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Do you remember where you were when the Jayhawks won the National Championship in 1988?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on February 10, 2008

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Photo of Mike McBride

“Yes. I was at Ed Manda’s house here in town watching the game. It was wonderful - absolute hysteria. It was unbelievable.”

Photo of Dee Johnson

“I was living in Lawrence at the time, and my husband and son were watching the game. They were very excited, especially our son.”

Photo of Mark Roberts

“Yeah, I was working on my undergrad at KU and was actually home studying while I watched the game on a tiny black-and-white TV.”

Photo of Deb Boyle

“Yes, I was living in the small town of Centralia. I didn’t watch the game, but I remember what a big deal it was in the media.”


Corey Williams 10 years, 3 months ago

I was watching the games on tv in a chain store.

Corey Williams 10 years, 3 months ago

I was watching the game on a tv in a chain store. Sorry. Little inebriated at this hour.

BalkansHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

I was a junior at KU and watched the game with my brothers and some friends at Quail Creek Apts. I even remember my pregame meal, catfish on the grill and a bottle of spirits. Followed up the game with a little "high five drive" up Iowa street all the way to campus. The only thing hurting worse than my head the next morning were my hands.

kansas778 10 years, 3 months ago

I was 7 and my parents wouldn't budge on the "in bed by 8:30 PM" rule...

Frederic Gutknecht IV 10 years, 3 months ago

Watched at home... Went up to campus afterwards... If you could bottle the good feelings that were in the air up there, it would be worth billions. It was like walking through an endorphin mist. If you could bottle some of the more destructive clowns...and leave them in the bottle...that would be good, too!~)

jonas 10 years, 3 months ago

Hell if I know. I was 10 years old, and I don't think I cared that much back then. That's why we need a new championship, so I can tell people where I was when they ask me about that one.

Aaron Gaddis 10 years, 3 months ago

Truly incredible. Remember it like it was yesterday.

I was a 5th grader at the time and lived two houses down from Prichard. You can only imagine how exciting it was to have one of the basketball players as your neighbor. His roommates were really cool and I ended up watching the final few minutes at a party they were having at their pad.

Everything was aligned that night.

mom_of_three 10 years, 3 months ago

I was living in Wichita, watching the game in my teeny-tiny apartment, all by myself. The weather was great, and my windows were open, and I could hear all the neighbors cheering while watching the game. My boyfriend, (now husband) was a student at KU, and he called me before he went to celebrate on campus.

Mike Blur 10 years, 3 months ago

I had just ETS'd from the Army, and was living in a shabby little apartment on Tennessee Street. Went back to my parents' house to watch it on their large, 32-inch Curtis Mathes set (top o' the line back then.) Never jumped around or freaked out as much as I have for a KU game, before or since. My sis-in law was 9-plus months pregnant, and ready to pop. My brother begged her to hold on throughout the game. When the final buzzer sounded, we all said to her, "you can have the kid now!" My nephew was born the next day.

I headed for the Hill after that. I remember not much, just it was a warm evening, the nearly-full moon was out, kissing and hugging everyone, getting beers from anyone who wanted to give me one. It was such an open boozefest on campus, and I believe no-one was hurt!

John Spencer 10 years, 3 months ago

Wached it like all the other games that year at a friends house, then we went to the hill to celebrate. Rock Chalk Jayhawk GO KU!!

H_Lecter 10 years, 3 months ago

I remember a lot of excited screaming and I grabbed the loudest noisemaker I could find. I fired it off about eight or ten times and then it got very quiet. I heard a gasping voice say, "Next time, fire that gun OUTSIDE, AWAY from the people."

terrapin2 10 years, 3 months ago

I was a freshman at KU at the time. Watched at a friend's house and ran up on campus afterwards. It was unbelievable!! I was moving, but my feet were not touching the ground and I had to climb up one of the trees on Wescoe beach to get out of the way. The rest of the night is a bit of a blur. That feeling can never be repeated. Amazing!

sourpuss 10 years, 3 months ago

I was a kid, but not really little, and I watched the game with my parents. I don't remember the game itself much, but boy do I remember the aftermath! I remember walking out on our porch in fairly far East Lawrence (east of Haskell) and I could hear honking from everywhere. We piled in our pickup truck and drove downtown, which was full of people honking and partying. Then, the party moved up the hill and we went up to campus. I think an entire fraternity jumped in the back of our truck. The whole vehicle was coated in beer. We then parked and joined in the party on foot. I don't know when we got home, but I have never seen anything quite like it since. It was a once-in-a-lifetime spontaneous expression of joy.

Also, the car Danny Manning was riding in ran over my foot during the parade! Didn't hurt though.

Kyle Neuer 10 years, 3 months ago

In Winona, MN, with my ex and daughter. The kid was asleep in the next room, so I couldn't yell. I think I shook the chair apart.

I believe I ticked off my in-laws a couple of days before by blowing off a family dinner outing in favor of watching the Hawks kick Duke's butt. Something about a 26-4 run to start the game.

RiverCityConservative 10 years, 3 months ago

It was the only year I spent on American soil between my masters graduation in 1984 and my move to NYC in 1992, with the rest of those years spent abroad. I returned from South American to Lawrence for the 87-88 school year to study linguistics, and left again in May of 88 for Japan. I was with friends in Kansas City (playing poker and watching the game on TV) that evening in March and didn't get back to Lawrence until after the wild festivities. I remember that one K.U. professor (I had studied with him in a special humanities-business course as an undergraduate...he was the Chicago native who had kind of a street-tough voice and taught business as well as participating in local theater...I am pretty sure his name was Larry Sheer.) wrote that week in the Daily Kansan that the administration's decision to cancel classes the next day was "a bush-league decision." My little kids (now graduated from college and working in NYC) went to the parade downtown with their kindergarten and pre-school groups. I always felt lucky to have been back in Kansas that year for this amazing experience. I remember the way the team developed that season, as well. They were supposed to be contenders, but before the season opened they lost several key players for ineligibility reasons. There was Danny Manning and all these new starters who at first could only think of passing the ball to him, making it pretty easy for other teams to beat them. But over the season they developed into a real team with multiple threats, and that is why they were poised to make their run through the tournament. But first Larry Brown or someone at K.U. had to do some behind the scenes persuading of the selection committee to pick a team with only 17 victories. Once they were in, it was destiny that they would eventually meet Oklahoma. But it was so hard to imagine them beating what seemed to be a quasi-professional team that trampled every opponent with relative ease. The first indication the final might turn out differently was when, after OK scored first, KU heaved a full-court in-bounds pass for a quick score. We played over our heads for one half, to 50-50. Then, in the second half, OK started to tire and there was an odd look in the eyes of OK's only five players (they seldom if ever used their bench). Danny Manning stroking in those free throws to ice the game at the end was very nice to watch. I was sorry later to see him have trouble with his knees in the pros, but he's always been graceful in the sport and KU is lucky to have him here.

ConcernedAmerican 10 years, 3 months ago

My wife (KU alum) had just returned from 2 weeks in Germany, and got to watch the last two games. Now, she is no sports fan at all, but when KU won, she went absolutely crazy, started jumping up and down and screaming, "We have to go somewhere, anywhere, we have to go up on campus!" Never saw anything like it when we arrived on Jayhawk Blvd. What a party! Thousands of people were your best friend, shared their beer, laughed, cheered, you name it. I felt bad for the one girl's Honda Civic that was getting crushed by five football player-size guys jumping up and down on it. It was amazing. I try to tell my students, that if it ever happens again (and it looks like football may be added into the equation) that they will just have to experience the high for themselves. Go KU!

simplykristib 10 years, 3 months ago

I had already finished up at KU. I am still living in the same place where I watched the game. I remember it was warm that day. I was decked out from head to toe in Jayhawk apparel. I sat and watched the first half in the house. During the second half, I got upset that KU was losing 65-60. I remember standing by a tree in the front yard (has been cut down since) telling myself it was just a game and the team had done really well. I convinced myself to go back in and watch the rest of the game. When I went back inside, we were making our comeback.:) It was sooo awesome watching the rest of the game and then the newscast after that. I remember watching Wendall Anschutz on the newscast sporting a Jayhawk sticker under his lapel! He was trying to be modest about his allegiance to KU. :) I just bought the 20th anniversary DVD of the game. I can't wait to relive the magic of that game!

Bill Lee 10 years, 3 months ago

I watched the game on TV like most of us in Lawrence back then. Even though the game was in KC, tickets were hard to get. I was lucky enough, though, to be asked to drive in the celebration parade downtown. I had a VHS copy of the parade thanks to a friend at Sunflower Cable back then, but I lost it in a fire a couple of years ago. My family rode along with me in the parade, and my kids used to enjoy watching themselves on TV whenever I'd watch the video. Great game, great team, and some great memories!

Larry 10 years, 3 months ago

I was sitting three rows back from the floor in Kemper Arena. It was Easter weekend, 1988. We stayed in Crown Center and OU stayed just across the street at the Hyatt. It was sure great watching Billy Tubbs and the Sooners lose that game.

Kookamooka 10 years, 3 months ago

I was watching it at my friends apartment just across from the Yellow Sub. Right afterward we ran off down Jayhawk Blvd screaming. A year later, I was on an airplane to Miami with Roy Williams and the 1989 Basketball team. Good Times!

trollkiller 10 years, 3 months ago

I was at Kelly's in Westport trying to pick up girls. I drove my Chevy Vega to Westport, but told the girls that my ultra-rare 1932 Bugatti Type 41 Royales with the ejection seat and bullet-proof headlights was loaned to Larry Brown and that he might even stop and pick me up if I could find him a girl too. I had to leave early w/o any girls because two of my dogs were in the back of my vega and needed to go potty.)

More about me later,

Nick Danger

pace 10 years, 3 months ago

yes it was horrible. I picked up litter, trash and beer bottles for days from around the neighborhood. Driving home was a nightmare, I worried when I heard shots. Good for the team, but a wetched display of filthy behavior on the part of the fans, didn't look like joy, more like an excuse to act like criminals.

John Spencer 10 years, 3 months ago

I really wanna party with you Dr. Doom...not

jonas 10 years, 3 months ago

Larry quoth: "It was sure great watching Billy Tubbs and the Sooners lose that game."

As opposed to: "It was sure great watching Danny Manning and the Miracles win that game."

You're a glass half-empty kind of guy, aren't you Larry?

GretchenJP 10 years, 3 months ago

I just remember what KU looked like the next day.

Meatwad 10 years, 3 months ago

I was a KU student then. Running all over campus screaming, falling down (too much to drink maybe?), bleeding, getting right back up again and carrying on with my screaming, seeing people in trees, honking horns, filling the streets, hugging each other, it was mass pandemonium and a huge adrenaline rush I'll never forget. That dull roar that could be heard all over Lawrence, I was part of that.

acg 10 years, 3 months ago

Yes, actually. I had just moved to Kansas from outside of Philly a few weeks prior to championship and was in the 9th grade at Central. Then the Hawks won and the whole town went crazy that night. I had never seen anything like it. Of course, I wanted to go out there and get into the thick of it but being 15 my mother wouldn't hear of it. She also didn't believe me when I told her that school was letting out early for the parade downtown. I had to have a teacher call her and tell her I wasn't lying. I can remember thinking that the reaction to the game was totally awesome. People of all ages, races and financial backgrounds were dancing in the streets. That was pretty cool.

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