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September 20, 1956 - Image 5

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1956-09-20

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Back s



Gri dders'

Ptacek, Herrnstein Bolster
Solid Group of Returnees

Daily Sports Editor
There has been quiet optimism
in the Michigan football camp so
far this fall, along with some
promising new faces and a few
major problems.
As the Wolverines head into the
final 10 days before the season's
opener with UCLA, Coach Bennie
Oosterbaan and his staff have been
able to concentrate their efforts on
their leading candidates of a
squad that numbers over 60, in-
cluding 20 returning lettermen.
Encouraging in Tough Schedule
The results are definitely en-
couraging as Michigan prepares
for another rugged schedule in
the "loaded with power again"
Big Ten.
The difference between being
good and outstanding, however,
may depend largely on how well
Michigan's sophomore talent can
produce under the pressure of Var-
sity competition. The Michigan
camp seems anxious to give them-
selves a real game test; and until
then, only speculation is possible.
The new names in an otherwise
all-veteran first team are two rug-
ged backs from Ohio, John Herrn-
stein from Chillicothe and Bob
Ptacek (pronounced tot-check)
from Cleveland.
Herrnstein, a 6'2" fullback,
weighs a hefty 212. Ptacek, the
all-important tailback or left half-
back in Michigan's maybe-more-
often-used-single-wing attack this
year, registers at 6'1" and about
205. Both players carry their
weight well and have good speed.
It's been a long time since Mich-
igan has had as big a backfield in
size. Combined with rugged right
half Terry Barr and either Jim
Van Pelt or Jim Maddock at quar-
ter, Michigan seems to have a solid
first-team running offense.
Passer A Problem
But the problem of finding one
really good passer again may slow
the Wolverine attack. Ptacek and
Jim Pace, the fleet tailback from
Little Rock, Ark., have been doing
a good deal of the throwing in
drills so far. Both have improved,
Oosterbaan says, from last year.
Van Pelt, Maddock and Barr
all did a considerable amount of
passing on last year's team with
Inconsistent results.
The running of Herrnstein,
Ptacek and Barr since drills
started at the beginning of the
month show signs of real strength.
Ptacek is the "locomotive" type
of runner who gains momentum
in an open field and is hard to
bring down. Herrnstein has ap-
peared strong on many of Michi-
gan's straight and spinner power
plays through the middle of the
Barr and Pace both look es-
pecially fast this year and are in
strong physical shaps. Pace, whose
main drawback in earning a first
string position still seems to be
his defensive play, has added over
10 lbs. this summer and seems
more than ready to go.
Behind Barr at right half is
stocky veteran Ed Shannon; while
another promising new face in the
backfield is Jim Byers, a fullback
without Herrnstein's power as a
runner, but still an offensive
threat and a solid line backer on
Topflight at End
The concern over finding "the
passer". to add variety to the
Michigan attack naturally stems
from the two towering ends-"All-
American" candidates Ron Kramer
and Tom Maentz.
Kramer and Maentz, if unpag-
ued by injuries this fall, could
prove to be one of the finest set
of flankers in the history of col-
legiate football. Both have looked
tough in drills, which have been
closed to the general public.

Behind Kramer at left end at
present are 210-lb. sophomore
Gary Prahst and 195-lb. junior
Dave Bowers. Maentz is backed
by veteran senior Charley Brooks
and another big sophomore, 215-lb.
Walt Johnson from Dearborn.
Experienced Tackles
The tackles are experienced-
Jim Orwig (200) and Al Sigman

(215). Showing great promise is
another tough sophomore, Willie
Smith, at right tackle, who rocks
the scales at 237.
As with the guard and center
positions, however, a coupleof
injuries to key personnel and
Michigan might have a major
lack-of-depth problem.
Behind Orwig are Dick Heynen
(200) and Jim Gray (215), but
neither has had much actual game
The first string guards are also
veterans, Dick Hill (190) and Marv
Nyren (205), both of whom have
speed and agility for what they
may lack in weight. Behind Hill,
who is rated by many as one of
the better guards in the country
today, is Larry Faul (195), a con-
vert from end.
Mainstay behind Nyren at right
guard is sophomore Gerry Marcin-
iak (225), who along with tackle
Smith is rated by. the Michiganj

Grid Schedule
(Last season's result in paren-
theses -- Michigan's score appears
Sept. 29 UCLA (H) --
Oct. 6 Michigan St. (H) (14-7)
Oct. 13 Army (H) (26-2).
Oct. 20 Northwestern (H) (14-2)
Oct. 27 Minnesota (H) (14-13).
Nov. 3 Iowa (A) (33-21)
Nov. 10 Illinois (H) (6-25)
Nov. 17 Indiana (H) (30-0)
Nov. 24 Ohio State (A) (0-17)

... tailback candidate

Michigan Athletes Make Good Summer Showing

junior fullback
coaches as having fine natural
ability and potential but needs
mainly to master the plays and
get some game experience.
Rotunno Makes Switch
At center the present first-
stringer is Mike Rotunno (197),
who has done an amazing job in
his switch from the end position
this fall. Rotunno is rated as one
of the best all-around players on
the Michigan squad and is just
too good to have to play behind a
Kramer or a Maentz.
Almost even with Rotunno Is
Gene Snider (205), who was in-
eligible last year, but who was a
strong line-backer on Michigan's
1954 squad.
"Unless we have a lot of injuries,
Rotunno will play center and
Kramer will be at end," Ooster-
baan says. This injury question
could be a key one in just how
successful Michigan will be.
MacPhee Hurt
So far of note this fall is the
amazipgly few number of injuries.
Only reserve center Bill MacPhee,
who has reinjured his knee, has
been seriously hurt. Michigan
seems at present in topflight shape.
So the picture appears pretty
bright with a "new blood"' back-
field that averages just under 200
lbs. and a fast starting line that
averages 206 and can reach nearly
But the work is cut out for
Michigan as all pre-season ratings
indicate. Michigan State and Ohio
State are both ranked as strong
again in their bids for the
Big Ten championship, although
neither school is eligible for the
Rose Bowl trip this coming Janu-
Illinois is also potentially strong,
and Iowa, Purdue and Minnesota
all are possible darkhorses. In the
conference race, Michigan will
play seven Big Ten opponents, as
will Illinois, Minnesota and Pur-
due. Ohio State, Michigan State
and Iowa will play only six.
1000 HEADS
be they square, flat or rounded
for that crew-cut
The Daseola Barbers
Near Michigan Theater

... rugged soph
Top Grid
Here is Michigan's tentative
football roster, consisting of the
leading candidates for the squad.
The present number one man at
each position is listed first.
LEFT END: Ron Kramer ('57),
Gary Prahst ('59), Dave Bowers
LEFT TACKLE: Jim Orwig ('57),
Dick Heynen ('57), Jim Gray ('59).
LEFT GUARD: Dick Hill ('57),
Larry Faul ('58), Tom Berger
('58), Jim Davies ('57), Alex Boch-
nowski ('58).
CENTER: Mike Rotunno ('57),
Gene Snider ('58), Ray Wine ('59),
Don Remblesa ('58).
('58), Gerry Marciniak ('59), Clem
Corana ('57).
('57), Willie Smith ('59), Bob'
Boshoven ('58), Maynard Stetten
RIGHT END: Tom Maentz ('57),
Charlie Brooks ('57), Walter John-
son ('59), Gordon Morrow ('58).
('57), Jim Van Pelt ('58), Jack
Lousma ('59), John Spidel ('59).
LEFT HALF: Bob Ptacek ('59),
Jim Pace ('58), John Greenwood
('57), Dave Rentschler ('58).
RIGHT HALF: Terry Barr ('57),
Ed Shannon ('57), Mike Shatusky
('57), John Batsakes ('58).
FULLBACK: John Herrnstein
('59), Jim Byers ('59), Steve Zer-
vas ('58), Eugene Sisinyak ('59).
High School Band Day at the
University, an annual event
which has grown from a modest
beginning to one of the great-
est and most colorful spectacles
in the country, will be held be-
tween halves of the Northwest-
ern game, October 20.
This year's spectacle will fea-
ture more than 172 bands, or
nearly 12,000 high school bands-
men, drum majors and major-

What does it take to be an All-
Ron Kramer, Michigan All-Am-
erican left end, received a bruised
leg muscle in a long, gruelling
scrimmage which climaxed the
Wolverines' twice-a-day practices
last week.
Kramer was in sweat clothes
early Sunday morning, jogging
alone on the runnick track to work
out the stiffness even before the
training quarters had opened.
* * *
- Terry Barr, halfback, and Dick
Hill, guard, were the "iron men"
Of Michigan's 1955 football squad.
Barr, who will be shifted to right
half to start his senior season,
played 349.25 minutes, while Hill,
also a senior this year, battled it
out in the line for 344.30.
Ron Kramer played 295.55, or
exactly five seconds more than his
wing-mate, Captain Tom Maentz.
Coach Bennie Oosterbaan will
start his ninth seaspn as head
coach this fall and his 28th as a
member of the Wolverine staff.
Fritz Crisler, Michigan's athletic
director and former football coach,
was too small to play football at
Earlville, Ill., and Mendota, III.,
high schools, weighing but 92 lbs.
But he earned nine letters in
fottball, basketball and baseball
at the University of Chicago.
* * .
Ron Kramer, Wolverine All-Am-
erican end, and Jim Van Pelt,
quarterback, are student members
of the University Board in Control
of Intercollegiate Athletics for
* * *
Most popular Michigan football
player with the pre - teen - age
"autograph gang" that gathered
around Ferry Field during the
early fall practices was Ron Kra-
mer, who was never too busy or
too tired to talk to them.
When ICramer made a play on
the practice field, it wasn't nec-
essary to see him do it-the shrill
yells of the kids stamped the per-
former on such occasions.

Successful Wolverine athletes
kept Michigan prominent in the
sports world this past summer.
Tennis star Barry MacKay's
busy season was highlighted by
three Davis Cup matches in inter-
American zone competition. Rep-
re se n t ing the United Sfhtes
against both Canada and Mexico,
MacKay won one match in his
first Davis Cup play.
1 More valuable experience was
gained by the highly promising
young netter in tournaments at
home arnd abroad. MacKay
reached (as far as the third round
in such major American tourneys
as the National Clay Courts and
Eastern Grass Courts and entered
the famed Wimbledon's second
round while in England.
'M' Sixth in NCAA
Without the traveling MacKay,
Michigan still managed to place
sixth in the National Intercolle-
giate Tournament at Kalamazoo.
Dick Potter led the Wolverines
by gaining the eighth-finals be-
fore being eliminated by John
Lesch of NCAA champion UCLA.
Later in the summer Potter copped
the Detroit Public Parks Cham-
Two other Michigan teams at-
tained some measure of glory in
NCAA competition during the ear-
ly summer. The golfers had Fred
Micklow reach the second round
of their tournament at Columbus,

OLYMPIC QUALIFIER - Eeles Landstrom tied for third in the
NCAA meet and placed on the Finnish Olympic squad during
the summer. Landstrom has left school to join the Finnish army
and will return to conclude his studies in a year,

countries in the Olympics this
winter in Australia. Senior Laird
Sloan gained a berth on the Can-
adian team for his efforts in both
the 200- and 1,600-meter races.
High-jumper Brendan O'Reilly
was named to the Irish squad, but
must still wait until his country
collects enough money to finance
the trip to Melbourne.
Swimmer Dick Hanley and gym-
nast Ed Gagnier were other Mich-
igan stars who will be going to
the Olympics. Hanley's photo-
finish loss in the 100-meter free-
style qualifying finals was still
sufficient to cop a place on the
U. S. team along with winner Bill
Woolsey of Indiana.
Performing as he had done for
Michigan in his sophomore year,
Gagnier became literally a "one-
man team" as Canada's only gym-
nastics representative to the
News of one other Wolverine
athlete was pleasant this sum-
mer, but it cast a shadow on Mich-
igan's baseball outlook, for the
1957 season.
Outfielder-pitcher Bill Thurs-
ton gave up his final year of schol-
astic eligibility to sign a minor
league contract with Detroit's top
farm club, Charleston of the Am-
erican Association. Thurston's bat-
ting average was around .350 for
two years at Michigan. His pitch-
ing record was 7-3.

0., while five members of the
track squad placed in their meet
at Berkeley, Cal.
Dave Owen's shot put of 57'3/"
was the top achievement of the
thinclads who finished eighth na-
tionally. He gained a third place
in the event as did Geert Keil-
strup in the 3,000-meter steeple-

Eeles Landstrom's pole vault of
14'4" was good for a third place
tie. Mark Booth tied for fourth in
the high jump at 6'4" and Ron
Wallingford ran fifth in the 5,000
meter race.
Landstrom, Sloan, O'Reilly Named
Landstrom from Finland, was
one of three Wolverine tracksters
who qualified to represent their



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