The Green Wave was led by junior guard Michael Christian, who originally enrolled at Georgia Tech when Clark was working for Cremins. Christian transferred to Delgado Community College in New Orleans for the 1988-89 season and then signed with Tulane. Against Hofstra he had 24 points, three more than 6'9" Anthony Reed, who is Clark's first blue-chip freshman recruit.
In interviews Clark constantly refers to the "great unknown" that the Green Wave will face against potent Metro foes like Louisville and Memphis State. "I just don't know how we're going to react in certain situations," he says. "Basically our basketball program is only a month and a half old."
Tulane will take its lumps, but it's good to have the Green Wave back and trying to abide by the rules. Kelly acted properly when he closed down the program, and he's acting properly in giving the Green Wave a chance to remove the tarnish.
MERCY, MERCY, MERCY
A lot of coaches and athletic directors are opposed to the proposal by the NCAA President's Commission to reduce the number of regular-season games a team can play from 28 to 25. That would give the players more time for studies and extracurricular activities other than basketball, but it would also curtail revenues at a time when most schools are paddling hard to keep from drowning in red ink.
However, when you look at some of the scheduling farces that exist in December, it's difficult to argue against the proposal. Consider, if you will, the tournament that St. John's sponsors to honor Joe Lapchick, who was a coach at the school from 1956 to '65. The Redmen's 76-56 pasting of Wright State in Sunday's final gave them a 30-0 record in the event and their 15th straight title. One wonders if Lapchick would really feel honored by having St. John's beat up on a bunch of patsies in his name.
And then there are the Oklahoma Sooners and their coach, Billy Tubbs, who are making a joke of themselves and a travesty of the NCAA record book. You probably saw that the Sooners set a record for points in a half with 97 in a 173-101 romp over U.S. International on Nov. 29. That was tacky enough, but three days later they outdid themselves with a 146-51 victory over Northeastern Illinois. The 95-point victory set a record for a winning margin.
Sorry, but we fail to see any redeeming value in such grotesque mismatches. Unless coaches and athletic directors schedule teams that at least offer a modicum of competition, we would rather watch pro wrestling and free the basketball players to do something constructive. This isn't to say that a team doesn't have the right to schedule an occasional W. We like what North Carolina coach Dean Smith had to say Saturday after his team's 92-42 win over Central Florida: "It's fun to have one of these on the schedule, but that's it for the year."
IF THE SHOE FITS, KEEP IT
Keith Campbell, a 6'4" senior forward for Texas-Pan American, has plenty of tongues wagging: the tongues on his Cons, his Air Jordans, his Reeboks and the rest of his collection of some 100 pairs of basketball shoes. Half the sneakers foul the air in his Memphis home, the other half sit untreed in his apartment in Edinburg, Texas.