The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, September 16, 1992, Image 6

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Wednesday, September 16,1992
The Battalion
Auto racing
cures road
football blues
o you
think since
your Ag
gies are on the
road playing
the Sisters of
the Poor, or
some other
football team,
that it is safe to
go home this
weekend and
not miss any
Guess again.
The greatest
Sports Writer
spectator sport in North America is
rumbling right up to your doorstep
this weekend, but don't blink, you
might miss it.
Thats right, big time 200 mph auto
racing is coming your way, Brazos
Valley. You had better step right up to
witness it, or we may never get this
chance again.
More than $15 million has been
spent at the Texas World Speedway in
the last several years to bring the facil
ity up to racing standards, and the two
most important sanctioning bodies in
the stock car world have taken notice.
The National Association of Stock
Car Automobile Racing, or NASCAR,
and the Automobile Racing Club of
America, or ARCA, have sanctioned a
race together at the two-mile oval
track this weekend.
While the facility can handle well
over 100,000 people, the speedway is
hoping to draw in at least 40,000 rac
ing fans to the track located five miles
from downtown College Station.
That's whbre we come in. More
fans personally witness auto racing in
the United States than any other spec
tator sport, and Texas is one of the last
jewels to be placed in racing's crown.
Should this weekend's slate of rac
ing be a commercial failure, there's no
wav to be sure that we will ever get
. r. , n -n u<>\i ’
See Davis/ Page 6
Aggie defense
still climbing
Crew 1 starts to find niche
Sports Editor of THE BATTALION
Texas A&M's "Wrecking Crew" de
fense, the number one such unit in college
football last year, has led the Aggies
through their first three wins of this sea
However, defensive coordinator Bob
Davie said that as good as it is, the 1992
Aggie defense doesn't compare with last
year's group.
"Statistic-wise, you're never going to
have what you had last year," Davie said.
"When you lose players like Quentin
Coryatt and Kevin Smith, it's a big loss.
"But our young guys have shown a lot
of intensity so far."
The Aggies' defense has given up an
average of 13 points and 269 yards a
game this season. In all of 1991, the Ag
gies allowed only 222 yards a game.
Yet, linebacker Steve Solari said he
thinks the Aggie defense is just as good as
the defense was after three games last
year and is capable of improvement.
"I think we're just about at the same
level that we were at this time last sea
son," Solari said. "I'm not at all surprised
that we're 3-0. I don't think we have
peaked at all."
In their latest battle against the Tulsa
Golden Hurricane, the Aggies allowed no
touchdowns, nine points and only 184 to
tal yards. Three times the Hurricane pen
etrated the Aggies' 25-yard line and went
away without a touchdown each time.
Senior linebacker Marcus Buckley was
a big part of that defensive stand, Davie
said. After an ankle ailment kept Buckley
in limbo before the season began, Davie
said that Buckley finally came to full
strength against Tulsa Saturday.
"Tulsa was the first sign of his playing
better," he said. "Against Stanford, he
didn't play much. In the LSU game, he
had a little more playing time. But he re
ally came to form against Tulsa."
One of the problems plaguing Davie
and the defensive unit was the void at
strong safety caused by Steve Kenney's
injured knee in the opening game against
Stanford. Kenney's replacement, sopho
more Michael Hendricks, has relieved
many of Davie's fears.
"Hendricks came to life against Tulsa,"
Davie said. "Kenney was going to be a
star this year until he got injured, but
Hendricks came out and proved he could
Cornerback Derrick Frazier has shown
that the Aggie secondary can survive
without former Southwest Conference in
terception leader Kevin Smith. In three
games, Frazier has picked off three pass
"Right now, Frazier is playing the best
that he's ever played," Davie said. "That
kid has really made some strides this sea
son. If Derrick keeps playing the way
he's been playing. I'd put him up there in
the same league as Kevin."
Head coach R.C. Slocum said that al
though Frazier has been overshadowed
by Smith, now of the Dallas Cowboys, he
has long recognized his talent.
"He's kind of been in Kevin's shad
ow," Slocum said. "But he has been a
good, solid player for a couple of years."
Free safety Patrick Bates has not been
heard from a great deal this season, but
Slocum attributes that factor to opponents
staying away from him and not as a re
flection of his performance.
"I think the nature of the games that
we have played, the schemes of (the op
ponents') offenses don't allow him to be
involved as much," Slocum said. "I think
Patrick is playing well."
Davie and Slocum both agree that the
defensive line has increased its level of
A&M fullback Clif Groce makes a cut in the Tulsa defense in the Aggies’
against the Golden Hurricane on Saturday.
play throughout the season.
"The defensive line has become more
of a factor this season," Davie said.
"We're keeping more lineman in the
game longer than before."
Slocum added: "We are better on the
defensive line than I've seen us in a num
ber of years."
One of the large reasons for the line's
success revolves around Eric England's
move from defensive end to nose guard,
Slocum said, even thq.ugh it.tgpk some
persuasion for England to make the
"I was concerned about Eric,"
said. "He didn't want to move from
to nose. He was the most likely guy ti
the job, so we convinced him tod
He's done well because of hisgreatsp
and qiaickness."
England and the rest of the "Wrecki
Crew" will be put to thq test again Sail
day when A&M takes on Missouri.
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