By Adena Andrews
Seventy-five years of the NCAA tournament can invoke so many memories for different people. Therefore, choosing 75 of the greatest moments from thousands of games was difficult to do— but we tried anyway. To continue celebrating 75 Years of March Madness, CBS will count down the 75 greatest moments in March Madness history. The list will conclude at 9 p.m. March 7 (CBS Sports Network) with the No. 1 moment.
In the first episode where we count down from 75-56, my favorite moment has to be the 1981 title game between Indiana and North Carolina on a day that the nation stood still. Earlier in the day, President Ronald Reagan was hit by a bullet in an assassination attempt in Washington, DC. The national championship game, about 130 miles to the northeast of DC in Philadelphia, was in jeopardy of being canceled as the nation’s mind was on Reagan’s well-being.
“As far as we knew President Reagan could die and we were going to play a basketball game?” questioned Dick Enberg, who was a CBS Sports announcer from 2000-2011.
The game was played — as was the third-place game, the last in Final Four history — but there was one fan who wished he could be there. Reagan supposedly was upset he missed the game, and while he was intubated reportedly scribbled a note to a nurse mentioning, “All in all, I’d rather be in Philadelphia.”