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November 25, 2002 - Image 12

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The Michigan Daily, 2002-11-25

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4B -The Michigan Daily - SportsMonday - November 25, 2002

OHIO STATE 14, MICHIGAN 9

GAME STATISTICS

Buckeyes' stars step it up again in crunch time

Team Stats
First Downs
Rushes/Yards
Passing Yards
Total Offense
Return Yards
Comp/Att/Int
Punts/Avg
Fumbles/Lost
Penalties/Yards
Time of Poss

MICH
26
10/121
14
89/368
60
28/48/1
4/42.5
2/1
7/53
34:53

OSU
13
7/140
5
48/264
84
10/14/0
6/41.3
1/0
6/58
25:07

By David Horn
Daily Sports Editor

M I C H I G A N

PASSING
Player
Navarre
Team
Totals
RUSHING
Player
Perry
Askew
Navarre
Totals
RECEIVING
Player
Edwards
Bellamy
Askew
Joppru
Totals

C-A
23-46
O-2
23-48

Yds TD
247 0
0 0
247 0

A
28
10
3
41
No.
10
8
3
2
23

Yds
76
45
0
121
Yds
107
101
10
29
247
No.
4
4
Yds
14
14

Avg
2.7
4.5
0.0
3.0
Avg
10.7
12.6
3.3
14.5
41.1

Lg
12
11
12
12
Lg
15
18
12
20
20

Int
0
1
TD
0
0
O
TD
0
0
0
0
0

COLUMBUS - They've won by
seven points or fewer six times this
season.
They've struggled against anyone
with a pulse, and, even then, strug-
gled against teams without one.
But they've won the Big Ten and
are going to the Fiesta Bowl to play
Miami (Fla.) or Oklahoma or another
team of that caliber, and the Buck-
eyes are brimming with confidence.
"We were one step away coming
into the game and we played our
hearts out for 60 minutes. We proved
Ohio State can play with anybody,"
senior strong safety Mike Doss said
after the Buckeyes' 14-9 victory over
Michigan on Saturday.
Doss' confidence and the team's,
comes from an expectation that the
plays that need to be made will be
made; thus far, that expectation has
been accurate. This year the adage
that "big players make big plays in
big games" rings as loudly as the
Horseshoe's victory bell in Colum-
bus. Ohio State can't beat teams by a
lot of points, and has had to rely on
young players like freshman tailback
Maurice Clarett, sophomore defen-
sive back/receiver Chris Gamble and
junior quarterback Craig Krenzel to
win close games.
On Saturday the go-to guy was
Clarett, who had missed most of the
past three games with a shoulder

for 119 yards and a touchdown, and
caught two Krenzel passes for 35
yards, including a 24-yard recep-
tion that set up teammate Maurice
Hall's 3-yard game-winning touch-
down run. The Hall touchdown and
the Will Allen interception of
Michigan quarterback John
Navarre's last-second pass to win
the game were examples of Ohio
State players stepping up to make
plays that were absolutely neces-
sary for the Buckeyes' success and
undefeated status. Two weeks ago it
was a 37-yard touchdown pass to
Michael Jenkins by Krenzel on 4th-
and-1 that gave Ohio State a 10-6
victory over Purdue.
The difference on Saturday was not
Ohio State's dominance of rival
Michigan; it trailed in every signifi-
cant offensive category and trailed
for most of the game. But in close
games, it is key plays from key play-
ers that determines who wins and
who loses.
"We didn't make the plays when
we had to, and they made the plays,"
Michigan assistant coach Fred Jack-
son said.
The Ohio State defense has shown
that it can keep the game close. As
long as it is, Clarett and the Buck-
eyes' should have the playmaking
ability to do the rest when the Fiesta
Bowl rolls around.
"I am surrounded by great team-
mates, and we made the plays when it
counted," Clarett said.

is

PUNTING
Player
Finley
Totals
KICKOFF RETURNS
Player No.
LeSueur
Totals1
* PUNT RETURNS
Player No.
Curry 4
Totals 4
DEFENSE
Player
McClintock
Hobson
June
Stevens
Drake
Sarantos
Shazor
Jackson
Lazarus
LeSueur
Diggs
Casseus
Williams
Bowman
Orr
Spytek
Stewart
Shaw
Heuer
Dudley
Totals

Yds Avg Lg
170 42.5 46
170 42.5 46

Avg Lg
14 14
14 14

Yds Avg Lg
46 11.5 20
46 11.5 20

Solo
2
5
3
4
3
2
3
2
2
2
1
0
1
1
1
1
O
43
Yds
O
0

Asst
6
2
3
0
2
0
1
O
2
0
0
0
0
0
0
19
1
19

TD
TO
0
TD
0
O
Tot
8
7
6
4
4
4
3
3
2
2
2
2
1
1T
1
1
1
1
1
1
62
p TD
1 0
1 0

injury. The word out of the Buckeyes'
camp was that Clarett could have
played last week against Illinois, but
it was evident on Saturday that the
young superstar was playing with a
great deal of pain. Although Clarett

didn't admit it afterwards, Ohio State
coach Jim Tressel confessed that his
tailback - who has aspirations of
becoming a professional - was put-
ting himself in harm's way.
"I think he was in a lot of pain,"

DANNY MOLOSHOK/Daily
Ohio State's Maurice Clarett was the Buckeyes' best player and impressed the Wolverines with his 119-yard, one touchdown performance.

Tressel said. "But he knew what this
game meant to his teammates; he
knew what this game meant to Ohio
State. So he was going to play no
matter what."
Clarett carried the ball 20 times

PASS DEFENSE
Player
Jackson
Totals

Int
O
0

Lg
O
0

Brk-up
1

O h i o S t a t e

PASSING
Player
Krenzel
Totals
RUSHING
Player
Clarett
Krenzel
Hall
Team
Totals
RECEIVING
Player
Jenkins
Clarett
Schnittker
Gamble
Vance
Ross
Totals

C-A
10-14
10-14

Yds TD
124 0
124 0

Att
20
9
4
1
34
No.
4
2
10
1
1
1
10

PUNTING
Player
Groom
Totals
KICKOFFrRETURNS
Player No.
Schnittker 1
Hall 3
Total 4

PUNT RETURNS
Player
Gamble
Totals

NJo.
3
3

Yds
119
20
3
-2
140
Yds
21
35
15
14
6
3
124
No.1
6
6
Yds
11
61
72
Yds
12
12
Solo
10
9
5
7
4
3
4
3
2
2
0
O
1
54
Yds
0
0
0
0
0
0
0

Avg
5.9
2.2
0.8
-2.0
4.1
Avg
5.3
17.5
15
14
6
3
60.8

Lg
28
12
3
0
28
Lg
18
26
15
14
6
3
26

Int
0
O
TD
1
0
1
0
0
TD
O
0
0
0

Yds Avg Lg
248 41.3 52
248 41.3 52

Avg
11
20.3
31.3

11
22

DEFENSE
Player
Wilhelm
Doss
Reynolds
Fox
Nickey
Grant
Gamble
Thompson
Peterson
Smith
Anderson
Hawk
Allen
Kudla
Scott
ConwellI
Totals

Avg Lg
4
4 E
Asst
5
4
4
0
2
2
0
3
0
0
1
2
0
24

g TD
T O
g T:D
2 0
T O
Total
15
13
9
7
6
5
4
4
3
3
2
2
2
1
74
p' T
O
0
0
0
0
0

DANNY MOLOSHOK/Daily
The Ohio State defense stifled Chris Perry and the Michigan running game, allowing just 121 yards on the ground - 76 from Perry.
Lack of offensive adjustments
seals Blue's fate In secon al
Freshman Clarett influences Tressel on Buckeyes' game-winning drive

Bowling for Central Florida, again
Students thinking about traveling to Michigan's bowl game should be
excited to hear that the Wolverines will most likely be playing in one of
two central Florida locations. Since the bowl decision is still up in the
air, let's take a look at some fun facts about both cities where Michigan
students might end up this New Year's Day.
Tampa - Outback Bowl
City slogan: No better way to do Florida.
Mlles to beach: 0
Average Temperature on January 1: 71°F HIGH,
53*F LOW
Amusement parks: Busch Gardens, Adven-
ture Island
Claim to fame: Dwight Gooden and Gary
Sheffield were born there.
Tampa is home to the famous Ybor Strip, part
of Ybor City and home to the biggest outdoor
costume festival in Florida, which is held on
the day before Halloween. You can count on the clubs to be bumping for
New Year's Eve, especially the strip clubs, known widely as the best ones in
the state.
Orlando - Citrus Bowl
City slogan: You never outgrow it (espe-
cially if you're the Michigan football team)
Miles to beach: approximately 50 miles
Average Temperature on January 1: 72*F
HIGH, 1*F LOW
Amusement parks: Disney World, Univer-
sal Studios, Sea World
Claim to fame: It's the home of the boy
bands (Backstreet Boys, N'Sync, 0-Town).
Disney World isn't just for the kids any-
more. That's right, you can follow in the
footsteps of Pinocchio and visit the
place where good little boys go bad and everyone grows a set of donkey
ears and a tail: Treasure Island. A place designed or adults who need to
get away from their kids, you might just find a little bit of magic in the
clubs and restaurants on the Island. Or a whole bunch of boozing,
exhausted parents.

01

By J. Brady McCollough
Daily Sports Writer

PASS DEFENSE
Player
Doss
Fox
Gambie
Peterson
Smith
Allen
Totals

It
0
0
0
0
0
0

Lng
0
0
0
0
0
0
0

Brk-up
2
1
1

PLAYERS F THE GAME.-

COLUMBUS - The Michigan offensive scheme worked
well in the first half Saturday. About as well as a scheme that
doesn't produce a touchdown drive can work. In fact, the
Wolverines were so content with their performance that they
decided not to mess with success.
"(There weren't) many adjustments," said tight end Bennie
Joppru of his team's halftime prepara-
tion. "We didn't think we needed them." FOOTBALL
The Ohio State defense proved Michi-
gan wrong, as the Wolverines were held Notebook
scoreless in the second half for the first
time since their 10-7 win over Utah. Michigan quarterbacks
coach Scot Loeffler said that the Buckeyes went to more
man-to-man coverage, as well as mixing up their looks more
often in the second half.
"Obviously, we didn't run the ball in the second half, that's
pretty much the change," offensive guard Matt Lentz said.
"They made some adjustments as good teams do."
In the first 30 minutes, the Michigan offense controlled the
ball for almost 20 minutes, ran 47 plays compared to Ohio
State's 18, and converted eight-of-11 third downs. Punter
Adam Finley didn't even have to come on the field once, as all
three offensive drives took the Wolverines into the red zone.
However, the field goal kicking version of Finley was
called upon too many times, and that was the problem for the
Wolverines. Finley drilled three field goals in the first half to
give Michigan a 9-7 halftime lead.
"We did a good job mixing up the pass and the run, and
that's what we've done this past month really well," Loeffler
said. "It was effective. We just couldn't put the ball in the
end zone."
The Wolverines were invincible on third down, as quarter-
back John Navarre was able to take apart a vulnerable Ohio
State secondary time and time again. Michigan was not spec-
tacular running the ball, but backs Chris Perry and B.J.
Askew found a way to get the necessary yardage against one

While the Michigan offense stalled in the third quarter, it
had its chances to cash in and win the game in the final four
minutes. Navarre drove the Wolverines down to the Ohio
State 30-yard line but fumbled the ball to the Buckeyes for
the game's first turnover. Then, after the Michigan defense
held strong and forced a Buckeyes' punt, Navarre willed
Michigan to the Ohio State 24-yard line with seven seconds
to go. The Wolverines moved 56 yards in 58 seconds, but
Ohio State's Will Allen picked off Navarre's pass to Edwards
at the 1-yard line to ice the game and send the Buckeyes to
the Fiesta Bowl.
"Normally, when you win the third down battle, you're
going to win the game, but we lost the turnover battle," Loef-
fler said. "If we had won that battle, we might have been able
to put ourselves in a better spot."
"I still think we played well enough to win the game," Mor-
gan said. "It hurt. I'm just disappointed right now."
The outcome was nothing new for Michigan or the Buck-
eyes. Ohio State's second-half shutout of Michigan was its
sixth of the season and its fourth against a ranked opponent.
A PLAYER'S COACH: Ohio State's offense did what it had
done all season for three quarters of action Saturday: It didn't
turn the ball over, it hoped standout freshman tailback Mau-
rice Clarett would do something special and it was content to
punt the ball away and let its defense take control.
But on the Buckeyes' game-winning scoring drive in the
fourth quarter, Ohio State pulled out all the stops to make
sure they "made some money," unlike the Wolverines.
While many Buckeyes' fans would like to give second-year
coach Jim Tressel credit for the unpredictable play calling on
that crucial drive, it was Clarett, the 18-year-old phenom, who
told Tressel to call the pass play that resulted in a 26-yard
gain and a first-and-goal for the Buckeyes.
"(Clarett) told me in the second quarter that 'You better call
that play because they can't check me,' "Tressel said.
DIGGING DEEPER: Part of the reason Clarett knew the Michi-
gan defense "couldn't check" him was its depleted linebacker
corps, which became even more of an issue in the second
quarter when junior starter Carl Diggs left the game after a

SMITH
Continued from Page 1B
It didn't go undefeated at home.
It didn't beat Ohio State for the
second straight year.
More than anything else, that's
what everyone will remember.
And there's no single person that
can be made the scapegoat for this
loss.
The defense, even after losing yet
another linebacker (Carl Diggs) to
injury in the first half, played bend-
but-don't break defense but held
Ohio State to just 14 points.
Anyone who blames John Navarre
for the loss should have his or her
head examined. He played a near
perfect game managing the Wolver-
ines' offense up until the red zone
and was mistake-free except for the
late fumble.
His interception on the final play
was just like a Hail Mary being lost
in the shuffle. And even before that
fateful throw, he led Michigan back
and gave his team a chance to win.
The offensive line controlled the
line of scrimmage for the entire
first half and the Wolverines ran the
ball well enough against the vaunt-

ed Ohio State defense. On three
drives, Michigan ran 47 plays for
191 yards and ate up 19:09 off the
clock. Michigan didn't punt once
and - gasp - was 3-of-3 on field
goals.
But the Wolverines scored zero
touchdowns. They lost the game
because they couldn't make plays
and score touchdowns when they
absolutely needed to. They lost
because they couldn't put two
halves of solid football together in
their most important game. They
lost because they lack game-break-
ers.
They lost, and now have to settle
for mediocrity.
And that should be unacceptable.
Instead, some Michigan players
are looking for a silver lining.
"You win some, you lose some,"
said senior safety Cato June.
"We still have a bowl game left,"
said linebacker Carl Diggs.
"It's alright if we finish strong,"
said senior Tyrece Butler.
Nope, it's too late for that.
Joe Smith can be reached at
josephms@umich.edu

DAVID KATZ/Daily
OFFENSIVE - John Navarre:

" SIX.

A

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