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Phelan Farewell Tour Nears End

February 23, 2003|Associated Press

NEW YORK — The Jim Phelan Farewell Tour has been as low-key as the coach himself.

Since he announced Jan. 16 this would be his last season at Mount St. Mary's, Phelan has been honored during a short ceremony before each road game, bringing unwanted attention to a coach who has won 829 games.

"That's why I wanted to go to the end of the season before saying I would retire, so this wouldn't happen," he said. "But the school wanted me to do it so our fans in each area could come around, and I certainly appreciate it and it's nice of them, but I'd rather not have to go through it."

He went through it again Thursday night at Wagner College. He was presented a framed bow tie and a plaque recognizing his milestone victories at the Staten Island school. He smiled for the pictures, as he has time and time again.

"All of them are very nice," he said of the ceremonies. He was asked whether any of them had been more special than the others.

"No," he said as a smile started across his face. "What Quinnipiac did, I can't tell you. Let's put it this way: They have an Indian reservation nearby."

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