Coach Bob Thomason’s final regular-season game at Pacific was part game, part reunion, as scores of his former classmates at Clayton Valley High in Concord, former teammates from his days at Pacific, and former players in his 25 years of coaching paid their respects at Spanos Center. All were in a gleeful mood following the Tigers’ 71-51 victory over Long Beach State.
Don Lyttle, a center on Thomason’s first team at Pacific in 1988-89, who is 43 and lives in Roseville and works for a technology company: “I don’t think the cupboard was bare (when Thomason took the Pacific job in 1988-89), but I think he wanted it to be bare because I thought he definitely wanted to start with a clean slate. I think he looked at some of the talent he had and put his elbows on the table and said, ‘Let’s make the best of this.’ I’m actually very proud to be a part of that.”
Dell Demps, Pacific guard from 1988-92 and the current general manager of the New Orleans Hornets: “Pacific fans, students, alumni, I don’t know if they know how lucky they’ve been to have a coach like this. In over 25 years, Pacific just didn’t play one way, they played a bunch of different ways. It seems like Coach Thomason is always in front of the curve. And even from his passing game to a pick-and-roll team to a post team to a 3-point shooting team, it’s just been so fun to watch.”