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November 10, 2000 - Image 20

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2000-11-10
Note:
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i AWL i

S.- -TheMichiganDaily-FOOTBALL SATURDAY -- November 11, 200

0

0

0

0

No ber 11, 2000 - I

A unique perspective, slightly somber

WHEN MICHIGAN
HAS THE FOOTBALL

In

the

hunt

Wen I applied to colleges in
1995, the only thing I wanted
out of school for certain was
a major national championship. My
mother tried to
convince me that
with my micro-
scopic attention
span, I was more
suited for a small
school with small

class sizes - but
this advice went
ignored.
Sounds a little
obsessive, but
many of the com-

DAN
WILLIAMS
1 es t

mitted sports Li)1U1i'it
patrons at
Michigan could probably spin similar
tales. The twist is that the school I chose
was not Michigan, but Pennsylvania
State University.
I spent two years as a content under-
classman in Happy Valley, and I reli-
giously believed in Penn State football. I
believed that Joe Paterno stood before
me as a man-god, and I immersed
myself in the Penn State tradition. Most
of all, I felt destined for a national title.
When circumstances developed that
led me to transfer to Michigan after my
sophomore year, I already defined
myself so thoroughly by Penn State
football that I could not exchange alle-
wiances.
Thus, I came to be "the biggest Penn
State fan ever to attend the University of
Michigan," a self-proclamation.
And thus, the stage is set for this
improbable, Job-like piece.
Over the last five years. rootin. fr

Penn State has seemed like an experi-
ence in human suffering. I realize how
myopic and melodramatic that sounds.
but zealous fans, those whose well-
beings hinge on a football team, can
commiserate.
The memories return like bad war
flash backs.
There was the 1996 lowa game,
where I stood shivering in the coldest
rain conceivable watching Tim Dwight
and an average Hawkeye team steal a
win in Happy Valley.
There was last year's battle with
Minnesota, a game I couldn't watch
because I was covering the Michigan
women's soccer for the Daily in
B3loomington. When word reached me
of the Golden Gophers improbable
game-winning drive, ending Penn
State's national title hopes, I lost all
sense of duty and sprawled out on the
bleachers for nearly an hour, oblivious
to the girls I was supposed to be inter-
viewing.
Despite these inexplicable lows, the
transpirations of my college life have
made the three embarrassing losses to
Michigan the center of my anguish.
Every year I go to classes on Friday,
proudly sporting my Lavar Arrington
jersey, and every Monday I have to skip
those same classes because I'm too
ashamed to look my peers in the eye.
The debacle of Penn State football
this year has reinvented the phrase "fall
from grace." I've been hopping around
my apartment, pounding walls, throwing
silverware and pleading "my Nits" to
play inspired. Yet today they are 4-6,
including losses to Toledo and Iowa in
home games.

The descendence continues -- the
last two years I followed the team to
Tampa Bay and San Antonio for sec-
ond-tier bowl games - this year I'll be
staying home all together. The Nittany
Lions are about to lose the top recruit in
the country, a running back from
Chester, Pa., to the growing program at
Virginia Tech.
Every day I read fellow Penn State
fans calling for the retirement of
Paterno, a man we all once deified, and
I want to sob. My blind faith in him to
right this sinking ship remains, but it's
fleeting.
The game with Michigan this week-
end appears virtually unwinnable. Penn
State can't run the ball because the
offensive line is deplorable, the defense
won't stop I lenson or Thomas or Terrell,
and every David Royer punt is a misad-
venture.
But I still dream of a miracle. I will
not win a major national championship
while I'm at college, but I can't concede
that the Penn State football program has
digressed to the toilet. I have to believe
Paterno can pull a miracle from his
keister Saturday, and the program will
be reborn.
If the implausible does occur, the los-
ing streak ends and the weight of the
world is lifted from my shoulders, I may
have to abandon my seat and singularly
rush the field.
If that transpires, yell at me, bombard
me with marshmallows, even hate me.
But pity a fool that loves a declining
team a little too much.
Daily Sporls 1ritr Dan Williwus is
a /rmcr 1i1n Sta h al/e.C ( ' can he
reached ti at dhwawlrtniclz.cdu.

I lerrell
5 Bell
SE
54 Williams
77 Pape
RT

72 Goodwin
78 Mast
RGa

1'rnt 76 Hutchinson 79sackus
Goodwin 73 Denay 74 SolorT
c LG LT

LC
32 Scott
1 Branch

LE
96 Jones
81 Haynes
OLB
2 Toles
27 Dodd

32 Thoma- TB
23 perry

LT
98 Adams
99 Falls

RT
'3 Kennedy
W0 Valoczki

RE
37 Kurpeik
65 Ro~he

4 Walker
19 Bellamy
FL
s 83 Joppru
n 81 Seymour
TE
RC
10 Jut'
25 Grdnel

)LB
Gatton
Capone

FB 3AAskew
44 A rmstrong

Eight top teams battle it out for the top BCS bowl
No. 1 Oklahoma (8-0)
Remaining schedule: at Texas
A&M, vs. Texas Tech, at
Oklahoma State, Big 12 cham-
pionship game.
Good news: Only team without a defeat
gives Sooners more margin for error than
anyone else; Heisman race provides Josh
Heupel extra motivation.
Bad news: A loss is more costly late in the
season than early, so being undefeated
might not help keep the Sooners afloat if
they drop one.

SS
9 Pettigrew
15 Yisreal

6 Boyd
28 Millon

NITTANY
LIONS
TO WATCH
QB Rashard Casey
Passing:,
136-263, 1625 yds, 11 TD
RB Eric McCoo
116 carries, 442 yds, 5 TD
TE Tony Stewart
35 rec, 430 yds, 2 TD
WR Eddie Drummond
25 rec, 273 yds, 0 ID
DE Justin Kurpeikis
66 tackles, 15-56 for loss
FS James Boyd
92 tackles, 3 int.
K Ryan Primanti
13-15 FG, long 51

No. 2 Florida State (9-1)
Remaining schedule:
at Wake Forest, vs. Florida.
Good news: The Seminoles continue to kill
opponents by large margins, impressing poll
voters; Also, it's the Seminoles' turn to host
the big game against Florida.
Bad news: The only bad news is for everyone
else. Florida State has put its only loss
behind it and is charging toward the title
game in Miami.

U
Good news:
pose too mL
the Hurricar
is a pesky f
Bad news: N
up via stren
Oklahoma o
~-
Good news:
vides Husker
polls, jack u
(the lowest
Bad news: B
home.
No. 7 Oregon (I
Remaining schE
vs. California, e
Oregon State.

x
' >t
.r i
":

AP PHOTO

Not that far behind ...
BCS Standings, Page 5

No. 5 Florida (8-1)
Remaining schedule:
vs. South Carolina, at
Florida State.

No. 6 Washington (8-1)
Remaining schedule:
vs. UCLA, at
Washington State.

Senior Day 2000

Rashard Casey

WHEN PENN STATE
HAS THE FOOTBALL

8 McCoo
34 Easy

RB

FB 36 Ceiermle
39 Jefferson

20 Drummond
U1 T. Johnson
SE
67 McKenzie 72 Felder
76 Jones 75 Mitchell

22 Watson
24 B. Johnson
FL
57 Bell 89 Stewart
77 McKelvy 85 Gilmore
LT TE

Field Hockey
Who: Michigan (18-3) vs. William & Mary (12-7) at Wake Forest; the winner faces the
No.4 Wake Forest vs. Harvard winner Sunday for a final four berth
When: 2:00 p.m. Saturday; 2:00 p.m. Sunday
Last year: Michigan was NCAA runner-up
The Michigan field hockey team will hunt for a second-consecutive final four
berth in familiar territory this weekend, as the Wolverines head to the NCAA
Regionals in Winston-Salem, N.C. for the second year in a row.
No. 5 Michigan (18-3) will square off against No. 14 Williamd
& Mary (12-7) Saturday at 2 p.m., and the Wolverines will face'
the winner of Harvard (12-5) and tournament-host No. 4 Wake
Forest (16-3) Sunday at 2 p.m.
The only team in the regional the Wolverines have played this
season is Wake Forest, where despite outshooting the Demon Deacons, Michigan
lost 2-0.
The Wolverines were awarded an automatic bid by winning the Big Ten
Tournament this past weekend. The winner of the Regional heads to NCAA final
four next weekend in Norkfolk, va., at Old Dominion.
Last year in Winston-Salem, No. 5 Michigan beat No. 11 Duke 2-1, and then
third-seed Wake Forest 3-2 in a dramatic double-overtime en route to a final four
berth.
This will be Michigan's second NCAA appearance. Last year the Wolverines
defeated unbeaten connecticut, 4-3, in the semifinal game before losing to
Maryland, 2-1, in the NCAA Championship game on a goal scored with no
time left in the first half.

RT
SCB
5 Whitley
12 Williams

Kell! Gannon scored
two goals in the Big
Ten Tournament,
which Michigan
won thanks to a 3-2
victory over Penn
State in the final.
BRENDAN O'DONNELL/Dai-

So<
Who: Michiga
When: 1 p.m
Latest: Mich
undefeated,
setting year b

RG

C LG

DE
92 Rumishek
90 Coleman

NT
60 Wilson
90 Bowman

Four minutes
Michigan's g
finally settles
With an emp
cashed in he
ond round of
The Wolverin
against No.:
challenge of
Michigan los'
Redhawks g
overtime thr
The Michigan men's and wome
to Ypsilanti for NCAA Regionals
NCAA nationals. On the women
Katie jazwinski will try to
Championships after they 1

DT
96 Petruziello
97 Lazarus

CB
3 Howard
21 LeSueur

OLB
6 Hobson
42 Spytek

I

ILB ILB
17 Foote 61.EBt*rackins
45 Jordan 28 Diggs

RLB
39 Stevens
95 Kashama

Cross
coun try

ss sa
26 Curry
24 Drake

FS
15 Patmon
34 Fargas

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