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Postcards From the Final Four -- Thursday

April 2, 2004

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SAN ANTONIO, Texas–Georgia Tech’s first full day in San Antonio featured a full two-hour practice on Thursday morning at Trinity University, followed by an afternoon of free time. It was the Jackets only chance to unwind on the historic Riverwalk area of downtown. On Thursday night the Jackets gathered for a team dinner as full attention is now being paid to Saturday’s game against Oklahoma State.

This morning’s practice session was attended by former Tech head coach Bobby Cremins and his former Yellow Jacket assistant George Felton. One of Head Coach Paul Hewitt’s strong influences, former USC head coach George Raveling, also attended the workout.

Junior guard B.J. Elder participated through most of the morning workout, continuing to improve his chances of being near normal on Saturday, despite the ankle injury last Friday night against Nevada.

FUNCTIONS AND FILAMENTS

Head Coach Paul Hewitt and senior guard Marvin Lewis attended tonight’s NCAA Salute Dinner at the Convention Center near the team hotel. Hewitt joined the other three coaches in a roundtable question and answer session during the one-hour program.

The Georgia Tech hotel also is being used as the headquarters for CBS Sports and their entourage. The television rights-holder of the Final Four since 1982, CBS uses this event as a promotional tool for affiliates and sponsors as well.

The annual NABC Convention is being held again in conjunction with the Final Four. Coaches from every level of basketball are attending meetings and seminars through the weekend. The event is best known for its ability to allow coaches to “network” with other colleagues, but also for other jobs.

NCAA President, Dr. Myles Brand addressed the media this afternoon at the Alamo Dome and said while there are some negatives in college athletics, there are plenty of positives in college basketball and in college athletics as a whole. Brand also said that the NCAA has “no position” in the conference shuffling that occurred last summer and fall. Brand felt that things went well in terms of moving forward for the betterment of schools and their new leagues.

OVERHEARD ON THE RIVERWALK…

“If we didn’t have Muhammad highlights, SportsCenter would be 15 minutes shorter!” — John Anderson of ESPN talking with Tech head coach Paul Hewitt about the coverage junior Isma’il Muhammad gets on his program.

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