Frank Arnold's BYU Cougars came into the 1980-1981 season with a bad taste in their mouth. After going 24-5 the prior season the Cougars were upset in the first round of the NCAA Tournament by Clemson. The good news is BYU returned 3 future NBA players including All-American guard, Danny Ainge.
Returning for his senior season, Ainge led the Cougars in scoring (24.4ppg) and assists (4apg) on his way to winning the Wooden Award. Along with Fred Roberts, Steve Trumbo and Greg Kite the Cougars finished the regular season 22-6. That was good enough to earn the #6 seed in the East Region of the NCAA Tournament.
After defeating #11 seed Princeton, the Cougars dominated #3 seed UCLA, 78-55. That win setup a showdown with #2 seed Notre Dame that would go down in NCAA Tournament lore.
With the Irish down 1, Kelly Tripucka hit a turnaround jumper with 8 seconds left putting Notre Dame ahead, 50-49. Enter Danny Ainge. Out of a timeout, Ainge received the inbounds pass, dribbled the length of the court weaving in between Irish defenders and laying the ball through the net with no time remaining. BYU 51-ND 50.
The Cougars fell one game short of the Final Four losing to Ralph Sampson and Virginia, 74-60. The magical run was over but never forgotten.
"I think that team was just a really well-balanced team of size and speed and shooting and skill. The Notre Dame game gets a lot hype because that was the game that got us to the Elite 8. But I think the UCLA game was probably the highlight to all of us." -Danny Ainge
Modern Standard-Length Fit - SIZE CHART
- Material: Double Ply 100% Pro Aero Mesh
- Hemmed Pockets on Both Sides
- Elastic Waistband with Drawstring
- Sublimated Team Graphics
- Officially Licensed
- Made in China
- All Designs are trademarks of 19nine, LLC.