I wrote a column about the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame trying to determine what the best sports moment in N.C. history is. (They want your vote at www.ncshof.org).
It's an admirable effort, although somewhat awkward since they don't differentiate between team and individual performances (or even a meeting, in one case). But a panel of experts did narrow an original list of 22 down to five, and you're voting (once each, please) on the final five.
Here's the original list of 22 moments (which also left out some great stuff, of course, including Michael Jordan's shot to beat Georgetown in the 1982 NCAA title game and Duke's 2010 thrilling win over Butler in the NCAA final).
I have put in bold-face the 5 finalists that the hall of fame named. Most of them can be found on YouTube, of course, including Jim Beatty's four-minute mile in 1962 and highlights of the various basketball games.
What do you think is the best moment of these? Or would you pick something else not even on the list?
The N.C. Sports Hall of Fame's list of 22 greatest sports moments in the state's history (the five finalists are bold-faced)
October 16, 1895: College football’s first forward pass, thrown by North Carolina in a game against Georgia.
January 1, 1942: The Rose Bowl football game is played in Durham less than a month after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Oregon State defeated Duke, 12-7.
July 1, 1946: N.C. State hires Everett Case, the driving force behind the Tobacco Road basketball phenomenon.
September 26, 1948: North Carolina defeats Texas, considered the nation’s best college football team, with Choo-Choo Justice playing a prominent role.
May 8, 1953: The Atlantic Coast Conference is voted into existence with seven original institutional members.
March 8, 1957: North Carolina maintained its perfect record with a controversial win over Wake Forest in the ACC Tournament.
March 23, 1957: North Carolina defeated Kansas and Wilt Chamberlain to win the NCAA basketball championship with a 32-0 record.
February 10, 1962: North Carolina’s Jim Beatty became the first man to break the 4-minute indoor mile (3:58.9) in Los Angeles.
March 2, 1974: North Carolina’s basketball team trailed Duke by 8 with 17 seconds left, and won dramatically in overtime, 96-92.
March 9, 1974: No. 1-ranked N.C. State defeated Maryland in “the greatest college basketball game ever played” for an NCAA berth.
March 23, 1974: N.C. State snapped UCLA’s 38-game post-season streak in double overtime to advance to the national title game.
April 4, 1983: In what some regard as the biggest upset in NCAA Tournament history, N.C. State beat Houston for the national title.
July 4, 1984: Richard Petty won his 200th and final automobile race beating Cale Yarborough by one foot at the finish line at Daytona.
March 30, 1991: Duke upset UNLV en route to the NCAA crown the year after losing to the Runnin’ Rebels by 30 points in the title game.
March 28, 1992: Christian Laettner hit a dramatic turn-around shot just before the buzzer and Duke beat Kentucky, 104-103, in the East finals.
March 15, 1997: Dean Smith passed Adolph Rupp for his 877th career victory, beating Colorado in the East Region in Winston-Salem.
January 18, 2004: Just two seasons after a 1-15 record, the Carolina Panthers defeated Philadelphia and advanced to the Super Bowl
February 13, 2006: Greensboro’s Joey Cheek became one of North Carolina’s most unlikely heroes winning the gold in Olympic speed skating.
June 19, 2006: The Carolina Hurricanes beat Edmonton, 3-1, in a dramatic seventh game in Raleigh to bring the Stanley Cup to the state.
March 24, 2007: Anthony Atkinson scored 10 points in 39 seconds to lead Barton College to the NCAA Division II basketball crown.
September 1, 2007: Appalachian State shocked the college football world with a 34-32 victory over fifth-ranked Michigan in Ann Arbor.
April 6, 2009: North Carolina’s basketball team won its fifth national championship beating Michigan State, 89-72, in Detroit.