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March 30, 2000 - Image 9

Resource type:
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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2000-03-30

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a

2001 football schedule

Michigan's 2001 football schedule has
finall, been officially released by the
Michigan Athletic Department. Look
online to see the matchups.
michigandaily. com/sports

ft gkdtkym ]PaUu
S .TS

THURSDAY
MARCH 30, 2000

9A

*AD shoots
straight, but
Iwhat does
Ihe knowv?

Rumors hurt hoops recruiting

omeone needs to give Bill
Martin some tips on how to be
the Michigan Athletic Director.
In his first post-introductory press
conference as interim Athletic
Director yesterday, Martin actually
thanked the members of the media
for coming to his office. As further
evidence of his novice status,
Martin answered every question
without using the old Michigan "no
comment-"
What is this guy's deal?
All joking aside, Martin brought
the local media together to give a
key piece of
news regarding
the basketball
program: "It's
very simple, in
o~ne statement:
Bran Ellerbe isy,.
ourcoach, andis
he will be our CHRIS
coach next
year," Martin DUPREY
said. Dupe's
Very simple SCOOP
and straightfor-
ward - and something indicates to
Sme that this won't be the only time
Jthat Martin shoots straight with the
public.
Martin cited the numerous rumors
flying around on the Internet and
talk-radio shows about Ellerbe's
> future as the reason for this "clear-
1 the-air" meeting. By removing the
17 uncertainty regarding Ellerbe's sta-
tus, Martin hopes to preserve the
competitive recruiting edge Ellerbe
needs if he is to add on to his cur-
rent two-member class.
Despite the upbeat nature of the
announcement, Martin could not
guarantee that Ellerbe would remain
coach beyond next season.
"Remember that I am the interim
AD at this point in time. That would
be something the permanent AD
will have to address," Martin said.
Yesterday's session also represent-
ed the first time that Martin could
*legitimately offer comment on
issues concerning the athletic
department. At his introductory
press conference two weeks ago,
Martin wasn't up to speed on the
current state of affairs within the
department and wasn't able to offer
meaningful insight on those issues.
0 OFF-COURT INCIDENTS: We defi-
nitely talked about that.
"That gets into the one issue of dis-
cipline and direction. We (Martin and'
Ellerbe) didn't talk about any specific
instances, we just talked about what
we expect out of Michigan athletes
* ED MARTIN: "I can tell you
this about the Ed Martin situation: I
know very little about it. That's
being handled by our legal staff. I
believe that announcements will be
forthcoming within the next couple
of weeks.
"I'm very happy that this is going
'o finally come out. What we want
is the truth, we'll get the truth and
we'll deal with it."
BUDGET WOES: "You probably
saw a couple of weeks ago a report-
ed projected deficit of S2.5-3 mil-
lion. There will definitely be a
deficit, but whether it will be to that
level or not, we're just not certain.
"There were three reasons for that
deficit: A decrease in gifts, a
decrease in licensing revenues and
*he situation where we lost money
through our radio contract."
See SCOOP, Page 10A

By Mark Francescutti
Daily Sports Editor
What's next? Michigan basket-
ball in the National Enquirer?
The latest gossip seems to dig
into Michigan coach Brian Ellerbe
every day.
"You have no idea," Ellerbe told
reporters yesterday when asked
how several rumors in the past few
weeks have affected him.
But while Ellerbe may be a little
frazzled by the hearsay, his
chances at landing a star recruit
are suffering.
Interim athletic director Bill
Martin, who told reporters yester-
day that Ellerbe's job is safe, said
that several recruits have been lost
or alienated due to the rumors that
Ellerbe would be fired, after a sea-
son where the basketball program
teetered on a line of disarray.
Ellerbe went on to say that other
coaches and players have spread

the false rumors that harshly
affected the program.
"We've had a good number of
kids that relayed information to
us, and some that have eliminated
us because of those rumors,"
Ellerbe said.
The second-year coach has
come somewhat under the gun for
the lack of Michigan in-state
recruits.
While almost all of the possible
barriers to entry into the Michigan
area resulted from the Ed Martin
scandal along with Michigan's
seemingly stricter academic quali-
fications, Ellerbe still has to fight
the critics and the rumors.
"We've never not recruited
there," Ellerbe said.
The Wolverines have two
scholarships remaining, and may
or may not use them. Ellerbe
signed short, but quick, point
guard Avery Queen and 6-8 for-
ward 'Bernard Robinson in the

fall signing period.
With Peter Vignier graduating
and only Chris Young and Josh
Asselin at 6-10 or taller, the
coaching staff has a big hope to
find a big man for the spring. But
the crop isn't the best, especially
with the added rumors - every-
thing from Ellerbe's demise to
player transfers.
Still, Ellerbe hopes for some-
thing to sprout.
"If we can get one or two guys,
I think we'll be pretty good,"
Ellerbe said.
Bill Martin and Ellerbe met
Tuesday to discuss the recruiting
problems.
"The thing that I am concerned
with is that student athletes are
students first and athletes second,"
Martin said. "We've got a real
young team. (Ellerbe and I), we've
talked about maturity, about acad-
emic performance. We're not just
a farm team for the NBA."

Martin said there may be a push
towards accepting only recruits
who plan to stay the full student
time of four years.
"That may be the type of recruit
we want,' Martin said. "We had
that whole philosophical discus-
sion. Is it practical in today's
world? Probably not. But Is it pos-
sible that a (recruit) might over
time get their degree? That would
be great."
Seniors Darius Taylor and Peter
Vignier will graduate in four years
as planned. Vignier hopes to try to
play in Europe before returning to
attend law school.
DUKE'IN: Ellerbe said that he
talked to Duke coach Mike
Krzyzewski Tuesday about renew-
ing the series with the Blue
Devils. Michigan will begin: a
series with UCLA for the 2001-02
season. Ellerbe hopes to have' a
new deal with Duke completed
soon.

MARJORIE MARSHALL/Daily
Michigan coach Brian Ellerbe brought in a top-ranked recruit-
ing classes last season, but rumors could halt that success.

i

Balancing

It

;

I

TONIGHT
IOWA CITY
Who: No.1 Michin at NCAA Clanpionshp.
Wheni: Team pretirniriries tonight, texn finals
tcxootow and indwvidmal final Saturday
Reasons for a repeat
Scott Vetere
The 2000 Big Ten Gymnast of the
Year. Scored a national-best 58.7
to win the Big Ten individual all-
around championship, along with
three individual events. Has
caught fire since Michigan's March
4 meet against Oklahoma. Vetere
has scored above 9.8 at least three
times a meet. On a team of home-
run hitters, he possesses the biggest
stick.
Justin Toman
The 1999 NCAA parallel bars
champion and 1998-99 Michigan
Male Athlete of the Year. Last
year, Toman hit all six events in
the team finals to key Michigan's
NCAA Championship. A knee
injury will keep him from con-
peting in the all-around for the
meet. Despite the injury, Tomanr
will provide his expertise on the
parallel bars.
Daniel Diaz-Luong
After missing the bulk of the sea-
son with an ankle injury, Diaz-
Luong won the Big Ten high bar
individual title. His expertise on
the event aids the Wolverines
greatly -- high bar has proven to~
be Michigan's sole achilles heel.
Kris Zimmerman
The freshman won the Big Ten
parallel bar championship and
placed fourth on the rings.
Zimmerman will also contribute
on the high bar. His routines are
critical -- he has been inconsis-
tent this season, but spectacular
as well.
Lalo Haro
The senior from Pueblo, Mexico
will be saving his best in his final
collegiate gymnastics meet. Was
Kurt Golder's first blue-chip
recruit. Always a fan favorite,
Haro provides his emotional lead-
ership, his solid all-around ability
and consistent high bar routine
for Michigan's title run.

Men try to repeat as
NCAA champions

By Dan Dingerson
Daily Sports Writer

One down, one to go.
The Michigan men's gymnastics
team had two major goals this year;
defend its Big Ten championship, and
defend its NCAA championship.
The Wolverines already dominated
the Big Ten field two weeks ago in East
Lansing and took home their second
straight Big Ten title.
Now, they travel to Iowa, the site of
their Big Ten triumph last year, to try to
repeat as NCAA champions.
This year, unlike last, the Wolverines
are prohibitive favorites to win the title.
They have been ranked No. 1 all year.
Most importantly they have experience,
and they have developed a strong attach-
ment to the title: National Champions.
The championship meet starts today
with the preliminary competition. The
field is divided into two groups of six
teams each.
The Wolverines find themselves in
the first group along with Big Ten foes
Ohio State, Penn State and Illinois, as
well as Nebraska and Massachusetts.
The second group features second-
ranked Oklahoma, California, Iowa,

Michigan State, Brigham Young and
Stanford.
To advance to the team finals,
Michigan must finish within the top
three of their group. Advancing to the
finals should not prove to be a difficult
task. The Buckeyes are the only team in
Michigan's group who have been able
to compete with the Wolverines this
year.
Ohio State has defeated Michigan
twice this year, the only losses that
Michigan has suffered.
The rest of the first group is at a dif-
ferent level than the Wolverines and
Buckeyes. While the first two teams are
nearly a lock, the race for third could go
any of three teams - Penn State,
Illinois or Nebraska.
The Wolverines toughest competi-
tion could come from group two.
Oklahoma nearly defeated Michigan
on March 4 in Santa Barbara, a neutral
site. It took an enormous comeback by
the Wolverines to squeak out a victory.
Additionally, Oklahoma may be peak-
ing at the right time; the Sooners have
risen to No. 2 after being ranked as
low as No. 7 in mid-February.
The team finals will match the top
See NCAA, Page 13A

PETER CORNUE/Daily
Michigan's Scott Vetere nailed a national-best score in the all-around at Big Ten
Championships. He will be counted on If the Wolverines are to repeat as champs.

Haro moves from cornerstone to contender

By Rohit Bhave
Daily Sports Writer
Four years ago, the state of the Michigan men's
gymnastics program resembled a barren landscape.
The previous year's squad had finished 0-16 in the reg-
ular season. Then coach Kurt Golder arrived from
Iowa, determined to construct a winner.
To build this champion, the newly arrived coach
needed blue-chip gymnasts, a difficult task with a los-
ing program. Amidst the desolate recruiting climate,
Golder found a gem-- Jose "Lalo" Haro from Pueblo,
Mexico.
"He is the foundation from which we built two Big
Ten championships and a national championship on,"
Golder said.
Golder points to the fact that Haro's aided the
recruitment of Kevin Roulston and Justin Toman, then
Daniel Diaz-Luong and Scott Vetere the following
year.

At this week's NCAA Championships, starting
tonight in Iowa City, Golder will turn to Haro for his
crucial final routines.
"The first and last guys (on each event) will face the
most pressure," Golder said. "Lalo is at this best in
tough situations."
Prior to his enrollment at Michigan, Haro had
trained three years for the Mexican National team in
San Diego, California. The experience in San Diego
equipped Haro with the English and communication
skills he needed to survive his freshman year at
Michigan.
Although his freshman year in Ann Arbor did not
challenge him culturally, Lalo found the adjustment to
collegiate gymnastics and academics difficult.
"I was not used to having 12 competitions in three
months," Haro said.
In addition to having more competitions, collegiate
gymnastics emphasize the team, unlike the individual
focus of international gymnastics.

To adjust to the team aspect, Haro looked to the
upperclassmen for guidance. He learned the impor-
tance of supporting teammates in addition to training
himself for meets.
Haro's rapt attention paid off- he became the first
Michigan sophomore to be named team captain in
1997. For Golder, the nomination was both natural and
well-deserved for his prized recruit.
"What caught my attention about Lalo was his
friendly, well-adjusted personality" Golder said. "He
was such a strong, spiritual team leader."
Beyond the adjustment to collegiate athletic life,
Haro initially struggled with the two-fold role of
the student athlete. Often at the beginning of his
academic career, Haro would bring his academic
burdens into the gym and carry his gymnastics
issues into his classes. It was not until halfway
through his sophomore year that he could compart-
mentalize both aspects of his life.
"I really tried to treat (academics and ath-
See HARO, Page 14A

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