6 SAN FRANCISCO
Enthusiasm is when one of your former stars (Warrior Phil Smith) practices with his pro team all day, then comes by to watch his old college club work out.
Enthusiasm is when you increase your season-ticket sales by 600% and people are scalping seats in October.
Enthusiasm is when a faculty member mistakenly overpays for his season ticket, then says, "Keep the $55. That'll buy a couple of lunches for Cartwright."
Enthusiasm is when people say you can win the national championship.
That is the mood at the University of San Francisco. The Dons took the 1955 and 1956 NCAA titles, winning 60 straight games along the way, and USF fans are already talking about a replay.
Well, they don't have Bill Russell this time, but some think USF had a better recruiting year than the all-volunteer Army. At the top of the list is seven-footer Bill Cartwright, and his arrival attracted a squad of other top enlistees, including freshmen Winford Boynes and 6'8" James Hardy and junior college transfers Sam Williams and Allen Thompson. The Dons also have the top four players from the team that last season had a 19-7 record and finished second in the West Coast Athletic Conference. No wonder there is enthusiasm.
Cartwright ran up his 67% field-goal mark in high school against inferior opposition, but he has the talent to adjust quickly to the college game. He will be glad to see the season start, since the quality of competition should drop off. At practice his teammates batter him around, and the first two times he tried an unfamiliar hook shot Hardy caught the ball in midair. Cartwright is a nice little guy who happens to be inside a giant body. When he learns to shove as well as he shoots, the Dons will be mighty tough.
Hardy, whom Coach Bob Gaillard calls "Trouble" (as in trouble for other teams), will play the low post, freeing Cartwright to pop jumpers from the high position. Boynes, who has been brilliant in drills, will shine on the wing.
The backcourt could be a problem. Gaillard is considering moving 6'5" Marlon Redmond there despite the fact that he was an All-WCAC selection at forward last season. The other backcourt candidates are Thompson, Sam Williams, two-year starter Russ Coleman and Rod Williams, the team's best outside shooter and the man who will be called on to break-the zone defenses the tall Dons are sure to see.