By Kevin Wright
Daily Sports Writer
Junior catcher Becky Marx had a big choice
to make this past summer: where to transfer.
After a record-setting season for Loyola of
Chicago in which she hit .326, recorded 44
RBI, slammed seven home runs and was select-
ed to the first-team All-Horizon League, Marx
decided that she needed a change of scenery.
"I faced the big question: Do you want to be
the big fish in the little pond or the small fish
in the ocean," Marx said. "I had accomplished
everything that I wanted to at Loyola. There
were no external forces pushing me anymore,
so I decided that I was going to move onto big-
ger and better things."
But for Marx, the transition to Michi-
gan wasn't easy. During the summer, she
could talk to Michigan softball coach Carol
Hutchins just once over the phone. Any fur-
ther contact between the two would have
resulted in Marx losing some of her finan-
cial aid because it would have been consid-
ered recruiting. Without financial aid, it
would have been harder for Marx to come
to Michigan because she doesn't enjoy the
benefit of being on scholarship.
As the summer wound down and school
began, Marx still hadn't signed up for any
classes at Michigan, but she knew that she
would have a spot on the team. She didn't know
if she would start or even play, but Marx was
willing to take that chance.
"At the beginning of the summer, I said that,
if this all works out, then this was meant to be,
and it all did," Marx said. "There were so many
things that I couldn't control that had to fall into
place, and they all did."
Not only did Marx have to adjust to a new
school environment, but she also had to adapt
to a new coaching style and a new role on the
team. Over her two years at Loyola, Marx
became the best player, but she knew that, even
though she was coming to a program of Mich-
igan's caliber, she could still contribute to the
team without being the superstar.
"I had to get used to competition," Marx
said. "I didn't have competition at Loyola. I
The Michigan Daily - Thursday, April 14, 2005 - 1A
Tyson ready for fight,
feels like 'Mr. Mom'
WASHINGTON (AP) - Mike Tyson
hunched in his chair and tapped his 9-
year-old daughter's hand while she rest-
ed her head on Daddy's ample shoulder.
Later, the heavyweight once called "the
baddest man on the planet" cuddled his
"I feel like Mr. Mom," Tyson said, then
stomped his foot and smiled at his own
joke. Wearing a pinstriped suit, he could
have been any family man, albeit one with
a tattoo on his face.
Silent and expressionless for the first
15 minutes of Tuesday's news confer-
ence to announce his return to the ring, a
scheduled June 11 bout at the MCI Cen-
ter against journeyman Kevin McBride of
Ireland, Tyson lit up and laughed when his
foe's manager promised an upset.
And from that point forth, Tyson came
close to being the Tyson everyone has
come to expect: the curiosity that promot-
ers hope can still sell tickets and pay-per-
view buys even though he's 38 and lost two
of his past three fights.
He talked about sinking into depression,
called McBride "real cute," labeled him-
self "probably the worst husband in the
world," and told a PR person running the
show to "chill out" when she pointed out it
was time for more posed photos.
Yes, The Mike Tyson Show is headed to
the nation's capital.
"I just hope these people of Washington,
D.C., are prepared to handle this," Tyson
said. "It's going to be a train wreck."
It will be the former champion's first
fight in nearly a year and just his second
in 28 months. In his most recent outing,
at Louisville, Kent. on July 30, he was
stopped in the fourth round by Danny
Williams after tearing cartilage in his
left knee. Tyson had surgery - the knee
is fine, he said Tuesday - and he's been
training in Phoenix for three weeks.
He's been more than $30 million in debt,
and when asked how much longer he thinks
he'll keep fighting, Tyson answered: "Long
enough to take care of my children - a
The 6-foot-6 McBride, who's 32-4-1
with 27 knockouts, was originally sup-
posed to be Tyson's opponent for that
July bout. Make no mistake, this fight is
entirely about Tyson. McBride's name
wasn't even uttered by master of ceremo-
nies Rock Newman until nearly 20 minutes
into Tuesday's event.
"It's a no-win situation for me," said
Tyson, 50-5 with two no contests and 44
knockouts. "If I knock him out in two sec-
onds, he's a bum. If he gives me a shellack-
ing, I'm a bum."
For his part, McBride vowed at least
three times: "I'm going to shock the
His manager, Rich Cappiello, was more
"If people are thinking we're coming to
lay down ... we are coming out to knock
Mike Tyson out. He had his day. His day's
gone. I think Mike Tyson gets knocked out
within five rounds," Cappiello said.
That's when the first crease crossed
Tyson's face as he laughed.
"We are going to stop Mike Tyson and,
hopefully, . end his career," Cappiello
Later, in a classic Freudian slip, Cappi-
ello wrapped up his speech by proclaim-
ing, "We're going to go out there and knock
Kevin - uh, Mike Tyson - out."
That drew loud snickers from the crowd
and Tyson's entourage. But Tyson didn't
get drawn into a battle of words. And after
the fighters stood toe-to-toe for photogra-
Tyson shook McBride's hand, patted him
on the back and winked.
"I don't get into the staredowns and the
talking trash. I'm older, so I'm not really
too much into that," he said later. "I don't
want to punch a guy in the face before the
This from the man who brawled with
Lennox Lewis at a 2002 news confer-
ence announcing a bout. Who vowed to
eat Lewis's children. Who bit off a piece
of Evander Holyfield's ear. Who was con-
victed of rape in 1992.
He sounded downright introspective
Tuesday discussing how down he was after
"I was in that little square-box room,
and I was on crutches, and it was a very
depressing atmosphere. I just fell into a
deep depression," Tyson said. "Once those
painkillers wore off, it was horrific. _I
didn't know what to do. I was just like a
little spoiled brat. I was at my worst self."
He paused, before adding: "I'm just so
happy that I'm happy again."
And then he cackled, a high-pitched
squeak that reverberated off the walls of
the Lincoln Theater.
Michigan junior catcher Becky Marx has been a "gift from God" according to coach Carol Hutchins.
had to get used to not being the star on the
team and taking a back seat. I had to get used
to a big-time program where they demand a
lot from you."
While transferring to a new school would
take any player time to settle in, Marx also had
to deal with learning the unique deliveries and
different pitching styles of Michigan's three tal-
Faced with such a challenging task, Marx
had a head start. She caught for senior Nicole
Motycka when they both played on the same
team in Kalamazoo last summer. Previously,
Marx had caught for junior Jennie Ritter on a
summer team. Already knowing their tenden-
cies allowed for Marx to transition smoothly
into the starting lineup. In fact, when Ritter
pitches, Marx calls the game from behind
"(Ritter and I) click on such a great level,"
Marx said. "Pitchers are pitchers no matter
where you go. They all have the same mindset;
you just have to work with them."
On the offensive side of the game, Marx has
started slowly, batting .253 with three home
runs and 15 RBI. But Marx attributes her strug-
gles to the alterations that the Michigan coaches
made to her swing. As she becomes more com-
fortable with her new swing, she is confident
that she can return her batting average to her
To Hutchins, Marx has meant a great deal to
the team's success this season, not just with her
defensive prowess but also with her demeanor.
"She's been a gift from God," Hutchins said.
"She's been exactly what we needed. She's
beefed up our catching core and brings great
experience. She's just got a great attitude. She's
a great kid to have out on the field."
Looking back at the ordeal, Marx relishes
the role of a small fish in the ocean. Although
she doesn't receive much of the recognition, she
doesn't regret her decision to come to Michigan
in the least bit.
"Michigan softball is amazing," Marx said.
"It's intense, and you couldn't ask for better
coaches. It's a lot different. Here, it's the real
deal; we're here to win."
North Carolina's Rashad McCants will
leave school early for the NBA. The 64-oot4
guard is expected to be a first-round pick.
Wright leave early for NBA
Both North Carolina junior Rashad
McCants and Indiana junior Bracey
Wright will forgo their senior seasons
to enter the NBA draft.
McCants said yesterday he will
enter the NBA draft, after helping the
Tar Heels win their fourth national
championship this season.
McCants, the team's second-lead-
ing scorer at 16 points a game, said he
was in the process of hiring an agent,
a move that would prevent him from
returning for his senior season. But
he said he would continue working to
earn his college degree.
McCants said he came back to school
after his sophomore season to win a
national championship. He also said
he wanted to follow in the footsteps
of Michael Jordan, who helped North
Carolina win a national title before
leaving for the NBA as a junior.
"I felt like my whole reason for
coming back last year was to get those
goals accomplished," McCants said at
a news conference. "And I did."
McCants's announcement made
official a decision that had been expect-
ed for more than a week. Less than a
day after the Tar Heels beat Illinois
75-70 in the NCAA final, coach Roy
Williams addressed McCants's future
by saying, "We could lose some guys,
there's no question about that. And we
are going to lose Rashad."
Williams said yesterday that
McCants had his "complete support"
in jumping to the NBA.
McCants scored 14 points on 6-
for-15 shooting in 31 minutes against
Illinois in the National Championship
Others might soon follow. Fellow
juniors Sean May and Raymond Fel-
ton, and freshman Marvin Williams
are also considering their plans for
On Tuesday night, Felton said he
made a decision but wasn't ready to
Williams said he was leaning one
way, while May - the Most Out-
standing Player of the Final Four who
has said he plans to stay at school -
wouldn't commit to returning for his
If all four underclassmen leave
along with seniors Jawad Williams,
Jackie Manuel and Melvin Scott, the
Tar Heels will lose their top seven
Players who want to enter the NBA
draft early must file by May 14. The
draft is June 28.
Wright said yesterday he will also
forgo his senior year and enter the
The 6-foot-3 junior led the Big Ten
in scoring, averaging 18.3 points as the
Hoosiers finished 15-14 and missed
the NCAA Tournament for a second
straight year. He ends his career 15th
on Indiana's all-time scoring list with
"I am excited about the possibil-
ity of playing in the NBA, and it has
always been a dream of mine," Wright
said in a statement.
Wright said he would hire an agent
at the end of the semester.
"I wanted to complete my course-
work," he said. "I expect to finish that
soon, and at that time I will then turn
my focus towards the NBA draft and
Indiana coach Mike Davis called it a
"great opportunity" for Wright, a 2002
McDonald's high school All-American
from The Colony, Texas.
"Bracey has a lot of talent and will
be a terrific professional player," Davis
said. "We are going to miss him here
at Indiana, but at the same time, we are
excited about the players who are here
and the newcomers next season."
Wright was a first-team All-Big Ten
selection last season, when he scored
at least 20 points in 10 games. He had
three games with 30 or more points,
including a season-high 32 points in an
overtime victory over Michigan State.
He is the first Indiana player to win
the Big Ten scoring title since A.J.
Guyton in 2000. The NBA draft is
The NBA Draft will be held June
28 at the Theater in Madison Square
Indiana Junior Bracey Wright declared for the NBA Draft.
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