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March 13, 2000|LARRY STEWART

What: "CBS Sports Presents: Stories From the Final Four"

Edited by: Matt Fulks

Price: $12.95

Publisher: Addax Publishing Group (Lanexa, Kan.)

This 189-page paperback book is exactly what the title implies. The stories are told in the first-person by players and coaches. Some by broadcasters and writers too.

The foreword is by CBS' Jim Nantz. He writes about his personal experience covering the 1983 Final Four for the CBS affiliate in Salt Lake City. His alma mater, Houston, was upset by North Carolina State in the championship game. Nantz watched in awe as Brent Musburger did the play-by-play, a role he would assume three years later.

Saving the best for last, the final chapter is John Wooden penning his Final Four memories and his thoughts on the state of college basketball. Among other things, Wooden believes every team should be allowed into the tournament, thus benefiting from the financial rewards.

Between Nantz's foreword and Wooden's Chapter 23 are some great stories, beginning with Clyde Lovellette's recollections of Kansas' 80-63 victory in the title game in 1952 and finishing with thoughts of last season's championship run from Connecticut Coach Jim Calhoun.

What's missing is artwork. A few photos would have dressed up the book, which is available in stores or by calling (888) 285-5786.

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