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August 24, 1945 - Image 17

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1945-08-24

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Daily Sports Editor
The year 1943-44 saw Michigan ath-
letic teams win eight of a possible
nine Western Conference champion-
ships, and a tenth squad, competing
outside the Conference, also finished
with a winning record.
Wolverine teams did not quite du-
plicate that performance in 1944-45,
but no one had any real reason to ex-
pect them to do so. Never before 1943
had any Big Ten school so completely
blanketed the sports scene, and it just
wasn't in the books for it to happen
But 1944-45 was still a pretty fair
year for Michigan athletics. Four
Conference championships came
home to roost in Ann Arbor for an-
other year, and without exception
Wolverine representatives in other
sports were in there making it tough
for the opposition all the way,
Four Titles Won
Swimming, indoor track, baseball


and tennis were the championship-
producing sports last season, while
football, outdoor track and golf bare-
ly missed. The basketball and wrest-
ling teams did not fare so well in title
play, but managed to be thorns in
the sides of the leaders. The hockey
team did not play a Conference
schedule, but did well enough against
strong amateur outfits.
Football started things off with a
bang in the fall of 1944, as Michigan
began its eighth year under Coach H-.
0. (Fritz) Crisler. The Wolverines
did not win a championship but came
about as close as it is possible to come
without winning one, losing out in
the final game to Ohio State by a
mere four points. The team finished
the season with a record of eight wins
and two losses, after being doped as
a .500 ball club in pre-season prog-
Winter Sports Take Over
Winter sports then took over the

spotlight with basketball, indoor
track, swimming, wrestling and hock-
ey on the docket. All five gave Michi-
gan fans plenty of thrills before the
curtain rang down on the winter
sports scene.
Coach Bennie Oosterbaan's basket-
ballers started out like a house afire,
winning eight straight non-Confer-
ence tilts, but faded slightly as the
Big Ten teams moved in. Early sea-
son victories over Indiana and Illi-
nois boded well for the Wolverines,
but the going got progressively tough-
er as the team finished with a Con-
ference record of five wins and seven
losses, good for fifth place.
Track Team Wins
The indoor track team had a Big
Ten championship to defend, and
Coach Ken Doherty's charges re-.
sponded nobly to the task. After los-
ing out to a strong Illinois team in
a dual meet, the Wolverines edged out
the Illini at the Conference finale in

a garrison finish, winning 55 1-10 to
54 1-10. Strength in the distance
events proved Michigan's main forte,
as the thinclads piled up 37 out of a
possible 45 points in the mile, half-
mile and two-mile in taking the title.
Coach Matt Mann's swimmers also
assumed the role of title defenders
and swept through the season with
only a dual meet loss to Great Lakes
to mar their record. The Great Lakes
defeat was later avenged, and the
Wolverine natators topped a fine per-
formance by out-shining the rest of
the field in the Conference meet to
win going away, giving Michigan its
second championship.
New Coaches Stymied
The wrestling and hockey teams
both entered the season with new
coaches as Wallie Weber took over
the groaners and Vic Heyliger was
brought in from the University of Il-
linois as ice mentor. Neither tutor

fared too well in his first year. The
wrestlers, after amassing a commen-
dable dual meet record, were snowed
under at the Conference title meet
but did place Jim Galles as 165-pound
individual champ. The hockey team
won only four of ten games, most of
them with strong Canadian amateur
Attention was focussed on the base-
ball team as the spring sports cam-
paign got underway. Coach Ray Fish-
er, in his 25th year as Wolverine dia-
mond mentor, put together another
of his traditionally fine teams, a team
that lost only one of 21 games. That
loss was sustained in the first game
of the season, after which the squad
beat everybody in sight, including
eight Big Ten institutions. Such a
fine record, of course, produced a
Thinclads Lose This Time
The outdoor track team tried to
repeat its indoor performance at the

Conference meet, but Illinois was not
to be denied this time, taking the
meet by 10 points. Prior to that loss,
the Wolverines had been defeated
only by a combination of Great Lakes,
Illinois and Ohio State in a quad-
rangular meet won by Great Lakes.
It remained for the undefeated
tennis team, coached by LeRoy Weir,
to bring home Michigan's fourth title.
The netters were never headed in
their title-bound career, being ser-
iously challenged only by Ohio State.
In winning, the Wolverines compiled
one of the finest records ever put to-
gether by a Michigan tennis squad.
Golfers Out-Dueled
Coach Bill Baclay saw a cham-
pionship elude him in his first season
as golf coach, but his charges made
it plenty hot for Ohio State, the ulti-
mate winner. In fact, the Wolverines
and the Bucks were at each other's
figurative throats all season. Each

school copped one dual meet, but OSU
had the last laugh in the Conference
And so the record stands. Michigan
has now won at least three Confer-
ence championships every year since
1923. What will the year 1945-46
bring? At this stage, it is hard to
say. The Wolverines have depended
to a large extent on Navy and Marine
talent for athletic teams and will pre-
sumably do so again. The draft and
the course of the war will also have
a great effect on the eventual per-
sonnel of the ten Michigan teams.
But Michigan athletic tradition is
a winning tradition. Michigan teams
start out with the idea of being win-
ners. And, while it is probable that
mostly new faces will greet Michi-
gan's capable coaching staff as the
time for next year's campaigns rolls
around, no one will be very much sur-
prised if 1945-46 is another banner
year for Wolverine athletics.

SPORTS p4Sn6zgrn
Football Squad aces ruelling Sche


Baseball Team Takes

20 of 21,
Coach Fisher Has
Big 25th Season
Celebrating his 25th year as W
verine baseball mentor, Ray Fish
received almost every blessing
coach could ask for as his 1945 ni
won its second straight Big Ten ti
with a perfect record and dropp
only one game in the 21 contestsc
its schedule.
A single loss to Western Michiga
in the first game of the season ma
red the Wolverine record, which cor
tinued the tradition of Michiga
domination of the Big Ten diamo.
crown. - In the 25 years Fisher Ni
been at Michigan, his charges hai
brought home 10 championships.
Six Lettermen Return.
Building his team around a ni
cleus of six lettermen, Fisher al;
uncovered infield talent which wi

Wins Title.
probably be available for the '46
season. Capt..Don Lund returned to
his old center field post for the third
year, while Bill Gregor and Bill Nel-
son completed a veteran outfield. Last
ol- year's starting battery of southpaw
ier Bo Bowman and catcher Bob Stev-
a enson was also available for this
ne spring's squad, while Walt Kell at
tle third was the only veteran infielder.
ed Kell led the team in batting this sea-
on son with a .348 average.
Fisher solved his remaining infield
an problems by sending football and
r- - ........

IT IS TO BE PRESUMED that the average ireshman entering a univer-
sity is interested primarily in its academic aspects more than its
athletic offerings. And it is probably just as well that such is the case,
for we have not yet heard of anyone who passed a single college course by
religiously attending every home football game.
On the other hand, it is impossible for those who plan to enter.
this particular university to forget that Michigan's athletic tradition
rates only slightly below her academic reputation. For Michigan,
ever since the dim days of yore, has consistently ranked at or near the
top in practically every phase of major collegiate athletic activity.
Many factors go into this thing we have chosen to call "Michigan's
athletic tradition." Inter-mingled in the whole is a succession of great
coaches, great teams, great athletes, great contests-and great supporters
'of those teams that have given Michigan such a prominent position on
the sports map.
It is in this latter regard that you, as freshmen coming onto the campus
for the first time, will find your chief role. A few Qf you, a very few in
fact, will find places on the various Wolverine squads, but the great ma-
jority must make your contribution from the sidelines.
-THEREIS no over-estimating the importance of that role. The best
temin the world is hindered by a lack of support from the people it
represents. And Michigan teams represent no one if they do not represent
the student body of the University at large.
In past years other schools, most of them rivals of Michigan, have
hurled charges of student apathy toward University athletics. Some
of these charges, unfortunately, have a foundation in fact. .Far be it
from us to reason why the Michigan student body, give, every year
teams that consistently, rank with the nation's best, fails to support
those teams. But the fact remains that a tendency to do just that
does exist. It is up to you, as freshmen, to help halt that tendency.
The sports enthusiast on the Michigan campus does not lack for
opportunities to display his enthusiasm. Beginning with football in the
fall, running through basketball, swimming, indoor track, wrestling, and
hockey in the winter, and finishing off with baseball, golf, tennis, and out-
door track in the spring, the Wolverine sports schedule offers a continual
eight-month round of hotly-contested athletic action, action which brings
together the stars of Michigan and of other great schools under the very
finest of conditions. Your job is to support those teams. In supporting
them, you will help to continue this great tradition that is Michigan
Michigan Football Squads Get
Best of Tutoring from Experts

Cinder Squad
Wins, Loses in
Big Ten Meets
Takes Indoor Crown
But Misses Outside
Daily Sports Editor
Michigan's 1944-45 track squad had
both an indoor and an outdoor title
to defend and succeeded in accom-
plishing just half the objective, win-
ning the indoor crown in spectacu-
lar fashion by a single point but los-
ing to Illinois outdoors three months
At the beginning of the year, Coach
Ken Doherty found himself with a
remarkable corps of distance run-
ners, but season results showed weak-
nesses in the sprints, hurdles and field
events, depriving the 1944-45 outfit
of the traditional team balance asso-
ciated with Doherty-coached teams.
It was the lack of balance that cost
the outdoor title.
Pacing the squad all season were
Ross and Bob Hume, Michigan's
famed dead-heat twins, who per-
formed remarkably well despite se-
vere pressure of Medical School work.
Supporting the Humes in the distance
events were Charlie Birdsall, Archie
Parsons, Bob Thomason, Ross Willard,
Dick Barnard and Walt Fairservis.
Sprinters Named
Leading Wolverine sprinters in-
cluded quarter-milers Dick Forrestal,
Bill McConnell, Bob Mann and
George Shepherd; dashmen Julian
Witherspoon, Val Johnson and Hen-
ry Fondd; and hurdlers Ted Balogh,
Bill Marcoux, Russ Reader and John
Heading the list of Michigan field
event entrants were pole vaulters
Chuck Lauritsen, Warren Bentz and
Larry Sheer; John McNab in the high
jump, discus and shot put; and John
Weyers and Horace Campbell in the
broad jump.
Win TndonrT ile

'44 Gridders
Barely Miss
Big Ten Title
Lose to Ohio State,
18-14, in Last Game
Daily Sports Editor
If Michigan's 1945 football team
does as well over the season as its
immediate predecessor, then no one
will have much kick coming when the
final game has been played this fall.
For, although the -Wolverines of
1944 did not win a Western Confer-
ence championship, they failed to do
so by the narrowest of margins, los-
ing to Ohio State in the final three
minutes, 18-14. The season's total
record showed eight wins and only
two losses over a very rugged sched-
ule which did not have a "breather"
any place along the line.
Predict Dire Things
All sorts of dire rumors filled the
Michigan camp as practice got un-
derway in the fall of '44. The sports
writers hinted that "this was going
to be Crisler's bad year," that the
Wolverines, after tying for the cham-
pionship with Purdue the year before,
had run out of talent and would be
lucky to break even.
And the outlook wasn't exactly
rosy at the time. Only a sprinkling
of veterans, most of them backfield
men, showed up for practice, and the
balance of the squad presented a
motley mixture of green freshmen
and unproven Navy and Marine
trainees. From this agglomeration,
Head Coach H. O. (Fritz) Crisler and
his aides were to mold what was in
some respects the finest team Mich-
igan has had during Crisler's regime,
including the era of Tom Harmon
and Co. Never did a Michigan team
fight harder, or accomplish more
with less.
Lineup Named
Michigan's starting lineup for the
opening game against Great Lakes
showed Art Renner and Bruce Hil-
kene at ends; Clem Bauman and Art
LeRoux at tackles; George Burg and
Quentin Sickels, guards; and John
Lintol, center, in the line. Operating
in the backfield were quarterback
Joe Ponsetto, halfbacks Gene Derri-
cotte and Bob Nussbaumer, and full-
back Bob Wiese.
That lineup, with a few changes,
played through to the end of the sea-
son. Milan Lazetich, who gained all-
(See '44 GRIDDERS, Page 5)
Wrestlers Fail
In defense of
Big T'en Title
Although Michigan's 1944-45
wrestling squad depended largely on
Navy personnel, as did most other
teams, for its talent, the Wolverines
ended the season with a fair record
of three wins, two ties, and one de-
Coach Wally Weber began the sea-
son with only two returning letter-
men: Jim Galles, star in the 65-
pound class, and Bob Gittins, 135-

Michigan's football squad faces
one of thestoughest schedules in
Wolverine history this season as it
prepares to tangle with the nation's
strongest elevens, including.Army,
Navy, Great Lakes and Michigan
State, besides the perpetually strong
Conference teams.
From the season opener with
Great Lakes here, Sept. 15, to the

eleven which may have the services
of ex-Illinois star Claude (Buddy)
Young, and. ex-Michigan. end Dick
Rifenburg, the Wolverines will en-
tertain Indiana here Sept., 22. The
Hoosiers were one of the two teams
which beat Michigan last year, and
will be no "soft touch" in the com-
ing Conference opener. -
The traditional Michigan State
game will take place here Sept. 29
while the following week~end will ,se
the Wolverines invade Northwestern
in their first excursion into enemy
territory Oct. 6, at Evanston.
Begin Army Rivalry
The Wolverines go far afield Oct.
13 when they travel to New York's
Yankee Stadium for the Army game,
the first football contest ever played
between Michigan and the West
Pointers. The Army eleven, evep by
See FOOTBALL, Page 5
Ca gers Finish
Big.Ten Race
In Fifth Place

Army, Navy Head Slate;
Six Big Ten Tilts Carded
Coach Crisler Builds Squad Around Eight
Lettermen, Large Collection of New Talent



Lose Seven

basketball letterman Jack Weisen-
burger to shortstop and utilizing
freshman Dom Tomasi s talents at
second base. The first base berth
was held down by Tom Rosema, who
was also used as a pitcher.
Louthen Outstanding
Big news of the year from the per-
sonnel standpoint was the appear-
ance of Ray (Red) Louthen in a
Michigan uniform. Louthen, a for-
mer Western Michigan hurler, regis-
(See BASEBALL, Page 3)
Golfers Third
In Big Ten Play
Ohio State Is Nemesis
For Wolverine Squad
Michigan's golf team opened the
1945 season successfully April 23
when it met and defeated the Uni-
versity of Detroit's Titans, 151/2-21/2.
There were six starters on the 1945
team, all of whom received major
letters. They were Capt. Paul O'Hara,
Phil Marcellus, John Jenswold, John
Tews, Bob Ernst, and Ken Morey.,
Although the team only used five
men in most competition, players
were alternated, giving six letters.
Only Loss to C. S. U.
After beating the U. of D. linksters,
the Maize and Blue golf squad lost
its first match of the season to Ohio
State nn Anril 28 The Buckeyes


Faced with one of the roughest
schedules in its history, Michigan's
1945 football squad is counting on
Herbert O. (Fritz) Crisler and his
aides to shape a team of the calibre

Wolverine Athletic Director and
Head Football Coach "Fritz" Cris-
ler, who has been with Michigan
since 1939. Crisler is a graduate of
the University of Chicago, where he
played end under Alonzo Stagg and
became one of the only two Maroon
nine-letter men.
Crisler's Record Excellent
In his eight years as the directing
genius of Maize and Blue grid crews
Crisler has built up an enviable rec-
ord of 48 victories as against only
11 defeats and two ties. In addi-
tion, his 1943 team shared the Big
Ten football crown with Purdue.
Clarence L. (Biggie) Munn han-
dles the training of the powerful
Wolverine forward walls. He was an
All-American guard at Minnesota in
1931 and 1932 under Crisler, and
joined the Maize and Blue coaching
staff in 1938.
Earl T. Martineau is charged with
whipping Maize and Blue backfields
into working units. Martineau earned'

closing game with its traditional ri-
val, Ohio State, the Michigan team
will have only one breather on Oct.
20, a mid-season open date.
Great Lakes First
After taking on a Great Lakes
1itle Won Again
By Swimmers
Only Loss to Great
Lakes Is Avenged
Michigan's 1945 swimming squad
again dominated Big Ten swimming
circles, topping off an - undefeated
Conference season by running away
with their 16th championship crown
in 19 years.
Plowing through Northwestern,
Purdue, Minnesota and Ohio State in
the four Big Ten dual meets in
which they engaged, Coach Matt
Mann's men compiled a total of 198
points to their opponents' 137.
Although the Maize and Blue
natators got off to a slow start, drop-
ping a pre-season meet to Great
Lakes by a heartbreaking 44-40
score, they avenged this defeat later
in the year by swamping the power-
ful Bluejackets, 50-34.
Wildcats First Victim
Northwestern's crew was the first
to fall under the fury of the Wolver-

After sweeping seven non-Confer-
ence games early in the season,' the
1944-45 Wolverine cagers found the
going a mite tougher in the Big Ten
and bogged down toward the end of
what looked to be a promising Con-
ference campaign, winning five and
losing seven to come in fifth in the
loop, one notch higher than the pre-
ceding season.
Coach Bennie Oosterbaan's quin-
tet, built around Capt. Don Lund,
the only major letterwinner from last
year, compiled an over-all record of
12 wins against seven losses, although
its final percentage in the Western
Conference was .417.
Lund Heads Lineup
Leading scorer for the Wolverines
was Bob Geahan, who was among
the top three scorers in the Confer-
ence until mid-season, and finished
twelfth in the final standings. Shar-
ing the forward spots with Geahan
were Don Mullaney and Keith Hard-
er, the only returning letterman for
this year's squad. Lund switched
from his old guard post to center, al-
though an ankle injury kept him out
of several games. Don Lindquist,
captain-elect, and Walt Kell shared
the guard berths.
The Big Ten season opened with a
terrific overtime game between the
Wolverines and last year's champion
Ohio quintet. The Buckeyes were
overtaken in the closing minutes of
the game after leading during most
of the second half, but finally nosed
Michigan, 44-41. The loss, although
disappointing to the Wolverines, was
in reality a moral victory.
Two Close Wins
The next two games resulted in
close victories for the Wolverines as

It .: 'f


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