The NCAA tournament is a treasure chest of memories, something we’re reminded of every spring when they start to show the classic moments of the past. Christian Laettner’s shot against Kentucky is a defining moment and one that doesn’t appear to be in any danger of dropping out of the rotation even after 30 years this coming spring (it was such a great play that then President George Bush was heard to marvel about it the next day).
But there are so many that, inevitably, some get crowded out. Keith Smart hit a brilliant shot to take out Syracuse in 1987. Chris Webber’s unfortunate time out in 1993. Fred Brown’s mental error when he passed the ball to James Worthy rather than his own teammate. Freshman Michael Jordan’s winning shot in the same game. Lorenzo Charles’ amazing buzzer beater against Houston.
With a few drinks you could continue all night long. There’s just that much.
This play isn’t exactly forgotten but it has been crowded out to an extent: Tyus Edney’s brilliant end to end dash to hit a game-winning layup against Missouri in 1995.
Mizzou had just gone up by one with 4.8 left and UCLA’s Jim Harrick called a timeout. Edney, who is just 5-10, got the pass and dashed downcourt. After going behind his back to cut right, he cut into the lane and hit a layup in the heart of Missouri’s defense. It was a memorable play to say the least. We can’t say for sure that this is true, but we’ve heard that it made such a deep impression on a Minnesota family that the parents named a son Tyus in honor of that player and moment.
When that child grew up, Tyus Jones came to Duke and led the Blue Devils to a 2015 national championship.