Former Men's Basketball Teams Honored
March 6, 2006
TEMPE, Ariz. - The Sun Angel Foundation and Arizona State University Athletics celebrated the reunion of the 1979-80 and 1980-81 men's basketball teams in a series of events this past weekend.
Many of the former players currently reside in Arizona and a few others flew in to gather for a series of events including dinner on Friday night with Athletics Director Lisa Love, a private reception held in the players' honor prior to the Sun Devils' men's basketball game with Washington State and capped off by a standing ovation at halftime when the players were introduced on Ned Wulk Court.
Team members in attendance for the festivities included Kurt Nimphius, Jim Butts, Sam Williams, Johnnie Nash, Tom Kuyper, Bruce Thomas, Ron Warring, Kedrick Ellison, Fat Lever, Alton Lister and Coach Jim Newman.
Some notable accomplishments of these teams included back-to-back 20-win seasons, back-to-back NCAA tournament berths and an undefeated record against arch-rival Arizona. Of this group, five players went on to have successful careers as players in the National Basketball Association (NBA).
The teams also combined to go 46-11 in those two seasons with a combined 21-5 record in their second and third seasons as members of the Pac-10.