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Basketball great influenced Bob Bradley

  • SI.com, Tuesday, May 25, 2010 2:34 AM

Grant Wahl reports it was obvious that U.S. coach Bob Bradley enjoyed spending a week before the World Cup at his alma mater, Princeton, site of the South Africa-bound USA's training camp.

Bradley flashed his biggest smile of the week when he posed with Hall of Famer Pete Carril, the 79-year-old former Princeton basketball coach. As a young soccer coach at Princeton in the 1980s, Bradley latched onto Carril, who served as a sort of Yoda figure, offering wisdom to Bradley at one of the local watering holes, writes Wahl.

“Normally you’re in a conversation with somebody and you say ‘A’ and they say ‘B’ and it keeps going from there,” Bradley recalled. “I found out early from Pete, I would say ‘A’ and he’d maybe say ‘W.’ At some point you then understand that there’s other ways to see things. When you’re a coach and you come in contact with people who do see things a little differently, who see it at a different level, who challenge you, that’s important. To have him show up was great.”

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