Team preview: Clemson

Blue Ribbon Illustrated previews the 2003-04 college basketball season, exclusively on Insider.

Updated: November 6, 2003, 10:50 AM ET
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Oliver Purnell passed up his first two chances to join the Clemson basketball program. He turned down an offer to join Bill Foster's staff in 1975, electing to work at his alma mater, Old Dominion, instead. And when Rick Barnes left Clemson for Texas after the 1998 season, Purnell rejected a chance to pursue the head job, sensing a lack of commitment "to make Clemson the best basketball program in the ACC."

But he sensed a new attitude last spring when Clemson athletics director Terry Don Phillips came calling after firing Larry Shyatt.