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March 15, 1958 - Image 2

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1958-03-15

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ine in Campus Athletic Spirit aces Evaluati

o .)


Y. - r

t, formerly as
Michigan as its
Tictors," has fal-
recession in re-

athletic event hardly
thout numerous cries
duals both on and off
The bemoaners point
's tradition and then
the lack of good at-
.d vigorous cheering at
ity's athletic eyents.
ike Old Days'
lumnus put it: "They
have the enthusiasm
Nowadays that we did
days when I came
ugh this expression is
ised and may be trite,
heless somewhat true

amine the student population at
Michigan. In recent years, the
numbers, types and ages of stu-
dents here have undergone nu-
merous changes and these in
themselves could have accounted,
for a decline in spirit.
The large number of war vet-
erans, most recently from the
Korean War, have come to school
with a more serious attitude
toward campus life.
Their sober attitude has been
built on their experience in the
Army which afforded them a true


Ln student
ibled very
als, giving

for the superb
ng a sporting
antly analytical)
eking the prob-
ssion is to ex-

No longer is the pledge paddl6l
every time he walks into the
house or sees a brother on cam-
pus. Instead of daily hazing, the
fraternities have turned to calis-
thenic sweat sessions and a single
hell week at the end of the se-
Also gone from the campus in
the spirit tradition are the "gung
ho" ar "rah rah" students who
could always be found the night
before the game leading a cheer
or attempting some. kind of stunt
in front of the Union, on the Diag
or on the hill.
Added to these facts, the figures
which show a large number. ,of
transfer and graduate students
whose percentage is increasing
every year provide a substantial
basis for-one explanation of the
decline of spirit.
Big Dampening Force
Professor David Varley of the
sociology department sees these
graduate and transfer students as
a "big dampening force on spirit"
and has commented: "Since they
went to previous schools, they.
have no strong ties with Michigan
and do not tend to contribute
greatly to the building of our
From reading these summaries,
one readily. realizes that the en-
vironment in the way of spirit on.
this campus is far from exciting.
It is also evident that the amount
of spirit currently being generat-
ed here is generally uninspired
and uninspiring.
When asked to evaluate the
spirit and enthusiasm of his play-
ers, football coach Bennie Ooster-
baan stated: "The players live
on the campus and the campus is
in part, their environment. There-
fore, if there was an excited cam-
pus it would help the team, but
since education is the main ob-
jective at Michigan, as it should
be, the mature attitude taken by
the students is the best.
Take over 22,000 students from
varied income. classes, religions,
backgrounds, parts of the country,
whose values also encompass nu-
merous ideas, ideals and thoughts,

put them together on one campus
and you have the one and only
The University's main project
is definitely to produce educated
graduates and its stress is on
Out of all this, spirit attemptsI
to survive. But it is not alone on
campus. It exists in a perilous tri-1
angle with performance and
Everyone admits that good per-i
formance builds spirit and that it3
is much harder to achieve spirit
when a team's performance is
poor. .
On the'other hand, it has hap-
pened many times that a medio-1
cre team with terrific support ons



the Hawkeyes in ,their practically
empty fieldhouse."
Face Biggest Problem
At this point it seems safe to as-
sume that spirit depends on good
athletic performance and that
good athletic performance may in
turn also depend on spirit. But the
biggest problem remains unan-
Can a highly academic school,
noted for its scholastic achieve-
ments,- maintain athletic spikt
and good performance and still
continue its high academic stand-
This problem is very acute in
today's era of specialization in-
athletics. When asked about

"The enthusiasm here is toward
academics while other Big Ten
schools devote their spirit to ath-
letics. Michigan stands out in the
Big Ten as a school which empha-
sizes a high quality of academic
standards," he stated.
Varley went on to add: "We
aren't in an Ivy League where
schools have the same interests in,
the same order of importance as
ours, but in a league where ath-
letics are highly emphasized."
A well known alumni officer on
campus who refused to be quoted
said that athletics at the Univer-
sity should be second to 'studies
and not all-important.
He went on to prescribe a solu-
tion similar to the one adopted by

stay and support a team when it
Thereirn lies the problem which
is very similar to the current eco-
nomic recession in which the
United States finds itself.
Both are spiralling in nature
and both need a spurt to move up,
but ironically enough, the spurt in
both cases can only be effectively
applied by >the parties concerned,
in the U.S.'s case, the consumer,
in Michigan's case, the student.
The most obvious organ for in-
creasing spirit seems to be the pep
rally. This event which use to
highlight the football season on
campus has practically disappear-
ed in recent years.
Pep rallies during recent seasons
have gradually dwindled until last
year's rock bottom figure of one.
Lou Susman, '59, president of
the Wolverine Club, whose func-
tion consists of scheduling and
setting up pep rallies,, Block 'M'
and the away trips claims that
there are too many disinterested
groups on campus.
He went' on to say: "The pep
rally is to show the team that you
have spirit and are backing them,
but the team isn't allowed to at-
tend the rally."
Last year's planned trip to Illi-
nois (Michigan lost, 20-19) was
cancelled at the last minute due
,to administrative troubles.
When asked why he didn't or-
ganize any basketball pep rallies,
Susman replied: "We can't ar-
range them."
"Since the freshmen team plays
before the varsity game, we have
had an opportunity to put one
on," usman went on.
Also a better scheduling of gym-
nastics meets and basketball
games has to be arranged to let
the cheer leaders attend the bas-
ketball games," Susman conclucded.
Oosterbaan believes that spirit
is built through the, weeks and
months and that what happens
before, and not entirely what oc-
curs at the pep rally builds the
true spirit.
Oosterbaan answered the ques-
tion of the team and its coaches
not appearing at pep rallies byl
commenting: "The team is keyed
up~ enough the night before a game
without adding the pressure and
tension which occurs at a rally.
"The coaches also feel nervous

and tense before the game
believe that it is very imp
for both the players and c
to relax."
Professor Varley mentioni
threats to the students'
through newspapers and
might arouse their spirit.
huckstering," as he referred
"if handled right could in
the campus' spirit for a sho:
but whether it is a permanen
is very doubtful."
An evaluation of spirit
University would thus find a
heterogeneous mass, ty
human in their "loving a w
attitude, seeking a good edu
Until recently, the student
been successful in remain
mass, "loving their winners

DIAL NO 8-6416

Continuous Saturday
and Sunday from 1 P.M.

Program !


picture of society. Along with the
experiences which they gained,l
they have also gained in years1
and have come to college at a
later and more mature period in
their life.
Another breakdown of spirit on
the campus is found in the fra-
ternity house where the act ofl
pledging is no longer the terrify-
ing and exciting thing as in the


! of


Consultant on Education for S.Z.O.
Sunday, March 16, 3:30 p.m.
HILLEL... 1429 11m1

the part of the student body has
become a winning team.
Basketball coach Bill Perigo
summarized his feeling on the
spirit-performance relationship by
saying : "If the students don t,
care, why should the players"
Perigo went on to mention how
much more effective teams are
on their home courts because of
the inspiration of the crowds.
He added: "It's the crowd that
makes the difference and not
necessarilyrthe court. When we
played Purdue here between se-
mesters and there was little at-
tendance, the team's play suf-,
fered and we lost.
On the other hand, while we
were at Iowa during their semes-
ter change, we were able to beat

Michigan's possible athletic. con-
flict in a recent television inter-
view, University President Harlan,
H. Hatcher said "I would like to
see Michigan's sports improve,
but I would also like to see them
continue to be played by students."
Hatcher made this statement
during the halftime of Michigan's
basketball game with Northwest-
ern, one of the many Michigan
lost. His statement showed that
this problem is at the top of the
adminisiration's list of problems.
Professor Varley predicts that
,theproblem of balancing the pre-
carious triangle will become much
harder in future years. He ie
menited: "The, biggest. problems is'
that we are in the Big Ten Con-
ference which is composed of ath-
letic powerhouses."

nt Hilarious
At It Again

the University of Chicago which,
would mean the dropping of var-;
sity football if the athletic situa-
tion here becomes overemphasized
and studies are lacking.
The alumnus -added, however,
that the students at Michigan are
academically from the "cream of
the crop' and that it is not likely
that studies would suffer here.
He also compared Michigan's
status to that of an Ivy League
school and said that if it ever
came to a showdown between-ath-
letics and studies, that he felt the
alumni would continue as they a-
ways have, to put Michigan's
scholastic reputation first.
University Vice-President James
A. Lewis described the spirit-per-
formance-scholarship triangle on
this campus as being normal and
felt that athletics were not over-
He described Michigan's athletic
situation accordingly: "The team
can look upon the students with
pride and the students can look
upon their teams with pride."
Lewis' explanation of the,reces-
sion of spirit on campus is that
today's students at the University
are more- serious about education
and not as interested in spirit or
possible antics associated with it.

getting an educ
seems that thisi
soon have to be
However, any
would preserve I
angle, cannot be
rived from a d
the attitude of I

WIHL Formally End
.By Vote of Directors

-l i i' Ir . r r i l 1 I r lrr ir I Ml I ~ rw



TONIGHT at 7:00 and 9:00
Sunday at 8:0 4
50 cents

ST. PAUL (P)--The seven-year-
old Western Intercollegiate'Hockey
League, most powerful in American
college hockey, formally voted it-
self. out of existence yesterday.
Athletic directors and faculty
men said, however, they would
continue informal talks in an at-
tempt to build at least, a loose
association of western college
hockey powers.
No More Haggling
Yesterday's action, taken by
faculty representatives, brought to
an end years of haggling among


topic of discussion

the seven teams in the league.
'Lave A Winner' By a unanimous vote they rati-
Director of University Bands fied a breakup that was set in mo-
tion two months ago by the with-
William D. Revelli attributed the drawal of the league's three Big
recent lack of spirit to the fact Ten schools-Minnesota, Michigan
that "everybody loves a winner, and Michigan State.
and that is what it will take to At the time of the vote, only
bring vigorous spirit back to the Denver and North Dakota had not
University." previously declared their intention
The leader of Michigan's famed to pull out, effective June 1. Michi-
Marching Band went on to cite gan Tech and Colorado College re-.
the complacency of the students on cently followed the lead of the Big
the campus and how they fail to Ten schools.

The breakup was the re
series of disputes over sue
as the recruiting of' mater
dian talent, conflicting ru
erning teams which als
allegiances to other
leagues, and lack of \ a
league authority.
Plante Injui
Out of Acti
BOSTON (A')-- Jacque,
suffered a brain concuss
an injury to his spinal corc
day night and the Montre
will miss the next few
Hockey League games.
Plante's injuries wer
known yesterday by Dr.
Browne, Boston Bruins' p
Plante was. jammed into
when his own teammat
Harvey, rammed Boston's
siuk from behind and Stie
balance, was plunged intc
Read and U
Daily Classih





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international studentse
representing their own



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