Tony Allen plans to get more involved with the current OSU basketball program

Despite his deep-seeded love for OSU, Tony Allen has fallen out of touch with his college program. But that all seems to be changing, with a recent Stillwater camp and preliminary plans to honor his 2004 Final Four team at an upcoming game.
by Anthony Slater Modified: August 1, 2013 at 6:08 pm •  Published: August 1, 2013
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photo - OSU's Tony Allen holds up the Big 12 tournament MVP award after winning the 2004 conference title. / Staff photo by Bryan Terry.
OSU's Tony Allen holds up the Big 12 tournament MVP award after winning the 2004 conference title. / Staff photo by Bryan Terry.

More than most, Tony Allen consistently expresses a deep appreciation for the people and places that paved his path to the NBA.

That, in particular, includes those who made his two-year stay at Oklahoma State such a successful one.

Ask about his college degree and he’ll laud the academic advisers. Ask about his world-class defense and he turns the conversation toward Eddie Sutton, his former coach and lifelong mentor.

“This is where I got all that grind work from,” Allen said at his basketball camp in Stillwater on Wednesday, pointing down to the Gallagher-Iba hardwood as a way of emphasizing his point. “(Where I) got that technique from. This is how I was able to study film and break down each individual that I’m gonna cover. Everything that I do today in this league, being able to guard these players, I got to salute Coach Sutton.”

But in recent years, despite a deep-seeded love for the program, Allen has fallen out of touch with it.

The NBA schedule is hectic, not allowing in-season visits to Stillwater. And many of the brand names from his time, particularly the Suttons, are gone, replaced by a new regime.

He’s still an OSU fan. Still sends out congratulatory tweets after big wins. “I watch a lot of YouTube,” he said. “So I’m pretty familiar with who the (current players) are, the Smart kid and the Nash kid.”

But his connection to the program has been strictly on an outsider basis. And that’s something he hopes to change.

“I definitely want to be involved,” Allen said. “This is where I got my career off the ground at and I can’t say any more good words about this great place.”

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by Anthony Slater
Thunder Beat Writer
Anthony Slater started on the Thunder beat in the summer of 2013, joining after two years as NewsOK.com's lead sports blogger and web editor. A native Californian, Slater attended Sonoma State for two years before transferring to Oklahoma State in...
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