SEC vs. Big Ten
Page 2 staff

Silver Anniversary

First round: SEC vs. Big Ten
SEC Silver Anniversary Team Big Ten Silver Anniversary Team
G: Chris Jackson, LSU (2-time All-American, set NCAA fresh. pts record) G: Mateen Cleaves, Mich. St. (3-time All-American, led MSU to 2000 title)
G: Allan Houston, Tenn. (Averaged 22 pts per game as four-year starter) G: Steve Alford, Indiana (Led Indiana in scoring all four seasons)
F: Chuck Person, Auburn ('86 All-American, school's leading scorer) F: Jim Jackson, Ohio St. (2-time All-American, averaged 20 pts in 3 years)
F: Jamal Mashburn, Kent. (18 pts over 3 years; '93 SEC player of year) F: Glenn Robinson, Purdue (28 ppg over 2 years; '94 player of year)
C: Shaquille O'Neal, LSU (2-time All-American, '91 national player of year) C: Kevin McHale, Minn. (Averaged double figures all four years)

Fran Fraschilla's analysis

No. 4 seed: SEC
Coach: Rick Pitino

Offense: This is an explosive offensive team in the halfcourt with five weapons. Pitino fools with Mashburn at the "point forward" spot to create mismatches and runs some NBA sets to get good looks for Person, Houston, and Jackson. And, he'll make sure the big guy is kept happy.

Defense: This could be a very average defensive team, although O'Neal will intimidate down low. Pitino must get creative and may have to play some zone. He will save the "matchup" press for the Golden Anniversary team in 25 years.

Intangibles: Pitino, an excellent motivator in his own right, brings Dale Brown out of retirement to be his "positive thinking" coach.

No. 5 seed: Big Ten
Coach: Bob Knight

Offense: Knight shows up looking for Isiah Thomas but gets Cleaves, who reminds him of Quinn Buckner. This team will run "motion offense," which will be particularly good for Alford and Robinson, who will be very effective along the baseline. McHale has already been coached by Knight in the '79 Pan Am Games. Jackson, the fellow former Buckeye, quickly becomes a favorite.

Defense: Man-to-man, of course. There's a concern about Alford, Robinson and Jackson defensively. The whole must become greater than the sum of the parts as "helping" becomes the watchword.

Intangibles: A number of Knight's friends express an interest in helping out this team. At a typical practice, Pete Newell, Tony La Russa, Bo Schembechler, and George Raveling are in attendance.


Page 2's Silver showdown bracket

ACC vs. Atlantic 10

Big East vs. Big 12

Conference USA vs. Mountain West

Writers' Bloc: Best college hoops player

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