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Michigan Could Have Another Football Winner In '70

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By Wayne DeNeff

Michigan could have another fine football season in 1970 if Coach Bo Schembechler comes up with a new tight end, a couple of tough offensive guards and a trio of top-notch pass defenders.

Of course, Schembechler, recovering from a mild heart attack in Pasadena, won’t be doing any work about 1970 for several weeks. But no doubt Michigan football, both the 1969 season and the coming year, are in his thoughts. The assumption is that Schembechler will continue to coach although some express doubt.

The key losses via graduation are tight end Jim Mandich, who was the captain and leading pass receiver’ take-charge guards Dick Caldarazzo and Bob Baumgartner and that terrific trio of pass defenders—Tom Curtis, Barry Pierson and Brian Healy.

It’s true there are three other graduating seniors—fullback Garvie Craw, wingback John Gabler, and defensive end Cecil Pryor—who’ll be greatly missed but the answer in each case seems evident.

No one will be surprised if Billy Taylor, the Wolverines’ leading ground-gainer for 1969, becomes the fullback next season, leaving the tailback spot to Glenn Doughty, the squad’s second leading rusher.

Phil Seymour, a regular defensive end until sideline for 1969 with a knee injury, is the logical replacement for Pryor. Preston Henry appears ready to step in at wingback where he actually got in a lot of playing time last fall. Mandich’s backup, Mike Hankwitz, also will graduate so the Wolverines are hit hard there. They also lose offensive guard Frank Titas.

Sophomore Reggie McKenzie no doubt can handle one of the guard spots in good shape and Bruce Elliott is a tough competitor slated for one of the positions in the defensive backfield. There has been talk about Jim Betts, No. 2 quarterback, moving to the defense.

Michigan fans can rejoice about the return of such fine athletes as quarterback Don Moorhead, tailbacks Taylor and Doughty, pass receivers Bill Harris, Mike Oldham and Paul Staroba, regular offensive tackles Dan Dierdorf and Jack Harpring and center Guy Murdock.

If Michigan can fill the holes on pass defense, it should be in good shape overall defensively because all but one regular, Pryor, returns to the front line.

Defensive tackles Fred Grambau and Pete Newell will be back along with middle guard Henry Hill and end Mike Keller.

Also returning are a couple of fine roverbacks, Tom Darden and Frank Gusich, and linebackers Marty Huff, Mike Taylor and Ed Moore.

It looks like Michigan, an 8-2 finisher in 1968 and an 8-3 finisher in 1969, will be able to field another winner in 1970 and the Wolverines, along with Ohio State, probably will be ranked as Big Ten favorites.