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I know everyone is looking for something to watch on television right now. “The Last Dance” ended, professional sports aren’t back playing again and network television shows are going into their summer breaks. So I came up with few full games from the vault to pass the time while we wait for sports to come back.
For this edition of my favorite games from the vault, I am going to give you three college basketball regular season games that you should go back and watch. I did not choose games from the NCAA Tournament and I do not count conference tournament games as regular season games either.
UNLV vs. Arkansas- February 10th, 1991
The Rebels Overcome “40 Minutes Of Hell”
People consider the 1991 UNLV Running Rebels arguably one of the greatest teams in college basketball history and they did not even win the national championship. On this Saturday afternoon in February, the defending National Champions and the No. 1 team in the nation had to travel to one of the toughest places to play in the history of college basketball (Barnhill Arena) to take on the second ranked Arkansas Razorbacks.
In this middle of the season matchup between two teams that were each on a 20-game winning streak, the Running Rebels used an outstanding second half to erase the Razorbacks halftime lead to win 112-105. For the people who only know about Zion Williamson and were born before 1990, this game will introduce you to Larry Johnson. He was Zion Williamson before Zion Williamson.
In a game that featured nine future NBA players, a two legendary head coaches, a fight and an ejection of two first-team all-Americans, you might not find a better game on that shows everything that 1990’s college basketball was all about. Oh, by the way, the national televised coverage of the game made it even better. Here’s the link to the game
Oklahoma vs. Kansas- January 4th, 2016
The Buddy Hield Game
There have always been games where a player steps on a national spotlight and becomes a star. A prime example was Kemba Walker’s entire month of March in the 2008 season. On this night in January, Sooners’ guard Buddy Hield not only put on a show for the entire nation but made himself the National player of the Year.
Going against a team that would have five future NBA players, Hield scored 46 points (hitting 8-15 from downtown), had eight rebounds and seven assists in this triple-overtime (and yes, I said triple-overtime) classic. Although they lost 109-106, Heild had 22 in first half and was a flame thrower from the second the game started.
Five players played 50 or more minutes and the game came down to the final seconds. This might be the greatest regular season No. 1 vs. No. 2 two regular season game in history. Here’s the link to the game
Alabama vs. Minnesota- November 25th, 2017
Wild, Wild and Wild
Those three words are the only words I can use to describe this early season matchup between two top-25 teams in Brooklyn, New York. Alabama started this game with a full team and by the time the final buzzer sounded, they were incomplete but had won the respect of basketball fans everywhere.
If you have never seen this game or heard of this one, let me give you a few reasons why you take two and half hours of your day or night to watch this.
Alabama had the entire bench ejected for leaving the bench during an on-court altercation, another player (Dazon Ingram) fouled out a minute later, then one minute after that, John Petty left the game after hurting his ankle and didn’t return.
So for those keeping a score at home, Alabama had to play the final 10 minutes with three players and only two timeouts against the 14th ranked Golden Gophers (and their 12 timeouts). Alabama proceeded to outscore Minnesota 30-22 and was down by three points with a minute to play.
Even though Minnesota won the game 89-84, watching Colin Sexton literally being doubled and tripled-teamed for 10 minutes, scoring 40 total points and almost winning the game single-handedly, is well worth sitting on the couch. Here’s the link to the game