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September 14, 1999 - Image 16

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1999-09-14

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16 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, September 14, 1999

Saban, Spartans not overlooking
the unlucky Fighting Irish

Michigan State coach Nick Saban
isn't about to be fooled by Notre
Dame's 1-2 record.
Or the fact that the Spartans have
won the last two games between the
Notre Dame, Saban said yester-
day, is one of the top teams in the
And Saturday's clash with the
Fighting Irish will be the biggest test
yet of Michigan State, now 2-0.
"Notre Dame has an outstanding
football team; I think they're proba-
bly 15 yards away from being rated
in the top five in the country," Saban
said, referring to the Irish's narrow
losses to Michigan and Purdue.
"They've had two very, very diffi-
cult defeats," Saban said.
"They have a lot of good football
players, and I'm sure they will be
very much ready to do the bent they
possibly can to get things on the

right track."
Michigan State is going to try to
stay on the right track when the
Spartans visit South Bend to take on
the Irish on Saturday. The Spartans
are coming off victories over Oregon
and Eastern Michigan, but beating
24th-ranked Notre Dame - espe-
cially on the road - is something
else again.
"Notre Dame has a special tradi-
tion so that makes it a special place
to go and every player knows that,"
Saban said.
"Notre Dame is a place that has as
much national prestige as any school
in the county, probably more. It's not
an easy place to play."
It may be even harder with Notre
Dame having suffered two straight
setbacks at the hands of the Spartans
- 45-23 last year and 23-7 in 1997.
"They're definitely going to be
jacked for this one' said Michigan
State guard Shaun Mason, a stand-

out in Michigan State's 51-7 pound--:
ing of Eastern Michigan Saturday in
Spartan Stadium.
Saban gives Notre Dame the cred-
it it's due, but refuses to be
awestruck by the Irish. w
"I think our players should feel
they can win every game that we
play," he said. "I think the more you
compete well and win against good
football teams, the more that confi-
dence grows.
"We have a couple of challenges:
Notre Dame is an outstanding team
and this is our first game on the
road. It takes a special kind of con-
fidence and a special kind of psy-
chological disposition to play on the
road because you have to have an
inner strength not to get affected by
the things that are happening in the
"We've played some good games DAVID ReCukN~st/a"
on the road, and itswill take our best The Michigan State football team is still wary of Jarious Jackson and the Notre Dame football team, despite the Fighting
effort in this game to be successful." Irish's 1-2 record to start the season.
Charismatic Williams sisters boost ,
popularity of womens' tennis

NEW YORK (AP) - One of the most
memorable images of the U.S. Open is
Serena Williams launching herself toward the
net for a volley, her legs spread wide far
above the court, her racket high, poised to
In that moment of attack, when the light
glints off her taut, thick muscles and her face
is filled with voracious delight, she resem-
bles no one so much as Michael Jordan on a
fast break, tongue wagging as he leaps to
dunk the ball.
Williams brought a new level of athleti-
cism to women's tennis in her surge to the
Open title Saturday, just as Martina
Navratilova did in the early 1980s and Steffi
Graf did later that decade.
More than that, the 17-year-old Williams
and her big sister Venus, a finalist at the same
age two years ago who, no doubt, will be a
champion herself someday, brought a new
level of interest to tennis.
That interest goes beyond the obvious, the
hundreds of black fans suddenly sitting in a
crowd that had always been a sea of white
faces. Even if there were thousands of black
fans, as well there might be in years to come,
that change would be little more than super-
What the Williams sisters brought goes
deeper. Their success, their unabashed cocki-
ness, their youthful coolness from the beads
in their hair to their revealing dresses, is cap-
turing millions of young people, black and
white, who might never have paid attention to
the sport.
One indication: The television ratings for
the women's final between Serena Williams

Serena Williams, who won the women's singles title and combined with her sister Venus for the doubles
title, represents an exciting future for women's tennis according to many analysts.

Fans won't let go of stadium's parts

DETROIT (AP) - A Detroit baseball fan apparently
feeling sentimental for the bathrooms at Tiger Stadium
tried to make off with a urinal.
The Tigers play their last game at Tiger Stadium later
this month, and police and stadium security say some
fans have begun scavenging for nostalgic items.
Besides the man who tried to steal one of the trough-
style urinals, other fans have been unscrewing oak arm-
rests from Tiger Den seats and spiriting them out of the
stadium, officials told the Detroit Free Press.
"For many people, going to Tiger Stadium was some-
thing that they did with their parents or with their dad,
and it means a great deal to them," said Detroit police Lt.
Shereece Fleming-Freeman. "People just wanta piece of
The Tigers did not return calls seeking comment, the
paper said.
Fans across the country historically have taken items
from stadiums after final games, even wielding tool-
boxes and cutting their seats loose or sawing turnstiles
off their bases. Two fans were arrested before old
Comiskey Park closed in Chicago in 1990 on charges of
trying to steal home plate.
With I11 home games left at Tiger Stadium, the last
Sept. 27 against Kansas City, some Detroit officials
worry the same could happen here.
"It is apparent to me that the stadium will.-become a

As the 20th Century draws to a close,
the Detroit Tigers will grace their home-
field of memories - at the corner of
Michigan and Trumbull - only four more
In two final series to remember the ages,
the Tigers will take on
Cleveland Sept. 20-23 all games at 7:05
Kansas i , Sept. 24-27
games at 7:05, 5:05, 1:05 and 4:05,
Read Daily Sports in coming weeks for
our coverage
of the waning days at Michigan &

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