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December 08, 1999 - Image 13

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The Michigan Daily, 1999-12-08

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Wednesday, December 8, 1999 - The Michigan Daily - 13

DuBose, Carr happy about
quarterback depth, ability
Orange Bowl participants familiar with QB rotation

By V. Brks
Daily Sports Editor
At first glance, the difference
between Michigan and Alabama's
quarterbacks seems to be immense.
Michigan brings two strapping
flamethrowers to the Orange Bowl in
senior Tom Brady and sophomore
Drew Henson. While Henson does
have some ecapability, Michigan's sig-
nal callers are dropback pocket passers
for the most part.
Meanwhile, the Crimson Tide's
quarterbacks, sophomore Andrew Zow
and freshman Tyler Watts, are a little
more mobile. Both Zow and Watts can
run the ball, giving Alabama a rushing"
threat from the quarterback position.
But while Michigan and Alabama
have different styles of quarterback,
they have had a similar philosophy on
how to use them this season.
Both the Wolverines and the
Crimson Tide spent half of the regular
season rotating their quarterbacks,
with results that pleased both coaches.
Michigan coach Lloyd Carr, who
played both Brady and Henson during
the first half of the season, said it was
necessary due to the nature of the com-
petition at starter.
"The competition was extremely
close,' Carr said. "It wasn't fair due to
the competition not to play them both.
I wanted to make a decision that would
help us win the national championship
and to do that we need depth at every
position."
In Michigan's system, Brady would
play the first quarter, Henson would
play the second quarter, and the quar-
terback that was performing better
would finish the game.
While Carr thought the system was

Double the pleasure
Both Michigan and Alabama have used two quarterbacks extensive-
ly this season. Here are the stats for the four key signal callers.
MICHIGAN
Tom Brady 6-5, 213, Sr.
180-for-295, 2,217 yards, 16 TDs, 6 interceptions.
Drew Henson ' 6-4, 221, So.
46-for-89, 546 yards, 3 TDs, 2 interceptions.
ALABAMA
Andrew Zow 6-2, 215, So.
147-for-263, 1,790 yards, 12 TDs, 9 interceptions
Tyler Watts 6-3,211,Fr.
47-for-83, 498 yards, 2 TDs, 5 interceptions

effective, he felt that it took a mental
toll on the players, especially Brady.
"I didn't know for sure how'd they'd
react to it," Carr said. "I thought they
handled it real well.
Brady's "performance was really
good considering the situation. He led
the team to a Big Ten championship
the season before, so I'm sure rotating
was hard on him at first."
At the end of October, Brady finally
took command of the starting position.
But while Michigan's quarterback
rotation was stopped, another was
starting in Alabama.
Alabama coach Mike DuBose want-
ed to get Watts some playing time ear-
lier in the season, but Zow's play made
it tough for the redshirt freshman to
see any playing time.
But when Zow got hurt in a loss to
Tennessee Oct. 23, Watts was forced to
start against Southern Miss the next
week. Watts led Alabama to a 35-14
victory, and a rotation was born.
"We didn't play well enough early to
get Tyler into the game," DuBose said.
"I was very concerned about disrupt-

ing our flow on offense. But when
Andrew went down, Tyler came in and
played really well."
Zow came back for Alabama's next
game against Louisiana State, but
Watts wasn't going to be put back on
the bench. With two quality signal
callers, DuBose decided to give rota-
tion a try.
And he has loved the results.
"It's been very rewarding," DuBose
said. "We took a potentially negative
situation and turned it into a positive.
Their play has given me confidence to
stay with them without affecting the
flow of the game."
Unlike Michigan, which rotated by
quarters, Alabama rotates by series.
But both DuBose and Carr have the
same general goal -to find a quarter-
back with a hot hand and go with him.
"If we had to play today, we'd use
the same system," DuBose said. "We
play both early and go with the hot
hand."
In a place as warm as Miami, a quar-
terback with a hot hand will go a long
way to deciding who will win the

LOUIS BROWN/Daily
Tom Brady is one of four quarterbacks playing in the Orange Bowl on New Year's Day that has a lot of game experience. Both
Michigan and Alabama have employed a two-quarterback rotation at various parts of this season.

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BLOOMFIELD HILLS (AP) --A
Michigan high school soccer team
visiting Cuba has gotten a taste of
the tensions between the Caribbean
nation and the United States over
custody of a 6-year-old boy.
The Bloomfield Hills players
ssed through a ring of Cuban sol-
diers Monday to enter the U.S. diplo-
matic mission, target of about 2,000
p-otesters the night before.
The team was visiting the mission
to learnemore about recent U.S. and
Cuban relations.
CubanPresident Fidel Castro has
demanded that Elian Gonzalez be
returned to his father in Cuba, but
the U.S. State Department has reject-
ethat demand.
he young boy was found Nov. 25
clinging to an inner tube off the
coast of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and
released to relatives in Miami.
Elian's mother and stepfather were
athong the 14 people who died when
an overloaded powerboat sank dur-
ing the 90-mile crossing to Florida
in what American authorities said
was a case of illegal alien smug-
he boy's father said the child was
taken out of the country without his
kniowledge.
-The chief of the U.S. mission,
Vicki Huddleston, told the players
Monday that Elian's welfare is what
matters most.
"I have two children, and as a
mother you want to see the best for
the child," she said.
Some of the teens said they want-
*to make sure their parents knew
they were safe.
"Can you send my mom a mes-
sage? Tell her everything is fine,"
junior Justin Singer said to reporters.
One adult accompanying the teens
said the visit was good for the group
and could sow the seeds of improved
U.S.-Cuban relations.
"They got a chance to hear from
t chief diplomat in Cuba what
r role in U.S. policy is," Cuba
expert Pamela Falk told The Detroit
News.
"The goal is to increase contact
between the next generation of lead-
ers in the two countries."
Luis Hernandez, president of
Cuba's soccer federation .sid rela-

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