University of Maryland guard Walt Williams, who began as one of the lesser-known players at tryouts for this year's Pan Am Games team, was one of 12 selected yesterday by U.S. head coach Gene Keady.
Keady, who also coaches Purdue, said the 6-foot-8 senior from Temple Hills has a chance to start at either point guard or shooting guard when the competition begins in Havana next week. The United States will play the host team in the opening round.
"He's certainly going to play a lot," Keady said from West Lafayette, Ind., where the team was to practice last night before leaving today for Orlando, Fla. "A lot depends on how he does the next few days. We're going to be scrimmaging the Yugoslavians down in Florida."
Williams, who missed six weeks last season after suffering a fractured left fibula in mid-January, was one of five ACC players named to the team. Three members of Duke's national championship team -- Grant Hill, Thomas Hill and Christian Laettner -- were chosen, along with Eric Montross of North Carolina. Tom Gugliotta of North Carolina State was one of two alternates.
The other guards on the team were Jim Jackson of Ohio State, Terry Dehere of Seton Hall and Tony Bennett of Wisconsin-Green Bay. Other players selected were Adam Keefe of Stanford, Tracy Murray of UCLA, Mike Peplowski of Michigan State and Clarence Weatherspoon of Southern Mississippi. Byron Houston of Oklahoma State was the other alternate.
Walt Williams couldn't be reached for comment.
Terrapins coach Gary Williams said: "I think for Walt personally, just getting some more games is important. I think it's good for Walt to play for someone like Gene Keady. He'll have to play hard. During the summer, a player of Walt's talent doesn't always have to play hard."