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June 03, 2002 - Image 48

Resource type:
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Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2002-06-03

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32 - The Michigan Daily - Orientation Edition 2002

Scandal unlikely to affect recruiting

By Joe Smith
Daily Sports Editor
Michigan coach Tommy Amaker is often
said to have a golden touch when it comes
to recruiting.
Several recruiting analysts say that despite
the recent indictment of banned Michigan
booster Ed Martin and its impending conse-
quences on the basketball program, Amaker's
appeal won't lose its luster.
The scandal is "something you have to
overcome, but Michigan has enough of
other things going on that are positive for
(the indictment)," said HoopScoop recruit-
ing analyst Clark Francis.
"I still like the position Michigan is in
for next couple years recruiting-wise."
Following his previous recruiting suc-
cesses as an assistant at Duke and as head
coach at Seton Hall, Amaker nabbed a top-
10 class for Michigan next season.
Incoming recruits Lester Abram and
Graham Brown told The Michigan Daily
yesterday that they still intend on donning
the maize and blue next fall, and that even
possible NCAA sanctions wouldn't hold
them back.
Analysts say that the same should be
expected from the other three members of the
class, including superstar point guard Daniel
Horton - not to mention future classes,
which include top junior prospect Dion
Harris from Detroit Redford, who lost the
Class A state championship game to
Abram's Pontiac Northern team at the Bres-
lin Center on March 23. Harris committed
to Michigan earlier this summer after
Amaker assured him that NCAA sanction
-are unlikely.

Mark Mayemura, an editor of Recruit-
ing USA and a recruiting analyst for
ESPN.com, agrees with Francis, saying
that Michigan recruiting will still be in
good shape.
"In the mind of the young basketball
players, (the scandal) doesn't matter," said
Mayemura.
"Aside from the death penalty, they will
be able to deal with it."
Francis said there are several reasons for
this positive outlook. For example, Michi-
gan still has many positives to offer,
including a young and bright coaching
staff, the ability to offer significant playing
time to top big men right away and aca-
demic prowess.
Francis also mentioned that for some of
the kids Michigan is trying to go after -
those with "inner-city toughness" or those
with a "chip on his shoulder" - would
have a different view on the scandal.
Francis said those types of recruits often
think that the accused players didn't do
anything wrong by trying to help them-
selves out of a tough situation.
"I don't think a inner-city, poor kid -
regardless of what color he is - looks at
things the same way as middle class," Fran-
cis said. "They're not in the same world."
While charges like those involving Ed
Martin and former Michigan players are
serious and symbolize what is wrong with
collegiate athletics, Francis said that for
some kids, they don't see "beating the sys-
tem" as something terribly wrong.
"They think, 'so some rich guy came out
there and befriended you and gave you
money? Big deal,"' Francis said.
When he became Michigan's coach last

spring, Amaker said that he wanted to use
the "Fab Five" as a recruiting tool.
Analysts say that plan won't be affected
too much by the Martin scandal. The crown
jewel of the Fab Five, Chris Webber,
received $280,000 from Martin according
to the indictment, but Mayemura says the
current Sacramento Kings' forward won't
lose many reputation points.
_ "I don't think this impacts (Webber) neg-
atively," Mayemura said. "He is still one of
the most popular players. By default,
Michigan benefits from that."
And Francis said that because its been 10
years since the "Fab Five" took the college
basketball world by storm, Michigan's cur-
rent recruits may be too young to remember.
"Most won't remember the Fab Five
when they were playing for Michigan,"
Francis said. "They may have early memo-
ries, but they were like five, six or seven
years old then."
Both analysts said that winning basket-
ball games is an important factor that will
help the recruiting process improve at
Michigan. Fortunately for Michigan fans,
they see good days ahead for Amaker's
program.
"There is no doubt that Amaker will win
20 games," Mayemura said. "Michigan has
a great coaching staff. They will earn their
big paychecks."
And if the coaches can earn their pay-
checks, any future NCAA sanctions will
become less significant in the recruiting
process.
"Winning is a lot more important than
what the NCAA does," Francis said. "If
they start winning games, the rest will take
care of itself."

MARTI N
Continued from Page 30 69
gambling business.
The government decided to allow Martin to keep his
house near the Detroit Golf Club, but in order to do so,
the 68-year-old must forfeit approximately $27,000 in
cash. He will remain free on a $10,000 unsecured bond.
The conspiracy conviction that Martin agreed to could
entail a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a
fine of up to $1.2 million.
As part of the plea bargain, Martin faces a probable
sentence of 30 to 37 months, but Cleland made it clear
during the meeting that he has the ultimate hand what sen-
tence Martin will serve.
Convertino said that Martin's health may play a fac-
tor in the length of his sentence because Martin told
Cleland that he was taking medication for high choles-
terol and high blood pressure.
Cleland indicated that while the two sides came up
with an accurate guess of a proper sentence, he would
wait to see how beneficial the information Martin
reveals is for the investigation. Once Cleland makes his
decision, both sides -are free to appeal if they are
unhappy with the sentence.
"I don't know what to expect. We hope for the best,"
Mitchell said. "I believe (Cleland) will be fair."
As Cleland put it, the "rosiest" situation for Martin
would be that his testimony was so helpful to the gov-
ernment that it would request he be given just probation
and no imprisonment.
In court, Martin said he was convinced that scenario
will eventually play out, insisting, "Yes, sir, it will," as
Cleland explained to him the possibility of not receiv-
ing jail time.
But Cleland said Martin's response is only a "hopeful
prediction."
Mitchell said his client understood the possibility of
receiving jail time, but he is remaining optimistic.
"My client knows- what he did and what he didn't
do," Mitchell said. "(Ed and Hilda) have been painted
as Bonnie and Clyde, and that's wrong."
-Daily News Editor Maria Sprow contributed to this report.

It didn't have to be this way...
Banned booster Ed Martin made a bad investment on Michigan's basketball players. Even though Robert
Traylor has repaid some of Martin's loans, the retired Ford autoworker is broke, according to his wife's attor-
ney. Instead of facing jail time, Martin could be living a lavish lifestyle. Here is a list of better investments
on the $616,000 he allegedly gave the four players.

100 million:
Martin could have bought more than 125,000
shares of Microsoft, which would be worth over
$100 million today.*
*DOES NOT ACCOUNT FOR INFLATION
20:
Martin allegedly paid for Maurice Taylor's Ford
Explorer that wrecked and uncovered the scandal.
Instead, Martin could have bought 20of his own
SUVs.

123,200:
instead of using these
sunglasses to hide from the media, Martin could have
bought 123,200 Blue Blockers to block the sun while
on vacation.
400:
If Martin didn't pay players, he and hiswife-- as
well astheir descendants -could have purchased
Michigan basketball season tickets for the next 400
years. *
*DOES NOT ACCONWTFORRAPID INCREASE IN PRICES

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Ready to Rebound
Bernard Robinson Then Who?
Year: Junior Here's a Ioho or who is
Height: 6-foot-6 going to fill Robinson and
Weight:185 Blonchard's shoes once
Pts:12.2 they leave.
Reb: 4.5
Robinson is having his Dommonic Ingerson
second rough offsea- Skinny: Sharp-shooting
son in a row. He had sophomore has unlimited
mono lost year and range but must control
now faces chorges for y emotions.
molesting a girl Gotta love: The fro.
LoVell Blanchard
Year: Senior Daniel Horton
Height 6oot-7SkinnytMcDonald'sAll-
Weight:205 American that will com-
Pts: 14.5pere with Avery Queen to
Reb: 6.3 be the team's strting
This is it. Blonchard point guard.
has one more year to Gotta love: His chances of
line up to potentil. stoRingJORIE MARSHALL/Daly

I

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