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October 03, 2008 - Image 12

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2008-10-03

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48 - Football Saturday - October 4, 2008
l~l ha oaqa8l~ "o; podepe s; le s;eqy'AIsuo~u! awes ay; o; poq ay; pofqns I;l,, 0 ;sill sly; ul o slqsdse 5We 6M i~m ueiyi sssaidao; i luniloddo us sq o uOS ;ou s,ssqj.,9*,; uoddeq o uos ou s,isq± " uMop Ap
- n the excitement following last them through brutal summer workouts,
C week's 27-25 comeback win over the Wolverines were able to give first- Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez got plenty of buzz when he came toI
A.Wisconsin, Michigan players year Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez
o U were asked about the key to the his first signature win in Ann Arbor..,
Thedhistoricvictory. Forsome,talkingaboutthepowerof But the most talked-about member of his staff isn't even a coach - it
They could easily have easily point- commitment is just a way to motivate
ed to fifth-year senior linebacker John people. The words are air with no sup-
N Thompson's pick-six, redshirt freshman port. That's not the case with Barwis. strength and conditioning M ike Barw is, w ith his intense worko
quarterback Steven Threet's 58-yard run "It's hard to instill toughness in peo-
or junior Brandon Graham's three sacks. ple and commitment when you don't
Those plays will live on in Michigan do it yourself," said Autumn Barwis, By-Ian Robinson Daily Sports Editor
lore, but the Wolverines didn't see them Mike's wife, and an assistant on Michi-
as the game-deciding moments. gan's strength and conditioning staff.
For them, those moments happened "That's one thing that sets Mike apart.
months ago. It wasn't just one, either. That's how he thinks. It's not a show. Center photo: Rodrigo Gaya/Daily, outside photos: Zachary Meisner/Daily
Rather, it was a summer's worth of It's not, 'When I'm at work,this is what
. sprints, lifts, squats, sweat, and blood I am like.' He really is like that all the
with Michigan's new director ofstrength time." jokingly calling him a cage fighter, who her son's accomplishments, she showed weekly allowance and completed house- and put it back."
and conditioning, Mike Barwis. That's the way Mike has been since he owns pet wolves and made it to West the same level of humility he displayed hold chores as a responsibility to the Judy works in school administration. o
The workouts put the players into "the got to Michigan, and that's the way he Virginia football practice after crashing when talking about his team. family. Every day, she sees what happens when t
bestshape of their lives." They are stron- has been his entire life. his truck off a cliff, he didn't want to take "You just give them the tools to get Shortcuts didn't exist. parents let their children slip by. e
AD ger, quicker and faster than ever. focus away from the players. where they are going," Judy said. "Too Mike likes to tell a story about when "Toomany times, I see a parent say, d
After the third quarter Saturday, the IT WASN'T ME "I would prefer to have stories about many people think it's all about them he did some yardwork at his grandpar- 'It's my fault they forgot their homework
Badger offensive line had its hands on its the team and the players or the pro- when in fact it's not about them. It's ents' house. He put a shovel back where because I forgot to put it in their back- w
hips while the Michigan defense looked Mike Barwis refuses to take credit for gram," Barwis wrote in an e-mail four about the tools they gave these people." he found it, but there was still some dirt pack,' " Judy said. "And therefore, the ti
fresh, despite being on the field for near- the mental and physical changes that days later. "I am just one guy in a unit on it. child sees no consequence." Y
ly 28 of 45 minutes. have occurred in the Michigan football and am really not that important. I THERE ARE NO SHORTCUTS "What's wrong with this picture?" his It creates an atmosphere where chil- D
a. The Wolverines' improved physical program since he arrived. would rather not subject my family and grandfather asked. dren don't take responsibility for their y
conditioning was integral to Saturday's "All I do is provide tools and direc- friends to the public eye." Barwis grew up in Philadelphia. In Mike didn't know. actions. That's not the kind of home Mike y
comeback. But its new level of tough- tion, and they do the work," Barwis said. But when his playersowere asked about the household, everything was earned - "There wasn't dirt on the shovel when grew up in, and that's not the impression
ness allowed the Wolverines to maintain "These kids have been very committed. the transformation, they were almost nothing was given. I got it, so what was the dirt doing on the he has carried with the Wolverines. ti
their never-die attitude throughout. Any gains that they have had have been unanimous in saying it was the strength Judy grew up on a farm. Her fam- shovel now?" his grandfather respond- During summer workouts, players h
m "It's mental conditioning just as much because of themselves, not because of and conditioning program. ily's livelihood depended on the work ed. had to beat specific times for a series
as it is physical conditioning," Barwis me." This is the first time his family has they put in. Failing one's responsibili- "Pop, what's the difference?Why does of sprints. If a player couldn't make i
said. "If we're not committed 100 per- When approached at Michigan Media spoken to the media. They spoke under ties around the house meant letting the it matter?" the times, he simply worked harder to p
cent to everything we do in our lives, we Day about the idea for a story about the the condition that they would not be entire family down. "If the shovel were better with dirt achieve them. t
; start to fall short of our dreams." source of his mentality, he was appre- asked to discuss the Barwis legends. Mike grew up with this mentality. He on it, they'd have made it that way," his That's exactly what happened with l
With the commitment instilled in hensive. With stories floating around When his mother, Judy, spoke about and his two brothers never received a grandfather said. "Clean it the .hell up senior nose tackle Terrance Taylor. h
"If we are not completely committed in the mental aspect and we don't have an attitude where we are trying to excel at what we do and we are not 100% committed to whatever we do, then we tend to fall short in this world." 0

October 4, 2008 - Football Saturday - 5B
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