Houston oncologist remembers days of playing in NCAA tourney

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by Matt Musil / KHOU 11 Sports

khou.com

Posted on March 21, 2013 at 11:34 PM

Updated Friday, Mar 22 at 11:45 AM

HOUSTON -- March Madness is here and everyone is watching their NCAA brackets closely now -- including a Houston oncologist.

He’s doctor now, but back in college, TJ Pugh was on the court for March Madness.

He went to the NCAA tournament four times as a 6’10” power forward for the University of Kansas in the late 1990s. Pugh wore jersey number 32 for the Jayhawks.

Dr. Pugh is a radiation oncologist at MD Anderson. And as you can imagine, he’s also self confessed college basketball junkie who has made filling out his NCAA men's basketball tournament bracket a yearly ritual.

Dr. Pugh says the on the court intensity of those games he played in the NCAA Tournament proved to be the perfect training ground for his profession that brought him to Houston to fight cancer through proton therapy.

Even though Dr. Pugh is a highly respected oncologist, he admits he’s not much of a “bracketologist.”

He says his wife -- who is not a basketball fan -- regularly does better than him. And, she bases her predictions on which teams have the meanest looking mascot.

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