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November 21, 1997 - Image 22

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-11-21
Note:
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- The Michigan Daily -- Football Saturday - November 22, 1997

FEATURE

i

QUICK INFO

November 22, 1997 - Fo

l

M

One dream
Brian Griese has had a tumultous career at
Michigan, but after finally putting his critics to
rest this season, he has the chance to lead
the Wolverines to the Rose Bowl

He

Ohio State
1996 Record: 74 Big Ten
(1st puace), 11-1 overall

-AmmqLl I
ON

The two-deep

Coach: John Cooper, 11th season
Last meeting: Michigan 13,
Ohio State 9; Nov. 23, 1996
Overaloserkm Michigan leads, 53,4-6
Key players
LB Andy Katzenmoyer, So.
TB Pepe Pearson, Sr.
WR David Boston, So.

MICHIGAN
LEADERS

Wide Receiver
9 David Boston
83 Vaness Provitt
Left Tackle
77 Tyson Walter
75 Henry Fleming
Left Guard
56 Rob Murphy OR
76 Jefferson Kelley
Center
63 Kurt Murphy
50 Eric Gohlstein
Right Guard
64 Ben Gilbert
55 Tam Hopkins
Right Tackle
50 Eric Gohistein
67 Brooks Burns

Wide Receiver
15 Dee Miller
42 Kevin Griffin
Quarterback
8 Stanley Jackson AND
7 Joe Germaine
Fullback
23 Matt Keller
37 Nick Goings
Tailback
29 Pepe Pearson
5 Michael Wiley
Tight End
85 John Lumpkin
84 Steve Wisniewski
Placekicker
47 Dan Stultz
17 Andy Stamp

m
i
N
U
p

By Daniell dRumor,
D)aily Sports Editor
T he end of an era is here.
Michigan quarterback
Brian Griese does not
flinch, complain or dwell
on the inevitable. With
the same inner calm and maturity
that he has displayed all season,
Griese acknowledged the magnitude
of today's matchup against Ohio
State, arguably the biggest game in
the last decade for Michigan foot-
ball and certainly the biggest game
of his career.
He knows the nation and his cyn-
ics and supporters will be watching.
As the quarterback, the leader of the
best, Michigan's success hinges, in
part, on how he handles the pressure
playing in his last home game with
Michigan's postseason fate hanging
in the balance. He doesn't think
about the Big House - as Michigan
Stadium is affectionately known -
the crowd, the excitement or the
memories. Right now, concentra-
tion supersedes emotion.
"It's going to be emotional, but
it probably won't hit me until after
the game," Griese said. "During
the game, I try to keep people
focused. Once the final whistle
blows, it will hit me."
Today, Griese has the opportunity
to beat Ohio State for the third
straight year, and in the process,
lead the Wolverines to the Rose
Bowl, a dream of Griese's since he
stepped onto campus as a wide-eyed
freshman.
It only seems fitting that the fifth-
year senior has a chance to end his
fairy-tale career with a fairy-tale
season.
Griese's football career has
never been easy, but neither has
Michigan football for the past
four years. Things are differ-
ent this season - for Griese
and for the Wolverines.
It's ironic that Griese
almost did not return for
his fifth year of eligibili-
ty, with four straight four-
loss seasons and a quarter-
back controversy looming
with Scott Dreisbach on his
mind. But a strong showing
in last year's Outback Bowl
in Tampa. Fla., factored into
the decision of his life.-
My performance in the
Outback Bowl had every-
thinsg to do w,'ith my
deccision," Gricee ?_

said. "Adter that, I knew I wanted to
come back."
Maybe something told him he had
to come back.
At the start of the season,
Michigan was not expected to be in
the Rose Bowl con-
tention on the last
day of its season,
but it happened.
Griese was not J"
expected to be
the primary rea-
son the
Wolverines
made it this far,
but he has
been.

Now Griese, a former non-schol-
arship player, is the leader of a
Michigan team that is undefeated,
ranked No. 1 in the country for the
first time since 1990 and has a
chance to go to Pasadena for the
first time since the 1992 season, if
it can beat Ohio State today.
"It's true, I've been through
a lot here, but I wouldn't
change a thing," Griese
said. "My job is to get the
team in the end zone. I
realize my role this year,
and I've been more of a
leader."

PASSING
Player C-A
Griese 161-252
Brady 12-15

Yds
1895
103

TD
14
0

Int
5
0

Kapsner 2-3 21 0 0

SARA STILLMAN/Daily
In a controversial decision - but one that will not be second-guessed - Uoyd
Carr gave Brian Griese the starting quarterback job the first game of the season.

RUSHING
Player Att
Howard 173
Thomas 116
C. Williams 57
Floyd 48
RECEIVING
Player No.
Howard 32
Tuman 26
Streets 24
C. Williams2l
Shaw 19
Thomas 13
Woodson 10
Shea 8
Floyd 7
PUNTING
Player
Vinson
Griese

Yds
856
500
264
229
Yds
256
3871
3491
176
2351
128
1941
76
83

Avg
4.9
4.3
4.6
4.8
Avg
8.0
14.9
14.5
8.5
12.4
9.8
19.4
9.5
11.9

Lg
51
58
16
31
Lg
26
53
41
26
39
28
37
23
43
Avg
39.6
39.0

TD
7
4
1
2
TD
1
4
4
0
2
0
2
0
0
Lg
54
41

M

m m

1''
K
C4

_, .

Griese patrolled the sidelines most
of that season. He was a senior, a for-
mer starter on a nationally-recognized
team and now his most exciting
moments came as Michigan's pooch
punter. Redemption came in the final
game of the season against Ohuio
State. Griese relieved Dreisbach at
halftime and carried the Wolverines
from a nien-point deficit to a 13-9
victory, spoiling the Buckeyes' unde-
feated season for the second consecu-
tive season.
So what's Griese's secret against
the Buckeyes?
"Secret? I don't know. The secret
has been good weather," Griese
joked.
All kidding aside, Griese has a
chance to make it three-straight victo-
ries against the Buckeyes today and
end his career against a team he has
dominated.
This game "is so important, it's
hard to explain," Michigan linebacker
Sam Sword said. "To send our seniors
out with an undefeated record would
be a great honor."
U..
Now fast forward again and stop at
the present. This is where the story
ends.
Griese has traveled an interesting
road to get to where he is now, and
the only secret to his success this sea-
son has been hard work, dedication
and a commitment to fundamentals.
Griese is not the prototypical quar-
terback with a strong arm, quick feet
and a bag of hidden weapons. He
does not have a strong arm, he isn't
very quick and he tends to keep the
game plan simple. His strengths is to
keep things simple: simple pass pat-
terns, smarts, quick thinking and
poise in the pocket.

It has worked perfectly so far.
Griese is living proof that success
also follows quarterbacks who don't
have big names and who aren't flashy
or high-powered machines. He is cur-
rently ranked 19th in the country in
passing efficiency, just two spots
behind Tennessee's Peyton Manning,
the front-runner for the Heisman
Trophy. There are just four quarter-
backs in the history of Michigan foot-
ball who have passed for more than
300 yards in a game - Griese is
third on that list with 323 yards
against Penn State in 1995.
He is 12th on Michigan's single-
season passing yards list with 1,577
in 1995. He already has 1,895 passing
yards in the '97 season, courtesy of
short, methodical pass patterns aided
by a few key blocks. With two games
remaining, Griese has the potential to
move into the list's top-five.
"Brian Griese is doing a great job
running that football team," Ohio
State coach John Cooper said.
It is strangely appropriate that
Griese will cap off his career against
the Buckeyes, but the tables are
turned this season. This season, Ohio
State has a chance to play spoiler to
Michigan's perfect season. A
Michigan victory will give the
Wolverines the Rose Bowl berth they
covet and hand Griese a memorable
season. A loss will likely erase his
fairy-tale story.
"We understand what we did to
them last year," Griese said of
Michigan's 13-9 victory. "Every guy
remembers that, and we're committed
to not letting that happen to us.
"I had always dreamed of the Rose
-Bowl, but I never thought it would
come to this," Griese said. "I haven't
had a problem relaxing. You only get
to live once and go through this type
of experience."

No. Yds
411623
3 117

Defensive End
56 James Hall
59 Grady Brooks
Defensive Tackle
91 Josh Williams
95 Pat Kratus
Nose Tackle
58 Rob Renes
94 Eric Wilson
Defensive End
81 Glen Steele
90 Juaquin Feaze
Outside Uneback
43 Clint Copenhe
45 Jeff Holtry
Cornerback
30 Andre Weathe
5 James Whitley
Wide Receiver
86 Tai Streets
85 Marcus Knigh
Left Tackle
79 Jeff Backus 0
73 Paul Tarinous
Left Guard
76 Steve Hutchin
67 David Brandt
Center
68 Zack Adami
64 Steve Frazier
Right Guard
52 Chris Ziemanr
67 David Brandt
Right Tackle
77 Jon Jansen
71 Jeff Potts

Left End
94 Robert Bailey
96 Tony Eisenhard
Left Tackle
68 Winfield Garnett
92 Paul Breed
Right Tackle
73 Joe Brown
95 Jim Bell
Right End
48 Matt LaVrar
90 Clinton Wayne
Outside Linebacker
52 Kevin Johnson
46 Marcel Willis
Middle Linebacker
11 Antoine Winfield
3 David Mitchell

Outside Unebacker
45 Andy Katzenmoyer
44 Chris Kirk
Cornerback
35 Jerry Rudinski
32 Na'il Diggs
Strong Safety
19 Ahmed Plummer
2 Rolland Steele
Free Safety
13 Damon Moore
20 Central McClellion
Cornerback
1 Gary Berry
17 Percy King
Punter
41 Brent Bartholomew
47 Dan Stultz

I
-z
_e

KICKOFF RETURNS
Player No. Yds
C. Williams 14 285
PUNT RETURNS
Player No. Yds
Shaw 10 76
Woodson 28 186
Whitley 3 15

Avg Lg TD
20.4 31 0

DEFENSE
Player
Sword
Jones
Ray
Hendricks
J. Williams
Steele
Hall
Woodson
Renes
Weathers
Copenhaver
Gold
Mayes
Feazell
Peterson
Taylor
Whitley
Wilson
Patmon
Swett

Solo
66
53
35
27
26
27
24
26
25
24
19
18
15
15
17
13
13
5
4
3

Avg
7.6
6.6
5.0
Asst
22
21
24
21
20
16
18
14
15
13
10
9
10
9
6
3
3
5
5
4

Lg
26
20
7

Tot
88
74
59
48
46
43
42
40
40
37
29
27
25
24
23
16
16
10
9
7

TD
0
0
0

Staff
Picks
- all picks made
against the
spread.
Game (ROME TEAM IN CAPS)
MICHIGAN (-3 1/2) vs. Ohio State
PENN STATE (-15 1/2) vs. Wisconsin
Michigan State (-25) vs. ILLINOIS
Purdue (-14) vs. INDIANA
IOWA (-21) vs. Minnesota
Florida State (-4 1/2) vs. FLORIDA;
UCLA (-9 1/2) vs. SOUTHERN CAL
WASHINGTON (-6 1/2) vs. Wash, State
Tennessee (-16) vs. KENTUCKY
AUBURN (-12) vs. Alabama
Best Bet
Last week
Overall
Overall best bet

NICHOLAS J.
COTSONIKA

Ohio State
Wisconsin
Michigan State
Purdue
Minnesota
Florida
UCLA
Washington State'
Tennessee
Auburn
UCLA
6-4
72-47-1
5-5

ALAN
GOLDENBACH
Michigan
Penn State
Michigan State
Purdue
Minnesota
Florida
UCLA
Washington State
Tennessee
Auburn
UCLA
5-5
57-60-1
4-6

JOHN
LEROI

PASS DEFENSE
Player Int Yds
Woodson 6 7
Ray 5 43
Hendricks 2 0
Copenhaver 1 19
Jones 1 17
Patmon 1 0
Sword 1 0

Michiga
W iscons
Michigan S
Purdue
Minnesot
Florida Sts
UCLA
Washingt
Tennesse
Auburn
UCLA
5-5
59-58-1
4-6

L9
4
30
0
19
17
0.
0

Brk-up
4
4
2
0
1
0
2

TD
0
0
0
0
0
0
0

5-5 4-6

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