Sam Milanovich was a a basketball coach at Dickinson State. He was a charismatic guy with an infectious energy. If you met Sam, you will also remember him.
That's one of the reasons, Milanovich has events named after him, not only in Dickinson, but also Sioux Falls. Sam died of cancer in 1992, but his name live on with the Milanovich Classic at DSU which started on Friday.
For the current Blue Hawks men's basketball team, it's been mixed results, but what do you expect from a team with 12 new players on it.
"We struggled in our exhibition game against Minot in sustaining a 40-minute effort but overall it's been a group that's really applied themselves every day. Things we need to work on some chemistry and sustaining that execution on both ends that 40 minute effort. We have a long way to go but we may have some pieces that I really like and it's a good group to be around," said Justin Wetzel, DSU head coach .
"With a dozen new faces on the roster, being a returning player has its advantages and it's expectations," said Curtis Redd, DSU senior. "Obviously I know what coach wants. He likes blue collar guys and guys who come to work every day and it's something I pride myself on. I'm looking forward to being an extension of him on the court and it's been a lot easier now that I know what he likes to do."
"For the returners, it just helps us be comfortable. We're comfortable with what he wants on and off the court and expectations and like Curtis said we're an extension of him. We have to bring the new guys along with us," said Billy Engel, DSU senior.
The Blue Hawks open the Milanovich against Rocky Mountain College.