In the most lopsided title game in history, the UNLV Runnin’ Rebels embarrassed the Duke University Blue Devils 103–73 to win the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Championship 23 years ago this Tuesday on April 2, 1990.
Powered by stars Larry Johnson, Greg Anthony, Stacey Augmon, David Butler and Anderson Hunt, the Rebels went on an 18-0 run midway through the second half to help Jerry “Tark the Shark” Tarkanian capture his first crown as a collegiate head coach.
Scoring a game-high 29 points on 12-for-16 shooting, Hunt was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player after the blowout triumph at the McNichols Sports Arena in Denver, Colorado.
Finishing their memorable campaign with a record of 35-5, this version of the Runnin’ Rebels was inducted into the UNLV Athletic Hall of Fame in 2000.
The Blue Devils concluded the season 29-9 and ranked 15th by the Associated Press.
Hurley, a freshman guard who mirrored Eddie Munster donning nut-huggers in the Blue Devils’ shorts, suffered ongoing nightmares of sharks encircling him in a pool of water following the loss.
Although Hurley and Duke would get revenge the next spring, the UNLV Runnin’ Rebels cemented their place as one of the greatest college basketball squads ever assembled nearly a quarter-century past this week.by