After a tempestuous Tuesday that began with players being questioned by local police and ended with the publishing of a CBS Sports report that alleged Georgia Tech coach Josh Pastner of NCAA rules violations, Wednesday was a much more enjoyable day for the Yellow Jackets.
The team practiced in preparation for its season opener against UCLA before spending the afternoon at Shanghai Disney Resort, where, among other things, freshmen Evan Jester (closer to camera) and Moses Wright tried out a model of the Tron roller-coaster. How the day looked in pictures.
A view of the Huangpu River from the Tech team bus on its way to practice. The smog is considerable throughout the city and significantly limits visibility. The air quality index on Thursday topped out at 199. On the spectrum of air quality categories, it’s at the top of “unhealthy” and just below “very unhealthy.”
Tech practiced in the morning at Dulwich College, an international school. A beautiful school in a tree-lined neighborhood, it is the rare school with a bakery on campus.
Tech players enjoying a laugh during lunch at the Disney Shanghai Resort. Particularly amused is freshman walk-on Evan Jester.
Hall of famer Bill Walton chats up center Ben Lammers prior to Lammers and coach Josh Pastner speaking at a news conference to promote Saturday’s game. Among other things, Pastner was introduced as “John Pastner,” which apparently is what his placard read. “I’ve been called worse,” Pastner said in making the correction.
The emcee of the occasion apparently was additionally confused introducing them because of Pastner’s apparently youthful appearance, acknowledging she didn’t at first know which of the two was the coach and which the player.
Part of the media notes for Saturday’s game. At the news conference, held at Shanghai Disney, there were perhaps 15 or 20 local reporters on hand. Besides Lammers and Pastner, UCLA coach Steve Alford and guard Aaron Holiday also spoke. The primary speakers were Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott, Dazhong Zhang (CEO of Alisports, the sports arm of the e-commerce company Alibaba) and XUE Yanqing (secretary general of the Federation of University Sports of China).
Tech players, coach, staff and cheerleaders pose in front of the Disney castle. The team spent about 3 ½hours in the park before returning to the team hotel. Pastner was mildly interested in the excursion, going on the Pirates of the Carribean ride (in the same boat with a much more enthused Steve Alford) before eventually going back to the team bus to get his laptop to watch game video.