Scorts e CS
MAJOR LEAGUE St. Louis at
BASEBALL BUFFALO, inc.
CLEVELAND 10, MONTREAL 3,
Florida 3 Florida 0
Series tied 2-2 Chicago 1
N.Y. RANGERS 0
SAN JOSE, inc.
SAN ANTONIO 112
Golden State 87
October 23, 1997
fy Alan Goldenbach
Edily Sports Editor
Despite growing up in Detroit,
Clarence Williams did not take sides in
the state's greatest rivalry.
"Actually, growing up I wasn't a
Michigan or Michigan State fan," the
Michigan junior tailback said. "I was a
University of Miami fan."
Even if he lived in an igloo in the
North Pole, you would figure that
Williams, in particular, would have had a
little parental influence in setting his head
in a particular direction at a young age.
"I never wanted to go to Michigan
State," Williams said. "My dad is actual-
ly a graduate of Michigan State and he
persuaded me to go to Michigan. I don't
know what his reasoning was, but I was
never a Spartans fan.
"And I won't be on Saturday."
The week leading up to the biggest
about players' loyalties today
sporting event in the state always evokes
childhood memories for the participants
- especially those native to Michigan -
of when they choose either the Blue or
the Green side of the intrastate fence.
"I was kind of neutral growing up in
Alabama,' said junior linebacker Sam
Sword, who subsequently moved to
Saginaw. "Until I moved to Michigan, I
was kind of half-and-half. But once I
signed on the dotted line with Michigan,
there was no regret about not going to
What makes the decision to sway to
one team or the other is complicated for
the young football player in this state
with aspirations of playing collegiately.
Many of the players on both sides were
recruited by both Michigan and
So throwing one's heart to one school
as a youngster could result in mixed emo-
tions come time to sign a letter of intent.
"I took one of my five (recruiting) vis-
its (to Michigan State)," said junior line-
backer Clint Copenhaver, a Brighton
native. "I know their coaching staff pret-
ty well, I know a few of their players pret-
ty well, so that may make it a little bit
more interesting for me."
But apparently, the trip to East Lansing
was a mere formality.
"I grew up 20 minutes from Ann
Arbor," Copenhaver said. "My whole life
growing up, I was really in love with
Michigan. Michigan State was always a
smaller interest of mine until I took that
avenue to see what it was like.
"But my whole life, my love was with
Michigan, so it was the obvious choice."
For some, though, the choice is not so
clear. In fact, a recruit's decision can
sometimes be swayed by the game's out-
"Your natural reaction (of school
choice) is to go with the team that is the
winner," Williams said. "In my particular
situation, I wasn't basing it on who won.
I just chose Michigan.
"But I'm sure kids take that into con-
sideration because that's very important."
And then there are those whose dislike
for one team came from recruiting. Or in
Marcus Ray's case, the lack thereof.
"They didn't recruit me," said the
senior safety from Columbus, who has
just a bit of interest in Michigan's other
major rivalry. "I think they were the only
team in the Big Ten that didn't recruit me.
I was wondering why they thought I was-
n't good enough to play there"
But before we get the idea that the
Michigan-Michigan State rivalry is as
much a part of every football players'
family as the white picket fence in front
See RIVALRY, Page 17A
Anthony Thomas will likely have a memory of his own after he and the rest of the
Wolverines try to run past Michigan State this weekend in East Lansing.
THE STATE NEWS SAYS:
flat i games
The leaves have changed colors and are falling off the
trees all around us. The air has turned colder and there are
hints of snow in the forecast.
And for football fans that can mean only one thing - it's
time for Michigan State and Michigan to meet on the grid-
It's time for blood and guts to be
spilled onto the Spartan Stadium astro-
And it's also time for something else
unbridled hatred of the other
Normally, the rivalry between
MARC Spartans and Wolverines everywhere is
VIEAU considered to be a slow boil. But this
week, it's a nuclear meltdown.
The State And to help me with this veritable
News cornucopia of Ann Arbor angst, I've
brought in former Michigan hoops
coach Steve Fisher. After all, he's got n
bat, of spare time on his hands these days.
Yet, I am in a bit of a quandary of where to start picking
on you Wolverines clones.
There are the inevitable drunken sprees that Michigan
athletic coaches seem to go on, including: former football
coach Gary Moeller's display of what alcohol can to do a
body in a Southfield restaurant. Hockey coach Red
Bernson relieving himself on an Ann Arbor library. It's one
thiii to take care of nature after you've had one too many,
lut to do it in front of a man of the law? Come on, Red!
And hey, while we're on a roll, how is senior quarterback
Brian Griese's hand doing after he smashed a window with
See STATE NEWS, Page 18A
Michigan tight end Jerame Tuman, who scored two touchdowns last weekend against Iowa, has been one of Brian Griese's
favorite targets all season.
THE DAILY SAYS:
are abuzz with tal
of their alma-mater
Baby talk is buzzing throughout the fast-food business
these days. Everyone who operates a drive-thru window in
this state, or slops together a Big Mac or a Whopper, wants
to know how their alma mater, Michigan State, will do this
"Uhhhh," said one Michigan State grad, who could not
provide the spelling of his name. "We
do good. We only losed this many
The guy was holding up two fin-
gers, but I'm guessing he meant one:
that debacle last week in Evanston.
Hey, let's face it. Choking is a
Michigan tradition, but those Spartans
NICHOLAS J. had to go and try it themselves, thor-
COTSONIKA oughly ruining what could have bees
The Greek match of near equals this Saturday.
Speaks So we're left with the same old
Speaks __ story: Michigan State hoping to make
its whole season by beating Michigan.
How sad. The Wolverines have more
rivals than a Spartan can count -- such as Ohio State, Notre
Dame and Penn State (that's three) - all of which are
teams that play for titles. The Spartans have the Wolverines,
an inferiority complex and a future in french fries.
Of course, there's no question Michigan State has played
pretty well this year. Coach Nick Saban has done an,
admirable job, and his psychological techniques have beei
near genius. Look what he did with that offensive line:
"Now, guys, this is just like class" Saban told them "You
know when the guy up in the front of the class -.you
know, the farmer - looks the other way, and you fool
around? Blocking is just like that. Just pretend you'reow-
"So," one Spartan said, "if blocking is like cow-tipping, is
scoring like what we do with the sheep?"
"No," Saban said. "We can't have everything."
Those are just the athletes. It gets worse. Take, for exam
ple, a study recently completed by the Michigan Alumni *
Association. In it, the association asked Michigan alums to
See COTSONIKA, Page 18A
no to South
Fired Michigan basketball coach
Steve Fisher said Wednesday he has
turned down an offer to become
coach at South Alabama.
South Alabama pursued Fisher
aggressively. Fisher and his wife,
Angie, flew to the school Sunday on
the school's private jet for an inter-
Fisher was impressed when he left
the school, but said he needed time to
CeS think over his decision, The Detroit
News reported yesterday.
Fisher said he called the school
Tuesday night to reject the offer, but
school officials maintained they
never had made an official offer to
"He was asked, as were all th
other candidates, whether he wouUi
take the job if it were offered to him,"
Ron Rosenberger, assistant to school
president Frederick Whiddon, said.
"He responded that he wasn't'"
Fisher's decision left a list of six
candidates, including former
Memphis coach Larry Finch.
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will be here soon.