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March 27, 1995 - Image 13

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The Michigan Daily, 1995-03-27

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The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - Monday, March 27, 1995 3

Q & A:1992 GOLD MEDALIST MIKE BARROWMAN

Barrowman
Former Wolverine swimmer talks
about the 1995 NCAA Champions

RACHEL BACHMAN
Bach's Score

Michigan swimming has produced
many Olympic-caliber athletes over
the years, including current Wolver-
ine GustavoBorges, 1992 silver med-
alistfrom Brazil.
Also in 1992, it produced the lat-
est in a line of seven gold medalists -
Mike Barrowman, who seta record in
the 200-yard breastroke with a time
of 1:53.77. This weekend in India-
napolis, Daily Sports Writer Michelle
Lee Thompson spoke with Barrowman
about the 1995 NCAA Champion
Wolverine team and marks
Barrowman set in his own swimming
days.
Daily: What have you done since
the 1992 Olympic Games?
Barrowman: Well, I took a year
off and went on a tour of the United
States and did a series of swimming
clinics to make some money.
In 1992, 1 told the press and there
was an article in the newspaper that I
said, 'Oh, I don't know, I might try
kayaking.' You know, just an off-
hand thought. And then a year after
that, I'd forgotten about it. In the
middle of '93, th(U.S. Olympic Com-
mittee calls up and says, 'Are you
serious, would you like to give it a
try?'
And I said, 'Oh, I don't know,'
and then I sort of got to thinking.
Ended up going out to the middle of
the country, and some things hap-
pened. They called me back and I
ended up going out to California to do
kayaking. I've been doing that ever
since, in tandem with the clinics and
speeches and things like that.
D: Well, you've been sitting here
and watching Steve West. What do
you think of Michigan breastrokers?
They don't seem to be the highlight of
the team.
B: For 11 years now, Michigan
has had a breastroker in the finals at
NCAAs. When West graduates, I
don't know what's going to happen
- it's kind of a little scary.
D: Did the two of you ever swim
together?
B: Yes. My senior year was his
freshman year.
D: As a lot of these guys graduate
and swimming is not a professional
sport, guys like Marcel Wouda and
Gustavo Borges are going to be left
without the same competition oppor-
tunities they had in college. What are
they going to do in the coming years,
with respect to what you have done?

B: I don't have any idea. You do
make more money swimming than
you do in kayaking, I do know that.
I would imagine that being they're
normal people, when they're finished
with swimming, they're going to go
out and get normal jobs and do well in
life. They're swimmers in a sense and
they're normal in a sense. They're
normal in the sense that just like ev-
erybody else, they need to sleep some-
where. It's good in a sense - they'll
probably get a job that they want and
do well at it.
They're good people. I'm sure that
they'll take the route that everybody
else has taken, eventually.
Swimming will last a little while,
through the Olympics at least.
D: Speaking of the Olympics,
which of Michigan's athletes will fare
well in 1996?
B: Tom Dolan's going to stand
out. He's got his work cut out for him;
he's got some tough competition out
there in the world, that's for sure. But
he's going to do it. He's a tough guy
and I have confidence in him.
Gustavo could be right in there in
the hunt for the gold. He was close
last time and I think he can do it. Other
than that, I think you'll have to wait
and see; I don't really know.
D: Do you think Tom is gold-
medal caliber?
B: Certainly. Certainly. He's

SPORTS INFORMATION
proven that at the World Champion-
ships. He has a really legitimate shot.
Being the favorite is going to hurt. He
knows he's got someone knocking on
his door from Finland.
But Tom Dolan's the type of per-
son that if he's starting to get punched
in a race, he's going to punch back
twice as hard and he's going to come
out of it ahead.
D: What do you remember about
the beginning of your swimming ca-
reer?
B: I had a lot of different steps up
the ladder, I climbed pretty evenly.
My other coach, Jozsef Nagy, met
him in '86, and he really taught me an
enormous amount of things, includ-
ing the way of breastroke, which was
a more efficient stroke that was nor-
mal out there. Together, we kind of
went a long way back. No real turning
point, it was a pretty even process
along the way, just meeting him.
D: Was he your high school coach?
B: He was my high school coach
and then I go back to him on the off-
time away from Michigan, so about
50 percent of the time was with him
and 50 percent with Urbanchek.
D: Urbanchek is especially known
as a distance and individual medley
coach. What did he contribute to your
career as a breastroker?
B: Jon is an anything-he-wants-
to-be coach. He thinks he's the great-

est IM coach in the world; I won't
dispute that. But I also think he's a
great coach in every other aspect in
the world. He's proven that time and
time again. He's had great breastrokers
in the past 11 years. He's had four
NCAA championships in breastroke,
I think he's had eight or nine Big Ten
championships in the 200 breastroke,
five of so in the 100 breastroke. You
can't tell me he's not a great breastroke
coach. You gotta give him hands-
down for being a great coach all-
around.
The biggest thing he gave me was
just peace of mind to enjoy my life at
Michigan, to enjoy swimming and
kind of taking things in balance. That
was probably the most important as-
pect of Jon, because he's exactly the
opposite of Nagy.
Nagy was 'Go-go-go 'til you die
and I don't care what else is happen-
ing in your life,' and Urbanchek's
kind of like, 'Hey, you're gonna do
great, get out there, you need to
swim hard but you have other things
in life and I understand that.' And
between the two of them I had the
perfect balance, and I think Jon knew
that, he's a smart guy. He could see
that I needed that and he gave that to
me.
He'll watch the swimmers and see
what they need. If someone needs
pushing, he'll push them and if some
needs help and kindness, he's giving
them that too. He's a good coach to
have like that.
D: Are you still swimming?
You've talked about kayaking, have
you continued to swim?
B: I swim eight laps at the clinics,
that's enough. I did the goals that I
wanted to do. I accomplished all the
goals in swimming, there was noth-
ing left. I did not want to be greedy
and go back again. Once was enough.
D: So who gets your vote for the
200 breastroke in the 1996 Olym-
pics?
I'd say Roja of Hungary is going
to battle it out possibly with (former
Wolverine Eric) Wunderlich, and then
there's always a surprise turned out at
the end, and I don't know who that'll
be. But between those two, I'd say
Roja's definitely got the experience
and the willpower and the. work ethic
behind him, but Wunderlich can al-
ways pull stuff out of nowhere. Plus,
Wunderlich's an enormously talented
swimmer. We'll see.

"NI' bowlers tri lng to
earn a little respect
While most fans were gearing up to watch the Oklahoma State-
UMass game, one Michigan sports team was in training for
national title. The athletes were at their Ann Arbor facility
yesterday, perfecting their technique and trying to stay loose before the
championships April 7-8 in Omaha, Neb.
The place? Colonial Lanes on Industrial Boulevard.
The squad? The Michigan bowling team. Seriously.
Newspaper readers read ad nauseam about the plight of Michigan's
minor sports: If their funds aren't getting cut, these teams' stands are
turning up empty and local sportswriters are trampling them in their haste
to get to kickoff on time.
But most of these sports - gymnastics, field hockey, baseball - all
command a certain level of respect (OK, except baseball). But not bowling.
"The typical bowling image is a smoke-filled alley, beer-drinking, pot-
bellied people," says Tony Baladad, team coordinator and men's team
captain. "(People) don't see it as a competitive sport.
"I don't go around bragging that I'm a bowler."
There is no glamour in the sport. Yesterday, seven members of the team
(there are 17 on the roster) battled wrist ailments and the noise of a second
grade birthday party in the neighboring lanes to get through two-games.
The sport made popular by the 80 million Americans who participate in it
every year and made a joke by Homer Simpson is not doing well these days.
According to Sports Illustrated, the amount the ABC network paid the PBA for
tour rights shrank from $3.52 million for 24 tournaments to $700,000 for 14
tournaments in the '95 contract. A Saturday morning fixture since the 1950s,
bowling on TV just isn't drawing a crowd anymore.
What does this mean for Michigan's team? Not much, it seems.
Because no matter how ESPN treats bowlers, the general population still
sees them as the Rodney Dangerfield of sports.
"I'm doing it for myself," Baladad says. "If they want to think I'm some
sort of nerd for bowling, then fine." But he also dreams, as most athletes
do, of widespread recognition. "One day I do hope to become a pro. But
that's really difficult because the money's not really there."
The main problem is that bowling isn't a show. Team member Michele
Macoit says that when people shell out $500 for a scalped Bulls ticket,
"They're paying to see Michael Jordan do these awesome things that they
can't do. People pay for something to be in awe of." To the average sports
fan, seeing a cumbersome black ball (with no stitches) rolled down a
highly-waxed floor is not awesome. "It doesn't make (bowling) any less of
a sport," she says, "just less entertaining."
Which means you won't be hearing about the winners of bowling
region seven and one of the 16 teams going to nationals.
Fun? Accessibility? Participatory appeal? Who cares if bowling, the sport
we hate to love, has all these things? Entertainment, as executives at NFL
Films will tell you, is the name of the game. If sports business gurus can't sel(.
20,000 tickets to it and hawk T-shirts at it, it isn't a sporting event.
Michigan bowlers aren't concerned with such things; they just want too
compete. But with this sport, which sticks out among others like a Pacer in
a parking lot of BMWs, sometimes they can't even do that. The Big Ten
tournament, which host team Wisconsin passed to Illinois like a hot potato,
was scheduled for late February.
It was canceled due to lack of participation.

RACHEL BACHMAN/Da*y
ichigan bowling team, from left to right: Back row: Antwan Edson, Travit
Raskey, Michael Weinstein, Tony Baladad. Front row: Kara Kobrzycki,
Michele Macoit, Tony White.

* Women netters handle weekend competition

By Alan Goldenbach
Daily Sports writer
The Wolverines came as close as
they could to playing at a level of
perfection this weekend.
The Michigan women's tennis
team dropped only two sets in as
many meets this weekend against
Michigan State and Penn State. Michi-
gan (5-1 Big Ten, 9-5 overall) blanked
the Spartans 9-0 on Friday and rolled
to an 8-1 victory over the Nittany
Lions on Saturday.
In fact, the only sets that the
Wolverines lost were in a three-set
doubles match loss to Penn State.
And that came after the Michigan
tandem of Karin Khanuja and Sibyl
Smith breezed to a 6-2 win in the
first set.
Granted, the Wolverines weren't
facing their toughest competition of
the season, as Michigan State and
Penn State are familiar residents of
the bottom part of the Big Ten stand-
ings. But that didn't seem to bother
the Michigan players.
"The competition really wasn't
that great," sophomore Sarah
Cyganiak said. "But at the same time,
everyone did step up and played a lot

better."
"After playing some of the top
teams in the country the past four
weekends our level of play seemed to
improve from playing against those
teams," Michigan senior co-captain
Jaimie Fielding said.
Not only were the match results
decisive, but so were the set scores, as
well. Against the Spartans, 13 of the
18 sets played were won by the Wol-
verines by scores of 6-0 or 6-1. In the
match with the Nittany Lions, such
was the case in nine of the 19 sets
played.
Most notable was Michigan's Tara
Graff in her match against Michigan
State's Amy Durham. Graff, playing
a lot like her professional namesake,
won both sets of the match by the
score of 6-0.
"In my four years of playing here,
I've never seen anyone finish off an
opponent like (Graff) did," Fielding
said. "She was done with her match in
about 30 minutes. I was still playing
the first set of my match when she was
done."
Cyganiak continued her strong
play as of late. With victories of 6-1,
6-3 and 7-6, 6-3, the Wolverines No.

I singles player has won five of her
last six matches as she ran her per-
sonal season record to 10-4, tops on
the Michigan squad.
Cyganiak and doubles partner,
Sora Moon, won twice this week-
end raising their record to 5-0 as a
team. They have dropped only one
set along the way to running up a
perfect mark.
But as quickly as the Wolverines

disposed of their opponents this week-
end, they will have to get ready to
return to the tough level of competi-
tion that they have faced throughout
the season. Next weekend, Michigan
travels down to Florida to take on
Miami and South Florida.
"The level of competition will be
much better next weekend," Cyganiak
said. "But we feel that we're defi-
nitely ready for it."

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