It's time for hoops

While some were confused as to whether to call it "A.M. Mayhem" or "Midnight Madness," Cameron was certainly crazy again for the first men's basketball practice of the season at 12:01 a.m. Saturday.

After acknowledging that he felt the fans at Cameron were less robust than usual a season ago, men's head basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski involved the fans as much as possible in the hour-long practice.

"We [the fans] weren't as good, so how can we be better?" asked Krzyzewski, who considers the fans an integral part of the team. "Part of doing this is to try to start off the right away."

The workout began with a surprise appearance by Jay Williams, who was an integral member of the 2001 National Championship team and the consensus 2002 college basketball player of the year for the Blue Devils. Last summer, following Williams' rookie season with the Chicago Bulls, the 6-foot-1 point guard crashed his motorcycle and was seriously injured. Williams walked--with the help of crutches--to the center of the floor and addressed the crowd.

Williams briefly spoke of his accident and proclaimed, "I'm still here." No. 22 then complimented the current Duke squad.

"This team has a chance to put another banner [in the rafters of Cameron]," he said as the crowd roared.

The rest of the festivities included a five-on-five scrimmage between the scholarship players and several shooting games that included both students and the athletes. Before one contest, Krzyzewski gave a disheveled student wearing birkenstocks a hard time.

"Before next practice get a hair-cut and wear some socks," Krzyzewski joked.
Mike Corey contributed to this story.


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