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January 14, 1950 - Image 3

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1950-01-14

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To Face Boilermakers in Season Opener


* * *

by merle Levin, sports co-editor
The appearance of Indiana's Negro basketball star, Bill Garrett,
here Monday night has not surprisingly been the signal for the annual
vicious, mistaken and unnecessary blast at the so-called discrimination
practiced against Negro athletes in the Western Conference.
And, as usual, those who claim that Big Ten coaches are in-
tentionally slighting Negroes in all sports but football and track
are away off in their reasoning and their facts.
* * *
PUTTING IT as unesthetically as possible, I've yet to meet the
coach (with the exception of those at Southern universities) who
would sacrifice the chance to win a few more games by refusing to use
a.talented Negro on his squad. Not when it means added security
in his own job-and perhaps a few more groceries on the table next
Bill Garrett isn't the first Negro to play basketball in the
Big Ten. Chicago had two Negro cagers on its team in the years
1944-46 and Iowa used a Negro named Dick Culberson in several
games in 1945 and 1946.
Garrett is the best Negro basketball player to perform in the
Western Conference. He received a tremendous ovation when he
fouled out against Michigan Monday night and I doubt if it was'
because of his color as some have intimated. Mr. Garrett was one of
the trickiest dribblers and passers that I have yet seen in the Big
Ten and when I clapped my two paws together Monday it was inl
tribute to his basketball skill, not his color.
* * *
WHY HAVEN'T MORE NEGROES played Big Ten basketball?i
That's a difficult question to answer. Perhaps the reason is that they
have received better offers from small schools who go in for basket-
ball in a big way, something which they can't afford to do for football.
Perhaps-and here's the rub-they feel that they are notI
wanted on a Big Ten team. If this is the situation-and it's
possible-then there is something wrong.
What's the remedy? I don't know. It certainly isn't to load the
squad with inferior basketball players just for the .sake of having
Negroes on the team.
LEN FORD WENT OUT for basketball at the PERSONAL RE-
QUEST of Ernie McCoy in his junior year at Michigan. The big
football end was a good prospect but he didn't fit in with the team
that was building to win the Western Conference title. He was an
individualist on the basketball court.
Ford was quickly relegated to the Junior Varsity with anotherI
football player who didn't fit in with the pattern of play coach
,,zzie Cowles was seeking to establish for his team. Len's fellowE
gridder and fellow jayvee was Dick Rifenberg who had arrived
at Michigan tagged as one of the best basketball prospects ever
to be produced in these parts. No cries of prejudice went up whenI
Rife went down, strangely enough.
How about other sports? Well there was a Negro third baseman
on tie baseball squad at Michigan last spring. His biggest obstacle
wasn't his color but a guy named Ted Kobrin who has been labeled
the best third baseman ever turned out by Coach Ray Fisher.
IN TENNIS AND GOLF the fault lies not with the Big Ten but
with the sports world in general which has closed the doors of com-
petition to Negro stars. There isn't much incentive to develop your
skill in a sport in which you are not allowed to participate against
top flight competitors.
The same goes for swimming and wrestling. I can not recall
ever having seen a, Negro wrestler either in high school or college
competition. I saw a Negro relay team compete against Michigan
in the Michigan AAU swimming meet here in 1948. They didn't do
too well but they seldom had the opportunity to participate
*against topflight competition.
It's a well known axiom in sports that the best way to improve
-is to compete against someone better than you. With the tops in
White instruction and White competition closed to them, the num-
ber of Negroes who have become exceedingly adept at tennis, golf,
wrestling and swimming can be counted on your fingertips. The
chance that one of these rare athletes would come to a 'Western
Conference school is correspondingly small.
SURE THERE'S RACIAL PREJUDICE in sports. It's a disgraceful
blot on some of our nice-sounding American ideals. But it isn't
prevalent in the Western Conference. I'm sure that Bill Garrett would
have been welcomed with open arms at Michigan by Ernie McCoy
whose primary objective is to win the Western Conference chai-
.' pionship as often as possible. So would any other Negro star who
approached Garrett's caliber.
But as long as there are no Garretts at Michigan there probably
won't be any Negroes playing basketball here. When one does enroll
at Ann Arbor-or at any other Big Ten school-rest assured that you

will see him in action. Until then, well, talk is cheap.

Badgers Foe
As '1W Cagers
Play on Road
Can the Wolverines win away
from home?
That's a big question, one which
might be answered tonight when
Michigan'sbasketball team runs
headlong into its second consecu-
tive major test, playing the Wis-
consin Badgers in the Fieldhouse
at Madison.
* * *
A CAPACITY crowd of 13,000
spectators is anticipated.
The visitors enter the contest
with a Western Conference rec-
ord of two victories in as many
attmpts. They are deadlocked
with Northwestern for the
league lead. Wisconsin has
split two Big Ten games so far,
having beaten Illinois, 59-50,
and lost to Indiana, 61-59.
After a successful getaway
against Iowa,sthe Wolverines rose
to the occasion of their most
severe challenge by toppling the
Indiana Hoosiers from the ranks
of undefeated quintets at Ann Ar -
bor last Monday.
TONIGHT'S game finds Mich-
igan battling against percentages.
Of eight Conference tilts played
so far, seven have been won byj
the home team. In addition, the
Badgers have one of the most
highly regarded units in the Big
Wisconsin's explosive offen-
sive power is concentrated
mainly in her 6 ft. 6y in. cen-
ter, Don Rehfeldt, who current-
ly is way out in front in the
Conference individual scoring
race. He registered 52 points in
the first two games, establish-
ing himself as a favorite to
retain the crown he won last
On either side of Rehfeldt at
the forward positions will be two
Freds, Bencriscutto and Schneid-
er. Ab Nicholas, a high scoring
rookie, will be at one guard.
* * * -
THE OTHER guard will be Bob
Vader, a veteran of three Big Ten
campaigns and the biggest threat
besides Rehfeldt. Mader leads all
the regulars in percentage of field
goal attempts, having meshed al-
most a third of his shots.
Coach Ernie McCoy will
counter with his usual starting
combination, forwards Macki
Suprunowicz and Don McIn-
tosh, guards Chuck Murray and
Hal Morrill, and pivotman Leo
Jim Skala will be standing by
in case he is 'called upon to take
up slack in the front line.
It was the latter who made the
difference against Indiana whenf
McIntosh was off form.

Matmen Face Wildcats;
Seek Third Straight Win

Michi ganl's wrestlers will be
seeking their third dual meet vic-
tory in as many starts, when they
battle the Northwestern Wildcats
at 7:30 tonight on the Yost Field
House mats.
Coach Cliff Keen's matmen ex-
pect rugged competition from the
tough Wildcats who boast a vet-
eran squad with six of the eight
starters, lettermen.
split its dual meets this season.
They lost to Wisconsin, 24-6, be-
fore the Christmas holidays and
last week conquered Great Lakes,
There may be several changes
in the Maize and Blue lineup, as
Keen is undecided whether to
stick with Dave Space at 136 or
to go with Bob Sligh instead.
Space, a sophomore is undefeat-
ed in his two starts this season.
At 165, Bud Holcomb goes for
the Wolverines, replacing Don
O'Connell, who wrestled in that
slot last week.
Keen is undecided whether to
start Joe Planck who lost a nar-
row decision against Purdue last
week, or to go with Art Dunne.
The rest of the Michigan line-
up remains intact. Brad Stone
will go for the Maize and Blue
at 121, Larry Nelson at 128, Cap-

tain Jim Smith at 145, Bill
Stapp at 155 and Jack Powers
at 175.
Powers will be aiming for re-
venge in tonight's match, as he
will be wrestling Wildcat Captain
Tom Ragouzis, who pinned Powers
in six seconds, in last year's meet,
which Michigan won 25-5.
Other veterans for the Purple
and White include George Ha-
las, son of the famed coach of
the Chicago Bears, at 128, Nick
Stevens at 165, Howard Dick at
155 and 136-pounder Eddie Fox.

... twenty-fifth anniversary

'M' Two-Miile Relay Team
To Compete in East Tonight
Competition for Wolverine

trackmen will begin tonight when
a quartet of Don Canham's run-
ners participate in the Evening
Star Relays in Washington, D.C.
A two-mile relay squad, com-
posed of Shel Capp, Don McEwen,
John Lindquist and team captain
Jus Williams, is entered in the
meet, which annually heralds the
opening of star-studded indoor
competition in board-tracked
eastern arenas.
* * *
MEETING Seton Hall, Syra-
cuse and Villanova, the MichiganI

thinclads willefind strong oppo-
sition' presented by the eastern
Ranked as the number-one
team in the East this year,
Seton Hall's quartet boasts out-
standing middle-distance men
Carl Joyce and Phil Thigpen,
both of whom are capable of
pounding the board tracks for
half-mile times in the vicinity
of 1:56 or better.
A strong contender is Syracuse,
w h o s e middle-distance runners
ran off with virtually every title
and trophy the eastern meets had
to offer last year. Their squad is
equally strong this year, and can-
not be counted out in the fight
for first place.
Running on the 220-yard,
board track will be a new exper-
ience for Capp and McEwen and
could work to the decided dis-
advantage of the Wolverines.
Williams and Lindquist faced
competition on timber tracks in
last year's campaign, but the ex-
tent of this experience is slight.

Coach Mann Begins Twenty-Fifth Year;
Neisch, Stager Meet Thomas, Kosmetos
By HUGH QUINN after swimming his fres:
Michigan's swimmers open their here.
1950 dual. meet season this after- Ms ilta i
noon when they test a strong Pur- sMoss will team wi
due squad at 3:30 in the Varsity strker BernTi lnofo
Pool, as Wolverine coach Matt igan's 300-yard med]
Mann aims for the first win of his team. Purdue's entry n
Silver Jubilee year.
And Mann, who came to Michi- ably be Dunlap, Tho
gan in 1924, will find one of his backstroker Everett Bi
former swimmers trying to upset Besides Kahn, either
his plans, Boilermaker coach Dick buckle or Dick Howell v
Papenguth, who did his early Michigan in the back str
swimming under Mann's tutelage, ell will be swimming th
is bringing a tank squad rated by individual medley.
Mann as the best in Purdue his- MICHIGAN'S trio
tory." George Eyster, Frank I
Jim Hartman will see a
BUT MANN will have the help er in Purdue's Murray
of his son, Matt Mann III, team ---- -
captain, in pointing for today's
win. Young Matty will be swim-
ming in the 220-and 440-yard
free style races, along with ano-
ther senior, Gus Stager.
Purdue's claim to hiving its
strongest team is based on the
excellent team balance, with at
least one good man in every
event. For instance, All-Ameri-
can free styler Mike Kosmetos
will be Mann and Stager's com-
petition in the two middle-dis-
tance events.
The visitors' strength in the
sprints is Chuck Thomas, who
placed third in the Big Ten 100-
yard free style last year while a
sophomore. Thomas' rating as top
Conference sprinter this year will
be challenged today by Wolverines
Tom Coats, Dick Martin, and Jim
Dickerson in the 50, and Coates
and Dave Neisch in the 100.
* * *
IN THE BREAST stroke, Wol-
verines Stew Elliott, Bill Upthe-
grove, and Charlie Moss will find
their biggest competition in ano-
ther Mann pupil, Bob Dunlap.
Dunlap transferred from Michigan

Experienced Gymnastic Squad
Opens Season Against Chicago

Led by Ed Buchanan, Western
Conference, NCAA and National
AAU trampoline champion, Mich-
igan's gymnasts meet the Univer-
sity of Chicago this afternoon in
the opener of the 1950 season.
Coach Newt Loken will have the
assurance of at least plenty of
experience in his nine-man crew,
which will be seeking to repeat
their effort of last year when they
defeated Chicago 511/2 to 44%/.
** *
ALTHIOUGHT Chicago is annual-
ly ranked a national power, Coach
Loken will use this meet primarily
as a warm-up for the Conference
meets which start in February.
Loken has a hot prospect in the
high barin the person of sopho-
more Connie Ettl.
SIDE HORSE - Connie Ettl,
Bob Checkley, Jeff Knight
HIGH BAR - Bob Wyllie,
mheckley, Ettl
man, Wally Nieman, Ettl

venson, Tillman, Ettl
TUMBLING - Levenson, Fred
Thompson, Tillman
TRAMPOLINE - Tillman, Le-
venson, Ed Buchanan

i . t,



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