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Tony Bennett — the coach, not the singer — is quirky. Mysterious. Someone who believes "it's okay to be different."
That's the basic storyline for an in-depth Washington Post profile of Bennett, whose Virginia Cavaliers men's basketball team enters March Madness as the No. 1 overall seed.
Ghosts - Anyone - Post - Manages - Words
Strangely enough (ghosts, anyone?), the Post manages to write 1,850 words about Bennett without any reference to terms such as "faith," "Christian" and "prayer."
Those familiar with Bennett will understand why that's so remarkable. More on that in a moment.
Post - Opening - Paragraphs
But first, the Post's haunted opening paragraphs:
CHARLOTTESVILLE — Most everyone had taken shelter by now, but Tony Bennett was walking in the rain. In his mind, some things are worse than a downpour.
Bennett - Way - Minutes - Tip-off - Virginia
Bennett was making his way to work 87 minutes before tip-off against Virginia Tech, a late arrival for most college basketball coaches but early for the Virginia coach, a man who detests idle time. And though a cozy security tent sat a few dozen yards away, a crowd was beneath it on this February afternoon, so Bennett made his way between a wall and a television truck.
Even Bennett’s staff used to find some of his quirks odd, but when you’re the coach of the nation’s No. 1 team and the architect of an ACC powerhouse, it’s all part of the plan.
Things - Bennett - Bit - Efficiency - Profession
“Certain things are sacred to me,” Bennett would say a bit later, and among those are efficiency, maximizing potential and — perhaps most precious in a profession filled with self-promoters — his privacy.
Hmmmm. Are those really the only things sacred to Bennett?
Let's keep reading:
Bennett is perhaps college basketball’s most public mystery. He actively avoids the spotlight for himself and his program, believes pregame theatrics and between-game hype are pointless, and doesn’t see how interviews and television appearances can benefit his team. And with the Cavaliers...
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