Bird’s Eye View: A stroll down memory lane
Yesterday’s “Bird’s Eye View” was loaded with calls talking about some of the memorable times in UL basketball history. There were plenty of calls concerning the “Bo” days, particularly games against Louisiana Tech and Mike Green, and the memorable comeback win against Northeast Louisiana, when the Cajuns trailed by six with less than a minute to go and forced overtime and later won.
There were calls about the resurrection of the program after probation under Jim Hatfield. Ted Lyles, Calvin Crews and a freshman by the name of Andrew Toney.
There were calls about the first NIT appearance….Dion Rainey from the corner against UAB and the last minute win at Texas…..the Great Alaska Shootout win…..NCAA appearances….and of course, the NIT Final Four. And yes, that heartbreaking loss to Tennessee…..Warner, Brown..and of course, Alonza Allen throwing the ball off the backboard and finishing with a thunderous dunk.
There were calls about Kevin Brooks, Aaron Mitchell and sharpshooting Sydney Grider. Earl Watkins’ ten three pointers, including the buzzer beater in overtime to beat Houston. The NCAA win over Oklahoma and Marty Fletcher’s “Good Day Sunshine” tie.
Callers remembered Byron Starks, Michael Allen and the late Tony Moore, 1000 point scorers all, who led the Cajuns to two Sun Belt Titles.
There was the championship in 2000 over South Alabama followed by a tough loss to Tennessee when a phantom foul call against Aussie Brett Smith let the Vols escape. There was Brad Boyd’s nine three-pointers on the road that upset #12 Mississippi State.
And there was the squad that won back to back championships, with Orien Greene, Dwayne Mitchell, Brian Hamilton and Chris Cameron. We talked about that tough loss to Louisville, who made it to the Final Four that year. The Cajuns might have been two block/charge calls away from a monumental upset.
And, during the show, Jake sent in some memories that we thought we’d share with you.
Remember the Sports Illustrated cover prior to the 1973 NCAA Tournament?
How about a picture of Bo in the same issue?
Animal House was popular in the late 70s into the 80s
The Cajuns beat Marquette and after the game, an article appeared in the Milwaukee Sentinal talking about what Blackham Coliseum was like for visitors. Also, a memorable night against Northeast Louisiana when Gerald Morris, with the Indians winning by a bunch, incited the crowd with his one finger salute (the pic is upside down but you get the drift.)
Don Allen, who spent 25 years doing Cajuns broadcasts, emailed the show and said Morris told the press afterward that he was trying to take the crowd out of the game. Don remarked, needless to say, Morris did not go on to a career as an advisor for NASA.
And remember the Cajuns last NIT bid under Bobby Paschal. They were on a losing streak and thought the season was over. In fact, they had not practiced in more than a week when the call came with the NIT bid. McNeese, who had beated the Cajuns twice during that season, thought and NIT bid should be theirs. Here is an article talking about McNeese’s reaction.
Special thanks to Jake for sending us those articles.
More memories this afternoon on Bird’s Eye View.