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MARCH MADNESS / NCAA TOURNAMENT | NOTES

Hard to Get a Handle on Burton's Name

March 22, 2001|DIANE PUCIN

What's in a name?

No one is really sure what to call Georgetown reserve guard Nathaniel Burton, a 6-foot-4 senior, who is one of the best perimeter defenders in the Big East.

He has a tattoo on his left arm that says "Big Nat," the handle he used while growing up in Washington, D.C. Coach Craig Esherick used to call him "Nate," and Burton has been called both "Nat" and "Nate" in newspaper and broadcast accounts throughout the season.

It has become such a big issue that the sports information staff at Georgetown got Burton to agree to go by his given name, Nathaniel, during the NCAA tournament.

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At the same time Georgetown and Maryland are playing at the Pond, USC and Kentucky will be on television, playing in the NCAA East Regional at Philadelphia. At the same time Stanford and Cincinnati are playing in the Pond, UCLA and Duke will be on TV at the East Regional.

Ouch.

For Southern California basketball fans who bought tickets a year ago to the West Regional and who have allegiance to USC or UCLA, what to do?

Rob Halvaks, West Regional tournament manager, had this advice.

"We'll have all the TVs in the concourse tuned to the USC and UCLA games," he said.

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