OReb arGUE NTIONAL NTrackinghe'M' teams
MAJOR LEAGUE NATIONAL NATIONAL The Michigan men's club volleyball team will be
BASEBALL HOCKEY LEAGUE FOOTBALL holding open tryouts tomorrow at 6:45 p.m. at the
aAL LAUE TORONTO 4, Buffalo23, Central Campus Recreation Building.
N.Y. ets 5, LOS ANGELES 3, MIAMI 18
Sacr natJi 0 St. Louis 2
San Jose, inc.Tusy
October 5, 1999
COUNTDOWN TO THE SHOWDOWN: ZIdays
Mum's the word
Saban puts li
By TJ. Berka
Daily potts Editor
EAST LANSING - Every year at this time, the Michigan-
MiIgWan State football game elicits a lot of emotion.
WJther faces off against brother. Father faces off against
soryuring the week of the game, a mini-civil war breaks out
acrtss the state.
"To a fan, this game is all about bragging rights," Michigan
State coach Nick Saban said. "It all about beating the guy at
the office that goes to the other school."
The hoopla that surrounds the game - which is crazy in its
own right - will be at ridiculous levels this upcoming week.
With both the third-ranked Wolverines and lth-ranked
Spartans sporting 5-0 records, the hype machine will be on
With this being said, the key to the Spartans' preparation
will be to keep the players shielded from the circus surround-
ing the game.
"We need to separate all that surrounds this game from the
game itself," Saban said. "We need to keep the players sepa-
rated so they can focus on what they need to do"
As far as the Michigan State program is concerned, the
Spartans need to break from the shadow cast by its maize-and-
blue rival to the south.
Three losses in a row to Michigan, including a 23-7 whip-
ping the last time the Wolverines visited Spartan Stadium, have
Michigan State followers yearning for revenge and the nation-
al respect that goes along with it.
But Saban will have nothing of that sort of talk, stating that
a victory in this game will not give the Spartans a Rose Bowl
berth or make them a national power.
"This is obviously a huge state rivalry," Saban said.
"Whenever you have success against your rival, that is some-
thing to be proud of. But being consistent over time makes you
a national power, and that is what we are trying to do.
"I don't mean to minimize this game, but the loser still has
a good shot of going to the Rose Bowl. There are so many big
games in this conference."
While Saban might not get as involved as Johnny Spirit in
the hype of the Michigan game, he does understand the emo-
tion that is involved.
And Saban also appreciates -and welcomes the conference
See SPARTANS, Page 12
ByIR Fr.e Miciga
Carr fro wns
ate.a z.upon title talk
Daily Sports Editor
Glowing with the confidence that seems to sprout when a
big game follows a big win, members of the Michigan foot-
ball team gave voice yesterday to what had previously been an
unmentionable - the national title.
They were careful to cast their use of the term in a con
tional light. They made sure they pointed out that this is 199
not 1997. They cautioned against looking beyond Oct. 9.
Whatever. Lloyd Carr, their coach, will have none of it.
"First of all, the '97 team, and that team, I don't know how
anybody could compare them," Carr said. "This team doesn't
measure up in any way."
In four days, though, one team will be a step closer to its
goals, the other will be re-evaluating those goals.
Despite Carr's pooh-poohing of national title talk, New
Year's in New Orleans has been high on his list for a long time
now. Addressing the crowd at the pep rally before t
Wolverines' Sept. 11 clash with Rice, Carr said as much.
And while playing in a conference that has seven ranked
teams can make the Sugar Bowl a longer shot than it would be
for, say Florida State, that doesn't diminish the significance of
Saturday's game. Or the Wolverines' confidence.
"Whoever wins has a shot at the Big Ten title, and maybe
even the national title," said senior nose tackle and co-captain
Renes, used to jousting with offensive linemen and offen-
sinve reporters, cautioned against callous comparisons to a
team now legendary for its accomplishments - as well as
attention-getting victory over Michigan State in mid-Octobe.
"That team went 12-0, we can't do better than that:' Renes
said. "What we can do is try to match that. Potential's nothing
if you don't want to harness it"
And though it may take an extra-large hamess to capture
the potential these Wolverines exude along with their confi-
dence, they want very badly to do so.
Asked how it would feel to leave the field with the mon-
strous Paul Banyan Trophy in his possession, junior defensive
.,: |,;| , end Jake Frysinger said,"That's what I'm looking forward to"
"That's the way it's been since I've been here:" Frysinger
5 . said.
LOUIS BROWN/Daily The last time Michigan lost to the Spartans was in 1995.
James Whitley, Tommy Hendricks and the rest of the Michigan defense hope to table top the Spartans this weekend. See TITLE TALK, Page 12
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By Geoff Gagnon
Daily Sports Writer
The Michigan hockey team can for-
get about just getting its feet wet as it
starts this season - the Wolverines
will be forced to jump in head-first.
And they'll look to come up on top
after opening both regular season and
CCHA play when they travel to Notre
Dame this Thursday and Friday.
The cause for Michigan Coach Red
Berenson's concern stems from a
Notre Dame program quietly becom-
ing a force to be reckoned with in the
CCHA while garnering a bit of respect
along the way. This year's pre-season
conference coaches poll had the Irish
holding the CCHAs fourth spot while
the media put the South Bend school a
place in fifth.
Notre Dame's fifth year coach Dave
Poulin is joined by a strong core of
returning veterans anxious to stake
their claim as a conference power.
But Poulin and his team know that if
they are going to put together the kind
of season they've been unable to string
together in the past, the matchup with
Michigan this weekend is crucial.
"What a way to start," Poulin said.
"We're going to be tested early in
going up against a team like Michigan
right out of the gate, but we'll be
A key common denominator in this
year's season opener was last week's
tune up that both teams played a little-
known Canadian team Wilfrid Laurier.
On the strength of two power-play
goals, Notre Dame rallied from a one-
goal deficit to beat Laurier, 4-1, a
night before Michigan Josh Langfeld
and Mike Comrie led the Wolverines
past the Golden Hawks, 6-2. While the
game served as little more than e
warm-up for both teams, it also reaf-
firmed what Berenson already knew
- the teams are very similar.
"In talking to the Wilfrid Laurie
coach he said that we were a lot like
Notre Dame in a lot of ways,"
Due to new scheduling practices
used by the CCHA this year, this
week's matchup will mark the only
time these two teams square off. And
that, Berenson says will make his
team's meeting with the Irish all the
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more important as the squads vie -
valuable conference standing points.
"These games are big," Berenson
said. "They're four point games, so if
you lose both its like giving up eight
points. Plus, we don't play them again,
so that means that if we win two games
it's a really great week and if we lose
two games, that's a really tough week."
This week's implications have also
forced Michigan players to give seri-
ous thought to the conference race.
The game will begin to paint a plaf
picture that won't come into full view
for another six months.
"It's really like the end of the year
right now," Mark Kosick said. "These
games are big now, but they'll be huge
come playoff time when we want to be
in a position to be the best team in the
A Notre Dame team marshaled by
last year's leading scorer Ben Sim
will be eager to stand in MichigA
way. The senior captain tallied 18
goals a year ago, sparking the Notre
Dame offense from the point, where
he's averaged nearly a point a game
throughout his career.
By David Mosse
Daily Sports Writer
Fresh off consecutive drubbings of
Big Ten opponents, the Michigan
women's soccer team (5-0-1 Big T
6-2-1 overall) heads to South Bens.
for a non-conference showdown with
the No. 6 Notre Dame (4-0 Big East,
The Wolverines could not have
asked for a better time to take on the
Irish. After crushing Indiana and
Purdue by a combined 7-1 score,
Michigan has won four consecutive
games and soared to the top of the
Big Ten standings.
But after beating up on the undo
belly of Indiana, the Wolverines now
must battle the cream of the crop in a
Fighting Irish team that is enjoying a
Revenge will also be on the minds
of the Wolverines - Notre Dame
ended their '98 season in the second
round of the NCAA Tournament
with a 3-0 blanking. The Irish com-
pletely stiffled Michigan's offense
holding the Wolverines withoutN
See IRISH, P ge 12
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