Juneau-Douglas High School graduate Carlos Boozer Jr. of Duke University is one of 45 college basketball players around the country invited to participate in the USA Basketball Men's National Team Trials, it was announced Tuesday.
The tryouts will be held June 1-3 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., and the 45 players will be auditioning for two different teams. One group will be named to the 2001 USA Basketball World Championship for Men Team, which will compete in Japan in August, while the other group of players will represent the country in the World University Games.
Boozer is one of four Duke players invited to try out for the squads, joining teammates Chris Duhon, Mike Dunleavy Jr. and Donhtay Jones. Maryland and Illinois are the only schools to have three players auditioning for the national teams. Alabama, Iowa, Memphis, St. Joseph's, Virginia and Wake Forest each have two players trying out for the teams.
Boozer tried out last year for the USA Basketball World Championship for Men Qualifying Team, which played in a tournament in Brazil, but he was one of the final cuts and didn't make the team.
Boozer said early last season that being cut from the team was one of the reasons he had such a strong start for the Blue Devils this past year. Boozer's return from a foot injury during the NCAA Championships helped Duke claim the national championship.
During an interview last week, Boozer hinted that he'd been invited to try out for the national team again and he said he was looking forward to the opportunity to try and represent his country in Japan. The final cut-down for the team will be during a July 22-30 training camp.
The 2001 FIBA World Championship for Young Men Tournament is for players born after Jan. 1, 1980, and will take place Aug. 3-12 in Saitama, Japan. The tourney is held every four years and will feature 12 teams divided into two preliminary round pools.
Team USA will be in Pool B, joining Argentina, Croatia, Israel, Japan and South Korea. Pool A features Australia, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Qatar, Slovenia and Spain. Team USA will be coached by Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim.
The World University Games is held every two years, with this year's tournament taking place Aug. 22-Sept. 1 in Beijing, China. The tournament is open to university and college students between the ages of 17 and 28 years old.
The competition features teams from 28 countries, and the United States will be in Pool B with Iran, South Africa and Turkey. Team USA will be coached by Penn State's Jerry Dunn and the final squad will be named during an Aug. 10-18 training camp.