Destiny's Child

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Then he makes both pressure free throws.

ASU wins by two points, 75-73. Diogu has scored 25 points, and hauled in nine rebounds.

After doing his post-game interviews, Diogu heads for the west tunnel exit by himself. He has a happy bounce to his step, and spontaneously breaks into a soul song of undetermined origin.

Diogu and several teammates stop to sign autographs for some kids, then he and Serge step into the misty evening and head back to the dorm.

There, the relief and joy of the moment are palpable. The roommates are joined by half a dozen or so friends, including a few teammates. A girlfriend of Diogu's turns on the oven and sticks in a sheet of chocolate-chip cookies.

The sweet aroma fills the room.

No matter what Diogu says about dealing with pressure, it is off for this evening.

He surveys the room, bantering to this person and that. In this moment of revelry, it's easy to understand why Diogu seems so torn about leaving for the NBA, good as he is and frustrated as he must be with the situation at times.

Ike Diogu knows he'll never pass this way again.

His friend passes him a cookie straight out of the oven.

Diogu savors it.

"Now that's what I'm talkin' about!" he announces, laughing.

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Paul Rubin
Contact: Paul Rubin