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December 01, 2009 - Image 8

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The Michigan Daily, 2009-12-01

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8 - Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Hogan carries 'M' with
dominant performance

0

By MICHAEL FLOREK
Daily Sports Writer
As the clock ticked down on the
Michigan hockey team's weekend,
all the Wolverines needed to do was
hang on. No. 15 Wisconsin, down
3-2, pulled its goalie to gain a six-on-
four advantage in
the final seconds. NOTEBOOK
Junior goalie -
Bryan Hogan kept a firm grip on the
lead. He made two stops in the wan-
ing seconds, and as the Yost crowd
showed their appreciation, they
knew it was for more than just the
end of the game.
It was the end to Hogan's arduous
start of the season, inwhich he post-
ed a .887 save percentage through 12
games.
During that time, he had a ten-
dency to allow soft goals at inop-
portune times. A puckhandling
mistake by Hogan cost the Wolver-
ines against Boston University, and a
couple of weak shots beat him on the
five-hole against Miami (Ohio). But
after three solid games - including
Michigan's sweep of this weekend
of the College Hockey Showcase - it

seems Hogan has turned a corner.
"Now he's starting to look like
the Bryan Hogan we know he can
be, and he showed that last year,"
Michigan coach Red Berenson said.
"I think what you've seen early,
that's the end of that."
Hogan made 63 stops in this
weekend's two games, which helped
him earn CCHA Goaltender of the
Week honors. Against Minnesota,
he recorded his fourth career shut-
out and first of the season. After
needing just routine saves against
the Golden Gophers, Hogan was
forced to step up and outplay Wis-
consin goalie Scott Gudmandson for
the win the next night.
Despite all the shots faced, which
included a 41-shot Badger onslaught,
Hogan attributed some of his suc-
cess to his defensive unit, who lim-
ited second-chance opportunities.
"We're not making as many
mistakes coming out of the zone,"
Hogan said. "It's the ones we had
when we were losing five games in a
row, where it would be breakaways
and crazy stuff in front of the net
that was tough to handle."
LOOKING FOR SHORTIES: The

Wolverines, who struggled to score
before this weekend, came away
with two shorthanded goals in the
Showcase.
Against Minnesota, junior Carl
Hagelin jumped up into a rush cre-
ated by junior Matt Rust, received
a pass and split the defensemen to
score with the man down to nail
down a Michigan victory. Sopho-
more Luke Glendening followed suit
a day later with a shorthanded goal
off a faceoff.
"Obviously you're not supposed
to score on the PK, but I think ever
since I came here, we've been prid-
ing ourselves on doing a good job
offensively," Hagelin said. "I think
if you're a threat on the PK, their
PP might be almost scared to make
plays."
These are the first two short-
handed goals for the Wolverines this
season, but they shouldn't come as a
surprise. Michigan finished with six
last season.
"I like to see shorthanded goals
because they are backbreaker
goals," Berenson said. "When you
can score a shorty in a big game like
these, itjust keeps the other team on

their heels."
SHOWCASE SHUTDOWN: Those
who made it to Yost ice Arena for the
CollegeHockeyShowcasewitnessed
the last of its kind. The Wolverines
will be on the road next season for
the final year of the Showcase.
Originally created to keep old
WCHA rivals playing on an annual
basis, the Showcase proved to be an.
imperfect fit for the teams involved.
The games are always scheduled
over the long Thanksgiving week-
end, when many students are at
home.
The stale atmosphere was evi-
dent last weekend as the Yost ush-
ers forced the small contingent of
students that usually make up the
entire west side of the arena to sit
down. Even with the mellowed-out
arena, Berenson said the team can-
not drop from the schedule.
"Do I think we should continue
it? Absolutely," Berenson said. "I
was in on the initial planning of this
tournament because I thought we
should play Wisconsin and Minne-
sota every year. If I had my way, we
would play them each home-and-
home."

CLIF REEDER/Daily
Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis was fired Monday after five years in South Bend.
Without Weis, -Irish
no longqer apunchine
%-.V*

3-point struggles doom
Blue at Old Spice Classic

Michigan shot just 20
percent from behind
the arc in two losses
to unranked teams
By CHRIS MESZAROS
Daily Sports Writer
When junior forward Manny
Harris clanked a 3-pointer off the
rim with 36 seconds left in Sun-
day's 68-66 loss to Alabama, it
was the perfect
summation of the NOTEBOOK
Michigan basket-
ball team's performance at the Old
Spice Classic.
Questionable shot selection.
An inability to knock down
threes.
And utter disappointment.
While Michigan fans who
watched the tournament may feel
disheartened after the team lost
to two unranked opponents, more
alarming than those losses are the
Wolverines' struggles from behind
the arc.
In Michigan's losses to Mar-
quette and Alabama, the team
sunk just nine of 45 3-poinaters for
a 20 percent success rate.
"They did a great job of con-
testing shots," senior forward
DeShawn Sims said after the Mar-
quette game.
"We got a bunch of good looks,
but we just couldn't knock down
any shots today."
Michigan relied on the 3-point-
er for a little under 40 percent of
its offense last season, so going
cold from behind the arccould be
detrimental to its future success,
particularly when it plays NCAA
Tournament-caliber teams like
Marquette.
Michigan coach John Beilein
admitted that his team relies on
the three to win close games like
those at the Classic.

The mistake with those two would
be to stop shooting. They need
to keep putting it up there when
they're open."
FALLOUT: After the hype of
starting the season in the AP Top
25 poll for the first time in 12 years,
the formerly 15th-ranked Wolver-
ines dropped out of both the AP
and coaches polls after their pair
of losses this weekend.
The drop in rankings coincides
with the need to readjust expec-
tations for the team's success as
it heads into this Wednesday's
matchup against Boston College in
the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.
"You play three games in three
days, its not like you can change
your philosophy, even for BC on
Wednesday.
"We just have to slowly work at
our_ game to see what we have to
clean up if we think things need
changing."
And while the team might not
have enough time to change its
game plan this week, it knows it
still has much to work on.
"It's still early," Sims said. "It
did let us know we still gotta long
way to go."
A SMALL SPARK: One of the
bright spots over the weekend was
the play of senior forward Zack
Gibson.
Gibson entered the game
against Marquette with 11 minutes
remaining and the Wolverines
down 60-49.
He led the team on a 7-2 run
that closed the gap to six points.
During the rally, Gibson scored
five points off two layups and
a free throw and finished with
eight against the Golden Eagles.'
Additionally, Gibson shot 3-for-
3 for six points in Sunday's game
against Alabama.
"We're trying to (find him min-
utes)," Beilein said about Gibson.
"But it'll depend a lot on the game
we're playing and howhe performs
in practice."

ell, it was fun while it
lasted.
After five seasons
and 27 losses, Notre Dame Ath-
letic Director Jack Swarbrick
announced on Monday that Char-
lie Weis will
not return
next year as
coach of the
Fighting Irish
football team.
In terms
of schaden-
freude, it was I
one of the IAN
more enjoyable KAY
press releases
in recent memory.
Weis's tenure in South Bend
was the perfect mixture of defi-
ance and delusion for Michigan
fans. As the cocky, arrogant leader
of a cocky, arrogant school, Weis
put his foot in his mouth time and
time again. "To hell with Michi-
gan," he said at an alumni banquet
in the spring of 2008. The com-
ment was allegedly an homage to
Bo Schembechler's similar state-
ments about opposing teams. That
nuance was lost on most of us.
Plus, he didn't win too much.
After back-to-back BCS Bowl bids
in his first two seasons with the
Irish - largely thanks to Tyrone
Willingham recruits Brady
Quinn, Jeff Samardzija and Tom
Zbikowski - Weis's teams went
just 16-21 over the next three sea-
sons.
Against Michigan, the Irish
went 2-3, including a 38-34 loss
this year in which Weis opted to
pass the ball late in the fourth
quarter when a few running plays
could have sealed an Irish victory.
But if Weis was both entertain-
ing and an anchor on one of Mich-
igan's most-hated rivals, why does
his departure leave me feeling so...
unsatisfied?
Well, the man could recruit.
According to Rivals.com, Weis's
recruitingclasses ranked among
the top 10 in the nation four times
in five years. His 2008 class was
the second-best in the country, led
by wide receiver Michael Floyd
and tight end Kyle Rudolph. The
pair combined for 10 catches, 169
yards and a touchdown against
the Wolverines back in September.
Despite potential first-day NFL
draft picks at every offensive skill
position, Weis never took full
advantage of the prodigious tal-
ent he accumulated. His eventual
replacement might.
Whether it's Brian Kelly, Chip

Kelly or Kelly Kapoor, odds are
that Notre Dame's next coach will
be far more tactically competent
than Weis. He'll inherit a cup-
board that's far from bare, and the
Irish mystique'should allow him
to continue building top classes
for the foreseeable future. Unlike
in Ann Arbor, where Rich Rodri-
guez will need at least three years
to build a legitimate contender, it's
easy to see Notre Dame returning
to glory in relatively short order.
Considering that Michigan is
scheduled to play the Irish every
year until 2031, this could pose a
problem.
Much like at Michigan, Ala-
bama and Nebraska, Notre Dame
has too much history, too much
name cache and too much finan-
cial backing to stay down forever.
It becameclear that Weis was
muchbetter suited as an NFL
offensive coordinator than a col-
lege head coach, and the Irish
made the right move in canning
him.
But while the monetary cost of
buying out the final six seasons
of Weis's enormous contract will
hang over the Irish program for
several years, his bumbling play-
calls and press conference snafus
likely will not. His successor will
surely bring more efficiency and
command more respect.
So before Michigan fans cel-
ebrate the end of the Charlie Weis
era, think about what the future
could hold.
Despite a lack of continuity at
head coach in South Bend, Michi-
gan has just an 6-5 record against
the Irish since Lou Holtz left after
the 1996 season. With plenty of
talent already in the fold, the right
coaching switch could shift this
power balance and potentially add
a second perennial national power
to Michigan's annual schedule.
Many of the Irish's potential
hires run the spread offense. This
could mean more head-to-head
recruiting battles, an area where
Notre Dame has consistently best-
ed Michigan in recent years.
And perhaps worst of all,
whether Weis's successor initially
wins or loses, the Irish will reas-
sume the spotlight in national
newspaper stories and ESPN Col-
lege Gameday segments.
Justby firing him, Notre Dame
is relevant again as more than just
a punch line. And that's something
we'll all miss.
- Kay can be reached
at iankay@umich.edu.

Junior MannyHarris was -sf 6 fror 3-point range in Michigan's 61 m66 b1hss I
Alabawa. This seas, Hartis is shooting a diswal 13 yercent frsm the behisd the atc.
"We have to (make them). We his teammates who specialize in
have to," Beilein said. "They played 3-point shooting couldn't get the
really good defense, I don't know job done.
how many times we had really Beilein said that he thought
clean, good looks, but it didn't Harris was hesitating on his shot,
seem like we made them when we and while the junior is a great
had to." shooter, he needs to clean up that
Harris struggled from behind part of his game.
the arcin both of Michigan's losses, "Stu (Douglass) and Manny are
making just one of his 10 attempts. obviously great shooters," Beil-
But while Harris contributed in ein said. "But Stu made one three
other facets of the game, many of the other night and that's about it.

Learn more about the Peace Corps.
Attend an information session.
Tuesday, December 1st
6:30 p.m.
U-M International Center, Room 9
800.424.85801 www.peacecorps.gov
Life is callipg. How far will you go?

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