OSU's Hurd to Travel to Asia with Athletes in Action

June 14, 2005

Corvallis - Lamar Hurd, who will be a senior point guard for Oregon State in 2005-06, will be part of an Athletes in Action team that will send current and former collegiate basketball players to Asia, where they will play 10 games in 12 days in late June and early July.

Hurd is a three-year starter for the Beavers. With another strong year, he could move into the top five on OSU's career assists chart. Hurd averaged 2.7 points, 3.2 rebounds and 3.0 assists as a 2004-05 junior, helping the Beavers to their first winning season and first postseason appearance since 1989-90. He is also a two-time Pac-10 All-Academic honorable mention selection.

'They asked me to do this earlier in the year, and I thought about it for a while,' Hurd said. 'It's a chance to do something really unique in a region that I'd never get to visit otherwise. It's an opportunity that I couldn't pass up.'

Coaches, players and support staff will assemble in Houston this weekend for a five-day training camp and the beginning of a journey that will carry them across cultures.

'What American athlete who thrives on basketball, battles to fight and adventures to live would not want the whirlwind experience that awaits these fine young men?' asked head coach Morris Michalski. 'We fully expect the personal growth and cultural exchange to be rich and life-changing. We are looking for victories in and beyond competition and pray that we get that.'

AIA will also host clinics and visit local universities to achieve the primary goal of sharing with and learning about each different culture. Using the common bond of basketball, the object is to connect with local people in a unique way so as to bridge the gap between the groups. The team will play an array of opponents from professional teams to junior national squads.

'Having observed East Asia pro leagues and knowing the obvious forward thrust that players like Yao Ming are bringing to that part of the world, I certainly respect the international competition we will face,' Morris said. 'It will be potent for sure and the schedule very demanding. Our kids are in for a real treat.'

The other players on the roster are Devante Blanks (Wisconsin-GB), Todd Hendley (UNC-Wilmington), Kevin Hughes (Wisconsin-GB), Zach Hyatt (Walters State CC), Aaron Jessup (Wisconsin-GB), Steve Newman (Georgia), Shawan Robinson (Clemson), Trent Strickland Jr. (Wake Forest), Kyle Visser (Wake Forest) and Wes Wilkinson (Nebraska).

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