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2B - The Michigan Daily - FACEOFF 2001 - Thursday, October 4, 2001
The Michigan Daily - FACEOFF 2001 -
Is it '98 all over again?
Tradition has led to the resurgence
of a proud Michigan hockey family
By Naweed Sikora
Daily Sports Wrinter
Four seasons ago, 10 talented but
unproven freshman burst onto the
Michigan hockey scene and made an
Along with senior goalie Marty
Turco," senior captain Matt Herr and
senior Billy Muckalt, the young team
raised many eyebrows as it captured the
Four years later the players are gone,
but the team seems oddly familiar.
Michigan once again finds itself with
10 talented newcomers to replace the
11 departures from the previous season.
The team has a senior goalie in
Josh Blackburn, who will begin his
fourth season as a starter. Once agaiA,
the team has a small senior class com-
plemented by a strong junior class led
by captain Jed Ortmeyer. And once
again, the team will have several
unknowns heading into the season.
"We think that we are in the middle
of the pack like everyone else in the
CCHA," Michiga4 coach Red
Berenson said. "I sense that we are a
different team this year with different
chemistry. I have no idea where we are
going this year, but I think we will be a
fun team to coach and watch. Night
after night, it is anyone's game."
Considered to be one of the finest
recruiting classes in Michigan hockey
history, the Wolverines' freshmen will
play a huge role in the team's success
Berenson is not afraid to put his
young players in key situations despite
their lack of college experience..
"I really like the freshman, I am
impressed by their work ethic and I
think they are fitting in fine," Berenson
said. "I know we will be faced with the
possibility of playing three freshman
forwards on one line, and I am not
afraid of that."
The freshmen are ready to accept the
challenge, but are also being careful not
to jump in too quickly.
"I knew how nervous I was before
the first practice, but it made it easier to
know there were nine other guys that
nervous also," freshman Eric Nystrom
said. "Everyone's bigger, everyone's
stronger, and everyone's a little more
experienced out here, which definitely
makes the pace a lot faster. I'm getting
Return of thejed'i. . .
The Man in the Iron Mask.
Clear and Present Danger .
Craig Murray is one of just four seniors
returning to this year's team.
used to it, each day gets a little better."
"We're a young team and young
freshman class,' freshman Milan Gajic
said. "I think we're just going to take it
one step at a time. The letter leadership
on this team is excellent, and the sup-
porting cast is there, which makes
things a lot easier for us."
Just as the senior Turco defended
Michigan's goal in 1998, the senior
Blackburn will stand in net for this
See 2001, Page 5B
0 0 0 0 8
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DAILY HOCKEY WRITERS
J. Brady McCollough
EDITOR IN CHIEF
MANAGING SPORTS EDITOR
DISPLAY SALES MANAGER
By Seth Klempner
Daily Sports Writer
Behind the sturdy wood desk in
Michigan coach Red Berenson's office
are two high arching windows that give
the office a feeling of grandeur.
Now entering his 18th season as head
coach of the Wolverines, Berenson's
influence on the program is larger than
both of the windows.
Berenson has fewr red hairs than he
used to. But in their place is the gray that
comes with wisdom and worldliness.
He doesn't say much during practice.
He doesn't need to.
His presence alone forces players to
skate just a little bit faster, shoot harder
and play stronger.
"He is a mentor for all of us. He is a
hockey icon as far as I'm concerned,"
alternate captain Mike Cammalleri said.
"Obviously he is concerned about
hockey and the Michigan program,"
1998 graduate Gregg Malicke said. "But
he is more concerned about the individ-
ual and how they do in life and whether
they are happy."
Berenson, a native of Saskatchewan,
Canada was one of the first major talents
to delay his professidnal career for the
chance to earn a college degree - which
he earned in 1962. Four years later, while
still playing in the NHL, Berenson
earned his masters degree in business
administration from Michigan as well.
That emphasis on education has fol-
lowed Berenson throughout his coach-
ing career. He has insisted that his play-
ers be top performers on the ice and
meet the academic standards of
Talk to Berenson and one will soon
discover that he takes as much pride in
enters his 18th a
season as a
M i hig an's head
coach with a
horse ina981- bfr cetnh
-- a graduate of
the University of Michigan class of
1962 - set Michigan records with
nine hat tricks and 43 goals in a
singleseason as a Wolverine
Berenson went on to play in to the
NHL for 17 years, finishing his
career with 261 goals and 397 -
asiss.After his re'irement, he
coached in the NHL fortfie years -
ors in 1981 - before ac cepting the
head coaching job at Mighigan in
1984. Berenson has led the
Wolverines to an overall record of
448-220-45 (.660), placing him -
15th all-time among NCAA hockey
coaches in career wins. Berenson
led Michigan to NCAA
Champonshis in 996 and 199'
as well as runner-up in 1997. He
also led the Wolverines back to the
NCAA Frozen Four last season for
the players that go on to be successful off
the ice as on.
"It is important that players develop
and be respected as people, not just as
hockey players," Berenson said.
"Making sure that my players have an
education to fall back on and have
another successful career. This is about
people, not just athletes."
Unlike the Michigan football pro-
gram, Michigan hockey has not always
been among the top in the nation. In fact,
when Berenson was hired in 1984, the
program was struggling and had lost
touch with its roots.
Berenson began applying the work
ethic and organizational skills that he
had acquired as a professional coach to
return Michigan to the success it had
experienced in the fifties and sixties -
taking only seven years to return the pro-
gram to among the nation's elite.
He has reunited the Michigan hockey
family to the point where last summer,
180 alumni returned for the annual
hockey alumni weekend.
"It is a great time to get together with
friends and remember what we went
through to become the people we are
today," former Michigan goalie Marty
Turco said of the reunion.
In addition to reuniting the Michigan
hockey family, Beenson has also made
capital improvements to Yost Ice Arena
that will ensure the financial stability of
the program for years to come. Among
these plans include an endowment fund
which will relieve a financial burden
from the Athletic Department, and club
seating that will be a revenue stream into
When asked about his legacy as
Michigan's coach and the man who
returned the program to its former glory,
Food for Thought
It is taught that the
of the 1960s/'70
ended the Vietnam
War. It can be argued
effectively that the
prolonged the war
and cost tens of thou-
sands of lives. Read
A Viet Cong Memoir by
Truong Nhu Tang and A
Thousand Tears Falling
by Yun gKrall
for research. If you
participate in rallies
against our country
over the September 11
terrorist attacks, do you
become an ally of the
Gary Lillie & Assoc., Realtors
Berenson sighed in contemplation.
"I think one of the things we have tried
to do is get this program not necessarily
a dynasty but a team that has been a top
program for a long time," Berenson said.
"That was my first goal, to improve the
image of Michigan hockey because it
had been down a long time."
"There has never been a person before
who has had the stature in this game of
college hockey," said David Brophy, one
of Berenson's professors at the business
school and a long-time friend. "There
are many coaches who have great
records but there is no one who has the
spirit in it that Red does."
Red Berenson won the won his second m
goaltender Marty Turco and complimente
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