CENTER OF ATTENTION
If he were a quarterback or a wide receiver, Michigan's Steve Everitt would already have appeared on countless magazine covers and TV halftime shows. Alas, Everitt plays center—football's most anonymous position. Last Saturday he had his typically superb game as the undefeated Wolverines beat Purdue 24-17.
At least at Michigan a guy in Everitt's spot has a chance to attain some acclaim. The Wolverines have had 11 All-Americas at center, not to mention Gerald Ford ('35), who went on to a fairly successful career in government. But the only way the 6'5", 290-pound Everitt, a fifth-year senior, will make his living in Washington is if the Redskins draft him.
Everitt is the top center prospect in the country and was named to many of the preseason All-America teams. When his NFL career is over, Everitt hopes to work as an artist, like his father, Mike, a sculptor. "I've done painting, drawing, sculpture, computer-generated graphics and industrial art," says Steve, who will graduate in May with a degree in fine arts. "But drawing is what I've always loved."
Since coming to Ann Arbor from Miami's Southridge High, where he was named Dade County Offensive Player of the Year in 1987, Everitt has gotten four Big Ten championship rings. "I gave my dad the first one," he says. "The other three were back in our living room, and when I asked about them after Hurricane Andrew, my parents said they were O.K." The rings were among the few objects in the Everitt home that survived the storm. The house was demolished.
The Everitts are resilient folk. Steve, who is righthanded, has been snapping the ball with his left hand since dislocating his right thumb two weeks ago against Minnesota. In the second game last season, against Notre Dame, Everitt broke his jaw. Surgeons inserted a plate and four screws to hold the jaw in place, but last month, during dinner with his parents, one of the screws came out. Recalls Everitt, "I was chewing and thought it was something in the food. I spit it out and couldn't believe it."
Says Everitt, "Now my father's telling everyone I have a screw loose."