Boyd Grant unable to attend Fresno State’s 30-year anniversary of NIT championship

Former Fresno State men’s basketball coach Boyd Grant waves while being recognized at half time of the Fresno State women’s game againt Idaho at the Save Mart Center Thursday, February 16, 2012. (CRAIG KOHLRUSS/THE FRESNO BEE)

Fresno State will celebrate the 30th anniversary of the men’s basketball team’s 1983 NIT championship on Saturday, but coach Boyd Grant won’t be able to attend after all.

Grant — who in nine seasons (1977-86) guided the Bulldogs to an overall record of 194-74, including 25-10 in the NIT title season of 1982-83 — is recovering from pneumonia and won’t  be at the 7 p.m. game against Boise State at the Save Mart Center. The team will be honored at halftime.

“It is with great disappointment that I will not be able to attend this weekend’s 30 year celebration of the 1983 Championship team,” Grant said, in a news release. “I am excited to hear that so many of the players from that team are returning to celebrate such an accomplishment after 30 years with the dedicated fans of the Red Wave that supported them through it all.”

Players from the 1982-83 team expected to be in attendance include Tyrone Bradley, Marvin Carter, Dave Mosebar, Charlie Smith, Mark Gustin, Omel Nieves, Mitch Arnold and Desi Barmore. Other former Bulldogs from that era, including Bobby Anderson, Bobby Davis, Kenny Cook and Art Williams will also be on hand.

Two of the team’s stars — “Bookend Forwards” Bernard Thompson and Ron Anderson — are not scheduled to attend.

“I’m really excited about coming back and seeing my friends,” Bradley said. “It will be great to get together after all of these years.”

Said Mosebar: “I am very much looking forward to seeing all of the guys and coaches. I’m sorry that we won’t be able to see Coach Grant there because of his pneumonia, but I am looking forward to seeing all of the guys.”

In the 1983 NIT, Fresno State defeated UTEP (71-64), Michigan State (72-58), Oregon Sate (76-67) and Wake Forest (86-62) to reach the final against DePaul. The Bulldogs beat the Blue Demons 69-60 in the championship.

Note: Fresno State is promoting Saturday’s matchup as a White Out game. All fans are encouraged to wear white and the first 500 through the doors will get an official White Out game day shirt and some fans will also receive a Coach Terry Towel.