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August 15, 1947 - Image 16

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1947-08-15

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AUGUST 15, 1947

Al! Won't Be
The road between the opening of the 1947 Michigan football
season and a possible Big Nine championship and Rose Bowl bid
for the Wolverines promises to be plenty rough and rocky.
In their first contest, for instance, they meet a Michigan State
team which has plenty of reasons for wanting to administer a proper
licking to the boys from Ann Arbor-although whether they can is
something else again. Clarence "Biggie" Munn, the Spartans' new
coach, is a former assistant of "Fritz" Crisler, and for Munn, a victory
over his ex-boss would be a nice way to start things off.
The Spartans will not be able to call upon the much-pub-
licized Russ Reader, who has signed a pro contract, but they have
three good backs in Georgie Guerre, Horace Smith, and Steve
Sieradski. Fred Johnson, a 9.6 sprinter ion the MSC track team,
also plans to do a little trotting for the Spartans this fall.
Quarterback Russ Gilpin, of whom center "Bulldog" Turner of
the Chicago Bears thinks great things can be expected, is also
back this year, roundijig out some good backfield material.
In the Spartan line, several good 'men have returned to give
Munn a good start. Among them are Kent Esbaugh, 200-pound
Michigan all-prep tackle, and Warren Huey, whom former Coach
Charley Bachman felt was "good enough to play on any college
team." Rounding out the forward wall are end Ken Balge, guard
Mark Blackman, tackle Alger Connor, and center Pete Fusi, a few
of the returning grid veterans.
Stanford, number two on the Wolverine schedule, readily
admits that "not many teams in the country will have a better.
set of backs than we will next fall." Halfback Bob Anderson
and Fullback Lloyd Merriman are being touted as definite All-

wiet on



American material, while quarterbacks Ainslie Bell and Al Morris
have shown enough in spring practice to push last year's regular,
Buck Brownson, down to third-string duties.
Eleven of the twelve veterans which Stanford lost were linemen,
which gives the Indian coaching staff, headed by "Marchie" Schwartz,
plenty to do in the next few weeks. However, the staff reported
"improvement" after spring practice. Two of their regular linemen,
Dave DeSwarte ,an All-America possibility, and Jack Eller, were killed
in traffic accidents this year.
Pittsburgh, the next Maize and Blue opponent, has not shown
much in recent years, but with the desire to become a member
of the Big Nine strong in their hearts, the Panthers will be out
to prove that they belong in Western Conference competition. Little
dope has been forthcoming on the strength of the '47 Pittsburgh
aggregation, but new coach Mike Milligan, who replaced Wes Fesler
(now at OSU), is reported to have a stronger group than last year.
If any of these games can be considered mere "warmups,"
then the next contest definitely begins a period of rough sledding.
Northwestern's Wildcats, who tied Michigan last year, are ready
to display plenty of power. While Guard Ed "Buckets" Hirsch
and Halfback Vic Schwall, two All-Conference gridders, are gone,
they aren't crying too much out Evanston way.
Stars like Halfbacks Frank Ashenbrenner and Ralph Everist,
the latter having been switched from fullback, linemen Vince DiFran-
cesca, Alex Sarkisian, Ed Nemeth and Francis DePauw are set to give
everybody plenty of trouble.
Bob Voigts, the new Wildcat coach now that Lynn Waldorf has
gone to the University of California, is a disciple of Paul Brown

ern Conference
Voigts plans to employ a "T" attack similar to that used by Brown.
A much-improved Minnesota team is the next Wolverine
opponent. Even Gopher Coach Bernie Bierman admits his team
is "better off than last fall." The line is reported to be a tra-
ditional Minnesota powerhouse. They have one tackle whom they
term as "wiry," tipping the scales at 195, if that can be taken
as an indication.
Since the Gopher "B" team was undefeated last fall, they are
reported to have plenty of fresh material to throw at the rest of the
Conference. Main trouble will be a shortage of halfbacks.
Although such stars as All-American Alex Agase, Buddy Young,
now with the pro football New York Yankees, Ralph Serpico and
Ike Owens have left the Illini campus, the boys from Champaign,
1946 Big Nine and Rose Bowl champs, are still going to have one of
the strongest teams to be seen this year.
With backs like Perry Moss, Capt. Art Dufelmeier, Russ
Steger, and Paul Patterson around to pick up the yardage, Coach
Ray Eliot can devote his time to an Illini line that was somewhat
depleted by losses. However,.Eliot has Mike Kasap, Sam Zatloff,
Max Weskunas, Bill Franks, Lou Agase, and Al Mastrangeli, just
to pick a few, with which to work.
The versatile "Dike" Eddleman, one of the best kickers in the
Conference, will also be ready for backfield action. The game, which
is the Illini Homecoming contest, is a virtual sell-out right now.
Indiana is banking upon the return of backs George Taliaferro
and Nick Sebek. Taliaferro will remind Michigan fans of the '45
Hoosier bunch which walked off with the Big Nine title. Coach
"Bo" McMillin has lost the versatile Pete Pihos, linemen John Can-
nady and Russ Deal, and his All-American quarterback, Ben Raimondi,


who has signed a pro contract. Backs Mel Groomes and Harry Jagade
will return to make things more pleasant for McMillin, however.
The Hoosier line is an unknown quantity, but with a "B" team
which trimmed the Wolverine Jayvee last year, Coach "Bo" McMillin
should have enough to choose from.
Up at Madison, Wis., Coach Harry Stuhldreher has a squad
including 33 major letter-winners to work with this year. With
Fred Negus, All-Conference center, among those who have left,
Stuhldreher, also has some line-plugging to do. "Jug" Girard,
an outstanding back of the '44 season, Jack Wink, Wally Dreyer,
Ben Bendrik, and Earl Maves, round out a strong backfield.
With the Wisconsin game coming after the Illini and Hoosier
contests, Crisler will have his hands full keeping the Wolverines on
edge for this one.
The last game of the season will be the traditional battle with
Ohio State, and the Buckeyes will really have blood in their eyes
after the shellacking they took last year.
The new Buckeyes' coach, Wes Fesler, has 29 lettermen back,
including backs Tommy Phillips and Joe Whisler. Warren Amling
and Cecil Souders, the two OSU All-American linemen, have
graduated, while Tommy James turned pro. On the return list is
Fullback Ollie Cline, who was rated second-string All-America in
Crisler himself summed up the coming season when he said every
school in the Big Nine will be able to beat any other Conference
school on any afternoon. He said that he. expects every Big Nine
school to drop at least one contest this year, but Michigan fans are
keeping their fingers crossed and their eyes turned towards Pasadena.

This Fall

u I


A i


of the All-American League pro

champs, the Cleveland Browns.

Spring Pigskin Practice Attracts 130;
Alvin Wistert Wins Chicago Trophy

Brieske, Mann Top Scoring
Parade in '46 Grid Battles

Honors To Gridders

(Continued from Page 1)

Exceeding Coach "Fritz" Cris-
ler's fondest expectations, 130
men turned out for spring foot-
ball practice last March 31, and
while the Wolverine coach was not
promising roses at the end of the
six-week grind, it was evident that
Michigan would be able to hold
its own on the gridiron this fall.
The practice sessions which
were held in July and August dur-
ing the war have been eliminated
and Crisler was mighty glad they
were. While the summer work-
outs helped in conditioning fresh-
men who were going to play on
the varsity in the fall, the Wol-
verine mentor feels it is too hot
to get enough real benefit out of
the July and August practice. ".
Wistert Wins Trophy
The name of Wistert rang out
again on the Maize and Blue foot-
ball scene as brother Alvin, third
member of the famed All-Amer-
ican family, was awarded the Chi-
cago Alumni Trophy at the end
of the spring session.
Like Frances and Albert, Alvin
puts his 6 ft. 3 in., 220-lb. frame
to work in thetackle position, but
unlike the rest of the family,
"Moose," as he is known 'to his
teammates, is the first member of
the clan to win the Chicago
Alvin is a transfer from Boston
University, where he held down a
starting tackle booth last year,
playing 50 minutes of football reg-

all subsequent presentations, is to
stimulate interest among the can-
didates during spring practice,
when the glamour and thrills of
competition are absent.
Trophy Awarded to Newcomes
Although no such provision has
been specifically stated, it has be-
come the custom to award the
trophy to tryouts who are spend-
ing their first year on the campus.
As a result, nobody has come up
with the prize more than once.
The first gridder to take the cup
was Ray Baer of Louisville, Ken-
tucky. Today he is a highly re-
spected coach in the Louisville
school system.
Since 1925 many footballers up-
on whom Michigan looks back
with pride have walked off with
the honors. Herman Everhardus,
the 1932 selection, was the lead-
ing Big Ten scorer in 1933;
George Rich, who took the award
in 1926, captained the 1929 out-
fit; Mervin Pregulman, the 1942
winner, was chosen to the All-
American team of 1943.
* * *
Crisler will field a Jayvee team
again this year, but it is doubtful
that there will be any 150-potnd
football at Michigan this year.
The sport was approved last year
at a meeting of the Western Con-
The idea of a "lightweight"
team has long been a favorite
brain child of the Wolverine ath-
letic director.

Adding another strange note to
an unusual 1946 football season,
two Michigan linemen, J i m
Brieske, and Bob Mann, stole the
season's scoring honors from the
host of Wolverine backs.
Even though he usually picks
up one point at a time, Brieske's
talented toe added 29 extra points
and one field goal to give him a
total of 32 for the season. By
scoring two touchdowns against
Ohio State, Mann brought his to-
tal to five, giving him 30 points
and second place in the scoring
Missed First Conversion at OSU
Although Brieske missed his
first conversion in Big Nine com-
petition in Michigan's romp over
Ohio State, he kept his field goal
record unmarred. In his entire
varsity career for the Wolverines
Brieske has only been called on
twice to attempt a field goal, once
in his first game, and again

against OSU in what probably was
his last appearance in a Maize
and Blue uniform.
Brieske's three points 'in the
Buckeye debacle added the last
ironic touch to a surprising game.
But "automatic" Jim almost
didn't get a chance for that first
field goal five years ago.
First Big Chance
With the Wolverines leading 6-
0 in the opener against Great
Lakes in 1942, Coach Fritz Crisler
called on Brieske for three more
points just for insurance. Eagerly
Brieske jumped up from the
bench to enter his first varsity
game for Michigan. He reached
for his helmet but it wasn't
Frantically he dashed up and
down the bench looking for his
headgear and almost missed his
first chance to score for the Wol-
verines. When he finally raced
onto the gridiron, he sliced the up-
rights for three points and the
game ended, 9-0.

received honorable mention on the
Associated Press All-America. He
stands a good chance of capturing
one of the top All-American slots
by the end of the 1947 season.
Another Conference record-
breaker last season was end Bob
Mann, who set a Big Nine record
of 284 yards gained on received
forward passes. Mann's specialty

as Michigan's end was also the
end-around, which never ceased
to baffle the opposition. He is back
again this year, and along with
Chappuis should make one of the
most dangerous passing combina-
tions in the Big Nine.
Fullback Bob Wiese was also
selected on the East's team for
the annual game with the West
All-Stars, but declined so that he

would be eligible to play baseball
last spring. He received honorable
mention All-America.
Bruce Hilkene, Wolverine tackle
who will lead the Michigan grid-
iron machine this year, is the flst
Maize and Blue gridder ever to be
elected captain twice. Hilkene was
named by his teammates to the
position in 1945, one of the few
sophomores ever honored with
this distinction.




gan lineman who won the Chi-
cago Alumni Trophy this spring.
Wistert is the third member of
the All-American clan, brothers
Francis and Albert having pre-
ceded him.
The Chicago Alumni Award,
given annually to the Wolverine
gridder showing the greatest im-
provement in spring.practice, be-
gan its long and interesting his-
tory in 1925.
Its purpose, according to Meyer
Morton who made the first and

Ernie McCoy Scouts Enemy
GridTactics forMichigan



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Every week, while thousands of
fanatic gridiron fans are cheering
their heroes on to greater heights,
there is a small group of men who
battle their way into crowded
football stadiums, struggle into
their seats among the confused
multitude in order to see games
they can never enjoy.
This is the plight of a football
scout, a group to which Ernie
McCoy of the Michigan football
coaching staff can claim member-
ship since 1925.
McCoy Returned From Navy
During the war years Head
Coach "Fritz" Crisler lost the
services of McCoy when the Mich-
igan scout entered the Navy to
work in the aviation physical
training program. This year in
addition to his scouting duties,
McCoy is helping Wally Weber
coach the 'B"' team.
According to McCoy, whether a
scout diagrams the plays of only
one-rival eleven or several dur-
ing the season, depends on how
late in the gridiron campaign that
opponent is met. This fall McCoy
will be scouting Michigan State in
two of the Spartan's games, and

he will also take stock of the
fighting Illini in one of their con-
In other sections of the country
one school can send as many
scouts to cover an opponent's
game as they please, but Western
Conference members, by agree-
ment, send only one scout to each
gridiron clash.
Scouts Watch Play
McCoy declared that besides the
general offensive and defensive
ability of the team, the scout must
take note of such details as the
exact position and spacing of the
players in each offensive and de-
fensive formation.
A scout must also look for the
different defenses that are used
in particular situations.
"Not only team ability but also
individuals," said McCoy, "come
under the scrutiny of a football
scout." Whether a certain player
is a fast or slow charger, a good
or bad blocker or if he reveals any
defects that can be taken advan-
tage of, are of vital concern to a
team in preparing a successful at-
tack and defense.





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