Loyola Marymount ran to the Elite Eight in 1990.
Few Cinderella teams were as TV-friendly as Loyola Marymount, an 11th seed in 1990, as they averaged an otherworldly 122.4 points per game the previous season.
The Lions were hard to predict because they defeated Michigan 149-115 in the second round, before narrowly beating Alabama in a nail-biter 62-60 in the next game.
Loyola Marymount was a team still mourning the recent passing of Hank Gathers, their 6-foot-7 power forward who died on the field on March 4, 1990, just months after discovering he had a rhythm. abnormal heart.
To celebrate his life, his teammates played in the NCAA tournament wearing ’44’ patches, his jersey number, on their uniforms.
A friend of Gathers’s, Bo Kimble, stepped up and fired an opening free kick of each game with his left hand, just as Gathers did.
UNLV, the eventual champion, eliminated the Lions in the Elite Eight stage.
The team then retired Gathers’ number.
Sources: ESPN, ncaa, Bleach Report.