Thursday will be the one day all season that Steve Robinson will not be wishing the best for Radford's basketball team.
Robinson is a Radford alumnus. He is also a North Carolina assistant coach.
And on Thursday the teams will play each other in the NCAA Tournament's first round at the Greensboro Coliseum.
Robinson, who is in his sixth season on the UNC staff, said that he won't have any trouble doing his job and helping his team reach the second round.
"I don't know if my feelings are conflicted," he said. "I'm happy for them and happy for us. I've been doing this a long time and I know what my feelings are. I know what my feelings are supposed to be. They're in check."
Robinson played at Radford in the 1979 and '80 seasons after transferring from Ferrum Junior College in Virginia. He graduated in 1981 and earned a master's degree at the school in 1985.
He was an assistant coach at Radford for three seasons starting in the 1984 season. He was inducted into the school's athletics hall of fame.
Robinson couldn't cite what he considered his smoothest move on the floor as a Radford player.
"I just played hard," he said. "I wasn't afraid to dive on the floor for a loose ball. Whatever we needed, I just tried to do."
Coach Roy Williams of UNC said the possibility was great yesterday that pictures of Robinson from Radford basketball media guides from 30 years ago would be posted in the team's locker room.
Robinson wasn't worried that the UNC players and other coaches would kid him excessively about his appearance in 1979. He would welcome a picture from back then of a younger man with more hair.
Robinson was one of the first three players to receive a grant-in-aid when Radford began playing major-college basketball. He has returned the assistance by helping endow a scholarship at the school in the name of his Radford coach, Joe Davis, to be given to a basketball team manager.
"I've always felt part of the university," Robinson said. "I enjoy very much being a part of that university."
■ Bill Cole can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.