Bulldog Assistant Promoted

Associated Press

Rick Stansbury, the assistant coach credited for recruiting two of Mississippi State's most successful teams, was appointed the Bulldogs' new head coach Friday at Starkville, Miss.

Stansbury's promotion came less than 24 hours after Richard Williams, the school's winningest coach, announced his retirement.

Stansbury, 38, has never been a head coach at any level, but has served on the Mississippi State staff the last eight seasons. The Bulldogs advanced to the NCAA round of 16 in 1995 and to their only Final Four appearance in 1996. Stansbury was responsible for recruiting both of those teams.


North Carolina point guard Ed Cota sat out practice because of a stomach virus, staying in the team's hotel at Hartford, Conn., while the Tar Heels prepared for their second-round matchup against North Carolina Charlotte.

Cota is expected to play today against the 49ers, according to team trainer Marc Davis.


Two overtime games and three last-second wins helped CBS' ratings recover slightly from last year's all-time low numbers.

The four games Thursday averaged a 4.6 rating/10 share, up 2% from the 4.5/10 in 1997. Last year's tournament was the lowest-rated in CBS' 16 years of showing the NCAAs.

A rating point represents 980,000 households, or 1% of the nation's estimated 98 million TV homes. Share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show.

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