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Dave Odom Returns to Boyhood Basketball Camp

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BUIES CREEK — The basketball season has ended with the latest triumph of the Chicago Bulls, but the basketball camp season is just getting started.

In fact, basketball camps have quite a tradition in Eastern North Carolina. Wake Forest's Dave Odom knows about summer basketball as a coach and a former camper. Wednesday, he returned to the camp of his youth at Campbell University.

The sight of basketball campers running brings back memories for Dave Odom. As a young athlete in Goldsboro he spent many sessions at the Cambell basketball school.

"Never, ever do I come back to Buies Creek and to Cambell without thinking of my days in these very seats here, and the bus rides to the different gymnasiums," Odom said.

The Wake Forest coach and Cambell camp alumnus made an appearance to sign autographs for the campers. Odom is one of the great achievers in the college game, and yet he seems to enjoy his time with young campers, most of whom will never be college players.

Odom brings a serious message to the camp. "One of the things that really bothers me about basketball today is everybody is telling everybody how good they are. They are beating their chest or shaking their fist or pointing their fingers at people. I think as coaches we need to try to cut that out. We need the players to play and show us how good they are."

Most of Dave Odom's summer is consumed with preparing for next season in Winston Salem. He thinks that he will enjoy watching the Deacons from the sidelines next season.

"Our freshman group played really well last year," Odom said. "The best thing about them is that they are sophomores and are going to be older."

Whether it is visiting young campers or coaching top collegians, Odom continues to show an enthusiasm for the game.


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