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View Count: 127 |  Publish Date: April 07, 2014
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Evoking memories of Fab 5

ARLINGTON, Texas --
The Fab Five came onto the national basketball landscape like a thunder dunk. You had to notice the five baggy-shorts-wearing freshmen starters from Michigan who made their way to the national championship game.
It was 1992 and people couldnt believe a team with five players just out of high school could find a way to play for the title. They did, the first such group to do it. Many said it would never happen again.
It took 22 years but another group of teenagers have played their way to a chance to win it all.
Kentucky, which plays Connecticut in the title game Monday night, starts five freshmen. They dont have a nickname like Michigan did. They just got on a roll in the NCAA Tournament as the Fab Five did a generation ago.
The Fab Five - Chris Webber, Juwan Howard, Jalen Rose, Jimmy King and Ray Jackson - didnt overwhelm the competition during their freshman season, entering the tournament with a 20-9 record, including going 11-7 in the Big Ten. The Wolverines were a No. 6 seed, two higher than the Wildcats.
They eventually lost to Duke by 20 points in the championship game but nobody watching then will forget the Fab Five for a lot of reasons.
We were so much either loved or hated and judged by the way we looked, Rose said for a 15th anniversary story. Back then, it was Oh, look at these hoodlums, these thugs, these gangsters, because we had big shorts, because we had black shoes and black socks.
The Wildcats, who come in with a 29-10 record, including 12-6 in the SEC, know all about the Fab Five. Only three players on the Kentucky roster were born when the Fab Five played its first game, but the documentary has become a TV staple.
Aaron Harrison, who has hit big three-pointers for Kentucky in the three games leading to Monday night, is an unabashed fan of the Fab Five.
That is my favorite documentary. Ive watched it 10 times, Harrison said. Its amazing what they did for the college game. It was great that they showed it doesnt matter how old you are but how youre playing together.
Julius Randle, Aaron Harrison, Andrew Harrison, James Young and Dakari Johnson have a chance to go one better than the Fab Five.
All of the Fab Five came back and they reached the title game again, losing to North Carolina in a game known mostly for the timeout called by Webber that Michigan didnt have.
The two freshman-laden teams will now be linked forever.
The correlation, Kentucky John Calipari said, they were young. We are young.

Time: 10:47  |  News Code: 396849  |  Site: San Francisco Chronicle
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▫ Wildcats prompt memories of Fab 5  San Francisco Chronicle - Sports
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