BATON ROUGE – Some of the great names in LSU basketball history reunited for one day to offer some of their valuable expertise to local youngsters Saturday at the new Team Sportsplex.
Among those taking part in the clinic were Collis Temple and his son Garrett; Howard Carter, Leonard Mitchell, Rudy Macklin and Ethan Martin from the 1981 NCAA Final Four team; Nikita Wilson and Ricky Blanton from the 1986 NCAA Final Four team; Darnell Lazare, Garrett Temple and Tyrus Thomas from the 2006 NCAA Final Four team; and, star LSU players Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf (Chris Jackson when he played at LSU), Stanley Roberts, Marcus Thornton and Ronald Dupree. They were joined as counselors by returning LSU player Johnny O'Bryant III and freshman-to-be Jarell Martin.
Garrett Temple, who recently signed a new contract with the Washington Bullets, said it was the first time he had ever worked with his dad as a coach or counselor at any type of clinic.
Blanton, who is still close with many of the athletes through his work as color analyst on the LSU Sports Radio Network and as an officer for the National L Club, said it was an enjoyable morning on the basketball court.
"It was great to see so many LSU basketball players in one place. Especially seeing Mahmoud here because of the tremendous career he had at LSU. We all enjoyed teaching the young kids about the game of basketball and sharing with them some life skills. It was a good day for the LSU basketball family."
“It’s nice to be back,” Rauf told local television station WAFB. “I’m looking forward to coming back more often in the near future.”
Rauf played as late as the 2011 season professionally in a league in Japan.
Macklin offered these comments later Saturday: “There were approximately eighty kids at the camp, which was just right so that every kid could get personal attention from the greats. Kids rotated every twenty minutes to each station, and after every third rotation, Stanley Roberts and I gave a five minute talk on fitness, good nutrition and the importance of a good education.
“Mahmoud put on stellar shooting performance that wowed everyone. It was a great turnout; great organization and the kids received important fundamentals from the very best, and the camp concluded with an autograph session for the kids, along with them getting posters and T-shirts. It was loads of fun!”
Abdul-Rauf, Blanton, Carter, Macklin, Martin and Collis Temple, Jr., were all members of the All-Century Team announced in January 2009 on the 100th anniversary of the first game in LSU history.