Hoop It Up

The Cat and the Hat already had its way with the Florida State basketball team. International superstar Yanni could be next. The Seminoles were forced on the road for their NIT opener last week – a 91-84 double overtime win at Wichita State – because their bid to host was homewrecked by the "Suessical Musical" scheduled at the Leon County Civic Center last week.

The Seminoles were forced on the road for their NIT opener last week – a 91-84 double overtime win at Wichita State – because their bid to host was homewrecked by the "Suessical Musical" scheduled at the Leon County Civic Center last week.

FSU, which has one of the stronger resumes in NIT field, got its wishes and will host Iowa State in second round action Tuesday night at 7 p.m. But early speculation that a victory would allow the 'Noles to host a quarterfinal game later in the week could be in jeopardy thanks to the musician from rural Greece. The tournament's organizers want the game played on Thursday or Friday and The Civic Center is booked Friday for a stop on Yanni's "Ethnicity" Tour.

It's exactly the kind of conflict FSU head coach Leonard Hamilton would like to avoid in the future as he continues to rebuild the program. Hamilton, a long-time assistant at Kentucky, said he never remembered a problem of this type in Lexington. The Wildcats play at Rupp Arena, which, like the Civic Center, is a privately owned off-campus facility.

STICKING TO THE HARDWOOD

Tim Pickett may have deadly accuracy from beyond the 3-point line but when he toes the rubber it's a different story.

Pickett and freshman swingman Von Waferthrew out the first pitch at Saturday night's baseball game in an effort to lobby the 4,263 in attendance to get their tickets for the game Tuesday against the Cyclones. While Wafer's effort ended up in the general vicinity of the strike zone, Pickett airmailed his to the backstop.

He was then showered with mock jeers of "airball, airball" from the fans at Dick Howser stadium.

"No one has said anything to me yet," Pickett said before practice Sunday. "But I'm sure I've got something coming."

After his team's 10-1 win over Maryland, Seminole skipper said he had no plans to add Pickett to his bullpen anytime soon. Teammates agreed.

"He needs to stick to basketball court," teammate Michael Joiner quipped.

INJURY UPDATE

Pickett continues to suffer though a pair of hyper extended ankles. FSU's leading scorer injured his left ankle diving for a loose ball in the regular season finale Georgia Tech and sprained his right ankle after coming down awkwardly from a jumper on the foot of Julius Hodge in FSU's ACC tournament loss to N.C. State.

Nearly a week between games has allowed Pickett to return to limited practice action.

"They still hurt," he said. "But I'd rather go out there and stretch than have them swell up. Some things I take part in and others I sit and watch."

Pickett said the status of his left ankle is considerably worse than his right.

Freshman Alexander Johnson and sophomore Andrew Wilson, who both have had ankle and foot problems, have been practicing


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