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Jay Wright's first NCAA trip to Buffalo: 'We got hammered after the game'

 

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Jay Wright, coach from Villanova, says he loves Buffalo. (Photo by Harry Scull Jr./Buffalo News)


By Tim Graham

Hey, Buffalo. Meet your new favorite college basketball coach.

He's Jay Wright from Villanova, and he loves your town.

Wright this afternoon reminisced about his first time in Buffalo, where his 14th-seeded Hofstra squad faced third-seeded Oklahoma State in the 2000 NCAA tournament.

"We got hammered," Wright said. "We were happy to be here. We got hammered, and we got hammered after the game.

"We were so happy to be here."

Hofstra returned to the NCAA tournament again in 2001, helping Wright get the Villanova job that spring.

Villanova has gone to the tourney nine of the past 10 years, but Buffalo will always hold a special place in Wright's heart.

"My wife and I were riding over on the bus yesterday, and it was the exact same snowy, lake-effect day," Wright said. "It was St. Patrick's Day. We got hammered in this building by Oklahoma State. ... I heard Doug Gottlieb talking on TV yesterday about somebody's shooting. He couldn't make a foul shot in that game.

"We had Speedy Claxton at Hofstra. He was a great guard. They were big and physical. They had a two guard [Norm Richardson] who went to the NBA. He came off a ball screen early and ran over to me at the bench and his finger was [dislocated]. I was, like, 'Oh, we're dead now.' They re-set it, but they hammered us.

"I think Bobby Knight played his last game with Indiana here, too, that same night. It was amazing."

tagged

Atlantic 10 | NCAA Tournament
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About Campus Watch

Bob Dicesare

Bob DiCesare

Western New York native Bob DiCesare covers UB football, Big 4 basketball and writes an occasional column. He still holds a grudge against Chris Ford who, he's convinced, cost St. Bonaventure the 1970 NCAA basketball championship.

@TBNDicesare | bdicesare@buffnews.com


Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered colleges for The Buffalo News since 1999. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz | amoritz@buffnews.com

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