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NCAA COLLEGE BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT | NOTES

Knee Won't Keep Gadzuric Out

March 19, 2000|SCOTT HOWARD-COOPER

MINNEAPOLIS — Concerns over the condition of Dan Gadzuric's left knee, a distant worry most of the season before tendinitis flared Feb. 26 against Oregon State, have faded again as he plays big minutes without a problem.

"I can go as long as they want," Gadzuric said.

They have wanted different things at different times. In the game after Oregon State, at California, he lasted 30 minutes, finishing with 22 points and 16 rebounds. Then he went from 19 minutes to 25 to 14 to end the regular season, the latter because he was able to rest in the rout of Washington.

Still coming off the bench in the tournament, Gadzuric played 26 minutes Thursday against Ball State, en route to 10 points and 12 rebounds, and got 21 minutes Saturday versus Maryland. He again played well--13 points and six rebounds--and certainly would have gotten more than nine minutes in the second half if needed.

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Among the schools that Earl Watson strongly considered before becoming a Bruin: Iowa State, the next opponent.

"Iowa State was right there with UCLA from the beginning, but I wanted to play at UCLA since I was a kid and since I can remember," he said. "I'm proud of my decision and will never think of it again."

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Small forward Danny Miller returned to the Maryland lineup after missing the first-round victory over Iona because of an ankle injury and played 26 minutes.

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So much for shooting problems in domes, a common problem. The Bruins hit 51.9% at Syracuse on Feb. 13, much better than the 43.1% of the home team, and then 45.5% against Ball State and 62.5% against Maryland in the Metrodome.

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