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Media requests swamp Richmond, VCU

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SAN ANTONIO — The busiest man at Virginia Commonwealth University closed on a new home Tuesday, awaits the arrival of his first child in a month and a half and coordinates media relations for one of country’s hottest basketball teams.

No wonder Scott Day struggles to find time for sleep.

By the time Day arrived at the airport after VCU upset Purdue Sunday night and earned spot in the Sweet 16, he had 32 emails, phone calls and text messages with media requests. That ballooned to 163 before the team flew to Texas Wednesday.

The requests from national media on a normal week?

“We don’t get any,” Day said.

Day slept 40 minutes after the Purdue win, sorting through requests and the week’s media plan to capitalize on the unique opportunity to get coverage for the university. They ranged from ESPN’s Kenny Mayne shooting a bit at practice to three requests from Kansas City media.

To keep players focused, interviews were cut off Tuesday until Thursday’s media sessions at the Alamodome.

Day’s biggest surprise? None of the requests — or attention — came from ESPN analysts Jay Bilas and Dick Vitale, who ripped VCU’s inclusion in the tournament.

Over at Richmond, Mark Kwolek is more accustomed to media attention after the Spiders landed in the top 25 last season. But 152 requests poured in, from the smallest outlets to the largest.

“It’s hectic, but it’s fun,” Kwolek said. “This is what you do it for.”

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