CFC TV: Prep for Italy has allowed Ernie Kent to put in base package this summer, hastening youth's development

PULLMAN - There's plenty of youth on the Washington State 2016-17 men's basketball team but Cougar coach Ernie Kent says the squad's prep for, and trip to, Italy next month will go far in their development.

In coming off "an outstanding summer" of workouts, Kent says the Cougs will no longer be a youthful team by the time they return from their August 4-14 trip.

Meanwhile, senior Josh Hawkinson, whose parents are handling the game scheduling and tour coordination through their company, Basketball Travelers, Inc., is looking forward to the bonding experience.

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* WSU will be in Italy for 10 days, from August 4-14. The tour will take Washington State to several different stops including Rome, Florence, Pisa, the Tuscany region, Venice, Vicenza and Como.  Washington State will play five games in Italy starting with Dream Team Italy Select, Saturday, Aug. 6 in Rome. In the second game, the Cougars will face Tuscany Select, Aug. 9 in Tuscany. The third game is against Vicenza Select, Aug. 11 at Vicenza followed by  Italian Select, Aug. 12 at Como and BC Silute of Lithuania on Aug. 13, also at Como.

* Washington State is scheduled for additional activities such as a trip to Vatican City, a sightseeing tour of the Colosseum and Roman Forum, a tour of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, a trip to the U.S. Military Base at Vicenza and a sightseeing tour of Lake Como, which includes a stop at Bellagio. The NCAA allows teams to travel overseas for a summer tour once every four years. Washington State most recently toured Australia in August of 2012 and before that Australia and New Zealand in the June of 2007.

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