$25,000 Rides on Field Goal Attempt
Posted March 20, 1998 6:00 a.m. EST
RALEIGH — There is a basketball player going to the Sweet 16 who doesn't have a uniform, a number or a team. Raleigh's John Russell will be on the court Saturday in St. Petersburg. Sinking a three-pointer will make him $25,000 dollars richer.
The sound of a basketball swooshing the nest is music to John Russell's ears. He hopes he hears nothing but net when he tries to sink a field goal for the big money.
Russell got this chance by simply dialing a toll free number and entering a contest. One night Russell's wife told him Gilette had called. He found it unbelievable.
Russell is a believer now, so he practices to sharpen his shot.
"I've got tips from everybody," Russell admits. "Use your legs. Don't use your hands. Use the tips of your fingers. I've got so many tips, I don't know what to do."
With all that money on the line, everyone's trying to get a piece of the action. Plenty of people are willing to train Russell for a price.
Twenty-five thousand dollars is no laughing matter. Russell admits he's nervous, so he's getting his game plan together. He'll do his best to block out the crowd and not think about them or the money at stake.
If Russell misses his big three-pointer, he still has a chance to be in the money. He also competes against two others. Whoever makes the most three-pointers out of ten shots advances for a chance to win $2 million dollars at the Final Four.