The Michigan Daily - Thursday, September 26, 1996 - 11A
AROUND THE BfI N
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By Jason Katz
For the Daily
Will Irish eyes be smiling?
Will Wisconsin challenge Penn State?
Will Purdue win a game?
*Oio STATE (0-0 BIG TEN, 2-0
OVERALL) AT NOTRE DAME (3-0):
One thing is for sure - Ohio State
will not score 70 points this week, as it
has in its first two games. Notre Dame is
not Rice, and it's not Pitt.
The Fighting Irish are an excellent
team and will give the Buckeyes their
first test, in a game that will feature as
even a matchup as there can be this year.
Many teams will anxiously watch this
me to see if the Buckeyes are really as
good as they have looked.
The Irish are coming off ofa huge win
at Texas, 27-24, and will be pumped by
the-crowd in South Bend.
Notre Dame quarterback Ron Powlus
will never win a Heisman, but people
should get off his back and realize that
he is never going to be Joe Montana.
Rick Mirer, maybe, which isn't all that
- for a college quarterback, that is.
wlus's one big problem is that he
has looked insecure in the pocket, and
with tough guys Matt Finkes and Mike
Vrabel coming after him this week,
Powlus might come down with a case of
The Notre Dame backfield is excep-
tional, with tailbacks Autrey Denson
and Randy Kinder and fullback Marc
Edwards. Denson took over for the
injured Kinder at the start of the season
d hasn't looked back, and Kinder
returned last week and was successful in
limited action. Edwards is one of the
best all-around fullbacks in the country.
Ohio State's main problem is that its
first-string offense has yet to complete
anything close to a full game. Stanley
Jackson is the new quarterback this sea-
son, but he has only had to throw 18
passes in Ohio State's two games. He
has looked good though, completing 15.
SThis could be the game that gives
Jackson and wide receiver Michael
Wiley some national attention. Pepe
Pearson is the featured running back,
and Ohio State head coach John Cooper
was very upset with Pearson's condi-
tioning last weekend, even though the
tailback gained over 100 yards for the
so~ond straight game. Offensive line-
mno and Heisman Trophy candidate
ONDndo Pace opens up holes so huge
"t Cooper himself could have run for
:yardage against Rice and Pitt.
Uifortunately for many angry col-
lege football fans, the Buckeyes won't
get a taste of their own medicine -
running up the score. The Buckeyes
will win this and many other games
with their defense. The Notre Dame
backfield is tough, but the Ohio State
defense, led by Finkes, Vrabel and end
Greg Bellisari, will be a little tougher.
Ohio State wins, 20-17.
PENN STATE (4-0) AT WISCONSIN (3-
Let one thing be clear from the start:
Penn State will win this game.
But Wisconsin is an improving team
and has the ability to make this game
close if the Nittany Lions expect a
cakewalk on Saturday.
The Nittany Lions have played 1 1/2
- they won their opener against
Southern Cal and then disposed of
Jekyll and Hyde Louisville. The Lions
have too many weapons, such as
sophomore running back Curtis Enis.
Wally Richardson is considered an
above-average quarterback, and the
Nittany Lions have a big time weapon
in kicker Brett Conway.
The Badgers go with Mike Samuel
at quarterback. Samuel has good tools,
but he must cut down on the intercep-
tions if the Badgers are to make this a
game. The running game is steady with
Carl McCullough freshman Ron
Samuel's job is made easier by the
good receiving tandem of Donald
Hayes and Tony Simmons. The
Badgers also boast one of the best
defensive ends in the Big Ten in Tarek
Saleh, who showcased his considerable
talents last week in a 14-0 victory over
The fact remains that the Lions have
two big advantages over Wisconsin:
They know how to win tough games
better than the young Badgers, and they
are, plain and simple, a more talented
Penn State wins, 30-13.
NORTHWESTERN (2-1) AT INDIANA (2-
The writer who said that Indiana
might be a pretty good team and would
clean up on Kentucky last week has
been committed to a mental institution,
which, coincidentally, is where this arti-
cle is being written from.
Indiana got 150-plus yards from run-
ning back Alex Smith and still didn't
score, losing, 3-0, on a late field goal.
Indiana returns home this weekend to
battle last year's Big Ten champion,
The Wildcats have put an embarrass-
ing opening-week loss to Wake Forest
behind them and have looked impres-
sive in their last two games. Running
back Darnell Autry just keeps running
for 100 yards, in between acts of
Shakespeare. Quarterback Steve Schnur
has not played like the Schnur of last
Continued from Page 1OA
knowing the plays and knowing the
basics that I didn't really have the time or
energy to worry about what people
thought about it." The coaching staff and
McNown himself believe that experi-
ence will improve his game immensely.
Traditionally, quarterbacks make their
greatest improvement between their
freshman and sophomore seasons.
"I expect to show a lot of improve-
ment over last season," McNown said.
"I hope to see a lot more consistency,
obviously higher statistics." For
McNown to achieve those goals, the
coaches believe he must be more patient
in the pocket.
"Overall, understanding the passing
game, he's getting a little bit better at it
every day,' Borges said. "Once he's been
in this passing game for a while, I think
his (completions) and touchdowns are
going to go up."
"I don't just expect him to improve; I
am going to insist on it," Borges said.
"I think right now he's on track to be a
darn good, maybe someday great, quar-
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Tailback Pepe Pearson and Ohio State face their toughest test yet when the
Buckeyes travel to South Bend on Saturday to face Notre Dame.
year, already throwing six interceptions.
Oddsmaker Danny Sheridan must think
Knute Rockne has taken over Indiana's
coaching reigns from Bill Mallory,
because the Wildcats are only a 3 1/2
favorite. Sheridan must have missed the
Indiana-Kentucky game last week.
Northwestern wins, 24-7.
EASTERN MICHIGAN (1-3) AT
MICHIGAN STATE (1-0, 1-2):
When your only win in four games is
against Western Michigan, and you
have played the likes of Temple and
Toledo, it might be fair to say you have
problems. Welcome to Eastern
The interesting thing about this game
against Michigan State is that the
Spartans are not doing much better.
Afiter beating up on Big Tet patsy
Purdue, the Spartans lost to Nebraska
two weeks ago followed by a devastat-
ing loss against Louisville, an important
game for Michigan State's psyche. The
Spartans might have one of the best
young coaches in the country in Nick
Saban, but they need more big time
players like middle linebacker Reggie
Garnett and wide receiver Derrick
Mason if they are going to compete in
the conference. Eastern Michigan, how-
ever, is a far cry from an upper echelon
Big Ten team. Heck, they're a far cry
from a lower echelon 'Big Ten team.
Michigan State wins, 30-10.
NORTH CAROLINA STATE(0-2) AT
PURDUE (0-1, 0-3):
This is why people play college foot-
ball. This is as interesting as it gets.
If you actually believe what you just
read, you might want to seek some pro-
fessional help. Purdue actually wins a
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