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Blazer Almanac - March 11
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Blazer Almanac - March 11
March 11

UAB is 2-5 in games played on March 11

1993 - The 1993 Great Midwest Tournament was held in Memphis. UAB was the 4th seed and played the 5th seed, DePaul. DePaul had a 7 point lead with 2:01 left in the game. UAB then went on a 7-0 run to tie the game at 63 with 56 seconds to go. DePaul' Tom Kleinschmidt hit two free free throws with 36 seconds left. On the next possession, UAB's Clarence Thrash hit one of two free throws. Kleinschmidt was souled again and hit one of two to give DePaul a two point lead with 17 seconds to go. UAB had one last chance. Stanley Jackson shot and missed. Clarence Thrash got the rebound, but was fouled on the shot with 3.6 seconds to go. He missed his first free throw, and then missed the second on purpose. Robert Shannon got the rebound. As he went up to shoot, the shot was blocked as the buzzer sounded. DePaul had defeated UAB 66-64, for the third time that season. UAB was 18-12. Bartow was quoted as saying he was unsure if UAB would get an NIT bi d. They did, and the first opponent was a familiar name.

1998 - UAB was 20-11 and had lost in the second round of the CUSA tournament. They were invited to play in the NIT and would be playing Missouri on the road. The Tigers were 17-14. UAB would be without the services of Willie Mitchell who had broken his toe. In the first half, Missouri went on a 21-4 run, including a 16-0 run and led 28-12 with 8:19 left in the first half. The Blazers got back into the game, working it inside and but the lead to four by halftime. In the second half, there were six ties and seven lead changes. UAB went ahead to stay on a Damon Cobb three with 4:11 to play. UAB had gone 0-5 from three point range in the first half but hit six treys in the second. The Blazers won 93-86. This was Murry Bartow's only NIT or NCAA win.

1999 - Murry Bartow's only NCAA appearance occurred on this date when they played in the 1999 NCAA tournament, The Blazers were 20-11 and one of four CUSA teams who received a bid. The TV pundits were in full voice that UAB should not have gotten in. NCAA Selection Chair CM Newton was blasted by Dick Vitale on ESPN for putting UAB in over California or Toledo. Newton explained that UAB had played their way in with a win over DePaul in the CUSA tournament. Even some UAB fans felt that Gene Bartow had pulled some strings for his son Murry. UAB's RPI was 61.

Gene Bartow had his own controversy going before the game. Paul Finebaum Radio Show producer Bob Lochamy had filed a police report against Gene Bartow, claiming that Bartow had grabbed his arm in a confrontation at the CUSA tournament. Bartow had confronted him over critical comments made by Finebaum on his show. Lochamy stated he did not plan to pursue a charge when asked.

If performance in the game answers questions as to whether you belong in the tournament, then UAB's answer was "maybe?" The Blazers were the #12 seed playing #5 Iowa, who was bidding farewell to their 13 year coach, Tom Davis. Iowa came out shooting lights out. They made 10 threes in the first half, by seven different Hawkeyes players. Red Williams kept UAB in the game shooting 6 of 7 in the first half. The Iowa lead never got too big, but UAB could never catch them. In the second half, Dwayne Brown scored seven straight to cut the Iowa lead to three points, but Iowa pushed it back out to a nine point lead. Fred Williams and Damon Cobb hit threes to cut it to a one plaint game, but Iowa again pushed it out to a ten point lead with 3:43 to play. Iowa won 77-64. UAB finished the season 20-12. It was the peak of the Murry Bartow era.

2004 -The 2004 CUSA tournament was held in Cincinnati and the Blazers were the fourth seed. Mike Anderson had been named Coach of the Year, but the only player to receive an honor was Mo Finley who was named 3rd team All Conference. The quarterfinal matchup was against the 5th seed Charlotte. Charlotte led 37-35 at the half, but Mo Finley opened the second half with two consecutive three pointers and sparked a 16-2 run. UAB would win 77-66. Finley had 28 points in the game.

2005 - UAB had advanced to the semifinals of the 2005 CUSA tournament by beating DePaul. Now they faced the #1 seed and sixth ranked Louisville Cardinals. Louisville who would be heading to the Big East the next year, had its hands full with UAB. The Blazers led at one point 49-40, forced 22 turnovers and had 12 steals. There were 7 second half ties, and Donell Taylor gave UAB a two point lead on a pair of free throws with 3:54 to go. At that point, Francisco Garcia gave Louisville the lead with a three pointer, and Louisville stayed ahead, hitting 9 of 12 free throws. Louisville won 74-67.

2006 - The Championship game of the 2006 CUSA tournament,ent was the #1 seed Memphis Tigers, playing on their home court, verses the #2 seed UAB Blazers. Memphis was ranked #5 in the country and needed to win to get the #1 seed in the NCAA tournament. Their only loss in CUSA had come 9 days earlier at UAB. UAB was ranked #24. Tigers jumped out to a 7-0 lead and led the entire way. UAB missed their first 12 shots and did not get a field goal until 7 minutes into the game. Memphis won 57-46. The win started a 16 game winning streak over UAB that did not end until this season.

2010 - UAB was the third seed in the 2010 CUSA tournament, held in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Elijah Millsap had been named 1st Team All Conference and Aaron Johnson was third team All Conference as well as being placed on the All Defensive Team. The quarterfinal opponent was Southern Miss. UAB came out as flat as any Mike Davis Tournament team ever did, falling behind 16-2 in the first five minutes. They shot only 39% from the field and made 4 of 15 free throws. The Blazers lost 58-44.

Blazers Birthdays
Born on this date in 1959 was Blazer great Chris Giles. Giles was the city MVP and all Metro when he graduated from Parker High school in 1977. He played one season at Southern Illinois before transferring back home to play for the newly formed UAB basketball program. He sat out the inaugural year due to transfer rules, but played for UAB from 1979-1982. He was a two time 2nd team All Sun belt player and a key member of a Sweet 16 and Elite Eight squad. He was drafted by the New Jersey Nets in the fifth round of the 1982 NBA draft. He played two seasons in the CBA before transitioning into coaching. He was a graduate assistant at UAB from 1984 to 1987, when he followed Assistant Coach John Prince to be an assistant coach at Jackson State. He remained at Jackson State for 14 years, and returned to UAB in 2002 to be an assistant coach under Mike Anderson. When Mike Anderson left for Missouri, he was not retained by new coach Mike Davis. He was soon hired as the new head coach at Miles College. He was fired in 2010 after NCAA violations were discovered.

An odd fact. Chris Giles was a part of seven the first 13 NCAA tournaments UAB participated in, either as a player, graduate assistant or assistant coach. He was a player or coach of every NCAA tournament win UAB had until the Iowa Tate win in 2015.

Happy Birthday to Chris Giles.
03-11-2018 01:26 PM
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