8.9 per game. Both earned selections
on the All-Big Ten first team with
Howard receivingunanimous approval.
On the national front, Rose gained
second-team All-American honors

from the Associated Press, while
Howard was selected to the third team
by AP.
Many speculated that Howard might
return for his senior
season, fulfilling a ,
promise he made to
his late grand-
mother to earn a
"I have to think ..
about what's best
for Juwan," the 6-
foot-9 center said.
"I didn't rush my
decision. I thought Rose
it over during the
spring last year and the summer. As the
season progressed I thought about it
While Fisher did not try to talk
Webber out of his decision, the coach
tried to do so with Howard as he had
done in 1990 with Sean Higgins. De-
spite the emotion filled conversation

that began with a drive around Ann
Arbor and concluded in the Wolver-
ines' locker room, Howard made his
"This is one of the toughest deci-
sions I have ever faced in my life,"
Howard said. "This is tougher thar
deciding to come to Michigan in the
first place. I've never experienced
anything like this in my life."
Rose saw the draft as a chance to
achieve a life long goal.
"I thought about what would be
best for me, and I thought about the
opportunity to achieve my dream," he
said about the factors that went into his
decision. "I've been thinking about
(playing professionally) all my lifeS
and now is my chance to do it. I'm
going to try to make the most of it."
Rose leaves Michigan sixth on the
Wolverines all-time scoring list with
1,788 points. Howard was one of five
players in Michigan history to score
1,500 points and grab 700 rebounds.

I I LEO R~ l tB rl 0]
Juwan Howard
Height: 6'-9"
Weight: 250
Position: Center
Career points: 1,526
Career rebounds: 745

Jaen Rose

Height: 6'-8"
Weight: 210
Position: Guard
Career points: 1,788
Career assists: 401

Up-and-dowtn season ends in
early tournalent ousting

Daily Basketball Writer
In many respects the 1993-94
Michigan men's basketball season
was not much different from the two
campaigns that preceded it.
The Wolverines were a confident
and talent-laden bunch, as they had
been since the arrival of the Fab Five
in Ann Arbor in the fall of 1991.
Michigan expected to be successful
and the media thought so as well,
predicting the Wolverines to win the
1994 Big Ten title.
Yet certain things were different.
The most notable change was the de-
parture of Chris Webber for the NBA.
Although Michigan coach Steve Fisher
missed his 6-foot-10 power forward,
he also had to deal with the loss of
much of his bench as Eric Riley, James
Voskuil, Rob Pelinka and Michael
Talley all concluded their careers with
the Wolverines' loss to North Carolina
in the 1993 NCAA title game.
One other difference between the
1993-94 season and the previous two
years came about as well: no appear-
ance in the national championship
game. After falling to Duke and the
Tar Heels in the title contest in 1992
and 1993, respectively, the Wolver-
ines did not complete the Final Four
trifecta this season.
Eventual champion Arkansas
knocked off Michigan, 74-68, in the
Midwest Regional Final in Dallas'
Reunion Arena before a largely pro-
Razorback crowd that included Presi-
dent Clinton and his family. Scotty
Thurman led the way for Arkansas
with 20 points, including 4 of 8 from
three-point range.
Despite falling behind by 14 mid-
way through the first half as a result of
a 20-1 Razorback blitzkrieg, the Wol-
verines fought their way back into the
game. A 9-0 run in the second stanza
brought the Wolverines to within five,
47-42, and they eventually cut the
deficit to just two, 63-61, when Juwan

Howard hit an 8-foot baseline jumper
with 5:31 remaining.
Howard's contribution on both
ends of the floor helped keep Michi-
gan in the game. The junior center
pumped in 30 points while grabbing
13 rebounds.
"Juwan Howard is awesome," Ar-
kansas coach Nolan Richardson said.
"Every time he touches the ball, some-
thing good happens. We tried to de-
fend him with man-to-man, double-
teams and triple-teams. He was still
able to have a good day."
His day wasn't good enough for
the Wolverines as they could not get
any closer after Howard's basket.
Jalen Rose missed a layup opportu-
nity with a little over 4:30 remaining
and also clanged a trey attempt that
would have tied the game inside the
final 30 seconds.
Rose's misses represented the
Wolverines' performance from the
field in this Elite Eight matchup.
Michigan knocked down a mere 41
percent of its shots, including a 5-for-
19 performance by Rose and Dugan
Fife's 1-for-8 effort..
"It hurts badly now for the coaches,
the players and the whole Michigan
family," said Howard, who earned
the Midwest Region's Outstanding
Player award for this play. "We've
gotten used to it by making the cham-
pionship game two years in a row. It
was like you could take it to the bank."
Prior to the tournament, the Wol-
verines were ready to take the Big
Ten title to the bank as well, but
something happened on the way to
hoisting the banner in Crisler Arena
- Michigan lost three of its last four
conference games. The end result was
a 13-5 Big Ten mark.
The most crushing of those losses
may have been the one to Purdue.
Michigan maintained a seven-point
lead with 90 seconds remaining in the
game, but the Wolverines failed to
score another point as the Boilermak-

ers reeled off eight straight points.
Big Ten Player of the Year Glenn
Robinson won the game for Purdue
with a twisting jumper in the lane
with just five seconds remaining.
The loss severely damaged the
Wolverines' chance for a No.1 seed
in the tournament, but made a No. 2
seed into a virtual lock. All Michigan
had to do was defeat Penn State and
win the season finale at Northwestern.
Besting the Nitanny Lions proved to be
no problem, but the Wolverines suc-
cumbed to the Wildcats, who achieved
a bid to the National Invitational Tour-
nament with the victory.
"Northwestern has been playing
with great confidence," said Fisher,
following the 97-93 overtime loss.
"The way they have been playing
they can play with anybody."
Earlier in the season, Michigan
played like the team that could beat
anybody, winning nine consecutive
games that pushed them up to a No. 3
national ranking.
After falling at Minnesota, a game
which Howard and Jimmy King missed
with the chicken pox, the Wolverines
came back to beat Illinois three days
later, 74-70.
Following wins over Wisconsin
and Purdue, controversy befell the
Michigan basketball program. King,
Ray Jackson and Chris Fields were
accused of stealing beer from a local
Dairy Mart just days before the Wol-
verine played at Michigan State.
The three later pled no contest to the
incident and were sentenced to com-
munity service and probation in addi-
tion to a fine. The Michigan Athletic
Department suspended the trio for the
game against the Spartans, which
Michigan won.
In the midst of the winning streak
came the Wolverines finest game of
the season. Despite another snow
storm socking Ann Arbor, fans lined
up outside Crisler Arena for
Michigan's rematch with Indiana days

Makhtar Ndiaye came to the Wolverines as a mid-season transfer from Wake
Forest where he was ineligible to play because of recruiting violations. Ndiaye
added depth to a shallow Michigan bench.

before the Tuesday matchup. The Hoo-
siers defeated the Wolverines in
Bloomington, 82-72, three weeks ear-
lier - a game in which Michigan
blew a 14-point lead.
An intense battle was assured.
However, Michigan had a presence
on its bench for the first time all
season. Webber made his return to
Crisler for the first time since joining
the Golden State Warriors and sat at
the end of the Wolverines' bench,
even participating in the pregame
"He just told us to take it to 'em,"

Jackson said.
AndMichigan did-exactly that, com-
ing away with a 91-67 victory before
the frenzied Wolverine faithful. The
Maize and Blue limited the Hoosiers to
40.4 percent shooting while canning
54 percent of its attempts.
"It was the intensity of a Final
Four game. We were intense for 40e
straight minutes for the first time this'
season," King said. "The way we're
playing right now we're finally peak-
The Wolverines just chose the
wrong time to make it to the top.

With big shoes to fill, expectations
are high for new basketball recruits

Continued from page 1F
second incarnation does not succeed on a grand scale, it
will no doubt be vilified. Doesn't seem quite fair.
I wish the incoming freshmen knew what to expect;
they surely have no way of knowing what awaits them.
Here's merely a taste:
Constant Comparisons to the Fab Five
Everyone, reporters and fans alike, will ask the freshmen
if they came to Michigan to be another Fab Five, if they think
they can do what the Fab Five did and if they, unlike their
predecessors, can win a national championship.

careers progress.
Perhaps it has to do with the Roman numeral aspect.
Given that the 1994 class now has aII next to it, people will
expect the same achievements from it that were produced by
the group that necessitates the extra digit.
The Fab Five merely created a precedent for the new class
to live up to.
Animosity from Practically Everyone
Not Connected with Michigan
The Fab Five saw this game in and out and eventually
learned to deal with it and ignore it. However, it did have an
effect on them.
Next year's freshmen will be carrying the Fab Five's

Many consider
Jerod Ward,
member of the

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