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August 14, 2000 - Image 14

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Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2000-08-14

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14 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, August 14, 2000

Martin testimony brings to light
question: what has really changed?

0

By Raphael Goodstein
Three and a half years ago
Michigan basketball coach Steve
Fisher was fired.
A new regime was brought in to
runt a clean basketball program, and
new Athletic Director Tom Goss led
the crusade promising to, "change
the prograr."
After (toss
fired Fisher, he
appointed an BASKETBALL
interim, just Commenta y
days before the
first practice of
the 1997 season.
Goss called up recently hired
assistant coach Brian Ellerbe to fill
the position, even though the players
publically asked for assistant coach
Scott Trost to receive the promotion.
Ellerbe was months removed from
a 34-47 record at Loyola College in
Baltimore.
Meanwhile in Ann Arbor, rumors
and allegations of NCAA impropri-
eties continued to swirl.
Many of those rumors and allega-
tions centered on booster Ed Martin,
a retired Ford electrician, who was
notorious for being close to Detroit
prospects during Fisher's marred
reign.
Fast forward three and a half years.
What has "changed?"
Well, Final Four hopes have been
replaced with a 52-42 record these
last three years, 27-33 since the
interim label was removed.

But that's not the main point.
What has really changed is what
once were only rumors have become
truths through testimony.
Former players Robert Traylor and
Louis Bullock admitted to accepting
money from booster Ed Martin while
at Michigan. T]here are strong impli-
cations that Bullock and Traylor
accepted this money under Ellerbe's
watch.
The real question here then is
should Ellerbe receive the blame?
Fisher, who was more successful
than any other coach in Michigan
basketball history, was replaced over
concern about the program's image.
This isn't a story designed to ques-
tion anyons's job status.
Fans have questioned Ellerbe's
credentials to coach Michigan since
he was given the full-time job.
A Big Ten fournament title high-
lights a three-year regime that has
had more dowts than ups.
A 51-point loss this past season to
rival Michigan State marks the low-
point of the program's history, not to
mtention Ellerbe's reign.
But perhaps more important than
any one win or loss are the famous
last words uttered to Fisher by a man
whio later would be run out of town
himself. Have we really changed the
progran?
After this past week's develop-
mients, whether or not the program
has changed should be re-evaluated.
Traylor and Bullock are testifying
that they accepted cash at Michigan.

DAVID ROCHKIND/Daily
Louis Bullock (Above) and Robert
Traylor testifited this past week that
they accepted money while at Michigan.
The very rumors of similar activities
led to Fisher's fall from grace.
Three and a half years ago, some
argued that Fisher's firing had to do
with the hope that a new regime
would not be punished for whatever
the NCAA could dig up on Fisher.
This hope is now moot.
The only thing worse than rumors
of player payoffs is testimony from
the players that received money.
Whose watch was ticking when
those payments were msade? Bill
Martin; Goss's successor, this will
your first riddle to solve.

PO BREFS'
Malchow, 15-year old Mediate wins Buick Holyfield decisions
headed to Sydney Open; Woods 11th Ruiz, wins WBA belt

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - With
Tom Malchow leading the way, 15-
year-old Michael Phelps became the
youngest male swimmer in 68 years
to earn a spot on the U.S. Olympic
team Saturday night.
Malchow was on pace to break his
own world record in the 200-ineter
butterfly before fading badly in the
final 50 reters. He still got on the
Olympic team with a wiingi time off
I minute, 56.57 seconds I- 1.69 off
the mark he set tune 17 in Charlotte,
N.C.
"I got my ticket to Sydney",
Malchow said. "Now, the battle
begins. It ' didn't make the team, that
might have been m career."
Closing fast, Phelps touched at
1:57.48 to earn the second Olympic
berth.
He becomes the youngest member
of the men's team since 13-year-old
Ralph 1lanagan, who competed in the
1932 Los Angeles Games.
"Phelps is awesome,"
said Malchow, 23, of Ann Arbor,
Mich. "I might have retired a little
sooner with someone like that coing
{iup"

GRAND BLANC (AP) -- The
record crowds that turned out to see
Tiger Woods saw quite a show on
Sunday -- by Rocco Mediate.
Mediate, who never led the entire
tournament and trailed by one stroke
going to the last hole, made a 12-foot
birdie putt and w son the Buick Open
whets Chris Perry missed a 10-foot
putt for his first bogey in 29 holes.
Mediate birdied two of the last
three holes and closed with a 6-
under-par 66 to wilt for the fourth
time it ihis career.
He finished at 20-under 268 and
earned s486,000.
"I knew if I made birdie, I might
get it a playoff," Mediate said. "I
didn't expect this."
Oily six players with the 54-hole
lead alone have gone on to
win the Buick Open. Perry figured to
be an exception until
he clrove into the left rough on the
i8th, played short of the
green and then ran a pitch about 10
feet past the hole.
"We both played great," Perry
said. "He just made one
more putt."

LAS VEGAS (AP) - Evander
Holyfield set out to prove something
by winning the WBA heavyweight
title against John Ruiz.
Unfortunately, he wound up proving
the wrong thing.
Yes, Holyfield won a title for an
unprecedented fourth time, just as he
had planned. But what Saturday
night's narrow but unanimous deci-
sion really showed was that Holyfield
might rethink his career plans as lie
nears his 38th birthday.
The fighter who staged thrilling
wars with Riddick Bowe and pule
one of boxing's biggest upsets agatist
Mike Tyson looked just like what he
has become against RUiz --- an aging
fighter whose reflexes are increasing-
ly suspect.
"Everything is hard for me,"
Holvfield said. "Im accustomed to
it. If it's not hard, it's probably not
worth it.
I'olvfield became a heavvweigI
champion once again by using the
ring generalship acquired in 19 previ-
ous title fights to take the 12th round
and win by one point on two ringside
scorecards, and four on a third.

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