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November 15, 2011 - Image 7

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The Michigan Daily, 2011-11-15

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Tuesday, November 15, 2011- 7

'M' prepares for unfamiliar team, familiar style

By STEPHEN J. NESBITT
Daily Sports Editor
A quick glance at the stat sheet
is telling- the Michigan football
team and Nebraska are lined up
side-by-side in nearly every cat-
egory across the board.
Team A boasts an 8-2 overall
record, 4-2 in
the Big Ten. NOTEBOOK
Team B lays
claim to an identical record.
Team A scores 32.5 points per
game on 421.5 yards of offense..
Team B scores 32.9 points on
404.1 yards.
Team A has totaled 2,313 rush-
ing yards, led by a two-headed
monster backfield. Team B has
2,327 rushing yards with, you
guessed it, a pair of beasts in the
backfield.
TeamAis Michigan. Team B is
Nebraska. But that really doesn't
matter. Come Saturday, it's going
to be some smash-mouth, ground
'em and pound 'em football at
Michigan Stadium.
"Nebraska's always been a
very physical football team for
numbers of years," said Michi-
gan coach Brady Hoke. "They
take great pride in their football.
"You look at the statisti-
cal information between both
teams, which I'm not real big
into, but there's a lot of similari-
ties in their rushing offense and
scoring and defensively - they're
a team that's going to play with
great passion."
The Cornhuskers are led by

Athletic Department officials
are urging fans to arrive to the
game early to participate in a
card stunt project. During the
national anthem, fans will hold
up 65,000 cards that will com-
bine to form an American flag.
The cards will be affixed to
seats in sections 1-23, circling
around the south endzone from
east of the 50-yard line to west of
the 50-yard-line.
"We're keeping (the cards)
away from the students, so they
don't turn into boomerangs," a
military representative joked on
Monday.
The national anthem will also
feature a flyover from four F-16
fighter jets out of Pope Air Force
Base in South Carolina. The jets
will be launching from Self-
ridge Air National Guard Base in
Mount Clemons, Mich. and fly-
ing south to north over the sta-
dium - and the card stunt.
The head pilot for the flyover
is a Michigan graduate. Plans are
to have a live video feed from the
lead jet play on the stadium's vid-
eoboards to show the card stunt
from overhead.
Pregame hospitality for veter-
ans will also be held at Ooster-
baan Fieldhouse.
"Let me tell you, it's awe-
some," Hoke said. "We all are
thankful for those who have
served this country and those
who are serving.
"Coming from San Diego and
havingthe relations we were able
to have with the Marine corps

and the Navy, it's humbling what
they do for our country and what
they do for us to be able to sit
here to today and get asked ques-
tions, some good and some not so
good."
ROBINSON CHARGED: Soph-
omore safety Marvin Robinson
has been accused of breaking
into a West Quad room in Sep-
tember. He was arraigned last
week on a charge of second-
degree home invasion.
"We are aware of the report,"
Hoke said in a statement. "We
will let the legal process run
its course, and we will not have
any further comment until that
time."
Robinson was released on a
promise to appear in court. He
will appear at the Washtenaw
County 14A District Court on
Wednesday. If convicted, Rob-
inson could face up to 15 years
in prison. Robinson has col-
lected nine tackles in four career
appearances with Michigan.
NOTES: Van Bergen was
named Co-Big Ten Defensive
Player of the Week, College
Football Performance Awards's
National Defensive Performer
of the Week and Defensive Line-
man of the Week after collecting
a career-high 2.5 sacks and seven
tackles on Saturday.... Freshman
kicker Matt Wile was named
CFPA Kickoff Specialist of the
Week after tallying five touch-
backs on six kickoffs in the swirl-
ing wind at Memorial Stadium in
Champaign.

MARISSA MCCLAIN/Daily
Michigan defensive tackle Ryan Van Bergen earned Co-Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week honors yesterday.

quarterback Taylor Martinez
and running back Rex Burkhead.
The pair combines for 184 rush-
ing yards per game. The Wolver-
ines' duo of junior quarterback
Denard Robinson and red-
shirt sophomore running back
Fitzgerald Toussaint averages
174 rushing yards.
Point. Counterpoint
Nebraska is in its first season
in the Big Ten, but the Michigan
defense isn't concerned with fac-
ing an unfamiliar offense.
"Nebraska presents a chal-
lenge unlike any other team in
the Big Ten, I think," said fifth-

year senior defensive tackle Ryan
Van Bergen. "The only other
team that might present a chal-
lenge like them would be us."
Still, even with Toussaint,
Hoke will use running backs
Jihad Rasheed and Michael Cox
in practice this week to simulate
Burkhead's power.
The Wolverines have played
the Cornhuskers just six times,
with Michigan holding a 3-2-1
edge in the series. By every indi-
cation, Nebraska, which Hoke
called "one of the traditional
football powers in this country,"
will be right at home in the Big

Ten.
"From what I've heard,
they're a tough team, they're a
good team, they're a solid team,"
Molk said. "They're very much
like us. But then again, I've never
played them. Looking forward to
something new."
Especially when that some-
thing new is what you see in
practice.
MILITARY APPRECIATION:
There won't be jetpacks at the
Big House, but that's about all
that will be missing from Michi-
gan's Military Appreciation
plans on Saturday.

Wolverines dethrone Spartans,
finish in inth place at Nationals

Chiasson leads freshmen

By ALEXA DETTELBACH
For theDaily
Meet Michigan's Big Ten.
champion men's club water polo
team.
Led by senior captains Kenichi
Osawa, Benjamin Hubbard and
Patrick Trabert, the Wolverines
finished their season with a Big
® Ten title and a ninth-place finish
at Nationals this past weekend
in Atlanta. The team started the
season without knowing much
about its new coach, but it was
clear by the end that Michigan
had landed a gem. Long-time
Ann Arbor native Tony Ander-
son led the ninth-ranked Wol-
verines to a 7-1 regular-season
record and their first conference
championship in seven years.
"(Anderson) fits the personal-
ity of the team really well," said
senior Matthew Woelfel. "He's a
great guy and the team dynamic
is very friendly. It's a lot of fun,
but we do a lot of serious work at
the same time."
Added Osawa: "It's been a
good adjustment, a good change,
kind of like a breath of fresh air.
We've been able to work really
closely with Coach and develop
strategies and plans for games
that really fit the personnel that
we have on our team."
The change wasn't all easy,
but after a slow start Michigan
moved in the right direction.
With important wins over Indi-
ana and Michigan State, the Wol-
verines put themselves in prime
position to win the Big Ten Tour-
nament.

"Over the last two tourna- going to let it become seven.
ments, we really came together After a back-and-forth battle,
and played some really good freshman Michael Abell-Venit
water polo, which led us to win- scored the winning goal with
ning the No. 1 seed for the Big just 30 seconds to play, putting
Ten Tournament," Woelfel said. Michigan past the Spartans 8-7
"That guarantees (a) spot to go to and ending Michigan State's
Nationals, which is really what reign.
we're working for." "The Michigan State game
For the last three years, the was just an unbelievable feel-
team placed second in the con- ing to win, and at the same time
ference tournament. a relief to finally get over the
"As a senior, it has been really hump," Woelfel said.
frustrating," Woelfel said. After the thrilling victory over
their rivals, the Wolverines had
little time to rest before Nation-
als. Entering as a No. 3 seed,
"There are a Michigan lost its opening game
against Columbia before defeat-
lot of exciting ing St. Louis and Villanova.
On Sunday, the Wolverines
opportunities ended their season with a vic-
tory against No. 10 Oregon in
ahead for (us)." the ninth-place game. Michigan
has a lot to look forward to under
the leadership of Anderson. But
the Wolverines will have a lot to
He wasn't the only one frus- overcome with the graduation of
trated. Michigan returned five five seniors and their captains.
seniors, making it hungrier than "They really set the tone and
ever for a coveted spot at Nation- did a really good job of keeping
als. And with a new coach and a us steady and getting us hyped
talented veteran roster, the Wol- up for practice and games,"
verines were as poised as ever to Woelfel said of the captains.
win back the Big Ten title. "(They) make us work hard and
The tournament began and have been really great."
ended in dramatic fashion. After Michigan will look to its tal-
opening with an 8-7 overtime ented crop of juniors - Kevin
victory against Illinois, Michi- Jensen, Ray Viviano, and Sam
gan beat Purdue 8-5 before meet- Rosen - to lead the team next
ing the Spartans in the finals year.
for the third consecutive year. "There is a lot of leadership,"
Michigan State had claimed the Osawa said. "There are a lot of
past six Big Ten championships, exciting opportunities ahead for
but Anderson's team wasn't this team."

By MATT SLOVIN
Daily Sports Writer
One of the Michigan hockey
team's defensive anchors is a
patient man.
Freshman Mike Chiasson
stayed patient in Omaha, Neb.,
where he played three seasons
for the Omaha Lancers of the
USHL before beginning his col-
lege career.
"It was a great developmental
league," Chiasson said. "It really
helped to advance my game to
where it is today. Not only did
they teach me to be a good hock-
ey player, but just being a good
human being off the ice."
He's patient on the bench
because he knows his shifts will
come. In fact, he's become some-
thing of a staple on the blue line
for the seventh-ranked Wolver-
ines. He's patient on the penalty
kill, stabilizing the unit by deliv-
ering a timely clearing of the puck
or forcing a streaking forward to
the outside.
The 20-year-old Chiasson sim-
ply knows that when you wait,
good things happen - like offers
from Michigan and early playing
time.
"I stayed really patient and was
looking for the right fit," Chiasson
said of his recruiting process. "I
don't regret it."
Michigan coach Red Beren-
son, too, is happy his defenseman
waited before jumping into col-
lege hockey.
"Chiasson's a little older ... and
that has shown a little bit," Beren-
son said. "(He's) playing every
night."
When the Wolverines score
a goal, look near that blue line.
Chances are Chiasson will be
there. Perhaps he started the

CHRIS DZOM5AK/Daily
Freshman defenseman Mike Chiasson has recorded a plus-14 plus/minus.

attack with a slapshot from the
point. Perhaps he brought the
puck up the ice.
Even if he wasn't instrumental
in a Michigan goal, Chiasson has
an uncanny knack for being on
the ice at opportune moments for
Michigan. He leads the team in
plus/minus at plus-14.
Chiasson gained most of the
experience that makes him such
a valuable member of the defense
from his USHL time.
"I think it's helped him a lot,"
Berenson said of Chiasson's
junior hockey experience. "He's
used to being a key player on a
defense that's had some success."
Delaying his college hockey
start has been a blessing for Chi-
asson because Berenson expects a
lot of his defensemen. And while
they learn to be the type of "hon-
est" players Berenson wants them
to be each week in practice, the
more advanced skater they come
in, the better.

Chiasson is also one of the
main freshmen that Berenson
consistently trusts on the penalty
kill. And while his coach readily
admits it's a "challenge," it's one
that Chiasson has been happy to
take on.
He's been around the sport
for his entire life. His pedigree is
impeccable - his father isthe late
Steve Chiasson, who was drafted
by the Detroit Red Wings in 1985.
Chiasson will stop at nothing
after working his whole life to get
here. And if Berenson finds some-
thing he can do better, Chiasson's
all ears.
"I've always been just one of
these guys who's trying to get bet-
ter everyday," Chiasson said.
As for his future, Chiasson
can't wait to see where the sport
takes him. In the meantime, he'll
be patient - killing those penal-
ties and setting up tallies.
"(It's) a great journey and I
wouldn't change it," he said.

Feeley, Ryan reach final round at US Grand Prix in Minneapolis

M' swimmers
compete against
Phelps, Lochte at
Grand Prix
By ISABELLA ACHENBACH
For the Daily
The Michigan men's swim-
ming and diving team spent this
past weekend getting pruney in
a pool alongside Michael Phelps,
Ryan Lochte and some of the
top swimmers in the world at
the 2011 US Grand Prix in Min-
neapolis.
"(The US Grand Prix) gives

these guys exposure," said
Michigan coach Mike Bottom.
"They understand what it's like
to swim against the best in the
world."
The Wolverines also swam
in the meet last year. This time,
two Michigan swimmers -
junior Ryan Feeley and sopho-
more Sean Ryan - worked their
way into the finals.
"If one of our guys makes it to
the finals, it's awesome," Bottom
said.
If two guys make it, it's cause
for celebration.
Feeley earned fourth place
overall with a time of 15:36.65 in
the 1,500-meter freestyle. Ryan
came in two spots behind with a

time of 15:45.51 to earn a sixth-
place finish.
"I didn't even know I got
fourth until I got back in Ann
Arbor around 1 a.m.," Feeley
said. "It's pretty nice getting
those times this early in the sea-
son. My teammates are pushing
me everyday in practice."
After finding out his score,
Feeley celebrated by getting
some much-needed sleep.
The Wolverine swimmers
entered this event after topping
Texas and Indiana, their first Big
Ten competitor, last Saturday.
Michigan (1-0 Big Ten, 5-0 over-
all) entered this week ranked
No. 1 in the nation, according to
the College Swimming Coaches

Associ
- Tex,
"Th
"I
to 1
last wi
tions
said.
Mic

ation of America (CSCAA) tion as the best collegiate swim-
as now trails at No. 2. mers in the country at the US
e swimming that we did Grand Prix. The meet was not
scored, but many swimmers got
their career-best times, Bottom
said.
If one of our "We knew we could swim
,' with the best after fighting with
uys m akes it Texas," Feeley said.
.l i Six Grand Prix's are held
the finals, it's every year across the nation,
each drawing hundreds of swim-
awesom e. mers. Michigan and Minnesota
were among the participating
colleges, but the majority of the
swimmers were either alums or
eek elevated our expecta- professionals.
of who we are," Bottom The races were "long course,"
meaning an Olympic configu-
higan kept up its reputa- ration 50-meter pool length

as opposed to the typical 25
meters. Michigan usually swims
a 25-meter pool, which gives the
swimmers an extra turn. But
Bottom's swimmers practice
long course as well.
"Part of what Michigan does
is, we are training people to
make Olympic teams," Feeley
said. "That's something we pro-
mote within the team and the
club. Swim against the best in
the world."
The Wolverines will soon take
on some of the other highest-
ranked Big Ten schools: Iowa,
Ohio State, and Indiana. The
next Michigan swim meet, the
Hawkeye Invitational, will be
Dec. 2-4 in Iowa City.

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