Dunbar basketball bringing past back July 20

'83, '92 national champs to meet in day's feature

High Schools

June 14, 2002|By Bill Free | Bill Free,SUN STAFF

One of the nation's most storied high school basketball programs, that of Dunbar, will go all out July 20 to showcase much of the talent that led the school to national championships in the early 1980s and early 1990s.

The main event of a daylong basketball alumni extravaganza at the school will send the 1982-83 national championship team (31-0) against the 1991-92 national championship squad (29-0) at 6 p.m.

The 1982-83 team produced three first-round NBA draft choices (Reggie Williams, Muggsy Bogues and Reggie Lewis) and a second-round pick (David Wingate).

The 1991-92 team was led by Keith Booth and will be given a major boost in the July game by the addition of Milwaukee Bucks star Sam Cassell, who played at Dunbar from 1984 to 1987.

"Sam said he would come in and play for our team," said Pete Pompey, who coached the 1991-92 team and was Cassell's coach in 1986 and 1987.

Wade coached back-to-back unbeaten Dunbar teams in 1981-82 and 1982-83, but the 1981-82 team had to share the national championship with nearby Calvert Hall.

"This is going to be a lot of fun," said Wade, now of the city's interscholastic athletics department. "Muggsy will be there. He can still play [he recently retired from the Charlotte Hornets]. I'm pretty sure Reggie Williams is coming, and Tim Dawson is coming up from Dade County in Florida with his family to play."

Also expected to play for Wade's team are Michael Brown, Eric Green and Herman Harried. Pompey's lineup is expected to include Cassell, Michael Lloyd, Paul Banks, Cyrus "Diego" Jones and Rodney Elliott, with Booth and Donta Bright listed as strong possibilities.

So who will win?

Pompey said: "We may be 10 years younger, but they're wiser. Our guys may be in awe of playing against people who were once their heroes. I just hope they don't remain in awe too long."

Skip Wise, a Dunbar great in the 1970s, told Pompey he is "working out hard" in preparation for the event, which will start at noon with running clock games featuring players from the 1950s and 1960s.

Ray Short, one of the organizers of the event, said: "We'll have even years playing against odd years right on up to the national-championship game. I'm sure the early games will be real short, so everybody will get a chance to play."

Short said, "It will be a proud day for Dunbar basketball."

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