CHARLESTON, S.C. – Charleston Southern Men's Basketball will host an Alumni Day on Saturday, Sept. 22. All basketball alumni are invited to play in an Alumni Game before taking in the Bucs' football home opener against Elon. Former CSU head coach Tommy Conrad, who directed the program to its only NCAA Tournament berth in 1997, will be honored at the football game.
Attendees will also be able to watch CSU practice that afternoon, and partake in a pregame tailgate. A full schedule of events is below. Those interested in attending should contact Assistant A.D. for Development Tyler Davis at 843-863-7523 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 1996-97 Bucs brought as much notoriety to CSU Athletics as any team in the school's history, earning a No. 15 seed in the Midwest Regional and a date with national power UCLA. The senior-laden team stormed through the Big South Tournament as the No. 4 seed, defeating Coastal Carolina, UNC Asheville and Liberty to punch a ticket to the Big Dance.
Conrad, who was in his first season as head coach following five years as an assistant under Gary Edwards, remembers the group fondly.
"I'll never forget looking at their faces when the final buzzer went off, and seeing the joy," Conrad recalled. "I still get chills right now thinking about it. They were committed, they stayed together, they won and they deserved a championship. It's a special group and one that should always be honored for being the first to make it to the NCAA Tournament."
Edwards, who directed CSU to one of its most successful stretches during his nine years at the helm, echoed his former assistant's thoughts.
"It was a pretty tight-knit bunch and they stay in touch quite a bit," Edwards said. "The '95 (also won Big South Tournament) and '97 teams were comprised of the many of the same players, which really added to the camaraderie and feeling we have looking back."
Current CSU head coach Barclay Radebaugh, who is entering his 14th season leading the program, is excited to welcome back alumni from all eras to campus.
"We are looking forward to Alumni Day and hope it's something we can continue to grow in the future," Radebaugh said. "We want our guys to take pride in the players that came before them as we continue to build and improve. Those relationships and investment will go a long way toward helping us get to where we want to be."
CSU Athletic Director Jeff Barber looks forward to developing relationships with alumni as they return to campus.
"I'm a big fan of alumni events like this because it's really those people that have built the foundation that allows us to be who we are today," Barber said. "I hope we get a lot of basketball alumni to come back and see what's going on with the program, the athletic department and on campus. We want them to get an in-depth look at our commitment to this program and how we want it to represent Charleston Southern."
Alumni Day – Schedule of Events
10 a.m. – Noon – Alumni Game
2 p.m. – Watch CSU Volleyball match vs. Hampton
4:30 p.m. – Watch CSU Men's Basketball Practice
6 p.m. – Tailgate/Attend Football game vs. Elon