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September 03, 2014 - Image 6

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The Michigan Daily, 2014-09-03

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

bA -- Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Michigan preps for South Bend racket

Coaches blasting
Irish fight song to
mimic environment
By MAX COHEN
Daily Sports Editor
Two brothers, John and
Michael Shea, wrote and
published the Notre Dame fight
song together in 1908. The duo's
lyrics include, "Cheer, cheer for
old Notre Dame/Wake up the
echoes cheering her name."
Those echoes have survived
the test of time. One hundred
six years later, the Michigan
football coaching staff is
preparing for them. Before
the final meeting between the
programs for the foreseeable
future, they have been blasting
the song at the team's practice
facilities this week.
It has become engrained in
their players' heads.
"The coaches said they play
it all the time when we're there,
so they just want us to get used
to it and not let it bother us,"
said sophomore running back
De'Veon Smith.
It could be up to a new duo,
Smith and sophomore running
back Derrick Green, the other
member of Michigan's 1-2 punch
at running back, to quiet the
spirit that the Shea brothers
helped create.
How the running backs and
the offensive line adjust to
Saturday's difficult environment
in South Bend will be key.
Smith and Green are coming
off the best games of their
college careers.
Against
Appalachian
State, Smith "It's
ran for 115
yards and two to bef
touchdowns,
while Green expe
rushed for 170
yards and one being
score.
As

Stat Sheet

'05:17-10 loss
This was Charlie Weis' debut seasos
with the Irish.It all went downhill from
there.

Sophomores De'Veon Smith (iete)and Derrick treen (right) posted career days against Appalachian State, but Michigan taces a much bigger test in Sout sena.

Fighting Irish, but Green said
older teammates and coaches
have told him about the extreme
crowd noise. At Big Ten Media
Day in July, senior defensive
end Frank Clark spoke about
the hostility of Notre Dame's
environment, saying he has
never seen so many middle-
finger gestures in his direction
in his life.
For Michigan's running
attack, the adverse conditions
aren't ideal.
The unit
struggled to
going produce last
season and
a great is looking
to build
rience momentum
after gaining
there." 350 yards on
the ground
in the season

opponent, a repeat of Saturday's
results is unlikely, but Smith
said he's confident in the
offensive line despite the unit's
uncertainty.
In order to prepare for the
loud conditions, the offense has
been working on non-verbal
communication to call plays.
With multiple young players at
offensive line and running back,
making sure everyone is on the
same page could be an issue.
"We've got signs for stuff like
that, but it's still hard. ... Like
I said, you've got to make sure
you key in on (fifth-year senior
quarterback Devin Gardner) and
get the play call," Green said.
The Notre Dame game is
another chance for the running
backs to prove themselves, but
they understand it means much
more for the program.
Both Smith and Green said
they didn't know much about
the history of the rivalry
growing up in Ohio and

Virginia, respectively, but since about the success of the unit,
they've arrived in Ann Arbor, and how carries are split is of
the importance of the game has little matter. If Green is the
been emphasized. No. 1 back, he knows the depth
"I know behind him is
everything, important.
every little '1ti' justt o Now the
thing about I S J m e to running backs
it," Smith said. take it up to the are tasked
"(We) play the with building
fight song, I neXt notch." on the season-
heard that the n o opening
crowd is wild performance.

Ij: 13- loss
Someone decided Vincent Smith should
throw in the red zone.

and loud, soit's
going to be a great experience
being there."
Green has heard the talk
about the noise, but emphasized
that preparation will be more of
a factor than the environment.
He knows his season-opening
performance will mean little if
he can't produce Saturday.
"It's just time to take it up to
the next notch," Green said. "It's
time to turn it up 10 notches."
Green and Smith both
maintained that they only care

"We're
trying, you know, (to) put our
name out there," Green said.
Succeeding in a hostile
environment with the stakes
raised is the next step to doing
just that.
Quieting the Notre Dame
fight song would be an added
bonus.

'08: 35-17 loss
Rich Rodriguez, enough said.The 2008
Wolverinesfinished 3-9.

sophomores, opener.
neither Green nor Smith has With a tougher environment
played on the road against the to go along with a more difficult

There's always more news '0 :2 - 0 ls
Check MichiganDaily.com We're sensing a pattern here...
throughout the day for updates

RELEASE DATE- Wednesday, September 3, 2014
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'M' opens with two losses

.

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istruction issues fell behind 2-0 in the first 10
minutes. Just eight minutes into
rce team East the second half, North Carolina
commanded a five-goal lead.
By ZACH SHAW An unassisted goal by junior
Daily Sports Writer back Jaime Dean in the 58th
minute gave Michigan its first
er three weeks of training goal of the year, but the tally
e East Coast and two didn't matter after the Tar Heels'
n-opening losses to ranked scoring barrage. The Wolverines
the Michigan field were outshot, 21-5, and were only
y team is finally returning able to draw two penalty corners
to a newly revamped to North Carolina's eight.
y in Ann Arbor. Michigan showed
17th-ranked Wolverines, improvement Sunday vs. Wake
e to train at Phyllis Forest, but didn't come away
Field due to lagging with a victory. Returning to
uction, capped a nearly action after a top-eight finish last
i-long trip to Virginia season, the Demon Deacons took
orth Carolina with an 0-2 a 2-1 lead just before halftime.
ng at the ACC-Big Ten The score remained
enge, closing their trip unchanged until senior back
a 5-1 loss to No. 2 North Leslie Smith scored as time
na followed by a 3-2 expired, sending the game to
me loss to No. 11 Wake overtime in dramatic fashion.
t. Despite dominating
cticing hundreds of miles possession in the second half
from home wasn't ideal for and outshooting Wake Forest
gan, but the opening game 17-12, the Wolverines fell short
2014 season proved worse. in overtime, allowing the game-
g off against the powerful winning goal less than five
Heels, the Wolverines minutes in.

While Michigan improved
as the weekend wore on, the
team still has many holes to fill.
After losing longtime goalkeeper
Haley Jones and all-time leading
scorer Rachael Mack from last
season's team, Michigan pines
for new leaders to step up.
Over the weekend, sophomore
Chris Lueb and freshman Sam
Swenson split time in goal,
recording eight and six saves,
respectively. In the field, Smith
and senior Ainsley McCallister
helped control possession and
push the offense. Still, no bona
fide scoring threat exists yet.
With arguably the toughest
opening weekend in the country,
Michigan was presented with a
unique opportunity to learn its
weaknesses early. Big Ten play
begins in three weeks, so the
losses have the potential to be
more valuable than wins.
But above all else, the
Wolverines will just be happy to
finally be home.
Editor's Note: Coaches and
players were not made available
for interviews.

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Leslie Smith scored with time expiring to force overtime against Wake Forest, but Michigan lost, 3-2, in the extra Irame.

I

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