"You can't lecture these boys all the time, so occasionally I have medical, legal and business people advise them on how to run their lives. Last week a couple of FBI agents came in and told them there were maybe three bad places in town to stay out of—and two of them were my favorites."
To keep his players out of the kind of weekend mischief he sometimes cannot avoid himself, McGuire holds scrimmages from eight to 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. "I'm surprised other teams don't do the same," he says. "By the time my boys get to the parties they have to really pour it on to catch up." McGuire is betting that they won't, but if they do he tells them to stay out of his part of town.
The beneficiaries of this liberal education are four starters from last year's 25-4 team—Forwards Larry McNeill and George (Sugar) Frazier and Guards Marcus Washington and Al's son, Allie—and 6'8" sophomore Maurice Lucas who, many believe, is already better than either Jim Chones or Bob Lackey. Throw in—should McGuire decide to play him—freshman Earl Tatum, who is only a step behind Lucas, reserve Guard Ed Daniels and backup Center Mike Mills and, voil�! the ingredients for a stay-at-home stew, the reason why McGuire turned down two pro coaching offers, one for some $90,000 from the Philadelphia 76ers. No matter what town Marquette plays, the pros are always in the wings.
While all the Acadians down in Lafayette wait in terror that the big, bad NCAA will sentence Southwestern Louisiana to the electric chair, the man with the golden arm and the man with the plastic knuckle go on about their business. That means Dwight (Bo Pete) Lamar, firing those rockets from somewhere out in the bayous, and Roy Ebron, waiting for a miss so he can jam it back in. While leading his team to a 25-4 record, Lamar took 949 shots last season, made 36 points a game and became the first man ever to lead the university division in scoring a year after he had led the college division. The 6'9" Ebron averaged 23 points and 14 rebounds despite playing with a fractured finger the second half of the year after taking one mighty leap and jamming it on a backboard. The big fellow finally had a pink plastic knuckle reinforcement inserted during the off-season, so he should be well again. As for Lamar, he is always in the pink. "From 35 feet I'm 50-50 to make the shot," says the handsome point champion. "If I miss a couple, the coach says, 'Scoot in a little.' "
Coach Beryl Shipley's team came so far so fast that a lot of people scooted in a little and started enough investigations to make old Blackham Coliseum look like a Creole Watergate. The results were that Shipley was put on a two-year probation period by the school administration and warnings were heard of further penalties from the NCAA. "I'm just sittin' and hopin'," says Shipley with as fine a country 'n' Western drawl as anyone this side of Ferlin Husky.
The coach faces other questions: how to fire up Ebron, who sometimes squanders his considerable talent by pouting and getting into foul trouble; who to blame for a monstrous road schedule that includes away games with Las Vegas, Jacksonville, Cincinnati, Houston, Oral Roberts and Hawaii twice; and where he can find a court big enough to hold both Lamar and the excellent freshman, Larry Fogle.
The Cajuns will not be as physical as last year but they should be quicker and more versatile. Tall Guard Jerry Bisbano is a solid, active veteran who complements Lamar well (meaning he passes to him) while junior Fred Saunders and 6'6" redshirt Robert ( Turkey) Wilson are big and quick enough to play either inside or out. Another freshman, 6'8" Andr� Brown, is a sleeper behind Ebron.
To correct the team's bad habit of gaping when Lamar is groping, Saunders, who has the touch but not the thirst, is being ordered to shoot more. The leaping Fogle, who has the thirst and the touch, needs no such encouragement. The youngster gives up the ball only on alternate Tuesdays and already in practice Lamar looks frustrated, a Bo Pete who has lost his sheep. The Cajuns raged all the way to the Midwest Regional last season and they are capable of carrying on a lot further. Ebron has to stay in the games, of course, and the NCAA wolf has to stay away from the door.