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Hoopla!

By PETE YOUNG, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published March 22, 2003

As close as it gets

Murray State, behind instant legend Popeye Jones, nearly became the first No. 16 seed to win an NCAA Tournament game in 1990. The Racers lost to Michigan State 75-71 in overtime. Jones, a portly sophomore, scored 37 and had 11 rebounds.

The season before, East Tennessee State nearly became the first, losing 72-71 to top-seeded Oklahoma. ETSU, paced by point guard Keith "Mister" Jennings, led most of the game but missed two potential winning shots in the closing moments.

Forever remembered

Fastbreaking Loyola Marymount's Cinderella run in 1990 is one of the most touching stories in NCAA annals. In the opening-round game, the Lions' first since the sudden death of forward Hank Gathers, Gathers' best friend, Bo Kimble, scored a West Region record-tying 45 in a 111-92 win over New Mexico State. As a tribute to Gathers, the right-handed Kimble shot his first free throw left-handed in each game.

In the second round, LMU set a tournament scoring record in a 149-115 demolition of defending-champion Michigan, with Kimble and Jeff Fryer (tournament-record 11 3-pointers) combining for 88 points. The fairy-tale run ended against eventual champion UNLV in the Elite Eight.

The most 'one shining moments'

UCLA's 11 national titles are the most, followed by Kentucky (seven) and Indiana (five).

The schools with multiple national titles since 1980: Duke (three), Indiana (two), North Carolina (two), Louisville (two) and Kentucky (two).

Lucky threesomes

Only three schools not ranked in the final AP poll have won the NCAA Tournament: City College of New York in 1950, Villanova in 1985 and Kansas in 1988.

Only three schools with 10 or more losses have won the tournament: Kansas in 1988 (11), North Carolina State in 1983 (10) and Villanova in 1985 (10).

Today's quiz

Which school has the most NCAA Tournament appearances?

The one and only

Oregon State's Terry Baker is the lone athlete to win the Heisman Trophy and play in the Final Four. Baker, a quarterback, won the Heisman in 1962. In the spring of '63 he was the Beavers' second-leading scorer (13.4 average) but did not score in an 80-46 national semifinal loss to runner-up Cincinnati.

Quiz answer

Kentucky, which is making its 45th appearance. The tournament began in 1939.

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