Twenty-five years ago, CBS play-by-play man Verne Lundquist called maybe the greatest college basketball game ever played. Duke's Christian Laettner won it with a buzzer-beater against Kentucky. (AP Photo/Carol Francavilla)
Not long after Christian Laettner made one of the most memorable shots in basketball history, Verne Lundquist realized he had probably just witnessed the greatest college game ever played.
As the 25th anniversary of the epic Duke-Kentucky East Regional final approaches, Lundquist has no reason to change his mind.
“It’s stood the test of time,” said Lundquist, who is in his 33rd year of calling NCAA Tournament games.
Laettner’s shot off a long inbounds pass from Grant Hill gave Duke a 104-103 overtime victory against Kentucky on March 28, 1992. It capped a perfect shooting night for Laettner and the Blue Devils went on to win a second straight national championship.
Lundquist said his broadcast partner, Len Elmore, quickly spotted that Kentucky was not putting a defender in front of Hill, who was passing the ball in from under the basket at the far end of the court. Knowing Hill would have no problem getting the ball in allowed Lundquist to focus on the front court, where Laettner was positioned and how Kentucky was guarding him.
"When the shot went down, “All I did was channel my inner Marv Albert and say, ‘Yes!’” Lundquist said.