ESPN Boston: No blocking out Marcus Camby - UMass Athletics

ESPN Boston: No blocking out Marcus Camby

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Marty Dobrow wrote a piece on Marcus Camby and his life growing up, his time at UMass and subsequent 17-year NBA career. here's an excerpt:

They were all on hand that night -- his mom and his sisters, his wife and his daughters -- to see Camby's first start in a season slowed by foot injuries. They watched the lights dim, the sparks fly from the scoreboard, the lithe dancers prance wearing little buttons of red light. They heard the music blare, and PA announcer Mike Walczewski bellow, "a 6-11 forward from Massachusetts ... Mar-cus Cam-by!!!"

And there he was, the years melting away, skipping onto the court, chest and forearm bumping with the boys, his long fingers pointing to the rafters. Camby's female rooting contingent especially reveled in the third quarter, when he came up with one of his signature blocked shots, swooping down the lane and redirecting a Tim Duncan shot into the stands as part of an emphatic 100-83 win.

The same crew will be back in force this Saturday at the Mullins Center to see No. 21 retired at the University of Massachusetts. That might not be "the world's most famous arena" but it was, back in Marcus Camby's day, the setting for quite a riveting soap opera.

"People who follow UMass basketball talk about the glory years, the Cal and Camby years," said Derek Kellogg, the Minutemen's head coach and a teammate of Camby's for two seasons under John Calipari. "That was the pinnacle of UMass history."

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