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April 03, 1996 - Image 10

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1996-04-03

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Irvin free on bond, awaits trial
Dallas Cowboys receiver Michael Irvin is free on $5,500 bond while he
awaits trial. Irvin, along with two topless dancers, were arraigned
Monday on charges of cocaine and marijuana possession. The former
charge is a felony and carries with it a penalty of two to 20 years in
prison and a $10,000 fine. No date has been set for the trial of the 30-
,year-old All-Pro wideout, who pleaded not guilty to the charges.

0

V

Wednesday
April 3, 1996

10

'M' baseball visits
stmggling Spartans

Michigan
penalized

0

By James Goldstein.
Daily Sports Writer
If one told the Michigan baseball
team that it would be tied for first
place in the Big Ten after eight games,
the Wolverines would have laughed.
Yet, even with Michigan's 8-15
overall record, the Wolverines are 6-
2 in the conference and tied for first
with Illinois and Ohio State.
"I really didn't expect us to be where
we are," Michigan's Kelly Dransfeldt
said. "We have such a young team
and need experience."
In fact, only six out of the 31 play-
ers on the roster are seniors. Michi-
gan is coming off a disappointing sea-
son last year. And to make things
worse, last season's top two hitters,
Scott Weaver and Bryan Simmons,
graduated.
But new Michigan coach Geoff
Zahn has come in and done a remark-
able job so far. True, the Wolverines'
overall record is way under .500, but
Zahn's pitching and aggressive hit-
ting style is working for Michigan.
Zahn and the Wolverines hope to
break the first-place jam as they pre-
pare to face Michigan State (0-8 Big
Ten, 5-21 overalr) today at 3 p.m., at
the grand opening of Oldsmobile Park
in East Lansing.
The Wolverines haven't had much
time to prepare for today's game.
Michigan just got back from Indiana
after completing Sunday's rain-sus-
pended games on Monday.
So it's back on the road for the
Wolverines. And right back home to-
morrow to face Western Michigan.
The busy week ends with a four-game
series at home versus Minnesota.
The Wolverines don't mind play-
ing so many games in one week. It's
what they are missing that hurts.
"It's tough because we are missing
a lot of classes and a lot of things are
coming up at the end of the year,"
Dransfeldt said. "That's the hardest
thing. Playing games- that's the easy
part."
Things are also coming much easier
for the junior shortstop.

In the Indiana series this past week-
end, Dransfeldt went 4-for-9 with five
runs batted in and three runs scored.
For all games this season, Dransfeldt
is batting .342 with 11 RBI, and is tied
for the team lead with Bryan Besco in
home runs with two dingers.
But in Big Ten contests, Dransfeldt
is hitting an even more impressive
.478 with nine RBI.
One reason for Dransfeldt's batting
success is his adjustments at the plate.
"I feel a lot better at the plate right
now," Dransfeldt said. "Coaches have
worked with me a lot on getting my
timing back to where it should be."
Jason Alcaraz has also mastered his
timing at bat for the Wolverines.
The freshman left-fielder has a siz-
zling .367 batting average, including
four doubles, one triple and a home
run.
Michigan State's Matt Riggins also
knows a thing or two about the long
ball.
Even with the Spartans' terrible
record, Riggins has gotten off to a
solid start.
The Michigan State first baseman
leads the Spartans with a .358 batting
average and eight home runs. In last
weekend's four-game series against
Ohio State, Riggins stroked seven hits
in 15 times at bat.
The Michigan pitching staff will
try to keep Riggins at bay. The Wol-
verine hurlers have kept their confer-
ence opponents in check so far, post-
ing a team-combined 2.53 earned-run
average.
Dransfeldt is enjoying playing be-
hind the Wolverine starting pitchers
and is thrilled with the progress of the
young staff.
"Overall, ourpitching staff has been
doing excellent," Dransfeldt said. "We
couldn't ask anything better from
those guys. (J.J. Putz and Luke
Bonner) have proved that they could
play at this level already. (Mike
Hribernik, Mark Temple and Brian
Steinbach) have all upped their games
for the Big Ten and are playing excel-
lent right now."

*
KRISTEN SHAEFER/Daily
Louis Bullock will not be missing Maurice Taylor or Willie Mitchell next year.
'Gon'nowhere
Tle r Mitchell say they wilnot
leave Michigan for NBA, Detroit

self for car
accident
The Associated Press
The University stopped recruiting Mateen Cleaves as
self-imposed punishment for a traffic accident involving
the prep basketball star and five varsity players, the school
said.
The NCAA accepted as adequate the University's de
sion to suspend efforts to recruit Cleaves for six day
according to documents released by the school.
The accident occurred at 5:10 a.m. Feb. 1 7, when a Ford
Explorer driven by Michigan sophomore Maurice Taylor
rolled over in Washtenaw County's Superior Township.
Taylor and teammates Robert Traylor, Louis Bullock,
Willie Mitchell and Ron Oliver had taken Cleaves, a
recruit on an official visit, to a party in Detroit.
The University completed an internal investigation four
days later, then notified the NCAA and the Big Ten that
one minor NCAA rule had been violated - Cleaves had
been entertained more than 30 miles from the Ann Arb*
campus.
"The involved student-athletes stated that they were
aware of the 30-mile radius stipulation, however, and
believed they were within the allowed radius," the Uni-
versity said.
The University said in the future "student hosts in the
sport of men's basketball will be required to provide a
written itinerary of the scheduled activities and locations
that they have planned with the prospective student-
athlete."
Although Michigan told the NCAA that it was suspenO
ing efforts to recruit the Flint Northern star, the associa-
tion lifted the ban six days later, The Detroit News re-
ported yesterday.
Louis Onofrio, an NCAA eligibility representative, told
the University by telephone that the ban was lifted. He
wrote to Michigan two weeks later and said the NCAA
officially ruled the incident a secondary violation requir-
ing no further action.
Cleaves, runner-up for the Mr. Basketball award honor-
ing the state's top high school player, announced last
week that he will attend Michigan State.
The News obtained the University documents aftW
filing a Freedom of Information Act request. School
officials twice denied the documents existed, then fought
to prevent their release, the newspaper said.
The newspaper retained a lawyer to begin legal pro-
ceedings. The University then released the documents,
calling its previous failure to do so an "oversight," accord-
ing to The News.
'M' basketball awards

Softball wins 2 on the road

From Staff Reports
The Michigan softball team swept
Penn State yesterday in Happy Valley
in a Big Ten doubleheader.
The Wolverines used a 14-hit bar-
rage to pile up seven runs against the
Lady Lions in the first game.
Jennifer Smith, Traci Conrad and
Sara Griffin each had three hits in the
offensive explosion, which left the
Lions on the short end of a 7-1 score.
Michigan's Kelly Holmes allowed
Penn State only three hits over seven
innings.
In the nightcap, the No. 11 Wolver-
ines once again shut down their hosts,
winning 5-0.
Sara Griffin once again starred for
Michigan, this time on the mound.
The Wolverine sophomore gave up a
mere three hits in blanking the Lady
Lions.

Tracy Carr singled-handedly
outslugged Penn State. In four trips to
the plate, Carr had three hits - in-
cluding a home run - while tallying
three runs batted in.
Carr's performance was part of a
10-hit effort by the Wolverines.
Michigan's fielding contributed to
the sweep, as the Wolverines did not
make an error in either game.
One glaring statistic stands out for
the Wolverines. Despite the impres-
sive offense in both matchups with
the Lady Lions, Michigan nonethe-
less stranded 10 baserunners in each
contest.
With the pair of victories, Michi-
gan improved to 4-1 in the Big Ten,
while running its overall mark to 25-
9.
Penn State, meanwhile, drops to 0-
4 in Big Ten play, and 17-12 overall.

By Barry Sollenberger
Daily Sports Editor
Defections, defections, defections.
They have hurt the Michigan men's basketball
team before. Will they hurt the Wolverines again
this spring?
That was the major point of interest at last
night's Michigan Basketball Bust - the Wolver-
ines' awards banquet. Never mind that Maurice
Taylor(M VP), Dugan Fife (leadership and hustle),
Travis Conlan (defense), Albert White (most im-
proved) and Maceo Baston (rebounding) all won
awards.
Word has it that the sophomore Taylor is hearing
whispers that are telling him to declare his elgibility
for June's NBA draft.
Taylor shot all of that r
down last night. I'm stay
"Like any player, 1
thought about leaving dogs. I'm s
early," Taylor said."But I
sat down with my family my family.
and coach and decided to
do what is best for me and
that's to stay in school." Michiga
The Wolverines' best
player had a solid season, but probably figures that
he isn't exactly ready to take on the Olajuwons and
O'Neals of the NBA just yet.
The sophomore averaged 14 points and seven
rebounds per game this past year. In the Big Ten
opener at Wisconsin, Taylor sat next to coach
Steve Fisher during the last seven minutes of a 51-
46 Michigan loss. The sophomore was in the
lineup during crunch time thereafter.
"Expectations are good," Fisher said. "But you
can't let them choke you - kill you. You have to
be determined to be better and that's what Maurice
has done. His biggest improvement has been from
the neck up."
And then there is Willie Mitchell.
Two years ago, he was one of the top senior high
school players in the nation. Every college wanted
him.
The Wolverines got him.
Today, Fisher must wonder ifhe still wants him.

The sophomore just finished his second disap-
pointing season as a Wolverine. Rumors that
Mitchell will transfer are flying, just like they
were a year ago after hispoor freshman campaign.
This time they say he is headed to Detroit
Mercy.
But Mitchell, too, said that he will be returning
to Michigan next fall.
"I ain't goin' nowhere," he said. "I'm staying
with my dogs.
"I'm staying with my family."
If Mitchell is, indeed, speaking the truth, Big
Ten opponents have reason to be excited.
Mitchell's problems begin and end with his

jumpshot. He couldn't
ring with my
taying with
- Willie Mitchell
an basketball player

hit the broad side of the
Great Wall of China
with it this past season.
His shooting percentage
was .313 - a nice bat-
ting average, but a
horrendus everything-
else-in-this-world aver-
age.
In fairness to
Mitchell, a knee injury

Name of award

Bill Buntin Most Valuable Player
Thad Garner Leadership
Wayman Britt Defensive Player
Loy Vaught Rebounding
Steve Grote Hustler Award

Player
Maurice Taylor
Dugan Fife
Travis Conlan
Maceo Baston
Dugan Fife

Rudy Tomjanovich Most Improved Player Albert White

hindered him through-
out much of the season. That is probably why his
coach still stands behind him.
"If I had to give one word to describe Willie, it
would be toughness," Fisher said. "He won't tell
you when he is hurt. At (Michigan State) he
played the way Willie Mitchell can play."
In that contest, Mitchell scored 13 points-his
high for the season.
Fisher also addressed the Jerod Ward situation
last night. The sophomore has brought new mean-
ing to the word "disappointment" for a number of
reasons - including a couple of knee injuries -
during his short Michigan career.
One of the top recruits in the land two years ago,
Ward played just 10 games this past season,
averaging just 7.2 points per game, before suffer-
ing one of those knee injuries.
"Press clippings don't mean anything and he
knows that," Fisher said. "We need him in this
program and he knows that, too."

r.. 11

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