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THE RETRO-SPECTIVE: THE 1996 BIG EAST TOURNAMENT FINAL

        

The Big East Tournament has given us some memorable moments over the past 3 decades. This past season, the Big East celebrated its 30 year of playing its conference tournament at Madison Square Garden. There were many moments that were honored, including one night in 1996 which featured two of the greatest players to ever play in the Big East. 

On March 9, 1996, the top two seeds in the Big East tournament, Georgetown and UConn faced off in the Big East title game, led by their two stars, Allen Iverson for Georgetown and Ray Allen for UConn. 

The action was back and forth for most of the game before Georgetown started to pull away a bit in the second half. 

Georgetown looked like they were going on to an easy victory with a 74-63 lead with 4:46 left in the game. 

That was until UConn, and forward Kirk King decided to do something about it. 

UConn went on a 12-0 run to finish the game, sparked by King, who scored 8 points during the run. 

However, what everyone remembers from that game is Ray Allen’s game-winning off-balance floater over Allen Iverson with 13 seconds left that put UConn up 75-74. Allen, who had missed his previous 14 shots before he hit the game-winner.  That was the only field that Allen hit in the second half. Allen finished the game with 17 points on 5-20 shooting, along with 12 rebounds, while Iverson finished with 13 points. 

Georgetown had a chance to win it, but an Allen Iverson jumpshot from the top of the key was no good, as well as Jerome “Junk Yard Dog” Williams’s putback as time expired. 

In a losing effort, Georgetown guard Victor Page was named the MVP of the 1996 Big East Tournament, while Allen Iverson set a tournament record for most points scored, with 79. 

Unfortunately for college fans everywhere, that was the last time that we saw Iverson and Allen play one another in college, as both were early entries in the 1996 NBA Draft. 

If there is another memorable moment that you would love to see spotlighted in the “Retro-Spective”, please let us know at info@retrocollegecuts.com.