Franz Beard’s Basketball Confidential

Keep an eye on Chandler Parsons during the spring and the summer because those skinny arms are starting to fill out with muscle. Parsons is going through a nice growth spurt right now and he’s added 8-10 pounds just since the end of the basketball season back in April. He could be a legitimate 6-10 by the time practice begins in October, too. Parsons played at 205 as a freshman, but the goal is for him to be at 225-230 in the fall with greatly improved strength.

Parsons isn’t the only one who has been hitting the weight room hard. Jai Lucas is starting to fill out. He’s up to 160 now, a 12-pound gain since the end of the season. Lucas wore down physically as the season progressed last year so the added weight should translate into increased stamina.

The strength and conditioning staff is hoping to get a few more pounds of muscle on Nick Calathes before he takes off for Europe to play for the Greek Olympic team. Nick’s up about 4-5 pounds right now (almost at 200) and the goal is somewhere between 205-210. Nick is waiting on his paperwork which will allow him to join the Greek national team for the Olympics. According to Nick’s dad, John, everything has been sent in but nothing will be processed and sent out until sometime in the next week or two after the Greek national tournament is completed. Nick’s brother, Pat Calathes, who averaged 18 per game for St. Joseph’s this year, won’t be on the Greek team because it will conflict with the NBA Draft. Pat is expected to be picked in the first half of the second round…

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Franz Beard
Back in January of 1969, the late, great Jack Hairston, then the sports editor of the Jacksonville Journal, called me on the phone one night and asked me if I wanted to work for him. I said yes. The entire interview took 30 seconds. It's my experience that whenever the interview lasts 30 seconds or less, I get the job. In the 48 years that I've been writing and getting paid for it, I've covered Super Bowls, World Series, NCAA basketball championships, BCS championship games, heavyweight title fights and what seems like thousands of college football, baseball and basketball games. I'm a columnist and special assignments editor for Gator Country once again, writing about the only team that ever mattered to me, the Florida Gators.