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October 09, 1997 - Image 9

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-10-09

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The Michigan Daily - Thursday, October 9, 1997 - 9A
Ohio State, Penn State face off in big showdown

By Daniel Ped
For the Daily
ith only one weekend of Big Ten
y complete, the usually fuzzy Rose
Bowl.picture has started to clear up ever
so slightly. While Iowa burst into nation-
al prominence with a dominating 4-0
start, it was dealt a crippling 23-7 defeat
at the hands of Ohio State. Although it is
only one early loss, the Hawkeyes have
significantly hurt their Rose Bowl
chances. They are idle this week, and
will take the extra time to prepare for
t ir upcoming visit to the Big House to
on the Wolverines.
The early results from this season
reveal a clear case of the haves and the
have-nots in the conference. "The Big
Five" - Michigan, Penn State, Ohio
State,' Michigan State and Iowa -
appear to have the ability to pummel the
conference's less-fortunate programs.
Michigan, Penn State and Michigan
State beat their opponents by a combined
re of 109-17 last week.
hose scores are not good for compe-
tition in the conference, but the disparity
in talent makes for even more exciting
games when the top echelon teams play
onte another - like this week...
No.7 OHIo STATE (1-0, 5-0) AT No.2
PENN STATE (1-0, 4-0)
This is the kind ofmatchup that makes
fads ,scream with joy, coaches cringe
with 'fear and network executives drool
with anticipation. As appealing as last
's Iowa-Ohio State game was, this
matchup easily dwarfs it as an undefeat-
ed ,uckeyes squad rolls into Happy
Valley to take on the Nittany Lions.
The Lions looked unstoppable this
year as they have jumped out to a quick
start behind their offense, which has
averaged a whopping 551 total yards -
tops in the Big Ten. Hometown hero
Mike McQueary has been the Big Ten's
mst efficient passer thus far, connecting
*n with Joe Jurevicius, who leads the
coiference in receiving yards. Coupled
with the ground attack of Heisman hope-
ful 'Curtis Enis, the Lions seem untouch-
But the country still doesn't know
how'good the Lions really are because
they haven't played any quality team -
until now. Last Saturday, wrecking-ball
linebacker Andy Katzenmoyer and the
Ohio State defense stifled tailback
an Banks and Iowa, holding the pre-
vi isly top-ranked offense of the
Hawkeyes to only seven hard-earned
points. Katzenmoyer is the best defen-

sive player in the country south of
Charles Woodson, and he should be able
to get into the Penn State backfield.
The much-heralded quarterback duo
of the Buckeyes - Stanley Jackson and
Joe Germaine - will have to contend
not only with the bruising defense of
Penn State, but also with the hostile
crowd in Happy Valley. But Ohio State
has many offensive weapons with the
steady ground game of tailback Pepe
Pearson and the breakaway speed of
wideouts David Boston, Dee Miller and
freshman Ken-Yon Rambo.
Even though Ohio State lost massive
offensive lineman Orlando Pace to the
NFL, the Buckeyes' line has been domi-
nating of late, including last week when
it controlled the trenches against Iowa.
The Buckeyes can take confidence in the
fact that they beat the best of the Big Ten,
while the Lions may be wondering how
good they really are.
Ohio State coach John Cooper can
-move into second place in school history
with one more win, which would give
him 82 in his career.
Remember the winner of this game
has gone on to at least a share of the Big
Ten title three of the past four years.
Take a seat on the couch, crack open the
cheesy poofs and prepare for a classic.
Ohio State 23, Penn State 21
No.11 MICHIGAN STATE (1-0,4-0)AT
INDIANA (0-1, 1-4)
Indiana has already lost by 42 and 37
points this season, under the guidance of
rookie coach Cam Cameron. Last year,
the Hoosiers did not lose any of their eight
games by more than 23 points. Coming
off of an embarrassing 37-0 homecoming
loss to Michigan, 37-0, the Hoosiers now
host undefeated Michigan State.
The Spartans appear to be solid in
every aspect of their game. The huge and
skilled offensive line of the Spartans,
anchored by 6-foot-7, 330-pound Flozell
Adams, has looked very formidable.
Michigan State tailback Sedrick Irvin
has been the beneficiary of good block-
ing, as he and his backfield comrade
Marc Renaud have averaged nearly 185
yards per game on the ground. The air
game led by Todd Schultz has quarter-
backed a safe, error-free attack.
But the strength of Michigan State,
like so many other great teams, lies in its
defense. The Spartans' rushing defense
has been the stingiest in the Big Ten,
allowing only 60 yards per game. Yes,
even stingier than the Wolverines',
which has allowed 77 yards per game.

By stark contrast, Indiana ranks near
the bottom of every major offensive and
defensive category in the Big Ten, most
notably last in rushing offense with 71
yards per game. If the Hoosiers are to
make a game out of it, they will look to
quarterback Jay Rodgers to try to jump-
start the dormant offense.
Third-year coach Nick Saban has
restored pride in East Lansing, while
Cameron has...well, it's only his first
Michigan State 35, Indiana 10
Fact: Wisconsin is the only team that
is 2-0 in the Big Ten. Fact: Wisconsin has
won those two games by a combined
score of three points. After being annihi-
lated by Syracuse in its opening game,
34-0, Wisconsin has quietly posted a
five-game winning streak.
Sophomore running back Ron Dayne
has spearheaded a running attack that
has posted a conference-best 18 rushing
touchdowns, as well as averaging 201
yards a game.
Wisconsin will be looking to avoid a
letdown against the lowly Fighting Illini
after its emotional, comeback victory at
Northwestern, 26-25, last Saturday.
Coach Barry Alvarez has the team play-
ing well, as he is trying to engineer a
repeat of the team's 1993 Rose Bowl
Illinois has the unenviable task of
hosting the Badgers one week after get-
ting smashed by Penn State, 41-7. If the
Illini are to avoid their 12th consecutive
loss, they will have to have get major
production from Robert Holcombe, who
is ranked third in the conference in rush-
ing with an average of 136 yards per
game. Unfortunately for the Illini, Dayne
is second in the conference with a 148-
yard average, and Illinois is ranked last
in the Big Ten in total defense.
Wisconsin 30, Illinois 19
PURDUE (1-0, 3-1) AT MINNESOTA (0-
After beginning the season with a dis-
appointing loss to Toledo, the
Boilermakers have rattled off three
straight victories, including a huge victo-
ry over Notre Dame and a decisive vic-
tory in the against Northwestern. This is
the first time since 1984 that the
Boilermakers have won three straight.
Purdue's offense has been surprisingly
productive thus far, ranked third in the
conference. The secret has been the
chemistry of quarterback Billy Dicken

Get ready for the game of the week: The Nittany Lions may need big defensive plays to weather the storm of the Buckeyes'
offense, but can Ohio State stop Joe Jurevicius and Curtis Enis like they did Iowa tailback Tavian Banks a week ago?

and wide receiver Brian Alford, who has
caught 27 passes for 392 yards. Purdue
will look to exploit the Golden Gophers'
defense, which is ranked eighth in the
Big Ten.
Minnesota has not had as much suc-
cess as Purdue's offense. The Gophers
are ranked 10th in the conference in total
offense. Senior quarterback Cory Sauter
has struggled somewhat. The Gophers
will look for Sauter to find deep-threat
wide receiver Tutu Atwell.
If the Gophers are to be successful in
this game, they will draw strength from
their front seven, who have allowed only
98 rushing yards per game, good for
third in the conference.
Purdue 26, Minnesota 21


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f9jclard ont's
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Hours: M, T, TH, F 9 am-6 pm
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Dean Dome may be
Smith-less this season

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) - North
CarbiiRa has called a news conference
for today concerning the men's basket-
ball program and speculation centered
on the possible retirement of coach
Dean Smith, the sport's. winningest
Sports information director Steve
Kirschner refused to give details about
t 2 p.m. news conference, saying only
tY the school planned a "major
apngncement." He would not comment
when asked whether it concerned Smith.
However, the Basketball Times, a
Rochester, Mich.-based monthly news-
paper, cited unidentified sources close
to the school in reporting that Smith will
step down immediately. It reported that
assistants Phil Ford or Bill Guthridge
would become interim head coach.
,uthridge has been Smith's assistant
0731 seasons and has turned down a
number of head coaching offers.
ford was the key guard in Smith's
farnmd Four Corners offense and is the
school's all-time leading scorer. He led

the Tar Heels to a 99-25 mark from
1974-75 to 1977-78. He has been an
assistant at North Carolina for nine sea-
The 66-year-old Smith, who has
coached the Tar Heels for 36 seasons,
has said for years he would decide
before the start of practice each year
whether to retire. North Carolina begins
practice Oct. 18.
Smith's home telephone was busy or
went unanswered Wednesday night.
Smith said earlier this year he planned
to honor his contract through 2001.
"I take each year as it comes," Smith
said in March, "and I won't make that
decision in April, because every April I
am probably (tired). So, you wait to see
how excited you are in August. For 36
years I guess I've been excited in August
and September. If that ever changed up
until 2001 then I would make that deci-
Smith, with a career record of 879-
254, broke Adolph Rupp's all-time vic-
tory mark of 876 last season.

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