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December 07, 2000 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2000-12-07

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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DECEMBER 7, 2000


Devilish pressure looms for Michigan

-Noo matter
lends an ear
u Tedon't often listen to each
Other anymore. The world as
of late, seems to have moved
toward more television and Web surf-
ing than casual conversation. But some-
nines listening can be a good thing.
Nine months ago, following the
forced resi nation of athletic director
Tomr Goss, Bill Martin stepped in as
the interim boss with a listener's ear.
A loyal graduate of Michigan, the
)9-year-old embraced his school, but
xpected to remain far only a few
months -just long enough to con-
verse with some coaches and resolve
some of Mi hi an's numerous bud-
getary dilemmas.
But throughout his short six-month
igterim reign, Martin developed
impressive relationships with the
teLseployees of the athletic department.
With Martin in charge. "we can get
things done now, eveiyone is excited,
said one athletic department employee
over the summer. "He listens.
In addition to instituting stability to
an unstable department, Martin lent an
car to the progressive hopes of the peo-
ple he managed. If a coach had a con-
cern or an idea, Martin would address
it, something many coaches found
hicking under Goss.
And in response, departmental
morale - viewed by some to be at a
severe low in February - rose to
exciting levels in the months follow g
Martin's employment.
But before all the talk and ideas
became more than just soie pipe
dream, Martin's short interim employ-
ment neared its end.
In fact, lie already planned to take a
vacation this past August as soon as his
interim term ended. After all,
University President Lee Bollinger's
search committee already had three
finalists for the permanent athletic
director position and Martin's name
wasn't on the list.
I "We looked at hundreds of people.
Bill Martin wasn't a candidate," said
psychology professor James Jacksoi,
_w ho headed the I17-person search con-
But that was no concern to Martin,
who didn't want the job anyway. He had
enough bullets on his resume - from
president of First Martin Corp., an Ann
Arbor real estate management firm, to a
spot on the U.S. Olvmpic Committee.
But tie Michigan coaches thought
A majority of.the coaches of the 25
varsity sports on campus sent a peti-
tion to Bollinger, asking for Martin to
remain as permanent athletic director.
The petition came as quite a shock
to Martin, but he followed his staff's
k wish on August 1, embracing the per-
manent athletic director position.
Now, Martin can turn his master
: .plan for the future Athletic Department
into a reality. ,
After dealing with prelininay bud-
.get issues, Martin recently turned his
attention to gathering an idea for a new
physical layout of the athletic facilities.
Ile doesn't covet just a clump of
slight renovations. Moreover, Martin
envisions a complete overhaul of the
entire athletic campus.
His plans include a management
firm studying the current layout prob-
lems of the athletic facilities, froni

overcrowding to parking. Martin
stresses that the dcpartment needs to
- think about logistics 10 years down the
road, not just rash and immediate
A few of the grand ideas:
t Move baseball and men's soccer
to south campus (down State Street)
near the tennis center and gymnastics
Build an entirely new indoor
practice facility, while providing new
access for to Michigan's softball field.
® Renovate Michiigan Stadium
(from new lockerrooms to more fan
"It's a dreamy situation one
reporter rccently said.

By Dan Williams
Dyily Sports Writer
Minimizing turnovers will be paramount for
Michigan on Saturday as it attempts to close
the canyon that exists, at least on paper,
between the Wolverines and their undefeated
opponent, No. I Duke.
Duke coach Mike Krzvzewski has unleashed
his two swift point guards, sophomore Jason
Williams and freshman Chris Duhon, on oppo-
nents. While Duke (8-0) has been known to
have a tenacious man-to-man defense, this year
Krzvzewski has used Williams and Duhon for
full -court, on-the-ball pressure.
The tandem's harassment of opposing ball-
handlers often produces ill-advised passes.
Then Duke's other three players sit back like
satisfies waiting for effortless interceptions.
Duke's 168 forced turnovers through eight
games looms ominously for Michigan (2-4),
which has trouble possessing the ball. It has a
team assist-to-turnover ratio of 0.71 to 1.
Conversely, Duke's ratio is 1.45 to 1.
"We've got to get better at handling pressure
and showing poise," Michigan coach Brian
Ellerbe said, yesterday.
If Michigan can decrease its turnovers, it

would be the first step toward a monumental
"We had 18 turnovers against St. John's, and
that was a team that doesn't get out in the pass-
ing lanes,"junior Leon Jones said. "Duke pres-
sures the ball all over the court. That's how they
get started - they get steals, and they get easy
layups. If we can keep our turnovers down to
10 or 15, then I think we can stav in the game."
Mat-vland, which applied the most pressure
of any team Michigan has seen to date, hound-
ed the Wolverines for 24 turnovers. To evade a
similar fate, Michigan may use both freshman
point guards, Avery Queen and Maurice
Searight, simultaneously.
"That's a lineup that we may look at not so'
much for pressure, but for us to be able to
reverse the ball and get some good looks and
maybe some easy baskets." Ellerbe said.
Queen, who has 20 assists to 13 turnovers on
the season, said he is eager to square off
against the up-tempo Blue Devils.
"I'm looking forward to it," Queen said.
"Being a point guard, you look forward to
going up against the hyped point guards. You
go to a big school to go against top point
guards like Jason Williams. But you have to
keep your head."

Who: Michigan (2-4) vs. No.1 Duke (&O)
When: 9 p.m.
Latest: Michigan will face its fourth ranked opponent
in a row in No.1 Duke. Last year the Wolverines played
Coach K's team to a 10497 loss.
TV/Radio: ESPN9 p.m./WJR 760 AM

Besides the; full-court pressure, Michigan
il also have to counteract Duke's basic
gressive half-court defense. The Blue Devils '
: renowned ;for frustrating teams by over-
ying even routine passes. Duke's anticipa-
n leads to steals, but it also prevents teams "
m developing a rhythm.V'
But an adept passiig team can sometimes
lize Duke'4 aggressiveness to create easy
"They play good help-side defense, so you
.e to be tough with the ball, Jones said.
ou've got to be patient because they are
ng to deny'the next pass. If they're going to
ay that far in the lane, we should have oppor-
ities to make backdoor passes.
"We can make them pay for playing that far MARJORIE MARSHALt
t. They plaY out almost to the hash marks Avery Queen (left) will have to handle the pressure of Duki
netimes." backcourt, and Ellerbe the pressure of coaching at Camer
1tesimrv specilteams



By Ryan C. Moloney
Daily Sports Writer
The benchmark of every team that advances far
in the NCAA hockey tournament consists of a sta-
tistically prominent system of special teams.
Now nearing the halfway mark of the regular
season, the Wolverines acknowledged the progress
made on the power play and penalty kill - while
giving a nod to the necessary task of improvement.
"We're never satisfied with where we are" coach
Red Berenson said. "With the experience we've got
with the penalty kill - we're not using any fresh-
man, we use mostly upperclassmen - they need to
do a better job on the penalty kill."
Michigan stumbled out of the gate with an atro-
cious penalty kill in the first two weekends this sea-
son, killing only 74.1 percent of the penalties
against it. The Wolverines killed 14 of 15 penalties
in games five and six against Bowling Green,
crawling back to a respectable 81 percent. In the
weeks following, Michigan inched its kill percent-
age up to 84.5 percent - an improvement to be
surer but still underneath the standards of a team
that had killed off around 90 percent of its penalties
by this time last season.
Like its penalty kill, Michigan's power play start-

ed the season slowly at 20 percent after six games,
but has progressed to a steady 24.1 percent clip
after 17 games. The Wolverines swooned to 19.1
percent on the power play at this time last season,
after emerging from the second weekend with an
impressive 30.6 percentage.
"I think overall we're better (than last year),"
senior Scott Matzka said. The power play is huge,
you get your chances to score and if you can't bury
them, it really kills you - it's a huge momentum
The Michigan penalty-killing unit's confidence
going into the season's second half could get a shot
in the arm, or a punch in the face, when it faces St.
Lawrence this weekend. The Fighting Saints own
the country's best power play percentage, capitaliz-
ing on exactly a third of their opportunities.
The Wolverines have amassed the second-most
penalty minutes in the CCHA so far, but St.
Lawrence's style is based more on pacifism than
antagonism - they are the seventh least-penalized
team in the country.
"We want to play against good players," sopho-
more Mike Cammalleri said. "We need to under-
stand that they have a great power play and we need
to play disciplined hockey.

Otto Olson and the Michigan wrestling team don't plan on being good hosts to in-state rival
Michigan State when the Spartans come to Ann Arbor tomorrow.
'M' ready for a dogfight

By Nathan Linsley
Dlily Spors Wier
The story of Michigan sophomore A.J Grant
and Michigan State's 125-pounder Chris
Williams is a microcosm of the matchup between
the two state powerhouses.
"I've known him forever," Grant said. "We
were really good friends when we were little. We

used to go to tournaments together
all the time, and stay at each other's
"Lately, we haven't had too much
of a friendship - we don't talk to
each other any more. We don't even
really acknowledge each other that
much. There's usually not even a
handshake after the match."
The teams know each other's ten-
dencies, appreciate each other's
styles and hate each other.
When the ninth-ranked Spartans
invade Ann Arbor tomorrow for

Who: Michigan
Michigan StatE
Central Michig
When: 7:00 p.
Latest: The W
battle for in-s
supremacy w
return of Otto
the Michigan

almost two weeks ago.
Michigan's 133-pounder Foley Dowd and 141-
pounder Clark Forward both lost by a point to
their Michigaii State opponents and are eager f'or
a rematch.
"It was hard to even concentrate on going out
to Vegas this weekend because I was so ready for
this match," Forward said. "It's tough getting beat
by a ranked kid that close, on top of it being a
Michigan State kid."
E EK END The Spartans pride themselves
on their three lowest weight class-
es, with Williams, Pat McNamara
niV.s and Mike Castillo all ranked above
e, Fri.; v 15th in the nation.
an, Sat. "Their low weights are key. But
olverines we have tough guys at our low
tate weights, too,' Grant said. "Foley,
ith the Clark and I are a nice one-two-
Olson to three punch right there."
lineup. In such an even meet, every
point counts.
"There are definitely pivotal matches that have
to be won - especially overtime matches, said
197-pounder Joe DeGain, citiig the three extra
points that are awarded in a dual meet for an over-
time victory.
The Wolverines will be back home on Saturday
to face Central Michigan. The possible letdown
from tomorrow's match worries McFarland.
"Regardless of the outcome, we're going to
have to be ready to go agaii," McFarland said.
"But I'll try to handle that Friday night after the
Michigan State match."
For now, Michigan is focused on the Spartans.
The squad has made adjustments and added to its
repertoire in preparation for its familiar foe.
Grant summed up the mood of the Wolverines.
"I just like beating State, period."

Women's basketball has
height; Syracuse has fight


By Benjamin Singer
Daily Sports Writer
Syracuse versus Michigan at Crisler Arena. It
sounds like a great matchup from the mid-90s -

the seventh-

ranked Wolverines' first dual meet of the season,
emotions will run high and tempers will flare.
"There's no love lost between the two pro-
grams," Michigan coach Joe McFarland said.
The schools always face each other before wii-
ter break, a matchup in addition to the Big Ten's
scheduled meet.
The home-and-home series is known for tight
contests -- last season Michigan won 19-15 in
Last Lansing and Michigan State forced an 18-18
draw in Ann Arbor.
Six of the weight classes have already met in
preseason tournaments this year, with the
Wolveriiies winning four of the matches. One
included Otto Olson who returns to Michigan's
lineup after injury occurred from a car accident

and that's what Michigan coach Sue Gu
counting on.
"I think because it's Syracuse, ,
maybe we'll get some people in the
stands," she said. "That's what I'm
hoping "
But spectators Thursday night
shouldn't feel duped into thinking
about images of John Wallace versus
Maurice Taylor. The women's basket-
ball game has a chance of being excit-
inj in its own right.
"They get after it," Guevara said.
"That's going to be a pretty big ball-
game because we get after it, too."
Michigan (5-2) has righted its ship,
fotr-game winning streak.

Who: Michiga
Syracuse (4-2
When: 7 p.m.
Latest: Michig
straight winsv
defense. Beth
sents a challe
points per gar

uevara is

The Orangewomen also return all five starters
from a year ago. Senior forward Beth Record, who
notched her 1,000th career point two games ago,
leads the attack, averaging 20 points a game. But
Record isn't Syracuse's only threat to score.
Despite a 3-13 shooting performance from
Record in her last game against Akron. Syracuse
still put 83 points on the board.
IGHT Three other players led the team
ARENA with 10 apiece.
But Michigan emphasizes
n(5-2) Vs. defense. Opponents have averaged
tonight 53 points over its current winning
an has four streak. Last weekend, tight perinme-
with tight ter defense led both New
Record pre- Hampshire and Western Michigan
nge with 20 to force awkward attempts with the
me. shot clock winding down.
What the Wolverines need to
worry about is rebounding. A quick look at the ros-
ter would suggest Michigan will own the post.
Three players over six feet see significant playing
time. Syracuse only has two 6-1 players on its
squad. But the Orangewomen still grab 49 boards
a game. The six-foot Record is again the leader
with 7.7 rebounds per game.
Height is only going to help the Wolverines so

riding a

"I don't think we've been winning ugly,"
Gbevara said. "I think we've looked halfway
decent. Our execution has improved."
But Syracuse (4-2) comes to town with its own
sense of confidence after two convincing victories
in a tournament it hosted, the Carrier Classic.


PTHIS WEEKEN IN resented By: 1

. .

"Whiv do von av that?" said Martin,.


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