Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Men

South Carolina coach: A career in its own class

South Carolina's Dave Odom's time as a coach is almost up. ¶ Odom, who announced his retirement effective at the end of this season on Jan. 18, and his struggling Gamecocks (13-16, 5-10 SEC) are down to Sunday's regular-season finale at No. 4-ranked Tennessee (27-3, 13-2) and then a trip to Atlanta for the conference tournament. ¶ "Playing or coaching your last regular-season game is a special time," he said. "It is." ¶ Odom has compiled an impressive 405-276 record in 22 seasons at East Carolina, Wake Forest and South Carolina. His teams have reached the NCAA Tournament nine times and the NIT six times; he has won three NIT titles, including in back-to-back years with the Gamecocks in 2005 and 2006. He has recruited and coached one of the best players ever, Tim Duncan. He has been coach of the year in the ACC and the SEC as well as nationally. ¶ That's what outsiders can see and evaluate. ¶ That's not the full measure of the coach.

Throughout his years, Odom, 66, has been a genteel ambassador for the game. A reporter could ask him anything, even about a former player who transferred, and he would graciously, respectfully fill up a notebook with his candid answer. He also has earned the admiration of his brethren for how he has handled situations and not merely X's and O's and W's and L's.

"I love Dave Odom," Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said. "He's everything that's good about our profession. He touched all the bases — high school coach, (college) assistant, head coach. He has a great love for the game. He's been an outstanding coach and an even better person."

You can bet Odom isn't going to ask his players to win one more big one for him.

"I do love my team and I feel similar emotion from them," he said Thursday morning. "But I will do the best I can between now and Sunday afternoon to direct their attention to what they need to do to be successful on the court and not have them concentrate on my situation. My situation's not going to change. This is my last game. And while I know they want to do well for me, it is far more important that they do well for themselves."

Balance award snub?

Kansas is No. 5 in the AP poll and, perhaps, the most talented team in the land. But how many Jayhawks will earn All-Big 12 honors let alone land on someone's All-America teams?

The number might be small if voters look solely at the statistics.

Darrell Arthur, Brandon Rush, Darnell Jackson and Mario Chalmers have game, but less than gaudy stats. They average between 12 and 13.3 points. A dozen other Big 12 players average more.

"The problem with us," Kansas coach Bill Self said, "is when you have so much balance, it tends to get guys to think that maybe there hasn't been any one or any two who've had exceptional seasons. Which is not true at all. These guys have sacrificed for the good of the team."

Did you know?

Despite losing four starters and 62 percent of the scoring and rebounding from last year's Sweet 16 team, UNLV (22-7 entering today's game against Utah) seems poised for another NCAA berth. UNLV hasn't made it to consecutive NCAAs since its glory days of 1990-91.

No wonder Lon Kruger is a finalist for the U.S. Basketball Writers Association coach of the year award. The guy can flat-out coach.

By the numbers

3 Consecutive Pac-10 regular-season titles UCLA has won thanks to a comeback, 77-67 controversial overtime win against Stanford on Thursday.

19 Game winning streak by Davidson, tops in nation.

94.6 Free-throw percentage by Louis Dale of Ivy League champ and NCAA bound Cornell, tops in the nation. Cornell played at Penn on Friday.

He said it

"I like it better later in the year 'cause it means you have accomplished something. I think what it says about our team is that we have gotten better defensively, we have been able to withstand some adversity and we've had a guy who has really had four years of adversity and tough times step up and do a great job for us in Quentin Thomas."

Roy Williams, North Carolina coach, on his team moving back to No. 1 in the Associated Press poll this week before playing today at Duke.

Brian Landman can be reached at landman@sptimes.com or (813) 226-3347.

South Carolina coach: A career in its own class 03/07/08 [Last modified: Friday, March 7, 2008 9:51pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. After state, academics will trump athletics for King ace Brian Lee

    Baseballpreps

    TAMPA — Brian Lee can still see himself on the pitcher's mound at Venice High School. Four years ago he was a freshman left-handed reliever just trying to keep King's state championship dreams alive.

    Pitcher Brian Lee participates in a practice at King High in Tampa, Fla., on Friday, May 26, 2017.
  2. Tiger Woods arrested on DUI charge in Florida

    Public Safety

    Tiger Woods was arrested on a DUI charge Monday in Jupiter, according to the Palm Beach County sheriff's office.

    Tiger Woods has been arrested on a DUI charge in Florida.
  3. Five cool things to do when it's hot outside

    Outdoors

    Summer is not officially here, but it may as well be. School is out, vacations are coming, and it's time to enjoy the outdoors. Don't buy the argument that summer in Florida is too hot to get outside. There is plenty to do, and we'll prove it. Here are five cool things to do outdoors during another hot summer.

    Rainbow Springs State Park is a registered natural landmark. Rainbow Springs State Park in Dunnellon is one several state parks with natural swimming holes in Florida. (Octavio Jones | Times)
  4. Rays morning after: A lot that went into a marathon win

    Blogs

    Rays manager Kevin Cash had a simple strategy when Fox Sports Sun's Alex Corddry asked him how the team would move on from Sunday's marathon win and get ready to face the Rangers tonight in Texas:

    Kevin Kiermaier of the Rays celebrates as teammate Michael Martinez slides safely into home plate to score a run against the Minnesota Twins during the 14th inning.
  5. Rays journal: Erasmo Ramirez ready to start a day after closing game

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — RHP Erasmo Ramirez was on the mound to finish Sunday's 15-inning marathon win over the Twins and will start tonight's game against the Rangers.

    The Rays’ Erasmo Ramirez throws 12 pitches in the 15th inning against the Twins to earn the save then says after the game that he’s ready to make his scheduled start against the Rangers: “My arm feels good.”