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March 27, 1995 - Image 15

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The Michigan Daily, 1995-03-27

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The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - Monday, March 27, 1995 - 5

prove 'M'
sports are
lust fn
By Dan McKenzie
Daily Sports Writer
INDIANAPOLIS - The sight of
Michigan swimmer Tom Dolan be-
ing escorted out to the awards podium
by a procession of ushers with the
song "Simply the Best" blaring in the
background might be described by
e as hokey.
V To most, collegiate sports mean

Borges caps off career
by achieving final goal

In The Tank

bands at foot-
ball games or
celebrating a
victory, not
fancy award

By Dan McKenzie
Daily Sports Writer
that the first thing Michigan swimmer
Gustavo Borges wanted to do upon
being led into a press conference fol-
lowing his national championship
performance in the 200-yard freestyle
was leave.
Borges sat through the conference
with a pained expression on his face.
At times, he looked more interested in
playing with the cap from the bottle of
water that he had just opened than
answering the reporters' questions.
Borges is not one for the spotlight.
Michigan coach Jon Urbanchek de-
scribed his star pupil as "humble."
Unfortunately for Borges, the spot-
light is hard to avoid. He is a world-
class athlete who claimed a silver
medal in the 1992 Olympics, a world-
record in the 400-meter relay and
before this weekend, seven individual
NCAA titles. But one thing was miss-
ing - a national championship for
the Wolverines.
"I think our ultimate goal is to win
the NCAA title for the team," Borges
said. "I would give up all my indi-
vidual titles in this meet to get a title
for the team."
Fortunately for Borges, he didn't
have to do that. His three individual
titles in the 50-yard freestyle, the 200
freestyle and the 100 freestyle propelled
the Michigan swimmers to their first
National Championship in 34 years.
"He is the building block of this
championship team," Urbanchek said.

"He contributed more than he should
have..We were always relying on him."
Besides bringing his personal title
count to 10 over the weekend, Borges
gave the Wolverines a boost in other
areas when they needed it. He single-
handedly pulled Michigan's 400 med-
ley relay team from fifth-place to sec-
ond when he swam the anchor.
Because the relays count for twice
as many points, a poor finish would
have caused a big decrease in the
Wolverines' lead over Stanford. In-
stead, Michigan finished that day in
first place with a 25-point lead over
the Cardinal.
Borges' performance was made all
the more impressive by the fact that it
came on the heels of a trip down to
Argentina where he represented Brazil
in the Pan Am games. Four days before
the NCAA Championships began,
Borges was in the midst of a 25-hour
journey back to Ann Arbor.
The press conference dragged on.
At one point, the questions came to a
halt. Borges asked impatiently,""Is
that it?"
The answer to that question is yes,
that's it. The NCAA Championships
was the last meet for Borges as a
But he walks away knowing he ac-
complished everything that he could.
He is an All-American and possibly the
most dominant sprinter in NCAA his-
tory. Butmost importantly, he has given
the Michigan athletic program its first
National Championship since he set
foot on campus.

ceremonies for swimmers.
'Especially at Michigan. The Wol-
verine performances on the gridiron
and the hardwood have aroused much
frustration in Michigan faithful this
year. Whether justified or not, many
have wondered if the Michigan sports
program is slipping from its expected
level of excellence.
Judging by the size of the Michi-
gan cheering section at the NCAA
Swimming Championships this week-
*1, most of the grumbling fans
weren't there to see the Wolverines
cruise to an overwhelming victory en
route to clinching a National Champi-
There was no riot on South Uni-
versity celebrating the victory. There
will be no pep rally. The swimmers
will come back and go to class and
receive few congratulations on achiev-
* one of the most difficult feats in
What is it about football and bas-
ketball that make them the only two
sports worth bragging about?
Anyone arguing that football and
basketball players outwork the swim-
mers has never gotten up before 6
a.m. to swim 10 miles. Not to mention
that the swimmers' season began half-
W through the football season and
ed over a week after the last bas-
ketball game.
Those who argue that football or
basketball are more exciting to watch
have never seen Gustavo Borges carry
his relay team to second place after
beginning his leg in fifth.
Not only are the swimmers some
of the best athletes on campus, but
they live up to the hype. They didn't
a seemingly insurmountable lead
in the final seconds. They didn't lose
to a school that you couldn't locate on
a map.
Maybe one day you will know
who they are. Maybe they will finally
get the recognition that they have
earned when they are winning gold
medals for their countries in the Olym-
Like the lyrics to the song say, they
simply the best. The ceremony for
the winners at the NCAA Champion-
ships wasn't hokey at all. It was the
swimmers' turn to be in the spotlight. It
is something they have worked hard for
and deserve.
So go ahead and brag about the
swim team to your friends at other
The swimmers were there for you.
On you say the same thing to them?
NCAA Honor Roll
Swimmer of the Year
Tom Dolan
Coach of the Year
Jon Urbanchek

Michigan junior Jan Wenzel was helped by the crown in his first NCAA Championship appearance. v
Large crowd urges on Wolveries
By Nicholas J. Cotsonika The fans had T-shirts made, dis- LS&A sophomore Tracy Solow
Daily Sports Writer tributed cards with a block 'M' on one never considered it either. The fan
INDIANAPOLIS - Amid pools side and "Go Blue" on the other. They goes to all the meets because "the
of cardinal, orange and tan, there was also brought in a trumpeter to play the student body just doesn't understand
a sea of maize and blue at the NCAA fight song. the tradition this program has. Any
Men's Swimming and Diving Cham- _41_time you have tod many banners on
pionships over the weekend. peopl needto your wall and you need to start on the
Michigan had the largest and loud- other side, you've got a good thing
est contingent of supporters by far. Its Co e and w se - going. People need to come and see
rousing choruses of "The Victors," what it's all about."
chants of "Let's go Blue" and shouts what (swimming
of "M-I-C-H-I-G-A-N" electrified the isflla ou f
air in the Indiana University-Purdue W alAb u
University at Indianapolis Natato- - Tracy SoloW
rium LS&Asohmr
Donned in an array of Wolverinesohmr
apparel -- most notably "Decade of They even went as far as to have
Dominance" T-shirts which- cel- flags for each foreign Wolverine's
ebrated Michigan's 10-straight Big country.
Ten titles - about 400 parents, Michigan alumni who were in the
alumni, students and women's swim- stands included gold medalist and --
mers cheered the Wolverines to a world record-holderMike Barrowman
National Championship. of the class of '92. captains of the -f
Michigan sophomore Tom Dolan, 1948 team Charlie Moss and Gus
who was named Swimmer of the Year, Stager, 1953 swimmer Dr. F. Wallace
said the crowd helped the team's per- Jeffries and 1961 captain Frank
formance. Legacki.
"They had a big impact on how we Athletic Director Joe Roberson
did," Dolan said. "Coming out of the and his wife also attended.
backstroke (during his American "These swimmers are just a bunch
record-breaking 400 individual med- of great kids with great parents,"
ley swim) I could hear them. I knew Roberson said. "I don't know how
then that I was on pace for the record, (Michigan coach Jon Urbanchek) does
and it made me go even faster." it, being from a northern school."
Canham Natatorium Aquatics Di- The women' steam knows how. The
rector Mark Lambert, Fritz Seyferth, team unity instilled by the coaches in-
Mary Walker, Steve West's father Tho- spired co-captain Anne Kampfe and 22
mas and the Michigan coaches are cred- of her teammates to pile into five cars
ited with bringing the group together for the trip to Indianapolis, saying only, _......::::__
and organizing fan participation. "we didn't even think of not coming."
Michigan's Steve West placed fifth in

the 200-yard breaststroke at the NCAA Championships Saturday night.

Continued from page 1
Gustavo Borges will be a part of
Wolverine lore for years to come.
They led Michigan to the title, top-
ping all individual performers with
60 points each.
Dolan set three American
records. Thursday night, he smashed
the 500-yard freestyle mark by al-
most three seconds with a time of
4:08.75. He obliterated the 400 in-
dividual medley record the next
night, coming in two seconds under
the previous mark at 3:38.18. And
Saturday evening, the 1650 record
fell to Dolan, who swam the event
in 4:29.31.
"Tom's just a god right now,"
Stanford senior Brian Retterer said
of the Michigan sophomore. "What-
ever he does seems to be right."
Borges couldn't do much wrong

Final NCAA Championship Standings
1. Michigan 561 7. S. Methodist 218
2. Stanford 475 8. Arizona 211.5
3. Auburn 393 9. Minnesota 211
4. Texas 346 10. S. California 189
5. California 234 11. Miami (Fla.) 169
6. Tennessee 230 12. Louisiana State 116

either. He won his fourth straight
100 freestyle title Saturday night
(:43.40) and also finished first in
the 50 free (:19.59) and 200 free
But his most spectacular perfor-
mance came when the Wolverines
didn't win. In the crucial 400 med-
ley relay Thursday night, Borges
carried his team the way he has
carried them for four years.
When freshman Jason Lancaster
touched the wall sending Borges
out on the relay's anchor leg, Michi-
gan was a distant fifth. But Borges

swam a personal-best split (:41.85)
to pull the Wolverines (3:11.68) into
second place behind Stanford
(3:07.28), which set an American
"Gustavo has been the softest,
kindest and smartest champion and
a quiet leader," Urbanchek said. "He
goes out for the team and that kind
of performance is how he leads."
Borges can have both because of
his team's depth. Dolan and Borges
combined for 120 points, but Michi-
gan tallied 561 as a team.
In every race Dolan won, there

were three other Wolverines on the
awards stand. Michigan scored 127
points in those events alone - with-
out Dolan.
Freshmen Owen von Richter and
Lancaster both finished in the top 10
in individual scoring, von Richter tied
for seventh and Lancaster for 10th. In
total, 10 Wolverines scored.
"We need guys who barely made
the meet to not only be here, but to
contribute," Urbanchek said. "That
was the difference between us do-
ing well and dominating the meet."
The only mistake the Wolver-
ines made all weekend was clerical,
Urbanchek said. Michigan's 400
freestyle relay team was disquali-
fied after junior Chris Rumley's
name was entered for Borges'.
Stanford women's coach Richard
Quick noted the error from the stands
and turned in the Wolverines, costing
them a possible 40 points.
"It's takes a Stanford person to

do that," Urbanchek said. "They're
smarter than you think and they're
always looking out for something
like that."
The Cardinal was frustrated how-
ever. Its string of three straight Na-
tional Championships was stopped
by Michigan, despite a stellar perfor-
mance by Stanford captain Retterer.
He set two American records of
his own and set another as part of
the Cardinal's 400 medley relay
team. He finished third in individual
scoring, but that couldn't fend off
To Retterer's chagrin, the NCAA
title went to a team from the snow
belt, a team that wasn't Stanford or
Texas, a team that hadn't won a
championship in 34 years. The hated
Michigan Wolverines are No. 1.
"My goal for this year was to win
the team title," Retterer said. "It's
disappointing that we didn't, but only
in that we lost to Michigan."

Continued from page 1
coach in Michigan history into the wa-
ter. Urbanchek led the warm-up-clad
Wolverines into the pool on his own
terms, just as he led them to the NCAA
Many years and many coaching
complishments separate the
sent Urbanchek from one who
captained the 1961 Wolverines to
an NCAA Championship. At that
time, the Wolverines had won-three
of the last four national titles, losing
nnn.toT TVC

other notch in Urbanchek's coaching
bedpost to some, but in reality it is the
goal he has struggled to attain since
he began coaching Michigan swim-
ming in 1982.
At that time, the Wolverines were
third in the Big Ten and 16th in the
NCAA. However, they had a 6-0
dual-meet record to brag about, be-
ginning Urbanchek's dual-meet dy-
nasty: He has bragging rights to a
107-12 (.899) regular-season record
at Michigan, losing only two home
meets in 13 seasons - both to
Eddie Reese, a 17-year coach at

all over the world to the Olympics
over the years, including current
Wolverine and 1992 silver medalist
Gustavo Borges, the 1995 Wolverine
team captain.
But despite serving as an assis-
tant on the
past three
U.S. Olympic
teams, the
1996 head
a coaching po-
sition went to
No. 2
coach Skip

"I think he's the best coach in this
country," Barrowman said.
"I've seen the coaches in this coun-
try and I know what they're capable
of. I've also been working with
Urbanchek for 10 years, and I think
he's undoubtedly the best," he said.
Although Urbanchek's laid-back
style of coaching has long been re-
spected by coaches and swimmers
alike, it was the crowd who said it
best in Indianapolis this weekend.
As the team accepted its trophy
and the swimmers were flailing their
arms around with pride, Urbanchek
just stood in front and gloated.
4YT... L...S TT... L. I IT... ~ A AM

Ann Arbor. He coached at Long Beach
State and Anaheim (Calif.) High
But coaching high school water
polo is not much compared to some of
Urbanchek's more recent accomplish-
Last summer, he coached seven
Wolverines and the entire U.S. team
at the World Championships in
In the Wolverines' decade of domi-
nance,l0 years of Big Ten titles,
Urbanchek has brought home confer-
ence Coach of the Year honors in six
seasons, including the last three.

his talents.
"He's great at teaching kids how
to pace," Kimball says. "He trains
those kids so well in distance. I don't
see anybody doing the job he's doing
right now. He's done a great job for so
many years."
But in typical fashion, Urbanchek
points to his captains, Gustavo Borges
and Marcel Wouda for their leader-
In addition to bringing distance
and IM talent to Michigan, Urbanchek
has altered a tradition set by former
coach Gus Stager by changing the
practice routine to year-round.

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