The Wolfpacker

January 2013

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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tracking the PACK NC State Honors Past With New Uniforms At Jimmy V Classic The late Jim Valvano, the former NC State head coach, was part of the Wolfpack's inaugural Hall of Fame class last October, and seemingly not a week — or possibly even a day — goes by when something doesn't remind Wolfpack fans of the legendary figure. NC State was able to pay tribute to its former coach Dec. 4 in defeating UConn 69-65 in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden in Valvano's home state of New York. NCSU had last played in the Jimmy V Classic when the Wolfpack made its first appearance in 2002, falling 69-60 to Gonzaga in East Rutherford, N.J. Valvano arrived from Iona in 1980 and won a national title at NC State in 1983 with the Wolfpack's miracle run through the ACC Tournament and NCAA Tournament. He passed away April 28, 1993, after his fight with cancer. NC State wanted its return to the Jimmy V Classic to be memorable, and had jerseys created for the UConn game. "The event is named after him, the Jimmy Junior point guard Lorenzo Brown showed the special jersey the Pack wore for the Jimmy V Classic, with the late coach's famous saying on the back. photos by nc state media relations V [Classic], and our school is unique in this event," NC State head coach Mark Gottfried said. "I went to the guys at adidas last summer and we talked possibly about creating something unique for this one night. I wanted to know if they'd be interested in helping us." The red jerseys had a net around the neckline on both the front and the back, and "DON'T EVER GIVE UP" was on the back where names of the players normally would go. "They [adidas] came up with the design, which I thought was pretty good when I first saw it," Gottfried said. "I thought it was really cool. I liked the net somewhat around the neck. It's sort of lightly seen, but it's really there. I really love the back of the jerseys. I even like the old style of lettering with State in the old fashioned block 'STATE' lettering for that one night." Different uniforms have become all the rage across the country — see Oregon and Maryland in football — mostly for marketing and recruiting reasons. The Jimmy V Classic jerseys hit home in a different way and received a coast-to-coast audience on ESPN with its No. 1 announcing team of analyst Dick Vitale and play-by-play man Dan Shulman. "When you look around the country, a lot of people in the country will be watching and recruits will be watching, we are trying to do things that will set us apart," Gottfried said. The impact Valvano made is still helping individuals today, and will long into the future through the V Foundation, which is raising money to help cure cancer. His widow, Pam Valvano Strasser, accompanied the team on the Wolfpack's flight Monday to New York City and was able to speak to the team Monday. "I thought that was great," Gottfried said. "I'm excited she accepted the invitation to fly with the team. I think it is a privilege for us to be in that game and I think it's a big deal for NC State. "I want to make sure the guys know who she is. She's been a good friend to me in my short time here. She's reached out to me a number of times. I've gotten to know her pretty well. "She's a special person that obviously went through an unbelievably difficult time. Now, the legacy for him and I think she carries that torch in a great way." — Jacey Zembal 14  ■  the wolfpacker 10-12,14,16,18.Wolfpack News.indd 14 12/11/12 2:40 PM

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