The Wolverine

August 2014

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Page 27 of 145

BY JOHN BORTON K urt Golder and his Wol- verines have it going like a 10-ton boulder hurtling down a mountainside. Along the way, they're carving out a special place for themselves in Michi- gan athletics history. The Wolverines' 2014 national championship — captured in the friendly confines of Crisler Center — stands on its own as a remark- able achievement. But anyone paying attention knows that effort doesn't stand alone. It marked the second straight top NCAA Championships finish for the Wolverines, a back-to-back title ef- fort not seen at Michigan since the trampoline team bounced all comers in 1969-70. Before that, you have to go all the way back to 1958-59, when Michigan's swimming and diving crew completed the mission in back- to-back seasons. Golder himself is chipping away at putting his image on a Michigan coaching Mt. Rushmore. He's now taken the Wolverines to national titles in 1999, 2010, 2013 and 2014, with no lack of talent returning next season. Only two coaches in Michigan his- tory — swimming coach Matt Mann (13) and football's Fielding H. Yost (six) — have won more. Needless to say, Golder won't make any apolo- gies at future coaches gatherings. "Those guys are certainly legends," Golder offered. "You just strive to get up in their company. You keep your nose to the grindstone, and hopefully good things will happen if you work real hard." The Wolverines worked hard, and well, in a repeat of last year's national title effort. They came in loaded, with now six-time NCAA champion and Olympian Sam Mikulak in his final season of competition for the Wolver- ines, as well as sixth-year senior and three-time NCAA champion Syque Caesar. Plus, they enjoyed a major carrot at the end of the competitive road in 2014. The chance to secure the title in front of the home crowd in Crisler set MEN'S TEAM OF THE YEAR GYMNASTICS Back-To-Back Champs Men's Gymnastics Surged To A Second Straight National Title

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