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April 01, 1998 - Image 11

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1998-04-01

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-- The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, April 1, 1998 - 11

Solid all-around squad gives
'M' tennis big-time potential

Chris Thompson
b. x(left) and team-
- Mu { mate Tom
Maichow became
victims of Ryk
Neethling's NCAA
z dominance, with
Thompson losing
two events.
zona gets one that got away

By Mark Francescutti
Daily Sports Writer
How can the Wolverines be this good?
It may be premature to say anything... but this is the
best Michigan men's tennis team in years.
But what makes these Wolverines so dominant? A
prime example has been their performance the past two
weekends, when Michigan had little trouble dominating
Big Ten opponents. It seems that all season - the fall
tournaments, the Rolex regionals, and the dual-matches
- Michigan has dominated.
As with any top team, there have been bumps in the
road, including close losses to top 20 teams South
Florida and Boise State, plus the shutout loss to Virginia
But overall, the season has been a Tennis
tremendous success. Here are the rea-
sons Michigan has a chance to make Commentary
some noise as the NCAA ---------------
Championships approach.
m Top-notch coaching: When it comes to the
Michigan coaches, you're talking about the best. Brian
Eisner earned his 500th win this season and his 35 years
of coaching and 18 conference titles place him in the top
20 in NCAA history.
Dan Goldberg - the winningest singles player in
Michigan history - has smoothly made the transition
from player to assistant coach.
Deadly Depth: Michigan has one of the top singles
sets in the region, if not the best.
Senior David Paradzik, at No. I singles, has settled
down in the past few weeks and consistently beaten top
Senior Arvid Swan has been a force at No. 2 singles
with a 23-9 record this year and currently is 10th all-time
at Michigan in career single wins at 79-55.
The four other singles spots are all held by strong play-
ers - senior captain Brook Blain, juniors Will Farah and
Jake Raiton, and two up-and-coming sophomores in Matt
Wright and John Long.
Steady Veterans: If there was ever a time for
Michigan to make a national championship run, it is now.
It is extremely hard for northern teams to compete with
the warm-weather squads from the south or west due to
recruiting problems.
But Michigan has earned third place at the NCAA
Championships twice under Eisner, and this year's team
- with its leadership - could make a run once again.
With four seniors and two juniors, leadership and
knowledge are all crucial assets.
"Our players have been in this position before,"
Goldberg said. "We have a lot of confidence and experi-
ence, which rubs off on our younger players."
The question marks last season were the doubles
teams. Inconsistent play led to several wins by weaker
teams, but this season, Michigan has won every match

By Jacob R. Wheeler
Daily Sports Writer
AUBURN, Ala. - At the time, sign-
ing'Ryk Neethling didn't seem like a big
deal to Michigan. The Wolverines had
just won the 1995 national champi-
onship, and when Neethling - a little-
known high school swimmer from South
Africa - sent a letter to Jon Urbanchek
the following year, the Michigan coach
had no scholarships left. So he didn't
sign him.
After all, the Wolverines already were
very strong in the long-distance freestyle
events, Neethling's domain. They had
Olympic gold medalist Tom Dolan, who
still holds NCAA records in the 500- and
1 ,650-yard races. And they had Olympic
silver-medalist Tom Malchow to com-
plement the host of other distance swim-
mn1Ts. So Neethling was hardly a neces-
But the South African pursued
Michigan. In fact, it was his first choice.
Neethling badly wanted to swim in the
United States and he wanted to be a part
j of.Michigan's dynasty.
"In high school, I always dreamed of
coming to the United States on a swim-
ming scholarship," Neethling said. "I
wanted to swim for Michigan because at
that time they were the dominant team."
Neethling especially idolized Dolan,
the, benchmark for college swimming

during his generation. He wanted to
wear maize and blue and win gold like
his hero. But Michigan never gave him
the chance.
"He gets my vote now," Urbanchek
said. "In hindsight, I'd like to have him.
But at the time we didn't have any schol-
arship money for him, we had already
spent it."
At the NCAA Championships this
past weekend, Neethling burned
Michigan for turning him down The
sophomore twice destroyed any hopes
the Wolverines had of winning a gold
medal. Thursday night, Neethling domi-
nated the 500 free from the get-go and
broke the pool record by seven seconds.
Michigan's Malchow and freshman
Chris Thompson could only play catch-
up the entire race and watch their golden
hopes motor away on Neethling's back.
Malchow finished in second, 4.3 sec-
onds behind the South African machine
and Thompson took the bronze, 5.33
seconds out of first. Malchow and
Neethling were supposed to battle it out
Friday in the 200 free. But Malchow, the
Big Ten swimmer of the year, struggled
in the preliminaries and didn't even
make the consolation round. Neethling
cruised to an easy victory and another
Martin Aquatics Center record in the
200 free.
But Neethling wasn't done yet. Once

again, Thompson found himself chasing
Neethling from the beginning of the
race. Within minutes it became obvious
that no one was going to catch the
Wildcat, swimming an entire pool length
in front of the pack.
But Neethling was still chasing after
someone else. He was tracking down
Dolan, trying to break his hero's NCAA
record in the 1,650 - one which was
thought unreachable.
"I didn't think he'd break Dolan's
record," Urbanchek said. "And I'm an
expert on that subject. I don't think
Dolan was worried about it either."
Urbanchek was right, the record still
stands. But Neethling came within three
seconds of Dolan's seemingly untouch-
able 14:29.31. And he was actually on
pace to beat it halfway through
Saturday's race.
"I've known I had a chance at the
record for a couple years," Neethling
said. "I started thinking about breaking it
last January.
"I wouldn't say that I don't like
Michigan or I wanted to rub it- in their
face. I just had something to prove."
He certainly proved his worth at the
NCAAs. Neethling ended up with three
goal medals and topped all swimmers at
the meet by scoring 60 points.
Not bad for an unrecruited, no-name
kid from South Africa.

Junior Will Farah is one of a number of reasons the Michigan
men's tennis team has been so successful this season.
when it carried the doubles point.
The three losses, however, all were in part due to dou-
bles match defeats.
"If we can consistently win doubles, I don't see any
team in the country that can win four out of six singles
against us," Goldberg said.
And only one other thing might be able to stop them -
the weather.
Take this weekend, for example, when Mother Nature
proved a little difficult for the Wolverines. Playing out-
side for just the second time this season, the high winds
in Bloomington gave Michigan some problems.
Still, the wind couldn't overpower Michigan's singles
strength, as the Wolverines won the close points when
they needed to, squeaking out five wins in a 6-1 victory
over the Hoosiers.
The victory kept Michigan (2-0 Big Ten, 7-3 overall)
undefeated in Big Ten play while giving Indiana (2-1, 7-
6) its first Big Ten loss.
Conference win-loss records will determine the seed-
ings for the Big Ten Championships, which start on April
"Conditions were difficult," Goldberg said.
"Fortunately, we had the experience out at the Boise tour-
nament, but there the conditions were nicer - no wind,
very calm - here it was extremely windy, which makes
the matches a lot tighter."

i X

Department of Microbiology and Immunology
* Introduction to Infectious Diseases:
Designed to introduce undergraduate biology majors and pre-professionals to
the variety of strategies used by bacteria and viruses to cause disease. Taught
by faculty who study pathogenesis of cholera, cystic fibrosis, gonorrhea, oral
and genital herpes, Legionnaire's disease and tuberculosis. Micro 505.
Lectures. 3 credits. MWF, 1-2 pm, G127 Angell Hall.
Basic Microbiology and Immunology:
Three separate but integrated modules present fundamental concepts of micro-
biology (Micro 501), immunology (Micro 502), and virology (Micro 503).
Appropriate for students interested in a basic understanding of the field.
Lectures. 1 credit modules*. MWF, 10-11 am, 5623 Medical Science
Building II.
* Studies in Microbial Physiology and Molecular Biology:
Three separate modules that can be taken individually or combined to form a
single course focusing on important topics in microbial physiology, molecular
biology, and genetics. Appropriate for students preparing for careers in health
professions or graduate work who are interested in a relatively advanced pre-
sentation of topics in microbial physiology (Micro 606), genetics and DNA
transactions (Micro 604), and regulation of gene expression (Micro 605).
Lectures, focusing on the literature. 1 credit modules*. TTH, 9-10:30 am,
5623 Medical Sciences Building II.
Advanced Virology:
Three separate but integrated modules present fundamental molecular and cel-
lular concepts of viral replication and pathogenesis through lectures and dis-
cussion of the primary literature by the class. Will focus on viral-host interac-
tions (Micro 615), DNA tumor viruses (Micro 616) and retroviruses (Micro
617). Appropriate for pre-professionals and students interested in graduate
study in biology who are interested in a relatively advanced presentation of
topics. 1 credit modules*. TTH 1:30-3 pm, 5623 Medical Science Building
Molecular Recognition of the Immune System:
This one credit course (Micro 640) will consist of lectures and discussions
pertaining to receptor-ligand interactions in the immune system. The goal of

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