Monday, August 13, 2007

Gottfried comments on Pan-Am games experience and Mercer added to the schedule

TUSCALOOSA | University of Alabama basketball coach Mark Gottfried said his stint as an assistant coach for the USA team in the Pan-American Games was “a great experience” even though the American team did not win a medal in the event.

Team USA, composed entirely of collegiate players, went 3-2 in pool play in the Games, which were held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

“We lost our first two games and that knocked us out of the medal round,” Gottfried said. “Then we came back to win our next three. I thought by the end of the tournament, we were playing as well as any team down there, but we had already been eliminated from medal play.

Gottfried said the team was still growing accustomed to the international rules and style of play in its early games.

“There is definitely a transition involved,” he said. “I think if we had been together as a team and had a chance to play a little more before we went to Brazil, we might have done better in the first two games.

“It was still an outstanding experience. All of the players were really great young men. Roy Hibbert [from Georgetown, a team that Alabama will face in December] was really a presence at 7-foot-2. D.J. White [from Tuscaloosa] played really well.”

From Cecil Hurt

If you scroll down to the bottom of the article (in case you glanced it over) there's a mention of the basketball team playing at Mercer.

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