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UCLA Basketball Win Streak of 88 Games Ended by Notre Dame January 19, 1974

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Notre Dame Stops UCLA Baskeball Win Streak that Started January 30, 1971 and Ended January 19, 1974.

Bruins Last Loss Before the Streak Started was Also to the Irish

UCLA ended the the 1969-70 season with a 5 game winning streak. As the 1970-1971 season progressed, the Bruins tacked another 13 games onto that run. On January 23, 1971 they faced Notre Dame. Austin Carr torched them for 46 points enabling the Irish to end UCLA’s streak at 18 games. Two years eleven months and twenty-eight days later, Notre Dame stopped another UCLA streak, but this one was the longest in NCAA men’s basketball history.

GAME BY GAME: The UCLA winning streak from 1 to 88

Win 1:
Jan. 30, 1971: 74-61 vs. UC Santa Barbara:

After their loss to Notre Dame, the Bruins fell to No. 2 in the AP poll, behind 14-0 Marquette and ahead of 14-0 USC. Curtis Rowe had 28 points with 11 rebounds and Sidney Wicks scored 19 as the Bruins were ahead by only eight with 8:39 left. “Let me initiate this by saying I’m not at all pleased,” Wooden said. “We didn’t play well today and we didn’t play well last weekend.”

… Read them all

Win 88:
Jan. 17, 1974: 66-44 vs. Iowa:

“I think Bill will play; the streak is important to him,” said Wooden after his star missed his third game in a row. Drollinger stepped up with 13 points and 17 rebounds, and the Hawkeyes’ 44 points were the lowest a UCLA team held anyone to that point. “I thought we were lackadaisical and I have never had that trouble with my teams,” said Wooden, perhaps a precursor to having the streak come to an end two days later at Notre Dame: 71-70.

From 1970-1974 UCLA Had Talent, Talent, and More Talent

1970-1971 was the season between Lew Alcindor (who became known as Kareem Abdul Jabbar) and Bill Walton. This is not to say that the 1970-1971 wasn’t stacked. They featured four future NBA players; Sidney Wicks, Curtis Rowe, Steve Patterson, and Henry Bibby. But during that “between season”, Johnny Wooden had to “make do” without a single future NBA Hall of Famers.

Bibby was the only future NBA guy left when UCLA started the 1971-72, but he was joined by Walton and another future Hall of Famer, Jamaal Wilkes. Two other guys who merely made it into the NBA were also on the team, Swen Nater and Greg Lee. So it wasn’t surprising when that team went 30-0.

Then Bibby was gone for the 1972-1973 season, but Dave Myers, another future NBA player was added to the roster, and again UCLA won 30 and lost none.

The 1973-1974 team had seven (count ’em) future NBA players. Lee, Walton, Wilkes and Myers were joined by Andred McCarter, Richard Washington and Marques Johnson. Johnson averaged more than 20 points a game over an eleven year NBA career, and played in five All-Star Games, but has not yet been elected to the Hall of Fame.

The 1973-1974 team had the most talent, but underachieved

In one disastrous weekend in Oregon. The UCLA Basketball team lost a Friday night game to Oregon State (February 15) and on Saturday night they lost again, this time to the University of Oregon. After that, the Bruins seemed to regain their footing. They won the remainder of the their regular season games, and despite the back-to-back losses in Oregon, they managed to win another PAC 10 title.

In the NCAA Tournament they beat San Franciso and then Dayton, to win the Western Regionals, but in the Final Four they lost the semi final game to a David Thompson led North Carolina State.


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