Wrapping Up In Greensboro

By - October 22, 2006

Things are tapering down at the Grandover Resort & Conference Center. Below are some parting thoughts before heading out:

  • The polar opposite to the chattery Jared Dudley was Florida State's Al Thornton, who conducted his interviews in a sotto voce that befit his unassuming demeanor. No individual player around the ACC not named Tyler Hansbrough is receiving more preseason hype than Thornton, but it would seem that the versatile 6-foot-7 swingman is more interested in doing his talking on the hardwood. ("I'm really looking forward to getting out there and playing," Thornton said. "Playing every game like it's my last.")

  • Said Duke's DeMarcus Nelson of forward Josh McRoberts, whose decision to spurn the NBA for a second collegiate season was met with an overwhelming sense of relief in Durham, "I believe Josh made a great decision coming back. He can still improve and evolve into the player that he's going to become, and it's going to be an exciting time for him." (Then added the junior tri-captain, with a wry smile: "I'm selfish about it because it makes my job a lot easier with him out there.")

  • North Carolina State's Engin Atsur, who competed for Turkey in the FIBA World Championship this summer, intimated that playing college basketball wasn't the most sound financial choice -- but the correct personal decision: "Personally, for me, it was the best decision because I wanted to have my degree and also play at a high level of basketball. But if I really wanted to play just professional basketball, I could have just stayed with my club team and signed a contract, which would have been better for a professional career maybe. I could be at that [professional] level right now -- you're talking about four years that you're not playing professional basketball. Some people could see that as a large economic loss but, personally, I see it as a positive because I have a college degree now."

Posted by at 06:55 PM on October 22, 2006

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