FSU Ends Tigers' Season, Shyatt Watch Begins


by - Correspondent -
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Dwon Clifton looks for help down the court.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Thursday night's 91-84 overtime loss to Florida State in
the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament play-in game proved to be a
microcosm of Clemson's season.


It also might have been the last game for Tigers' head coach Larry Shyatt,
who watched an all-too familiar script unfold in Charlotte Coliseum.


Clemson trailed by as many as 13 points early, fought back to lead by nine
with five minutes to go, only to blow that lead and have to rally from three
points down in the final 25 seconds of regulation.


Only a tip-in by Tomas Nagys with six-tenths of a second left allowed the
Tigers an extra five minutes in the 2001-2002 season.


But in the end Clemson's hopes of making noise in the ACC Tournament died in
overtime. Whether Shyatt's coaching career did the same is yet to be seen.


"I don't," Shyatt said when asked if he knew anything about his future.
Later, when prompted to assess the program and his ability to lead it, he
spoke in glowing terms about the downtrodden team in the locker room.


"We've got great kids, both on the floor and off," he said. "They're quality
individuals and they work very hard. We've improved so much in some areas,
and in a couple of others we're still behind. But I think we've made great
strides.


"With nine of our (top) 10 returning, and 18 of the top 40 in the league not
coming back, next year has a chance to be a special year. But we've got to
continue getting quality kids in here. I think we're a great shooter away
from being a team to be reckoned with next season."


In the locker room, each Clemson player seemed to face the same question:


Do you want Shyatt to return?


Without fail, their answer was yes.


"He brought us here, formed this team and has us moving in the right
direction," said sophomore forward Chris Hobbs. "I definitely want him back."


"This coaching staff loves us and cares about us," said freshman Sharrod
Ford, who had his best night of the season with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
"They care about us as players, and as people, and I want them all back next
year."


Whether or not that happens, at this point only athletic director Bobby
Robinson - and perhaps school President James Barker - know.


A decision could come as soon as Friday. It may have to.


Shyatt is scheduled for a recruiting trip for Saturday.

Clemson (13-17; ACC: 4-12)     33    34    17   84
Florida St (12-16; ACC: 4-12)  36    31    24   91

Clemson
PLAYER          MIN  FGM-A FTM-A OFF   REB   AST   PF    PTS
R. Henderson    26   2-7   0-1   5     10    0     4     4
C. Hobbs        13   1-3   1-3   1     6     1     5     3
T. Stockman     39   2-15  1-2   1     3     3     3     7
E. Scott        45   9-24  1-1   2     5     7     2     23
J. McKnight     33   4-14  2-4   2     7     1     5     12
T. Nagys        30   5-6   7-10  3     9     0     5     18
S. Ford         21   4-5   4-6   4     11    0     4     12
O. Babalola     4    0-0   0-0   0     0     0     0     0
C. Christie     8    1-3   0-0   0     0     2     1     2
D. Clifton      6    1-2   0-0   0     0     0     2     3
Totals          225  29-79 16-27 18    51    14    31    84
                    .367  .593   
TEAM REBS: 2
TURNOVERS: 6 (E Scott 3, C Hobbs, T Stockman, J Mcknight)
BLOCKED SHOTS: 4 (R Henderson 3, T Stockman)
STEALS: 6 (R Henderson, J Mcknight, T Nagys, E Scott, 
T Stockman, S Ford)
3-PT FGS: 10-29, .345 (T Stockman 2-10, E Scott 4-9, 
J Mcknight 2-6, T Nagys 1-1, C Christie 0-1, D Clifton 1-2)

Florida State
PLAYER          MIN  FGM-A FTM-A OFF   REB   AST   PF    PTS
A. Dixon        36   4-9   1-2   1     4     4     2     11
A. Waleskowski  19   0-4   8-8   4     6     0     1     8
N. Dixon        22   3-7   3-10  6     13    2     4     9
D. Arrington    44   7-14  6-10  0     6     6     3     24
M. Cummings     40   6-17  5-10  1     5     2     0     17
M. Joiner       21   5-6   3-6   1     5     1     3     15
J. Bracy        5    0-0   0-0   0     0     0     2     0
T. Harvey       22   3-3   1-2   3     9     0     3     7
M. Haywood      1    0-1   0-0   0     0     0     0     0
M. Mathews      6    0-0   0-0   0     1     0     2     0
A. Richardson   9    0-4   0-0   0     1     1     0     0
Totals          225  28-65 27-48 16    50    16    20    91
                    .431  .563   
TEAM REBS: 3
TURNOVERS: 8 (D Arrington 3, N Dixon 2, A Dixon, M Joiner,
T Harvey)
BLOCKED SHOTS: 2 (T Harvey, A Waleskowski)
STEALS: 3 (D Arrington 2, T Harvey)
3-PT FGS: 8-18, .444 (A Dixon 2-6, A Waleskowski 0-1, 
D Arrington 4-5, M Cummings 0-2, M Joiner 2-3, 
A Richardson 0-1)

Technicals: None
Attendance: 16,333 

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