With Fears Allayed, Trojans Ready to Go on Tour
USC forward Tremayne Anchrum’s reaction was not positive when he first heard about the Trojans’ nine-game, 17-day basketball tour of Asia. He did not want to go.
“I’ve never been out of the country . . . not even to Hawaii,” said Anchrum, a 6-foot-5 senior who grew up in Montbello, Colo. “Basically, making a long trip over water is not something that sounded good to me.”
So, to help Anchrum and his teammates prepare for their trip that begins today when the Trojans leave for Hong Kong, USC assistant Adrian Walters had the players meet with a group of students and professors familiar with the countries they will visit.
Headed by John Wills, USC’s East Asian Study Center director, the group gave the players tips on what to wear, eat and buy when they travel to Hong Kong, Taipei (Taiwan) and Seoul (South Korea).
“I know that I’m kind of scared, but now I’m excited to see the different cultures,” Anchrum said. “This will probably be a cultural experience that I’ll probably never get again in my life.”
USC, which lost in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament and finished with a 16-12 record last season, will play several national teams on the tour and will conclude its trip Aug. 30 at the Seoul Olympic Arena.
“On a trip like this, basketball is kind of secondary,” said junior guard Brandon Martin, who along with sophomore Jaha Wilson are the only Trojans who have played outside the country. “You always want to win but a tour of this nature gives us an opportunity to not only be exposed to different things culturally but also a chance to come together as a team on a personal basis.”
Senior Lorenzo Orr, a returning All-Pacific 10 performer, will be one of 12 players making the trip for the Trojans, who will have to play without starting point guard Burt Harris, who is sidelined with a foot injury. Stais Boseman, who will be academically ineligible for the first month of the regular season, will play.