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Knight Caps: a weekend of Rutgers stuff

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And Jimmy V gets a just honor

Jim Valvano NC St

Valvano Court

Before there was a V Foundation. Before there was Dickie V chatting it up with Jimmy V. Before there was some crazy NC State coach running around the court looking for someone to hug after winning the NCAA title. Before all that, there was Jim Valvano, Rutgers basketball player.

And on Saturday, Rutgers will honor this favorite son by naming the court that he played on after him.

The playing court at the College Avenue Gym - The Barn - will bear the name of a player who was part of the start of a Rutgers rise in the late '60's.

It was Valvano’s squad that took third place at the 1967 NIT - after losing to Walt Frazier and Southern Illinois in the semis - by topping Marshall. It was, to that point, the high watermark for Knights basketball.

RAC WEIGHT ROOM

If you ever went to a contest at the RAC and you sat on the east side, you probably passed the weight room that served the RAC. It was, for all intent and purposes, an oversized storage room that had weights in it. No more.

The Harriet and Bob Druskin Strength and Conditioning Center is now open for business. And so is recruiting!

It’s amazing what a couple million dollars can do, and the Druskins, long time supporters, decided that this was the right time to step forward (again) to make the weight room a reality. The room will be used by multiple sports that call the RAC and surrounding facilities home, including both basketball squads, baseball, softball, field hockey, and track & field.

Where’s the Knight?

When was the last time you saw the knight statue at Rutgers? Answer: you didn’t. Until now, there has never - Nev. Er. - been a knight in any form on the campus that has the knight as its mascot. That changes on Saturday.

Chris Paladino, RU alum and president of New Brunswick Development Corporation (DEVCO), the folks who brought you The Yard, are erecting a knight statue at The Yard. The first - and only, thus far - such commemoration on campus.

Rutgers Day and Alumni Weekend

Saturday, April 29 is the annual Rutgers Day. In essence, the campus is open for visitors to see their state university. It was an outgrowth of the old Ag Field Day. In the past and on occasion, the Spring Game was held in conjunction; that has been ended, at least for now. But it lets people come out and see a slew of stuff about Rutgers.

It’s happening on sll three campuses, Newark, Camden, as well as New Brunswick/Piscataway. For details of what’s going on at Rutgers Day, you can go here. For info on Alumni Weekend, check this out.

Some important sports stuff, too

Baseball, softball, and men’s lacrosse all are home this weekend. On top of Rutgers Day. Think traffic in Piscataway will be light?

Baseball has a huge series starting today at 3:00 pm against Michigan (7-5, fifth place). The Knights are in eighth place in the Big Ten with a 4-5 record. The series could go a long way to determine where both teams fit into post-season play. RU lot a 13-7 sunset-shortened non-conference game to Columbia on Wednesday.

Men’s lacrosse (9-4, 1-3 B1G), No. 12 in the nation, is struggling and fighting for its post-season life. It plays its final regular season on Saturday at HPSS against No. 4 Ohio State (12-2, 3-1). Whether RU makes the Big Ten tournament is a major question. The possibility of making the NCAA tournament is still there.

Softball is likely not making any postseason. They do have a healthy and not insurmountablechallenge as they host the other Michigan team, the Spartans (25-19, 7-10 B1G). The series opens today at 3.