Arizona men’s basketball coach Sean Miller joined the Jim Rome Show on Tuesday and after discussing 6th-ranked Wildcats, the conversation turned to Miller’s playing days at Pittsburgh and his role in one of the most famous plays in NCAA history. Friday is the 25th anniversary of Jerome Lane’s backboard-shattering dunk against Providence. While most know it as “The Dunk,” Miller, a point guard on the team, who set up the play, knows it as “The Pass.”
Miller believes one of the reasons the play still resonates today is because it happened in front of a large tv audience.
“There was not nearly as many channels and the competition on television for college basketball wasn’t anywhere near what it was today. If you were going to watch a national televised game back then, you were going to generally turn in to Big East, Big Monday and that’s really what it was,” Miller said.
Getting the right setting and the right audience is one thing, but none of that matters without the play. The dunk was an iconic moment for Lane and Miller, but a rather forgettable one for an Providence player who’ll remain anonymous.
“[I]t was a great play, you know actually a guy took the charge and didn’t get the call so it was actually an and-one, if you can imagine getting the whole backboard broken on top of your head,” said Miller.
Miller also pointed out that his role in that play still serves him to this day.
“Because I’m a coach, none of my players think I can play Jim, that’s the way it works, if I go in and tell any story, they just roll their eyes,” said Miller. “But the one thing I always have to my credit, they can never doubt that I made that pass, because they always see it with their own two eyes.”