All quiet on verbal front in Michigan-Ohio St. war

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — The Michigan Wolverines weren’t going to fire the first shot, at least not on Monday.
In their heated rivalry with Ohio State, marked over the years with bold predictions of victories, the Wolverines weren’t about to go first.
“You never want to give anybody something to put on their bulletin board,” offensive tackle and co-captain Jon Jansen said. “It doesn’t matter if it’s the press conference before Ohio State or Northwestern. Especially with all the media, you have to be politically correct.”
That hasn’t always been the case.
Four years ago Michigan captain Walter Smith angered the Buckeyes when he said the Wolverines wanted to get Ohio State coach John Cooper fired. “We want to keep on beating them and beating them until he’s not there,” he said.
The Buckeyes responded by beating Michigan 22-6.
The next year, Ohio State flanker Terry Glenn announced: “I’ll guarantee we’re going to the Rose Bowl.” Michigan won 31-23 and Northwestern went to the Rose Bowl.
Last year Ohio State receiver David Boston predicted Ohio State should beat Michigan by “two or three touchdowns.” The Wolverines won 20-14 en route to a national championship.
“That all taught us a lesson,” Michigan tailback Clarence Williams said. “I think we’re all smart enough to watch what we say.”
Michigan coach Lloyd Carr makes sure of it. He said that dealing with the media and what players say about opponents is part of preseason training camp each year.
“Sportsmanship is important in college football, and when you talk about an opponent you show respect,” Carr said. “When you don’t it’s a reflection on you and the school you represent.”