October 4, 2006
Taylor works hard, plays hard
By Kevin Wright
Daily Sports Editor
He couldn't sleep, mostly because he
knew what was waiting for him when he
During team conditioning this past sum-
mer, Terrance Taylor and his teammates
had the pleasure of 6 a.m. runs through the
Michigan golf course.
And the 305-pound defensive tackle sat
with a mix of anticipation and dread.
"I couldn't go to sleep because I was
like, 'Man, I got to run at six in the morn-
ing, and I better get some sleep,' " Taylor
said. "The next thing I know it's like five
o'clock and I'm like, 'Dang.' So I go out
there and run. But it's fun. There's nothing
better than to be out there at 6 a.m. with
your teammates running. "
Like his teammates, Taylor, who played
sparingly last season, knew this year's key
to success: better conditioning.
"We saw a reason for it," Taylor said.
"Last year, when you watch film, you get
sick to your stomach because you see play-
ers walking and not getting to the ball and
missing tackles. That's not us. Going into
conditioning, we had great leaders out there
(making us) run hard every day:"
The commitment paid off, especially
for Taylor. Already, the Muskegon native
has played more than 50 snaps in a game
(Wisconsin) and made his presence felt in
the trenches. He has had a significant role
in a defense ranked No. I against the run
"It's easy to forget he's a sophomore,"
Michigan coach Lloyd Carr said. "A year
ago, he was just finding out that college is
different than high school. He was used to
dominating, and he was used to playing all
the time, so he had some things to learn.
I think he's really much stronger. I think
that's the biggest difference than a year
When teams decide to double Taylor, he
takes it in stride, knowing that drawing the
extra man allows his fellow defensive tack-
le to have a one-on-one matchup - and a
good chance to get into the backfield.
Taylor points to his renewed focus on
the field, in practice and in the film room
along with his conditioning as the main
reasons he now wreaks havoc in the middle
of the line.
"Last year, I really didn't know the
defense and this year I watch film and got
the tip sheets and I look them over," Tay-
lor said. "Now 1 know the defense like the
back of my hand."
A wrestler in high school, Taylor
understands how important leverage is to
becoming the defensive tackle that both his
coaches and his teammates believe he can
But graduated defensive tackle Gabe
Watson might have changed Taylor's future
with 90 minutes of innocent fun in a pool.
Michigan was in San Antonio for the
Alamo Bowl last December, and Taylor and
one of his teammates were relaxing by the
pool. Then, Watson came in and wanted to
wrestle. Luckily, Taylor knew when enough
was enough. He had to bow out before Wat-
son drowned him.
"He got me pretty good," Taylor said.
"I think he took kickboxing or something.
It wasn't a wrestling move. I just gave
up. Gabe, he likes to play a lot. He really
doesn't know when to stop, so you really
have to give up."
Other than Watson, who Taylor claims as
his lone defeat, the sophomore has never
backed down from a challenge. When
asked who he's wrestled on the team, Tay-
lor lists Rondell Biggs, Jake Long, LaMarr
Woodley and Alan Branch as notches on
See TAYLOR, page 10A
Sophomore Terrance Taylor hoists the Little Brown Jug last Saturday.
Fitzpatrick fights through illness
By Chris Herring
Daily Sports Writer
After picking up a steal in Maryland terri-
tory last Sunday, freshman Kelly Fitzpatrick
started up the field in hot pursuit of a goal for
On the breakaway, Fitzpatrick found soph-
omore teammate Stephanie Hoyer open to her
F right. Catching the Terrapin goaltender out of
position, Hoyer quickly dished the ball back
to Fitzpatrick, who appeared to have the bet-
But the ball took an untimely hop over her
stick and rolled past the baseline, foiling the
Fitzpatrick learned firsthand that the ball
will not always bounce her way in a much
more serious way this summer.
Just four days before she planned to move
to Ann Arbor for training camp, Fitzpatrick
got seriously ill. After a week-long stay in a
Pennsylvania hospital, doctors released her.
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Later that week, Kelly and her family decided
to make the trip to Michigan, still without a
clear understanding of what caused the sick-
University doctors checked on Fitzpat-
rick soon after she arrived on campus. They
quickly figured out what had been causing the
Doctors diagnosed Fitzpatrick with a kid-
ney disorder called bilateral reflux, a condi-
tion where organs operate at just 35 percent,
which requires surgery.
"I was really shocked," Fitzpatrick said.
"It was one of those things where you don't
think anything that serious can happen to
you. Coming into my freshman year, I had
really high expectations for myself, and to
have something like this happen is definitely
"I went from wondering whether I would
get playing time to wondering whether I could
play at all."
But Fitzpatrick had no reason to worry
about receiving playing time. Before attend-
ing her first college class, the Hummelstown,
Pa., native had already played on the nation's
Junior Olympic team three times and led her
high school team to a state title, scoring a
nation-high 66 goals and breaking the state
record for goals in a career (155) in the pro-
Michigan coach Nancy Cox expected Fitzpat-
rick to contribute from the outset and was sur-
prised when she learned of the kidney ailment.
"It was shocking in the sense that this was
a young woman who had never had a major
medical diagnosis in her life," Cox said. "But
I felt much more for the family and for Kelly
than I did for Michigan field hockey."
Obviously, the news didn't come easy for
Kelly's parents, either. Her mother, Lauri Fitz-
patrick, was preparing her daughter to live on
her own for the first time when Kelly got sick.
"One week, you're picking out what color
sheets you need for the dorm, and you find
See FITZPATRICK, page 10A
Freshman Kelly Fitzpatrick scored Michigan's only goal against Maryland.
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