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April 20, 2009 - Image 10

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The Michigan Daily, 2009-04-20

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I

2B - April 20, 2009

Sj9 rt Moday

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

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The Daily may
e shrinking but
it can't disappear
Traditionally, the last Sports- 2005, if Michigan students wanted
Monday Column of the school year news, they had to turn to the Daily
has taken the form of alonggoodbye - at least if they wanted it for free.
froma(hopefully)soon-to-be-grad- I'm all for the proliferation of
uating senior information. And I don't want to
addressed to use this space to offer my opinions
anyone interest- on why the newspaper industry is
ed in listening. dying. The truth is, I don't have any
I'll refrain more answers than the next guy. If
from using that I did, I probably would have, you
format because, know, landed a job in the industry
if anything, this by now.
column should All I hope is that the changes I've
be about what NATE seen at the Daily in the last four
the Daily has SANDALS years don't mark the beginning of
meant to you, the end for this great college news-
the reader. ButI paper.
don't really have much to say about I'mnotconcernedthattheDaily's
that, either. decline in influence will negatively
So I sat down to write this col- impactme. I've already gotten more
umn with some apprehension, out of the Daily than anything else
doubting that I would have any- on this campus.
thing intelligent to offer. And I still Without the Daily, I never would
doubt I do, but the process made me have had the countless incredible
reflect on why I think the Daily is opportunities to cover interesting
still an important part of this cam- people, take amazing trips and,
pus, even if we don't realize it. most importantly, work with the
When I arrived on campus in people who became some of my
September 2005, the Daily was a best friends.
part of everyone's routine. There The Daily was important to me
it was every morning before class, for every reason other than seeing
offering some diversion to make mynameinthepaper,strewnacross
that nine a.m. lecture go by a little the floor in Angell Hall. The Daily
bit faster. was my outlet, my proving ground
The Daily of that time - and the and the place where I learned more
years before - was a behemoth about real life than any class I took
compared to what you see today. on this campus.
The print edition regularly had 16 I'm sure any senior reading this
pages. Sports fans could expect can say the same thing about the
to find an article on their favorite extracurricular they poured their
team two or three times a week, not time into over the last four years.
just after a game. So even if the Daily does nothave
Sure, everyone still picked up the a single reader at some horrible
Daily for the crossword, and by the point in time, I can only hope it
beginning of my sophomore year, doesn't completely disappear.
the Sudoku. But there was a lot of I've been lucky enough to have
good writing in the paper, too, for the Daily there for me for the past
anyone who cared to take a look. four years.
There's still an amazing level of Four years from now, I hope
quality in today's Daily. ButI worry the Daily will be there for another
that fewer people are takingnotice. student looking for a place to call
in the past four years, the Daily home.
has shrunk in size, laptops have
taken over classrooms and you can - Sandals wants to thank you,
get your news, if youhave any inter- the reader. He can be reached
est, from a dozen sources online. In at nsandals@umich.edu.

NCAAS
From pagelB
tenths behind the Wolverines,
with Cal coming in a half a tenth
behind that.
Just one big mistake could have
dropped the Wolverines to fourth.
But Michigan put together its
best meet of the entire season
when it mattered most, posting its
highest NCAA finish since 2000.
And for the second straight night,
the Wolverines posted their high-
est team score of the season.
"Pretty, much everything
clicked," senior Joe Catrambone
said. "We've never, ever hit this
high. It was just one great routine
after another."
As the gymnasts predicted all
year, pommel horse was a differ-
ence-maker. The Wolverines chose
to start on the bye rotation, mean-
ing their first event would be the
pommel horse. For some teams,
the pommel horse might exacer-
bate those first-rotation nerves.
Not Michigan.
The Wolverines knocked out
Rosso
From page 1B
in gymnastics, been inconsistent,
he knew he could hit it on Friday
night.
So the Michigan coaches decid-
ed to pull Cameron from the vault,
thus preventing him from com-
peting in the all-around.
"I just talked to the coaches
about what would be best for the
team," Rosso said. "Basically, if put-
ting Chris in was best for the team,
then put Chris in. Or if having a
little more difficulty would be bet-
ter for the team, then take a chance
on me. Chris could have easily been
All-American, national champion
in the all-around, but he was will-
ing to give that up for the team."
Through the thick, hot air of
Minnesota's Sports Pavilion on
Friday night, Rosso pounded down
the runway. He flipped a total of
three times off the vault table,
landing in a deep squat and taking
one step back to steady himself.
"I was a little nervous, because
I was pretty much putting myself
out on the line," Rosso said. "Either
I was going to eat my words or I
was goingto live up to them."
He lived up to them - his 15.70
score tied for Michigan's second-

5 of 6 hit sets, with sophomore
Chris Cameron anchoring the
rotation. He was competing with
an injured shoulder held together
by an extensive tape job, but he
performed as if nothing was out of
the ordinary.Afterhis 15.30 set, he
tilted his head back and whooped.
Following a picture-perfect
rings rotation, in which Michi-
gan's four top gymnasts all scored
a 15.00 or higher, the Wolverines
headed for vault. And in what
became the story of the night, all
six vaulters performed to their
potential.
Still, of the teams who had
already gone on the bye, Michigan
was third. And coming up next
was parallel bars, the event that
had given the Wolverines prob-
lems for over a month.
Senior Ralph Rosso led off.
Over his career, Rosso's trade-
mark has been his steadiness, and
his hits are usually so predictable
that they can be easily overlooked.
On Friday, he did exactly what he
was supposed to do - get Michi-
gan started with a solid hit.
The Wolverines built off Ros-
highest of the night.
All through the competition,
Rosso was a rock-solid foundation
for his teammates. He led off the
recentlytroublesome parallel bars
with a hit routine - and the rest
of the event squad followed with
four hits in the next five sets.
"We talked about needing to
get off to a good start (on paral-
lel bars), and Ralph's been that
guy all year," Michigan assis-
tant coach Scott Vetere said. "He
doesn't have a high start value but
he's clean. And he did just that."
Rosso was a spark on the rings
and floor rotations as well, start-
ing strings of Wolverine scores
above 15 on both events.
For the senior, who was part of
the team that finished eighth and
out of the team finals in 2006, it
was a fitting end to his career.
"To go from eighth to second,
it was quite an amazing journey,"
Rosso said. "Just everything that
we've gone through, from the dis-
appointment to our triumphant
success, it's been worth it all."
SYQUE-ING OUT THE COMPE-
TITION: When freshman Syque
Caesar tore his meniscus over a
month ago, his season seemed to
be over.
"Seemed" is the operative word
in that sentence.

so's success, as fourofthe nextfive
hit their sets. After senior Ryan
McCarthy stuck his dismount, he
began dancing and gesturing to
the fans to get louder. Cameron
bounced among his teammates
like an out-of-control Ping-Pong
ball after his 14.95'set, while Kel-
ley anchored with a 14.75.
When the Wolverines got to
high bar, the energy of team
and fans reached new heights.
Catrambone performed the same
set that earned him the Big Ten
high bar title, sticking his triple
backflip dismount. Kelley finished
the event with a 15.45 set, roaring
to his teammates.
"That was the moment for me
where I went crazy," Michigan
assistant coach Scott Vetere said.
"I think I could have jumped over
the high bar."
Heading into floor exercise, the
final event, Michigan was in third
behind Cal and second-place Stan-
ford. The two expected powers of
the night, Stanford and Oklahoma,
finished on rings and vault.
Michigan knocked out set after
set on the floor. Sophomore Ben

Baldus-Strauss finished his rou-
tine and ran in long leaps back to
his teammates' arms. Rosso, Cam-
eron and Kelley ended the night
with three straight scores above
15 - exactly what the Wolverines
needed to edge out the Sooners
for second place.
"You know, even though we got
second, this felt like '99 where
we won," said Vetere, who was
a freshman on the 1999 NCAA
Championship team. "You could
just feel that we were going to hit
routines. That's just a great feel-
ing and as a coach, I haven't had
that feeling since I was compet-
ing."
The Cardinal finished in first
place, but from the beaming smile
on the face of every Wolverine, it
was easy to believe they had won.
After the arena had emptied, they
even sang The Victors, the normal
celebration following a win.
"There were 15 of us, but
tonight we were one," Rosso said.
"We couldn't have done it without
each other. We had each other's
backs and we did it for the love of
each other."

4

:r

The freshman, who had been ond on high bar, the event in
singled out by teammates earlier which he was also an All-Ameri-
this season for his tremendous can last year.
improvement, was one of the keys "Those guys are awesome,"Vet-
to Michigan's second-place team ere said. "That's a one-two punch
finish. Though he started land- that's going to be at Michigan for
ing double-twisting vaults with another two years. Every other
consistency just before NCAAs, team, they're going to be scared,
he was in the lineup on both vault because they're only going to get
and parallel bars for team finals. better."
He put his hand down during RedshirtfreshmanAdamHam-
qualifiers the day before, but on ers earned his first All-American
Friday night, Caesar just took one title, performing with his usual
step, earning a crucial 15.65 score. smooth elegance on the pommel
Just one rotation later, he was horse for a seventh-place fin-
part of the Wolverines' dramatic ish. On the high bar, senior Joe
turnaround on parallel bars, post- Catrambone also received his
ing a solid 14.20. first All-American award, coming
SWEET SEVEN: In the individ- in fifth.
ual event finals on Saturday night, Senior co-captain Phil Gold-
five Wolverines brought home berg finished second only to Cali-
seven All-American awards. The fornia's Evan Roth on the rings,
five All-Americans tie a program performing one of his best rou-
high, and Michigan had an All- tines of the season. Each picture-
American in every event but vault. perfect strength position drew a
Thesophomore duo of Cameron round of cheers from the crowd,
and Kelley collected four awards. and Goldberg topped it off with a
Cameron came in fourth on the stuck dismount.
floor exercise and sixth on the "He just has the best positions
pommel horse, his dramatic flares in the NCAA," Cameron said of
on both events eliciting awed Goldberg. "Michigan is back.
whistles and shouts. We are here to stay. It has been a
Kelley became a regular in the decade since greatness, but great-
parallel bars lineup just a month ness is back and it's alive. We're
ago. On Saturday night, he fin- going to take this all the way.
ished third in the event and sec- No. 1in 2010."

4

4

2009-2010 Stanford Lipsey Awards
IMRAN SYED: Public Service Reporting
"Squandered Potential"
February 13, 2008
ANDREW KROLL: Investigative Reporting
"Perks for Profs on AthletiC Department Oversight Board Raise Concerns"
November 9, 2008

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