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November 04, 2010 - Image 7

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The Michigan Daily, 2010-11-04

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Thursday, November 4, 2010 - 7A

J.T. Floyd out for year,
needs ankle surgery

For Michigan, power play
remains a work in progress

ByTIMROHAN
Daily SportsEditor
Just as the Michigan second-
ary tries to get back up and dust
itself off, it gets knocked back down
again.
Before the season, the unit lost its
most experienced player, Troy Wool-
0 folk, to an ankle injury he suffered
in practice. And during the weekly
Big Ten teleconference yesterday,
Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez
announced that the Wolverines'
current No. 1 cornerback, J.T. Floyd,
would miss the rest of the season
* with an ankle injury.
Floyd injured the ankle during
practice, and Rodriguez said that the
x-rays were negative for a fracture.
But Floyd suffered ligament damage
that will require surgery.
"The unfortunate part of a lot of
it is it's been in practice and we're
not even tackling in practice,"
Rodriguez said. "So it's just kind of
one of those freak things. ... A guy
fell down in front of him and I don't
think he saw it. And he got rolled
up. "
With Woolfolk out before the sea-
son started, Floyd stepped into the
leadership role on an inexperienced
unit. Rodriguez called him the "solid
rock" of the secondary, but now
9 senior cornerback James Rogers,
plus true freshmen Courtney Avery,
Terrence Talbott and Cullen Chris-
tian will have to shoulder the load.
Rogers is a converted wide receiver
who saw little playing time prior to
this season, and none of the fresh-
men have started a single game for
the Wolverines.
Michigan's pass defense has
allowed more than 290 yards per
game with Floyd in the lineup, and
that was only better than three other
Division-I teams - ranking 117th in
the country.
Floyd started all eight games this
season at left cornerback and record-
ed66tackles,four pass breakups and
oneinterception.Rodriguez said that
Avery would start in Floyd's place on
Saturday against Illinois, but that he
would also like to get a couple of the
other younger cornerbacks prepared
to play, too.

Redshirt sophomore cornerback .T. Floyd was Michigan's top cornerback.

"I've been really pleased with
(Avery and Talbott's) development,"
Rodriguez said. "They're both com-
petitive guys, they're just young.
And we know they're going to make
some mistakes and there will be
some growing pains with them. But
they've done a good job in practice
and we're going to try and acceler-
ate the process as far as getting them
ready to play at the level we need
them to play at."
Just five days ago, Rodriguez talk-
ed with the media after the Wolver-
ines' 41-31 loss to Penn State about
how young the secondary was. That
came after a game in which former
walk-on quarterback Matt McGloin
threw for 250 yards and a touch-
down against the Michigan defense.
Rodriguez has maintained all sea-
son that the Wolverines are trying to
get their younger defensive players
up to that level where they can make
contributions.
The defeat at the hands of the Nit-
tany Lions was the third loss in a
row for the Wolverines. And in those
games, the secondary allowed three
touchdown passes against Iowa's
Ricky Stanzi as well as 284 yards to
Michigan State's Kirk Cousins.
Floyd's absence adds injury to
insult.
"I think our guys have seen so
much stuff, whether its injuries or

misfortune or what-have-you, that
it's almostbecome,'Okay, here we go.
We'll hang together. We'll stay all in,'
" Rodriguez said. "It's just another
bump in the road. When you see so
much of it, I don't want to say you get
accustomed to it or get used to it, but
you become resilient toward it. And
I think our guys are very, very resil-
ient. And the next guy will come in,
step up and play."
Michigan's secondary was
already a shell of what it could have
been before Woolfolk and now
Floyd were lost due to injuries. The
Wolverines lost former five-star
recruits Justin Turner (transfer),
Boubacar Cissoko (dismissed from
team) during the past year. And
another potential defensive back,
highly touted Demar Dorsey, was
committed to play at Michigan but
was not admitted to the University
this past spring.
Redshirt sophomore safety Jor-
dan Kovacs is now the only player
starting in the secondary with start-
ing experience prior to this season.
Without Floyd, eight of the 11 players
listed as a defensive back or hybrid
on the depth chart are either true or
redshirt freshmen.
"We're pretty young back there
in the secondary - now we're get-
ting a little bit younger," Rodri-
guez said."

By MARK BURNS
Daily SportsEditor
Before last Christmas, then-
junior forward Louie Capo-
russo had just seven goals and
was nowhere near the torrential
24-goal pace of his sophomore
season. But in the last 15 games
of the season, Caporusso altered
his game mentality to a "keep it
simple, shoot more" philosophy.
And with the modification came
results: 14 goals, 8 assists to be
exact.
This season, the No. 6 Michi-
gan hockey team's power play,
which is converting at a 21-per-
cent rate, could take a page out of
the former Hobey Baker finalist's
book.
While converting one in five
opportunities is certainly respect-
able, with the Wolverines' depth
and senior leadership in Caporus-
so, Carl Hagelin and Matt Rust,
there's no question Michigan (3-0-
1-0 CCHA, 4-1-3 overall) should be
seeing better results with the man
advantage.
"We've turned it over way
too often," Michigan coach Red
Berenson said after Tuesday's
practice. "Certain players have
been guilty of that, and we've got
to change that. ... We know these
teams are good defensively - we
saw it with (Nebraska-Omaha),
we saw it with Ferris (State) -
these teams aren't going to give
you time to look around and
decide what you're going to do
with the puck.
"You've got to do it quick,
you've got to move it and you've
got to know what you're doing
with it."
And as Berenson said, it
starts with not holding onto the
puck for too long and knowing
where the four other players are
on the ice, followed by tape-to-
tape passes, according to Hage-
lin.
"You can see the difference
when we make good passes or
not," Hagelin said. "If you make
a few good passes, the other
team is going to start running
around. If you make a bad pass,
the puck is out (of the zone) right

SALAM 510A/Daily
Senior forward Louie Caporusso will be a key factor on the power play unit this
season for the Wolverines.

away. So, (we're) just making sure
that we're making the right plays
and more patient with the puck
this weekend."
Hagelin added that, in practice
this week, Berenson has the play-
ers executing more of an overload
style of power play before the Wol-
verines' two-game road series at
Alaska (2-1-1-1, 5-2-1) starting Fri-
day. An overload style means the
team attempts to work the puck
off the end boards, as opposed
to an umbrella-type strategy, in
which various plays are gener-
ally executed from the top of the
offensive zone.
But along with a few technical
adjustments, there is definitely
a need to shoot the puck more.
Through the first month of the
season, the Wolverines have accu-
mulated just 49 shots on42 power
plays.
And for Michigan to create

more grade-A scoring opportu-
nities this weekend, it will need
to pepper Fairbanks' netminder
Scott Greenham and future goal-
ies with all the rubber they can
handle.
A certain aspect of the power
play is luck and getting a favorable
bounce here and there. But at the
same time, Hagelin admitted that
with a little persistence and hard
work, the goals are going to come
and the puck is going to bounce
their way eventually.
Said Caporusso, "Sometimes
you get bounces and people will
be like, 'Oh, you have a sweet
power play,' but really you're just
getting lucky. ... It's a lot of luck
actually, when you think about it.
The Pittsburgh Penguins last year
had some of the most talented
guys in the world and the worst
power play in the NHL, so go fig-
ure that one out."

I

CAN AMERICA STILL ACT?
CRITICAL CHALLENGES AT HOME & ABROAD
A 2010 CITIGROUP FOUNDATION LECTURE

Dr. Jessica Tuchman Mathews
President of the
Carnegie Endowment for
International Peace
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
4:00-5:30 p.m.
Free and open to the public.
Reception to follow.
Ford School of Public Policy
Annenberg Auditorium
1120 Weill Hall
735 S. State Street
Info: 734-615-3893
www.fordschool.umich.edu

Co-sponsors:
Gerald R. Ford
School of Public Policy
IUN ViRS:TY OF MIC GAN

International Policy Center
atuheemR.foe coolof PubicPoicy

CAREERS FOR THE PUBLIC 0000
Thursday, November 4, 2010
WeillHall
Ford School of Public Policy
6:00 PM
Looking for ways to stay committed to social justice
after college?
Hear alumni in various ilelds discuss how they have
remained committed to social justice in their
professional careers
Network with recent alumni to learn about work
opportunities
http://sitemaker.umich.careers4publiegood/home

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