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November 12, 2002 - Image 9

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2002-11-12

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November 12, 2002

cbe AfIdligan Bai1


Innew role
By J. Brady McCollough
Daily Sports Writer
It wasn't easy, but Jermaine Gonzales has finally
found a home.
The redshirt sophomore came to Michigan with
the aspiration not only to be the Wolverines' start-
ing quarterback, but also to change the face of
Michigan quarterbacking. He wanted to break the
mold of the traditional Michigan signal-caller -
always slow, yet steady, staying in the pocket no
matter what the circumstances.
But things didn't go as planned. Through an
injury and an early departure by then-starting quar-
terback Drew Henson, John Navarre - a year
older and more mature than Gonzales - took con-
trol of the quarterback position. Gonzales knew
that Navarre was "the man for the job," even
though Navarre struggled at the end of last season.
The months between the 2002 Florida Citrus
Bowl and spring practice were a constant battle for
Gonzales. He prayed about what direction to take
with his football career, making frequent trips to
see his pastor in Pontiac. Michigan coach Lloyd
Carr told Gonzales he would support him no matter
what decision he made. Everyone around him had
a different opinion about what he should do, but in
the end, he followed his faith - right into coach
Erik Campbell's corps of receivers.
"It was tough at first," Gonzales said. "It was a
hard decision that I had to make, as far as getting a
lot of outsiders telling me this and that, but I want-
ed to make the switch that would put myself in
position to get on the field."
"I think he wrestled with it," Carr said. "He had
aspirations of being a great quarterback. I think
long term this will be a great decision for Jermaine
because he's going to get better and better."
The switch from quarterback to wide receiver
has been a long process for Gonzales - one
that began with a rude awakening. In spring
practice, Gonzales ran a casual slant pattern.
Needless to say, safety Charles Drake made him


Coleman should realize
hypocrisy in scandal

Jermaine Gonzales came to Michigan with the hopes of bringing mobility to the quarterback position, but as
quarterback John Navarre has emerged, Gonzales has made the transition to wide receiver.

pay for it dearly.
"He got knocked out for a second," senior receiv-
er Ron Bellamy said. "After the hit, he came off the
sideline and gave us that look like, 'This is what
ya'll go through?'"
While it was Drake who taught Gonzales that
"you have to be a soldier to go over the middle," it
was long afternoons this summer with Bellamy and
Tyrece Butler that helped Gonzales to learn the
craft of the position. Gonzales' understanding of
the game was there immediately because of his
time at quarterback, but knowing how to release off
the line of scrimmage, create separation with a cor-
nerback or how to run-block didn't come as easily.
"He's learning the tricks of the trade right now,"
Bellamy said. "Next year, he's going to be a force

to be reckoned with."
Gonzales has already begun to assert himself,
breaking into Michigan's receiving rotation against
Michigan State and Minnesota. He has three recep-
tions for 55 yards in the two games, and is begin-
ning to earn the confidence of Navarre and the
coaching staff.
"I don't want to sound like I'm bragging, but
I've always been able to catch the ball really well,"
Gonzales said. "I believe if I work really hard, I
could be a starter next year."
When asked if the coaching staff had any trick
plays up its sleeve involving his former trade, Gon-
zales had to think before he spoke.
"There are a lot more ways that they can try to
expose me in the offense," he said.

Michigan's self-inflicted sanc-
tions on Thursday were nei-
ther righteous nor
commendable. While I admire the
tone and the language of President
Mary Sue Coleman, I found the
whole thing to reek of public rela-
tions posturing. Michigan sent itself
to its room before mom and dad got
home, and part of me is hoping that
papa NCAA revokes adolescent
Michigan's allowance and doesn't let
it go to the big dance, perhaps just to
spite the program. The self-imposed
sanctions were severe, but not com-
plete. There are games yet to forfeit,
scholarships yet to relinquish and
postseasons yet to write off. That
Michigan left the NCAA something
to punish it with is smart, but comes
off as insincere and calculated.
If Michigan didn't get caught, it -
would never have come clean. With
its back against the wall, the Univer-
sity tried for a last-ditch effort to
save face, and I can't help but feel
that it was at least partly disingenu-
ous. I respect Bill Martin and
Tommy Amaker. They are honest
men, and I want to believe them
when they say they want to start
fresh and build this program, clean-
ly, from the bottom up. But fellas!
This is college basketball, and there
is no clean; there is only relatively
clean and not yet caught.
College athletics are extraordinari-
ly competitive and success and profit
are the bottom lines. Can I condemn
Steve Fisher for condoning the Ed
Martin handouts'? Chris Webber for
taking them? There is an ethical
answer, which is yes, and a practical
answer, which is a little cloudy.
But before anyone points the fin-.-
ger at Fisher, his players and his ath-
letic department, we must point the
finger at a hypocritical University
that tries to maintain athletics in an
academic environment. The Univer-
sity ought to admit that the mainte-
nance of a competitive basketball
team makes it difficult, if not impos-
sible, to uphold its own ethical and
educational standards.
If you want a basketball program,
fine. But admit that to have a success-
ful one, the ethics on Central Campus
can't apply to South Campus.
We all like college basketball and
we are generally willing to turn a
blind eye to rule breaking (like Fish-
er did) for the sake of success. And I
can support the basketball program,

as long as we're all clear on what
kind of beast a basketball program
really is.
What I am not comfortable sup-
porting is a University that pretends
that the program is compatible with
our ethical standards. I question a
University that apologizes for its mis-
takes by sanctioning itself, under a
veil of self-righteousness, with (part
of) what was coming anyway. Presi-
dent Coleman: I liked your language
of inclusion, suggesting that you are
as much a part of this University as
anyone who was here in the early
'90s. Do you really want to take own-
ership, then realize this: The bottom
line is that practically, legally, Michi-
gan did exactly what it should have
on Thursday to keep this program
alive. I said that Thursday's press
conference and self-sanctioning was
great P.R., and it was, and if it doesn't
completely satisfy the NCAA it at
least looks great on camera and in the
press. But ethically, fundamentally,
Michigan cannot have its cake and
eat it too. Power and success lead to
corruption. If Michigan can run a
successful and profitable basketball
program without compromising its
ethics, then it will have accomplished
something that has thus far been
shown to be impossible.
Michigan is an institution of high-
er education and should be held to
higher ethical standards than the
individuals who represent it. Thurs-
day's sanctions were a step in the
right direction, but again, they were
predominantly a political maneuver..
True reform must be realized, if not
by the NCAA then by Michigan
itself. That should include stricter
enforcement of rules, compensation
for players, and any number of things
that have been suggested over the
years. The school may find, if it takes
a serious look of the role of athletics
(without consideration of its own wal-
let), that basketball is incompatible
with the mission of the University.
President Coleman said that integri-
ty is our highest priority. I value
integrity, and I like college basketball,
but I tend to ignore the one to enjoy
the other. The University of Michigan
does not have that luxury.
Special thanks to Seth Klempner whose
ideas contributed to this column. David
Horn can be reached via email at

reshmen react to self-imposed sanctions

By Charles Paradis
Daily Sports Writer
It would be stating the obvious to say that many
things have changed for the Michigan basketball
team in the wake of the
self-imposed sanctions. THE
But amid some of those ED MARTIN
changes, many things have
remained the same, FU
including the dedication of
this year's freshman class
to the program.
"Everything is pretty
much all over, and we are
coming in here as fresh-
men and even though we
are not involved we still
have to pay," freshman Graham
Brown said. "We are just here to
play because we are proud to be here at Michigan
and are looking forward to playing winning Michi-
gan basketball."
The news of the sanctions hit the team hard. But
like their senior captains, the freshmen recognized the
need to move forward. Some of the Wolverines' goals

have been put out of reach, like postseason play, but
there is still much that can be accomplished with the
right mindset.
"Everybody was down and sad at first, but once we
thought about it, there is nothing that we could do,"
freshman Daniel Horton said. "We have to think
about what we can do, which is still win games and
possibly the Big Ten Tournament."
One of the objectives still within reach for
Michigan is to improve on last season's 11-18
record. The Wolverines finished in a three-way tie
for eighth last year in conference play, with a 5-11
Big Ten record. While the sanctions may have
unjustly affected the current players, they will not
prevent Michigan from rebuilding.
"There are a lot of things that go on during life that
you think are not fair, but you have 'to roll with it,
which is what we are going to have to do now," Hor-
ton said. "We need to make it through this year and
win some games to show people that we are back,
which is one of the goals we want to accomplish."
Normally the winner of the Big Ten Tournament
would receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Tourna-
ment, but with the sanctions levied against the pro-
gram the Wolverines can still try to win the Big Ten
Tournament even if they will not earn a trip to the Big

Dance in the process.
The current sanctions may not be the only ones
the Wolverines will face this season. The NCAA
could still levy its own penalties on Michigan. The
one-year ban on postseason play hurts the seniors
the most, but the NCAA could choose to extend the
ban for another year or two, which could affect
future recruiting efforts. Loss of scholarships or
recruiting visits and other possible sanctions the
NCAA could hand down, would have even more
adverse effects on attracting talent.
"As far as the NCAA possibly making that more
years, we are kind of worried about that," Horton
said. "We just have to concentrate on what is going on
right now and that is practice."
Just like everyone else, the Wolverines will contin-
ue to don their practice jerseys and work hard in the
gym for three hours a day in preparation for the
upcoming season. Just like everyone else, they will
start their season soon and they will try to put togeth-
er a season to be proud of, even if that does not
include a trip to the postseason.
"You come here to look forward to being in the
NCAA Tournament as a little kid, but you just come
out here and try to win some games," Brown said.
"You just have to play your heart out every day"

Blue excited about
hosting first round

Icers depend on youthful defensive corps

By Courtney Lewis
Daily Sports Writer

Michigan started the year with a
young defense and expected to rely
heavily on junior and alternate captain
Andy Burnes. So when Burnes came
down with mononucleosis two games
into the season it
was a tough loss for HOCKEY
the Wolverines,N
both on the ice and Notebook
in the lockerroom.
Burnes returned to action Saturday
against Bowling Green, and while
Michigan's younger blueliners are glad
to have him back, they held their own in
his absence.
Michigan went 5-0 without him and
boasted an impressive penalty-killing
unit that denied opponents on 21 of 24
powerplay opportunities.
Freshman Danny Richmond pro-
duced five points, and redshirt fresh-
man Reilly Olson, a stay-at-home
defenseman, filled the sixth spot for
four games. But three sophomores
stood out in coach Red Berenson's
"With Andy Burnes out on defense,
that was huge for Brandon Rogers and
Eric Werner and Nick Martens to step

up and really fill that (hole), and give us
a chance, at least, defensively to be
competitive," Berenson said.
Rogers and Werner showed Burnes
what they could do when he returned
Saturday. Rogers neutralized two odd-
man rushes in the closing moments of
the third period in Saturday's 1-1 tie, and
Werner, who had a three-point night on
Friday, added a physical presence.
Burnes has been especially
impressed with Martens, the son of a
former Michigan hockey player.
"Nick Martens has turned around
completely from last year," Burnes said.
"He's playing great this year."
Werner, who has been paired with
Martens, agreed and said that Martens
is "taking on a new role."
The Ann Arbor native, who skated in
17 games last year, scored his first
career goal Oct. 25 against Alaska-Fair-
banks and attributes his improvement to
"I think the changes I've made and
the steps I've been able to accomplish
have to do with the mental part of the
game and just being more prepared and
knowing exactly what I have to do out

there," Martens said.
But Martens didn't take too much
credit for Michigan's solid defensive
play while Burnes was gone, saying that
the defensemen stuck together.
"We know exactly the way each one
of us plays, and there are no real indi-
viduals out there," Martens said. "We
are only as good as our weakest link out
there, so we have to be real tight and
count on each other in all situations."
Both Martens and Werner said
they're happy Burnes is back in the
lineup, but the younger defensemen
won't reduce their roles just because
their leader has returned.
"I'm still going to go out and try and
do the exact same things I was doing

when he was out of the lineup,"
Martens said. "We were successful
when he was out of the lineup, which
is a tribute to the character of the
defense corps, but I'm going to contin-
ue to try to do the same things that ...
really gave me the opportunity (to con-
tribute) and that earned me the playing
time I've gotten."
HOMECOMING: Forward Mike Cam-
malleri, who left Michigan for the
pros over the summer, will face his
home-town team, the Toronto Maple
Leafs, tonight in his third NHL game.
The Los Angeles Kings called up
Cammalleri, a native of the Toronto
suburb of Richmond Hill, from the
AHL last Thursday.

By Michael Nisson
Daily Sports Writer
The Michigan women's soccer team
is heading to the NCAA Tournament
and it doesn't need to book any plane
tickets to get to its first-round site. The
Wolverines were awarded for their
strong regular season record of 13-5-2
with a home site for the first pair of
games this weekend.
On Friday, Michigan will square off
against Oakland (10-ll-1),at 2 p.m. on
the Michigan Soccer Field.
When the announcement was made
on television that the team would be
hosting it's first NCAA Tournament
game, the players broke out in an uproar.

The importance of being able to play in
front of a home crowd was crystal clear.
"I don't think our team could be feel-
ing any better right now," senior tri-cap-
tain Carly Williamson said. "It will be
great because we can get a lot of parents
in town and have a great fan base. (It is
also great to have) one last chance for
the seniors."
Michigan coach Debbie Rademacher
"I think (the seniors being able to
play at home) is the biggest thing,"
Rademacher said. "The seniors have a
huge opportunity. You couldn't ask for a
better draw in hosting when it did not
look so positive a week ago."

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