Jump to content
d2o

RIP Coach John Thompson

Recommended Posts

Those 80's Gtown teams were some of my favorite college teams ever.    Iconic teams and coach for a young black boy like me.   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That was the best time for college basketball. I always hated those Georgetown teams because they beat Houston in 84. RIP to a basketball legend.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Iconic basketball that was just a factory:  Ewing, Mourning, Mutombo, Iverson.  Just unreal.  I was definitely a band wagon-er when watching those guys. RIP, coach.

Edited by jeevsie
the most important part

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

He had a hell of a 12-15 year run from the early 80's to the Iverson/Harrington teams.  Always liked watching them play, although I'm not sure I particularly rooted for them.

I read something this morning that said 97% of his players stayed for 4 years and graduated.  Much respect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Hate said:

That was the best time for college basketball.

This. The Big East was so dominant back then. Good times.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Hate said:

That was the best time for college basketball. I always hated those Georgetown teams because they beat Houston in 84. RIP to a basketball legend.

There was something amazing about College Basketball in the 1980s and early 1990s I have no idea what made it so special. I always feel like all that ended with North Carolina's win over Michigan in the time out game, though why I am not sure.

RIP coach, the Big East in the 1980s was the greatest college basketball league ever and your teams were a big reason why.

Edited by Valmy77

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The star players began only playing a couple years at most. I don’t blame them at all. It’s like having the winning lottery ticket and waiting a couple of years to cash it in. Still, college basketball was better when players played 3 or 4 years together.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, Valmy77 said:

There was something amazing about College Basketball in the 1980s and early 1990s I have no idea what made it so special. I always feel like all that ended with North Carolina's win over Michigan in the time out game, though why I am not sure.

RIP coach, the Big East in the 1980s was the greatest college basketball league ever and your teams were a big reason why.

Magic and Bird renewed interest in the game. Players stayed for 3 or 4 years. The brand was good and tough - with an emphasis placed on physical defense and ball movement and running the fast break. The 3 pointer was still in it's infancy and used more as a gimmick than a foundational part of the game. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
37 minutes ago, Wiler77 said:

He had a hell of a 12-15 year run from the early 80's to the Iverson/Harrington teams.  Always liked watching them play, although I'm not sure I particularly rooted for them.

I read something this morning that said 97% of his players stayed for 4 years and graduated.  Much respect.

yep 75 out of 77

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Hate said:

The star players began only playing a couple years at most. I don’t blame them at all. It’s like having the winning lottery ticket and waiting a couple of years to cash it in. Still, college basketball was better when players played 3 or 4 years together.

yep, I loved CBB back then.   Rivalries were built and we anticipated guys making the jump to the next level.   I haven't really watch CBB outside of the tourney in really about 20 yrs but I'm not remotely mad at the kids taking the opportunity to get paid as soon as they can though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

RIP to a great leader of men.  When I was a kid in the 80s I always admired the Georgetown teams that he fielded. As I got older, I realized he was also the kind of coach that I would want my kids to play for.

Yes, he won a lot of basketball games; but that almost seems secondary in comparison with the way he impacted the people who knew who he was. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Couldn't stand him or Georgetown. And as great as his teams were, how he only won one title is really amazing. 

That said, he represents a big part of the golden era of college basketball--the Tournament became huge when CBS took it over in 1982, and we had great coaches AND players we all knew.

Ewing and Thompson, Dean Smith and Michael Jordan,  Phi Slamma Jamma, Bobby Knight and Steve Alford, Larry Brown and Danny Manning, Denny Crum and his Cardinals, Tark the Shark and UNLV with Larry Johnson and his crew, Coach K and Laettner/Hurley/Grant Hill, The Fab Five, Nolan Richardson and 40 Minutes of Hell, Lute Olson and Miles Simon/Mike Bibby,  Pitino's UK teams that were just stacked, then led into Uconn and Jim Calhoun's crew, and Tom Izzo/Mateen Cleaves. 

For those two decades, we had champions with kids we got to know and coaches who were larger than life. Then we got Carmelo Anthony as the first big one-and done, as the NBA wouldn't take kids straight from high school anymore. Nothing has messed up college basketball, in my opinion, than teams building around one-and-dones, which hasn't helped build any real fans to stick with the game. Instead, it just added to following the sport in March, at best.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, JWinTX said:

Then we got Carmelo Anthony as the first big one-and done, as the NBA wouldn't take kids straight from high school anymore.

Timeline is a bit off here. Melo was pre one and done rule. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, ztejas said:

Timeline is a bit off here. Melo was pre one and done rule. 

 I know he went second in the NBA draft after LeBron...so I guess you are correct, on that part. I know that after this, it just became one and done...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, JWinTX said:

 I know he went second in the NBA draft after LeBron...so I guess you are correct, on that part. I know that after this, it just became one and done...

Still, not quite. The 2005 draft was the last to feature players out of high school. In 2006 Shawne Williams (Memphis) became the first one-and-done player that might have been drafted out of high school.

The first BIG one and done was (well him and one other)..... (c'mon, you're on a Texas message board).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 minutes ago, JWinTX said:

 I know he went second in the NBA draft after LeBron...so I guess you are correct, on that part. I know that after this, it just became one and done...

He actually went third.  Darko went second.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, JWinTX said:

Couldn't stand him or Georgetown. And as great as his teams were, how he only won one title is really amazing. 

I know us Texas fans have a huge "what if" around Colt going down, but man, we've got nothing on Hoya fans.

1982 featured the errant pass to James Worthy with the Hoyas down 1 and with only something like 20 seconds left.  Who knows if they make the shot, but they gift-wrapped that win for Dean's 1st NT.  And BTW, Dean's 2nd and last NT was helped by Chris Webber's "time out".

In 1985, it took probably the closest we're ever seen to a "perfect game" on a basketball floor by Villanova to deny Georgetown b2b titles.

The fact that 1985 was Thompson's last Final Four trip is what amazes me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Hate said:

That was the best time for college basketball. I always hated those Georgetown teams because they beat Houston in 84. RIP to a basketball legend.

It was more that the officials gave Olajuwon some bullshit early fouls which changed the entire game.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, conVINCEd said:

He actually went third.  Darko went second.

Yeah my god Joe Dumars was a horrible horrible GM.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Bevo said:

It was more that the officials gave Olajuwon some bullshit early fouls which changed the entire game.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, Pimphand said:

Yeah my god Joe Dumars was a horrible horrible GM.

At least he didn't miss on Bosh, Wade and Chris Kaman too.

Oh wait.

Edited by ztejas
On review, Kaman was actually pretty shitty.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, Pimphand said:

Yeah my god Joe Dumars was a horrible horrible GM.

That pick would of course overshadow anything he did but he built a team that won a title and made it to 6 straight conference finals with parts that everyone else basically threw away.   That is a lot more than a whole lot of guys can say.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 minutes ago, d2o said:

That pick would of course overshadow anything he did but he built a team that won a title and made it to 6 straight conference finals with parts that everyone else basically threw away.   That is a lot more than a whole lot of guys can say.

I don't think that pick overshadowed that move it was literally every single move he ever made that didn't involve drafting Okur & Prince, signing BIllups & McDyess, and trading for Hamilton & the Wallace brothers.

*end thread derail*

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, slorch said:

RIP to a great leader of men.  When I was a kid in the 80s I always admired the Georgetown teams that he fielded. As I got older, I realized he was also the kind of coach that I would want my kids to play for.

Yes, he won a lot of basketball games; but that almost seems secondary in comparison with the way he impacted the people who knew who he was. 

Thompson v. Rayful Edmond is enough to root for him as a man and mentor.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
37 minutes ago, Pimphand said:

I don't think that pick overshadowed that move it was literally every single move he ever made that didn't involve drafting Okur & Prince, signing BIllups & McDyess, and trading for Hamilton & the Wallace brothers.

*end thread derail*

Right. But could you imagine if you put rookie Melo or Wade on that 2004 Pistons team? They would have won 3 titles.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
36 minutes ago, Pimphand said:

I don't think that pick overshadowed that move it was literally every single move he ever made that didn't involve drafting Okur & Prince, signing BIllups & McDyess, and trading for Hamilton & the Wallace brothers.

*end thread derail*

LOL.  Literally every move he made, other than the multiple draft picks, free agent signings, and successful trades you cited that set up an NBA Championship and 6 straight conference finals.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pistons talk not going away...in a tribute to a coaching legend.

 

Really? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Her's a great old article by Ralph Wiley (RIP) on John Thompson (RIP).

https://www.espn.com/page2/s/villains/wiley.html

Darth Vader of G'Town
By Ralph Wiley
Page 2 columnist
   

Admit it. In your all-time favorite moments of college basketball, John Thompson was there. Wasn't he?

 

Sure he was.

 

And in your worse nightmares, he was there.

 

John Thompson was the great Father Villain of the great Jesuit university of Georgetown. He turned a village of lawyers into Georgetown by John Thompson. As Evil Empires go, he made the Soviets look like the Smurfs.

 

He was Dark Vader. And some of you still can't admit to yourself the (to you) horrible truth. Amid the celebrations of when the villain was vanquished, one simple truth.

 

I'm your father, Luke ...

 

What was your moment, Luke? Was it 1982, when Michael Jordan became the Michael Jordan, by hitting that game-winner from the left wing to give Carolina and Dean Smith his first national title, in front of, what, over 62,000 fans, the most ever assembled for a college game?

 

Remember when you first heard it, in the late '70s, early '80s, when you heard the train coming ... bam-bam, bambambam, Let's Go Hoyas, bam-bam-bambambam, Let's Go Hoyas ... remember how it made the hair on the back of your neck stand up, remember how you almost panicked, then adapted it? Remember how it became Let's Go Redmen, Let's Go Wildcats, Let's Go Whoever?

 

Remember John Williams' theme for Darth Vader?

 

Remember how the pep band played it? Remember how well that fit John Thompson, Dark Vader, and his Imperial Storm Troopers applying their vise of full-court pressure?

 

Remember how completely you despised him and didn't care why or how or how many? Remember how he gave you a reason to care about a college basketball game?

 

Remember how a nothing college game and a nowhere fledgling basketball conference called the Big East took what Bird and Magic had started in 1979 and ran with it?

 

 

  Page 2's villains
 

Remember how precious a victory over Georgetown was?

 

Unless you were with Georgetown.

 

Remember how it felt like your team (the team G'town was playing) was defending the honor of ancient Rome against Hannibal's elephants, named Ewing, Mourning, Mutombo?

 

Remember 1985, when the Big East dominated college basketball? Remember when Georgetown had won five of the first six Big East tournaments, until Thompson eased off on the tourniquet, let the blood flow to your brain?

 

Remember how you stopped thinking just to hate him?

 

Did you thank him for that later? No. You curse him still.

 

(So did I, sometimes.) Why? Fun, I guess.

 

John Thompson touched people, inside, like Robin Hood, like Malcolm X, like William Munny, like Muhammad Ali, and I went to see him about it, back then, because it seemed to me to be satisfying and profitable work. He yelled at me, the very first thing. He embraced his villany. "Why'd they send you? Because you're black?" "No," I said, "because I wanted to come." I neglected to add, "and everyone else was either too scared, too intimidated, or didn't want to."

 

The good villain makes you reach higher, deeper within.

 

Remember 1985, when the Big East sent three teams to the Final Four, and could've sent four? Ask Jim Boeheim, who just won his national championship. Ask who built the fire up under him in the first place. Ask Villanova what was its finest hour. Ask St. John's what they remember most. Ask yourself why you can't seem to work up a good hatred for Georgetown anymore. Ask yourself why that makes you just a little bit sad and nostalgic maybe. Oh, you want to keep up that good hatred for G'Town. Somehow, you can't, because He isn't there. What's "Star Wars" without Lord Vader? I'll tell you what. Not the same. Good. Episode IV, and all that. And still a great university. Just not the same.

 

Remember 1985? Is it not said to be the greatest "upset" in the history of college basketball, if not all sports history?

 

Why? Because of the players? Well, Ewing was a great college player, but he won no NBA titles. Reggie Williams was a superb college player, but he had no impact on the pros. Mike Jackson was a great kid, but only got a cup of coffee. David Wingate stayed around the league forever, but mostly as a spear carrier, practice fodder. For 'Nova, Eddie Pinckney and Harold Pressley and Dwayne McClain were all pro material, too, and Villanova had that limber jump shooter, that Harold Jensen, and that clownish point guard, Gary McLain, who had no game to speak of and who later bragged to SI that he was on yayo the whole time. Check this out. 'Nova shot 90 percent for the second half, nine of ten in the pre-shot clock era, 90 percent, and guess what? 'Nova won by two, 66-64. By two!

 

John Thompson, Dark Vader, architect of "Hoya Paranoia" and one of the great defensive traditions in all sports, let alone college basketball, was the Great Villain of Life.

 

The color component is in there, too. We didn't invent the dictionary. No, we just live by it. Look up "black." Look up "white." See what I mean? But it can work in many ways.

 

See, I know how John Thompson came to be a villain, and came to not care. I know it was another Father, a Catholic priest, who told the young black Catholic boy (whose family had to wait to take communion until the good "heroic" people were done), that he might grow up to be a murderer one day. I knew he had ducked his head in shame when the priest said that. I knew he had trouble reading. I knew his father couldn't get the white dust from the marble out of his hands, he worked so long and hard at the stone cutting business. I knew his mother had died too young, from overwork and not enough preventative health care. I know that John Thompson was a teacher of defense first, last and always, because he had heard time and time and time again back them, how black players were too lazy to play defense. Thompson told me these things himself, in time, once he learned that I didn't care if he was a villain or not. Villains have stories too. Sometimes they are as good as a hero's story. And I know for all the boos and catcalls and emotion and hatred -- nobody ever said anything about being lazy to John Thompson or any Georgetown team.

 

So the villain is the one who makes the drama work in the first place. There's no hero without him. John Thompson made more heroes out of other men than anybody else I can think of -- and, hell, you could make an argument that defense in hoop came into vogue behind the suffocating stance of the Let's Go Hoyas, when they shut down everybody, including Kentucky for nearly the entire second half in the Final Four semifinal en route to the NCAA title in 1984. Defense is still in vogue today. Quite so.

 

Rick Pitino first came into vogue, was first authenticated, because his Providence team beat John Thompson and the Hoyas in the 1987 NCAA tournament. Rick Pitino liked to play 11 too, like John Thompson. The Big East Conference, Michael Jordan, Dean Smith, James Worthy going "Gah!" when Fred Brown mysteriously threw him that ball, Sam Perkins, Matt Doherty, Villanova, Harold Jensen, Eddie Pinckney, Dwayne McClain, Rick Pitino, Billy Donovan, Looie, Chris Mullin, Pete Gillen and Tyrone Hill at Xavier in '89, Arvydas Sabonis and Sharunus Marcheloinus and that Soviet Olympic basketball team that many red-blooded Americans (like you?) rooted for in the '88 Olympics, the last Olympics for the U.S. college-age kids in basketball, because they'd have no chance, not against men, as we first saw then. Maybe we rooted for Russia out of habit, because Russia was going against John Thompson. John Thompson was an even greater villain than Cold War Russia!

 

That's off the villain chart, right there. That's impressive.

 

How many heroes can dance on the head of one villain? How many heroes can one villain make?

 

Apparently, plenty.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Wiler77 said:

The fact that 1985 was Thompson's last Final Four trip is what amazes me.

I was, too.   I know Mourning had injury problems one year, but what’s really crazy is they were a backend of the top 25 team for 2 or 3 years in the early 90s with Mourning and Mutombo on the same roster.   The overall talent level in college basketball back then was obscene.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Wiler77 said:

He had a hell of a 12-15 year run from the early 80's to the Iverson/Harrington teams.  Always liked watching them play, although I'm not sure I particularly rooted for them.

I read something this morning that said 97% of his players stayed for 4 years and graduated.  Much respect.

He didn't have a player leave early until Iverson I believe.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Catdaddyhorn said:

He didn't have a player leave early until Iverson I believe.

True.

And I went back and looked at the stat.  97% of the players that stayed 4 years received their degree.  I assume it's worded like that because there were some transfers along the way.

Iverson was his first player to declare early for the NBA draft.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wasn't a big fan of the Georgetown teams but really came to like Thompson more and more through the years.

Did not know, until today, that he almost was on the plane that went into the Pentagon on 911.  Jim Rome's producer helped him avoid that fate

https://21133.mc.tritondigital.com/OMNY_THEJIMROMESHOW_P/media-session/8bf6eb85-634f-4564-8456-f5c614bff1dd/d/clips/4b5f9d6d-9214-48cb-8455-a73200038129/10b88244-3e7d-46c8-b563-a7b70006e566/02d2f4d7-bc12-4cf1-95ed-ac28011fa330/audio/direct/t1598894951/John_Thompson's_Surreal_9_11_Story.mp3?t=159889495

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/31/2020 at 7:52 AM, Hate said:

That was the best time for college basketball. I always hated those Georgetown teams because they beat Houston in 84. RIP to a basketball legend.

I played jr high and high school hoops in the 80s so if I wasn't playing, I was watching. At that time, the Big East seemed like they had a marquee matchup a couple of times per week on ESPN. Non Big East schools were lucky to be broadcast once per year until march madness. When you saw that Georgetown was playing St. John next Tuesday night, it was circled on the calendar. The Big East were the giants.

I was never a Hoya fan but you had to respect them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would argue that North Carolina, Duke,Louisville, and Indiana would have something to say about that. The Big Ten was just as big as the Big East back then as was the ACC. The Big East gets a lot of notoriety because of 85 and getting 3/4 teams to the Final Four, but those other conferences were no slouches during that era.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, Hate said:

I would argue that North Carolina, Duke,Louisville, and Indiana would have something to say about that. The Big Ten was just as big as the Big East back then as was the ACC. The Big East gets a lot of notoriety because of 85 and getting 3/4 teams to the Final Four, but those other conferences were no slouches during that era.

The Big East had Syracuse, St John's Georgetown, Villanova, Seton Hall and Providence all make Final Fours in a five yr period.   No other conference was doing that.   I'm from Big Ten country and loved the teams in that conference from that period but no one matched the Big East then.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The Big East had Syracuse, St John's Georgetown, Villanova, Seton Hall and Providence all make Final Fours in a five yr period.   No other conference was doing that.   I'm from Big Ten country and loved the teams in that conference from that period but no one matched the Big East then.

There is no doubt that the Big East reigned supreme in that 5 year stretch and Georgetown was a big part of that. The Big East, Big Ten, and ACC were all the tops dogs during the 80’s and ,imo, college basketballs best era. The Big Ten had 3 titles during that decade (Indiana in 81 and 86, Michigan in 89), the ACC had two (UNC in 82 and NC Sate in 83), Big East has two (Georgetown in 84 and Villanova in 85), and the Metro Conference had two (Louisville in 80 and 86). The overall depth of the conferences across the nation was outstanding in the 80’s and probably never anything we will see again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't forget the 2 heartbreakers they lost in the Finals, Syracuse on Keith Smart's shot in '87 and Seton Hall getting hosed losing in OT in '89. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


mpu


Football ... Basketball ... Baseball ... Other Sports ... Recruiting ... Gambling ... Movies & TV ... Music ... Hobbies ... Lulz ... Food & Travel ... Daily Texan ... Help ... For Sale ... Politics ... Board Discussion
×
×
  • Create New...