THE MICHIGAN DAILY
By JOHN HILLYER
Basketball used to be almost a
dirty word at Michigan.'
"The forgotten sport" was what
they used to call it, and recent'
performances of the cagers usu-
-ally bore out such description.
But last season was a different
story, for the Michigan basketball
squad finished in a tie for fifth
place in the Big Ten with an 8-6
won-lost record. They were 13-9
for all games.
Had Better Potential?
It was the first above-.500 cam-
paign for coach Bill Perigo's men
in Conference competition in eight
years, and the general consensus
is that they actually had the po-
tential to do better. And some of
KRAMER VS. ILLINOIS
... two more
the things that happened last sea-
son bear this out, too.
The Wolverines took five of their
eight pre-Conference games, which
is about par for the course, but
sophomores George Lee and M. C.
Burton gave Perigo much cause for
smiling with their aggressive play
and sharp shooting. Lee, never be-
fore a guard, took over in the back
court and performed as though a
veteran at the spot.
Significantly, the five victories
were the five games played at
home. This was to be the case
throughout the winter, for in the
Big Ten the Wolverines were 6-1
at home and 2-5 away.
Opening at Indiana, Michigan
dropped a tough one to the even-
tual co-champion Hoosiers, 73-68.
Travelling to Michigan State, they
knocked off the other co-cham-
pions, the Spartans, by one point
in a thriller. Things were looking
Back home, the Maize and Blue
took care of Northwestern and
Wisconsin, then went to Minnesota
during the between-semesters
break to absorb the first of two
thrashings from the Gophers.
Returning to Yost Field House,
the on-again-off-again cagers took
care of Purdue, 66-54, to stay in
the running for the title. But talk
of a championship was quieted by
disappointments against Minne-
sota and Wisconsin, dropping the
Wolverines to sixth place.
All was not lost, however. For
Michigan basketball fans, the real
thrills were yet to come.
On the Saturday following the
Wisconsin nightmare, title-con-
scious Illinois stormed into Ann
Arbor. And Ron Kramer, the Wol-
verines' captain and pivot man,
was to reach his peak that night,
as was the entire team.
New Scoring Record
Michigan not only defeated the
Illini, but set a new Field House
scoring record for one team by
running wild in the late minutes to
triumph, 102-89. Kramer led the
assault with 25 points, Burton
chipping in with 23 and Lee with
Always an enigma, the Wol-
verines followed this with losing
performances against Minnesota
and Purdue. But the season was
to end on a happy note, to say the
Kramer, now at his peak, and se-
nior guard Jim Shearon, always
a tricky, speedy little playmaker
who had recently developed a
deadly overhead two-hand jump
shot, were to give the Wolverines
a real lift - one which would car-
ry them to victories in their final
First.,was Indiana, in first place
in the Conference and desperate
to keep pace with onrushing Mich-
igan State. Down the Hoosiers
fell, as Michigan built up a nine-
pt. advantage at half-time and
held off. Archie Dees and Co. for
an 87-86 victory. The cagers were
the talk of the campus.
Defeat Iowa on Road
Next they travelled to Iowa,
scoring an 83-79 win over the al-
ways-dangerous Hawkeyes. It was
a road victory, and, therefore.
Then the big one came - the
grand finale. Michigan State, whq
could have clinched the Big Ten
title with a victory and who was
foaming at the mouth to avenge
the earlier defeat, came booming
into Ann Arbor, bringing with
them what seemed like half of
the East Lansing campus,
Yost Field House was choked to
capacity for the big one, but only
the Michigan fans were to be glad
they came. ,They zhrieked their
approval as the Wolverines steam-
rollered to an 18-pt. half-time ad-
vantage and held off the helpless
Spartans in the second half for
an 81-72 triumph. Kramer went
out in a blaze of glory, leading the
Blue with 21 counters.
Hoosiers Share Title
Indiana won over Illinois, and
was thus able to share the crown
Such performances led many to
say that the Wol (trines might
have finished higher in the stand-
And with such as Tillotson, Tar-
rier, Lee, Burton, Lewis, Wright
and a promising sophomore
named Terry Miller - they might
do just that in 157-58.
BOARD ACTION-Pete Tillotson, Michigan basketball captain-
elect for the coming seasoi, goes high and hard to beat a Purdue
man to a rebound. Coming up at the right is George Lee, who
though only a sophomore last season led the Wolverines in scoring.
I - __ ________ __________________
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