Fressel's statement telling fan's they'll be proud of
State in Ann Arbor in fact a promise of victory?
JULY 23, 2001
if becoming the 22nd head football coach in Ohio State
didn't provide enough pressure for Jim Tressel, fans
turn on coach Tressel faster than you can say John
er if he isn't successful against Michigan after his memo-
r formally being introduced to the crowd at halftime of
hio State-Michigan basketball game in Columbus on
18, Tressel, who had been coaching Division I-AA
gstown State, wasted little time before bringing the
fans to their feet.
an assure you that you will be proud of your young peo-
the classroom, in the community - and most especially
310 days in Ann Arbor, Michigan."
ssel has repeatedly said he was not guaranteeing victory
e Wolverines on Nov. 24.
ow exactly does the new Ohio State head coach plan to
fans proud of their Buckeyes?
u know what the important date for the people in Ohio
t like it is to the people in Michigan. And I want (the
to be proud of (the players) - that they went out there
ey played clean and hard and tough and as well as they
I think that's what determines people being proud of
other," Tressel said.
ough a clean, hard, tough loss would be nice for the
eyes, Ohio State fans are tired of losing to Michigan and
>e expecting consistent victories over the Maize and Blue
nly is Tressel's job largely dependent on "The Game;"
alary probably is also. Tressel signed a five-year deal
$4.6 million before incentives. Although these incen-
were not disclosed, a large incentive for former coach
Cooper was to reach bowl games - and a victory over
igan is often needed to reach the Rose Bowl.
'en if his halftime speech was not bulletin board material,
State fans believe they can actually beat Michigan away
home - a sentiment that faded slowly after every loss in
Arbor under former head coach John Cooper.
der to beat the Wolverines in Ann Arbor for the first
since 1987, the Buckeyes won't be able to rely on as
a talent as they have had in the past. The Buckeyes are
Michigan signs new
recruit for basketball
Jim Tressel addresses Ohio State fans at the halftime of the
last Michigan-Ohio State game.
only returning 10 starters and most analysts are unsure as to
how the Buckeyes will fare next season. Lindy's pre-season
poll puts the Buckeyes 39th while another respected maga-
zine, Athlon, ranks the Buckeyes highly at 16.
Although the talent at Ohio State is much more impressive
than what Tressel had at Youngstown State, he realizes that
they are still undermanned for Big Ten play.
"I don't think we have as many people at every position as
any of us would like to have," Tressel said. "But I think it's
very adequate and I think the more we get to know each other
we'll be aware of what our current weaknesses are and what
we need to get better at."
Adding to the uncertainty is the possibility that senior quar-
terback Steve Bellisari might not retain his job. Tressel has
made it clear that Bellisari is in an open competition with
sophomores Scott McMullen and Craig Krenzel for the posi-
tion and that his recent nomination as a captain will not help
him re-earn the starting job.
"It will give (Bellisari) an edge that he gets to go out to start
the game - the coin flip," Tressel said.
"That doesn't change that he needs to do the things that we
need done for that position in order to play. That doesn't
change his job description at all."
So far, Tressel and his straightforward approach have been
widely accepted, according to athletic director Andy Geiger.
"He's really rallied everybody," Geiger said. "I think the
team is probably more focused than I have ever seen it. He
assembled an extraordinary staff. Everything is positive. The
response, from alumni to recruiting, has been really extraordi-
Along with the fans, the players have put their trust in Tres-
sel, describing him as a father figure and aiready predicting
that he will be the coach to bring Ohio State another national
"Well, the thing that I would like them to know is that I
truly do care about them and not just about how they play
football," Tressel said. "You know, how they do everything in
their lives. And if that is what a father figure is, then yes -
that is what I would like to do. But I want them to know that
we are there for them. On the other hand, we're going to
expect a lot out of them."
Among the activities Tressel will be carefully monitoring
off the field are his player's academics. Last year, Ohio State's
graduation rate for football players was a mere 28 percent,
worst in the Big Ten. The team was also embarrassed by a
0.00 grade-point average by senior wide receiver Reggie Ger-
many. Tressel established a 59 percent graduation rate among
his players at Youngstown State and he and Geiger hope to
See TRESSEL, Page 15
By Benjamin Binger
Daily Sports Editor
A new recruit for Michigan's
2001-02 basketball team was
announced earlier this week. Marcus
Bennett, a 6-foot-2 guard from
Renaissance High School, has
accepted a scholarship to play for the
Wolverines in the fall.
"I think he's a fine young man.
Michigan is looking for some players
with good character," Bennett's high
school coach Mark White said. "Bas-
ketball-wise he's a special talent.
He's a natural talent."
Earlier in the summer, Chris
Charles - formerly a verbal com-
mitment to Seton Hall while Michi-
gan coach Tommy Amaker still
coached the Pirates - turned down
the Wolverines to play for Villanova.
Amaker said at the time it was likely
too late for Michigan to find anyone
new for the upcoming fall.
White said Bennett signed with a
school so late because his test scores
left him ineligible until recently.
Of Michigan's original four schol-
arship recruits for the 2001-02 sea-
son, only Dommanic Ingerson of
Santa Barbara and Chuck Bailey of
Detroit have guaranteed their spot on
the team. Kelly Whitney from Chica-
go did not meet the academic
requirements and JaQuan Hart from
Flint has yet to announce his latest
test scores from June.
"We are excited to have Marcus
join the Michigan Basketball fami-
ly," Amaker said in a released state-
ment. "We feel Marcus is a quality
individual from an outstanding aca-
demic and athletic program. He will
be a valuable asset for us in the
upcoming season and throughout his
Bennett scored 23 points and
seven rebounds a game as a senior
last year for the Phoenix. He also
had 6.1 steals and 5.2 assists an out-
ing. Bennett was named a Class B
All-State first team guard as he
helped lead Renaissance to a 16-5
"He was our leader he carried our
team," White said. "We were sup-
posed to be rebuilding but he put us
in position to win."
Coming to Crisler
Coach Tommy Amaker and his
assistants have been busy
recruiters this summer. After just
returning to Michigan from a
recruiting trip, they're back on the
road again this week. Here's who
the new coaches have netted so
far for Michigan's 2002 class:
DANIEL HORTON (6-4 GUARD)
LESTER ABRAM (6-6 GUARD)
GRAHAM BROWN (6-9 FORWARD)
Sticking Around this Sumner
Make Easy Money w ith
* Michigan Telefund a
$7 per hour bonuses
6 11 C hurch, 4thfor
www .tee fund.umi ch.edu
ressel was hired to do what John Cooper couldn't -