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Raleigh Cougars Prepare for Second Season

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The goal of many of the Cougar players is to make it to the NBA.
RALEIGH — Over the past decade, the United States Basketball League has sent 114 of its players to the NBA. This Friday at Tampa, the Raleigh Cougars of the USBL start their second season, and many of the Cougars are dreaming big.

Tyrone Hopkins returns after a stint in the Philippines. Donald Williams comes to Raleigh after a couple of seasons in Europe. Ishua Benjamin moves over to the Cougars from NC State. All three have the same game plan-- to showcase their talent to the NBA through the USBL.

"The talent here is tremendous," says coach Twiggy Sanders. "You have to remember, this is the same league that produced Mugsy Bogues, Anthony Mason; Charlie Ward played for the Jacksonville franchise."

Sanders will coach this year's Raleigh Cougars. He'll emphasize fun, defense and winning. Coach Sanders says his team is going for a championship in the league. He doesn't get on his knees and pray for the team to come in second.

Coach Sanders knows when Cougars play well, his players will have the chance to move up through the higher levels of pro ball. That's why he has two or three strong players in every spot-- because all that matters is first.


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