September 21, 1998 - SportsMonday - The Michigan Daily - 78
"We competed better than I'd thought we would. When you move the hall
80 yards on Michigan's defense, you must be doing something right."
- Eastern Michigan coach Rick Rasnick
By Matk Snyder His game-high III yards receiving
Daily Sports Edor led to increased attention by Michigan
On Saturday, as Michigan throttled as the game progressed.
Eastern Michigan 59-20, the Wolverines But mental errors like Weathers'
realized how important suspended safe- doomed the Wolverines.
ty Marcus Ray is to the secondary. "We gave up too many big plays,"
His absence - Ray was declared Carr said. "And we didn't tackle well"
ineligible by Michigan coach Lloyd Another of those big plays came
Carr after allegations of 'improper con- when Church passed to Brandon
tact with a sports agent' - left a huge Campbell for a 71-yard touchdown in
hole that Eastern quarterback Walt the first quarter. After Campbell had
Church seized with a vengeance. clearly outraced the Wolverines, their
As if he were going after the last few only option was to reach him however
pieces of a turkey on Thanksgiving, they could, finally forcing him down at
Church mercilessly picked away at the the one-yard line.
helpless Michigan defense. Excuses for the secondary's ineffec-
"There were some things they gave to tiveness are numerous, and following
us," Eastern coach Rick Rasnick said. the game, multiple theories emerged.
Church "laid the ball out there real Carr blamed the problems generally
nice." on "a very young football team at a lot
Rasnick had reason to be pleased of positions," and specifically on
with Church's performance. The quar- Weathers' breathing problems.
a terback threw for 343 yards and two DeWayne Patmon, starting in Ray's
touchdowns as he completed 32 passes. position at strong safety, attributed the
"We had some nice deep balls that problems to jitters.
. were certainly good for us also," "I think we were worried about mak-
:" -Rasnick said. ing mistakes," he said.
The recipient of most of those bombs Though linebacker Dhani Jones dia-
; .- the longest of which went for a 71- missed the suggestion when asked,
yard touchdown - was wide receiver Charles Woodson's absence on the
;' Jermaine Sheffield. At 6-foot-5, defense may be a determining factor.
Sheffield, who has three inches on Three weeks of games may not be
Michigan's tallest defensive back - enough for the players to adjust to cov-
" Tommy Hendricks - snagged just five ering the entire field - as opposed to
* I passes but made them count. the half Woodson left them last year.
e Embarrassing Michigan's defense But, as with any unit, cohesiveness
came easily for Sheffield. On a sideline may override all other conspiracies.
route in the second quarter, he ran his Cornerback William Peterson played for
1 pattern and glanced over his shoulder at the first time this season and Ray did
the ball. Traditional defensive position- not. So the four-man unit (two safeties
ing would have had Andre Weathers and two corners) has varied weekly.
defending the pass, but instead, he "Each team has a different time fac-
MARGARET MYERS/DaIly defended Sheffield and never saw the tor," Jones said.
Eastern Michigan wide receiver Jermaine Sheffield used his 6-foot-5 frame to his advantage over Michigan's smaller defensive pass arrive. With Michigan State's bombing Bill
backs. Sheffield's height advantage allowed him to catch five passes - many of which were simply lofted in his direction by "Sheffield is an outstanding receiver," Burke just five days away, Michigan's
,arterback Walt Church - for 191 yards. Carr said. "He could play anywhere." time factor is running short.
Epstein's blasts win him kickoff spot for rest of season
By Mark Snyder
Daily Sports Editor
If Drew Henson possesses the Golden Arm
mong freshmen on the Michigan football team,
4en kicker Hayden Epstein must have the Golden
Epstein, whose long-distance leg was approach-
ing mythical status the more it remained in hiding,
finally got a chance to kick in a game situation
against Eastern Michigan and confirmed the hints.
"Hayden Epstein did a tremendous job," said
Carr, who considered starting Epstein against
Syracuse until just before the kickoff. "He's going
to be our kickoff guy."
Though mostly relegated to kickoffs - he
ttempted just one extra point which he converted
Epstein won the job in dramatic fashion.
And Lloyd Carr couldn't have chosen a better
day to make the switch from Jay Feely. Michigan's
59 points gave Epstein 10 opportunities to kick off
and he capitalized, booting seven into the end zone.
Well, actually, only six of them were caught by
On Epstein's final kickoff, after Michigan
extended its lead to 59-20, he threw all of his 194
pounds into the ball, sending it soaring through the
*prights in the: south end zone. As soon as the fans
realized what happened, they rose to their feet, giv-
ing Epstein a standing ovation in his first college
Eastern's success rate against him was horrid.
On the three kicks they were able to return, the
Eagles mustered just 35 yards on the runbacks.
His first kicking opportunity didn't come until
a minute of game time passed as Eastern Michigan
deferred its choice on the opening coin toss to the
second half, but he made a quick impression, send-
ing the bal deep into the end zone.
And Carr's praise continued.
"Absolutely, he's got a strong leg," Carr said.
"That's a tremendous asset; he boomed the ball."
INJURY UPDATE: Lloyd Carr's "banged-up"
team is beginning to improve it status week by
Cornerback William Peterson unexpectedly
returned to action, and on his first defensive play he
returned a Walt Church offering for a touchdown.
Though he only carried the ball five times on
offense, Clarence Williams also returned early,
immediately bring back the opening kickoff 31
But linebackers Ian Gold and Clint
Copenhaver, as well as fullback Aaron Shea,
remained mere spectators.
Carr said he probably won't get a further update
on their status until today.
Wide receiver Marquise Walker also can be
added to the list of walking wounded, but his ail-
ment - a broken finger - did not keep him from
practicing last week or catching a pass on Saturday.
TAKING THE FIFTH: While suspended safety
Marcus Ray was not on the sidelines on Saturday,
Michigan compliance director Derrick Gragg did
attend the game.
Gragg said he could not release details regard-
ing the investigation into Ray's alleged dealings
with an agent, but did redefine the terms of the sus-
Ray cannot attend team functions or participate
in team events (such as strolling the sidelines), even
if he's not in uniform, as long as he is declared inel-
igible, which is his current state.
In his postgame press conference, Carr refused
to address the issue, saying that he doesn't want to
talk about Ray's status until after the Michigan
With many Michigan players "banged-up," freshmen like Justin Fargas have been shouldering more of
the offensive load. Six newcomers saw considerable playing time in Saturday's victory.
L.A. SToRY: Putting a man in motion on an
offensive play is intended to confuse a defender.
On Saturday, Eastern put their entire team in
motion, confusing Michigan's entire defense.
Using a play called 'Anaheim,' Easteni coach
Rick Rasnick had his team line up in a traditional
Then, to rattle the Wolverines, the whole
offense -except the quarterback and the four line-
men necessary - shifted to the far right side of the
line spreading the defense.
Eastern quarterback Walt Church calmly ran
the play and found tailback Ethan Vannoy in the left
portion of the end zone for the Eagles' final score.
"I thought our defense did a great job (of
defending it)," Carr said. "That was an interesting
"We've got to put it'in ourselves."
Buckeyes shut down Missouri
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - In the
end, there really was no option against
No. 1 Ohio State.
"That was a good old, rock 'em, sock
'em football game," coach John Cooper
aid sifter his Buckeyes (3-0) beat No.
21 N4ssouri 35-14.
The Buckeyes, though, were sloppy
and sluggish through three quarters
agaisst the Tigers (2-1), who are 0-8
against No. I teams.
No.8 PENN ST. 20, PITTSBURGH 13
Now this is how Penn State-Pitt
garres used to be - and how almost
nobody outside of Pittsburgh's locker
room predicted it would be.
Kevin Thompson hit Chafie Fields
a 60-yard scoring pass in the third
quarter and No. 8 Penn State, played
unexpectedly tough by 25-point under-
dog Pittsburgh, was forced to rely on its
defense to win 20-13 Saturday.
Penn State (3-0) sacked Pitt's Matt
Lytle eight times - four by LaVar
Arrington - for 53 yards. Arrington
also made an interception.
No.14 WiscoNsin 52, UNLV 7
Ron Dayne and the Wisconsin
Badgers don't usually whoop and holler
when records are broken.
This one was different.
The bruising 250-pound junior tail-
back set the school career rushing
record Saturday, gaining 108 yards as
the 14th-ranked Badgers rolled over
winless UNLV 52-7 at Camp Randall
Dayne, who rushed for an NCAA
freshman record 2,109 yards in 1996
and 1,457 last year, entered the game 33
yards shy of Billy Marek's mark.
No. 16 AmzoNA 35, IOwA 11
So far, so good in the two-quarter-
back system at Arizona.
With Keith Smith nearly perfect in 1
1/2 quarters, and Ortege Jenkins mak-
ing some big plays in the middle half of
the game, the 16th-ranked Wildcats
pounded Iowa 35-11 on Saturday night.
Trung Canidate and Kelvin Eafon
each rushed for a pair of touchdowns as
Arizona (3-0) won its home opener for
the 1lth consecutive year and ran its
winning streak to seven games dating to
last year, the Wildcats' longest victory
string since they opened the 1993 sea-
NORTHWESTERN 23, RICE 14
Northwestern reached into its bag of
tricks Saturday and pulled out a victory
The Wildcats successfully used a
fake punt, an onside kick, a quick kick,
unusual formations and a hurry-up
offense that caught the Owls flatfooted
and helped propel Northwestern to a
23-14 victory Saturday night.
Northwestern (2-1) also showed up
with a defensive set the Owls (1-2) did
not expect and could not solve.
KENTUCKY 31, INDIANA 27
In Kentucky, a 79-yard touchdown
off a fake punt is no big surprise. The
real shocker in Kentucky's 31-27 victo-
ry over Indiana was the defense coming
to the rescue of the Wildcats' usually
Linebacker John Rader's 45-yard
interception return of an ill-considered
shovel pass by Hoosiers quarterback
Antwaan Randle El gave Kentucky (3-
0) its first lead of the game at 31-27
early in the fourth quarter. The defense
sealed the win by stopping Indiana on
its final two possessions. - also caught a pass for a score.
MiNNESOTA 41, MEMPHIS 14 LOUISVILLE 35, ILLinOIS 9
Thomas Hdmner rushed for 128 LeRoy Collins scored three fourth-
yards and a touchdown and Minnesota quarter touchdowns Saturday and
(3-0) scored on a fumble return and a Louisville broke a 10-game losing
blocked punt to beat Memphis 41-14 streak with a 35-9 victory over Illinois.
Saturday. Louisville (1-2) hadn't won since
Memphis (0-3) got 102 yards rush- beating Illinois (1-2) on Sept. 13, 1997.
ing from Gerald Arnold against a Illinois led only briefly, taking a 3-0
defense that came into the game ranked lead on Neil Rackers' 43-yard field goal
third nationally against the run. Arnold with 7:49 left in the first quarter.
Sept. 5 at Notre Dame (36-20, ND)
Sept. 12 Syracuse (38.28, Syr.)
Sept. 19 Eastern Michigan (59-20M)
Sept. 26 Michigan State
Oct. 3 at Iowa
Oct. 17 at Northwestem
Oct. 24 Indiana
Oct. 31 at Minnesota
Nov. 7 Penn State
Nov. 14 Wisconsin
Nov. 21 at Ohio State
Nov. 28 at Hawaii