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Hibbert's Fro, and Presidential Politics


The 'fro, about two weeks ago. (By Toni Sandys - TWP)

Yesterday's we examined the many hair styles of Maryland's Greivis Vasquez, tomorrow we'll pay tribute to the truly delightful look of Virginia Tech Coach Seth Greenberg, but today it's on to Georgetown's Roy Hibbert, who last cut his hair shortly before Midnight Madness and plans to keep the 'fro going until he resembles the Atlanta Hawks' Josh Childress. (Although teammate Jessie Sapp think he's already there, if he would only pick it out.) Hibbert and Childress met over the summer, and Hibbert was inspired.

"I always wanted to grow a 'fro when I was younger so I said why not grow it like his," Hibbert said today. "You know, it was my last year, I might as well go all out."

In seasons past, Hibbert has let the 'fro grow as the postseason approached, but this year he decided he'd start early. He also hasn't shaved his face for about a month--"he's going for the 'grown-man look,' that's all he ever talks about," Jonathan Wallace said--but Hibbert's gotten enough negative feedback about the beard from friends (and parents) that he decided to clean up.

"I look horrible right now," he said. "I'm going to get to it as soon as possible"

And what do teammates think about the look?

"What do YOU think about the look?" Patrick Ewing Jr. asked me.

"I support it entirely," I said.

"Well, I support it too," Ewing said. "Hey, man, it's Roy. He looks like Roy. Take that how you want. If it helps him play better, then I'm all for it."

"I guess he's going for the rugged look," Wallace said. "I don't really care too much for it, [but] he's playing well with it, let him keep it."

"I like it, I think it shows a rough side of him," Sapp said. "I say we go with it."

Which doesn't mean that his teammates don't make fun of Hibbert for the somewhat lopsided halo of hair sprouting out of his head, which makes him the spiritual cousin of Maryland's Bambale Osby.

"Oh of course we do," Ewing said. "I mean, it looks like he has a bird's nest in there or something."

"They say there's lint in my hair, everything like that," Hibbert agreed. "But obviously appearance is important, so I make up for that by wearing nice suits."

Hibbert, teammates told me, is also a huge fan of mafia books. He grew up watching "The Untouchables" with his mother and is forever reading Mario Puzo novels during road trips.

"In basketball, you know, Coach Thompson's like Michael Corleone, he's the head of the family, and Big John's the Don," Hibbert said as a Georgetown spokesman cringed.

Incidentally, both Coach John Thompson III and 'fro-inspiration Childress have donated significant sums to the campaign of Barack Obama, and Hibbert met the candidate at a dinner in Montgomery County, but the government major said he remains neutral and would have traveled to see Hillary Clinton speak if it were feasible. And he added that presidential politics is a frequent topic of conversation among the upperclassmen on the team.

"We don't sit [with] the coaches'--the adults table--but we overhear that stuff, we talk about it," he joked. "Fifteen years down the line, after Jon and myself's careers are done in the NBA, hopefully I can his running mate. I'll be his vice president when he runs for president. I think he'll probably do it; he'll take care of the South, I'll take care of the North. He's from Alabama, he'll get the Southern votes and I'll take care of the swing states."

Hibbert was asked why Wallace got to be at the top of the ticket; " he's more charming, I think," the big man said, before deciding that Hoyas' enforcer Tyler Crawford would be their secretary of defense.

"I'm not agreeing to that," Wallace said of the presidential race. "I don't know what Roy's talking about."

In any case, Thompson was eventually asked whether he'd support a Wallace-Hibbert ticket.

"Not any time soon," he said. "Let's see what they do in the 20 years."

By Dan Steinberg  |  February 13, 2008; 7:00 PM ET
Categories:  College Basketball  
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