February 16th, 2011 at 7:30 AM ^

This is one of my all time favorites.  Kentucky looked so unbeatable that year but Michigan handled their press way better than I imagined going into the game.  A true classic.


February 16th, 2011 at 8:29 AM ^

Everybody pretty much picked Kentucky to win the game and almost gave Michigan no chance of beating the big and bad Kentucky.


It's amazing on how talented that the Fab 5 really is.  C-Webb is a great athlete who can run and an outstanding passer.  Juwan can really run for a big guy.  Jalen is Jalen.

If they had stayed for all four years, they would win a national title when all is said and done.  The fact that they got to the national championship twice is an amazing feat by itself.

st barth

February 16th, 2011 at 9:11 AM ^

That was an awesome day.  Kentucky seemed like the real test that year and after the Fab 5 beat them I thought there was no way they could lose to Montross & UNC.

But it is sports and shit happens.  And with the scandal that emerged later, it's probably for the best not to have had a national title stripped.

Kilgore Trout

February 16th, 2011 at 9:40 AM ^

Great to just see the highlights.  I had forgotten about Mashburn fouling out.  UK was up 4 in OT when that happened, and you kind of just knew that was going to be it.  I also don't remember Ray Jackson being such a factor in OT.  A nice drive to the hole and foul to get UM within 1 in OT and then a beautiful post feed to Webber to take the lead for good.  Jackson doesn't get the credit he deserved.  I also thought it was interesting to see Howard guarding Mashburn.  Kind of forget that they both were really primarily inside players in college, despite what they became in the NBA.

UM Indy

February 16th, 2011 at 10:38 AM ^

after the game was a good good time.

Someone said Mashburn was the best college player he saw.  Can't argue it, but would submit Glenn Robinson and Calbert Cheaney for consideration.

03 Blue 07

February 16th, 2011 at 12:04 PM ^

Apparently, we are talking "best player ever seen from 1990-1993 in the Big Ten conference." Anyway, I don't think you can say Calbert Cheaney was a better player than Robinson. Robinson carried that team, where as Cheaney got his points within a system while being surrounded by a great cast. I don't think either of them were stellar defenders, either, though I think Cheaney was superior. (Granted, all of this is subjective). HowEVA, Big Dog averaged like 30 ppg in the Big Ten in a year where you had that Cheaney team at Indiana (which won the Big Ten and was a #1 seed in the tourney) and the Fab Five at M.  Robinson was sick in college.

Along the lines of what everyone else's said. . . that Kentucky team came into that game with an average tournament margin of victory in excess of 30 ppg (!). They were a machine, and, to me, that game was the Fab Five's best performance.  I seem to recall Mr. Webber hitting a shot while being pulled down by his shirt (although I may be thinking of a different game). It was the only time I felt like "holy shit, the other team, if playing its best, is better than Michigan" at times during the game that year. But Mash fouling out was massive, and the Fab Five grinded out that win in a game that tested them in a way I don't know they'd been tested like before.

God, what a game.


February 16th, 2011 at 2:12 PM ^

I'd take Webber over either Mashburn or Cheaney.  He was an incredible athlete - he was all over the court on defense and on the glass - and his skill level was underrated, especiallly his passing ability.  He also had a decent perimeter touch (if you watch the video of the '92 MSU game that was just uploaded, he drains two threes during our comeback).  The only thing he couldn't do was shoot FTs.

Glenn Robinson's a tougher call.  He was an absolute scoring machine.


February 16th, 2011 at 10:43 AM ^

I've said it before -- I think that was the Fab 5's high point.

* That was an amazingly big, athletic team.

* Other than Howard, they didn't have much conventional offense.  In terms of ball handling and (especially) outside shooting, they were pretty average.  Imagine (say) Voshon Lenard on that team.

* Pitino is such a @#$%head.  Notice how quickly he brushed off Fisher after the game.


February 16th, 2011 at 11:01 AM ^

of all players who can run and jump out of the gym.  I think the shortest player was Ray Jackson at 6'5" which is amazing that every one of them are all tall and athletic.  When you have that much talent, you don't need conventional offense.  You want them run and gunning and get the fast break buckets.

03 Blue 07

February 16th, 2011 at 12:07 PM ^

Agreed. When you watch those great Big Ten teams from the late-80's to the early 90's (including the Michigan-Illinois 1989 tourney game), it's really almost like pick up ball/NBA style: just great players who only need an inch to exploit their matchup and get buckets. For me, that was college basketball's apex, as the talent level was at an all-time high due to a.) the amount of kids playing basketball nationwide growing up (vs. other sports), and b.) the fact that they all basically stayed in college for at least a couple years, holding the talent pool for guys that age all in the same place.


February 16th, 2011 at 4:26 PM ^

If you watch carefully, the did run a convetional offense. The athleticism is what made it look easy. It also helped that CWebb was long and had great hands. To me, CWebb and Juwan ran some of the best hi-post to low-post in college those years. Juwan had a sweet 15 footer and CWebb could finish under the rim like no other back then. Goosebumps.....


February 16th, 2011 at 11:04 AM ^

hate 'em or love 'em. There is no middle ground.  Old Michigan alums hated Fab 5 because they brought something new that they have never seen.  Ironically, it was the Fab 5 who started the trend for showboating and trash talking.  Now it's the norm.  Other people loved the Fab 5 for their charismatic attitude, energy, athleticism and swag to the game of basketball.  They started the trend of baggy shorts, black socks and bald heads.

Fab 5 transcend college basketball and will always be a piece of NCAA basketball history.  No matter how hard Michigan tries not to acknowledge Fab 5, they will always be talked about.


February 16th, 2011 at 2:13 PM ^

They didn't start the trash-talking trend.  That was around beforehand.  (Larry Bird was one of the biggest trash-talkers ever, but for some reason no one ever noticed.)  They started the trend of long, baggy shorts, which for some reason frightened people.  Later, they added black socks.


February 16th, 2011 at 11:20 AM ^

Fab 5 was greatest team to watch ever. They were influential in so many ways. I was in middle school when they were at UM, watched EVERY game with my buddies, wore black socks, went outside and played b-ball in the cold/snow after every game (half time too).

I loved the swagger they had...Young, cocky, athletic and just good. Looking at this: They couldn't really shoot from the outside, basically played pickup offense, gambled, threw crazy passes, etc...But were just so damn talented and hungry to win they found a way. C-Webb was a beast and those hands ate up everything. Jalen was just the man, everybody followed him. That famous UK 'Press' didn't rattle Jalen at all, he looked relaxed breaking that thing time after time.

Makes me miss having a relivant UM hoops team...Hopefully our young team is on the rise and updgraded facilities will help.

Fab 5 were the shit...Can't wait until they can honor all these guys together whether they took money or not....GO BLUE

03 Blue 07

February 16th, 2011 at 12:10 PM ^

Dude, I feel like we lived similar lives in different places. The Fab Five came to prominence when I was 11-14 years old. I rocked the black socks, still have the Jalen Nike replica jersey (and the shorts), saved up and got the black Air Max's to wear as my basketball shoes my 7th grade year, cried when Webber called the timeout, and decided Michigan was the coolest school ever. It was hoops, more than football, believe it or not, that got me stuck on Michigan, and ended with two degrees there. I was an out-of-stater with parents who went to Illinois, but after the Fab Five, Michigan was it for me.

Man, I loved that team. I still love that team.


February 16th, 2011 at 2:06 PM ^

I swear to god I did the same exact thing during the tournament games. But I think I was outside every timeout with the rim about 8 1/2ft so I could slam. I was in Texas so the weather was cool. It made me proud that my team had the coolest players with long shorts, black socks,  & bald heads. God I love those guys, even to this day!

Was it me or did Ray Jackson always take that shot with one foot over the 3pt line?



February 16th, 2011 at 9:50 PM ^

That's so funny. My friend had an adjustable hoop we would lower and just go out and rag on it! I was always Jalen because I was the guard on our team. I watched that entire highlight at work today and it got me fired up...Literally makes me want to watch every game I can find on Youtube.

So funny how people from all walks of life and different parts of the country can grow up so similar...Even being moved by the same things going on at that time. I think you hit in on the head about the Fab 5 creating a bigger interest in Michigan. I grew up watching Bo with my Dad and running outside singing to fight song after touchdowns, loving UM football...But the Fab 5 created rapid love for UM that hasn't changed...


February 16th, 2011 at 2:17 PM ^

One of my favorite Michigan games in any sport.  The Fab Five was amazing.  I don't care what the NCAA says - Webber had a far stronger case for being eligible than Cam Newton did (Ed Martin befriended Webber's dad when Chris was an eighth-grader, not right before he chose a college).  I hope after the 10 years are up, we can find a way for him and the university to reconcile.


February 16th, 2011 at 5:14 PM ^

The Fab Five are my age...class of '91. As good as they were, that was my SECOND favorite Michigan basketball team. I really liked the 1989-90 squad, the year after the title run.

Sean Higgins, Terry Mills, Rumeal, Loy Vaught, Richard team.

But everyone knew how special the Fab Five were. Webber, Howard, and Rose were all unique players. BTW, I have an SI College Basketball preview from 1986 that lists the best players by class looking into the future. They miss on a lot (their best player from that year's current class was Marcus Liberty), but they singled out Jimmy King as the best player from the class of 1991.


February 16th, 2011 at 5:17 PM ^

I was at that game. Sitting next to three guys from UK. I was a bit apprehensive at the start of the game, but by the end we were all fast friends. We even shared a round on Bourbon St. afterwards as consolation. One of the best bball games I've ever witnessed.

Of course, I was the one needing consoling a cpl nights later... :/


February 16th, 2011 at 8:41 PM ^

who say "well, the Fab 5 never actually won anything" (meaning Big 10 titles). 

The Fab 5 cut down nets at the Final Four 2 years in a row as Freshmen and Sophomores.  Tell me Purdue wouldn't have traded all thier run-of-the-mill Big 10 championships for just one of those Final Fours. 

Kentucky was a juggernaut that year, blowing out teams in the tournament by 50 points a game.  It gets overshadowed because of what happened in the Final game, but that Kentucky win was the most underrated win in Michigan sports history.



February 16th, 2011 at 10:09 PM ^

In retrospect, it really is surprising Kentucky was such a big favorite in this game. We had three guys go on to have legit NBA careers. Kentucky just had one.