They werent exactly the Flying Wallendas, but it was a pretty impressive balancing act.
Houston beaten and the national championship won, N.C. States Cozell McQueen soon found himself standing on the rim. Climbing up beside him, and straining to do it, was teammate Ernie Myers.
Cozell has those size 16s and me, I have 13s, Myers said last week. Theres not a lot of room on that little rim.
Talk about an iconic photo. McQueen standing tall, holding a Pack Power poster over his head, and Myers scrambling to join him became a fitting finish to the Wolfpacks improbable journey to the top of college basketball.
Myers remembers seeing a sea of faces below, all looking up in wonderment at the basket.
The view was awesome, Myers said. You talk about an adrenaline rush. We felt like we were on top of the world.
Myers says the two never thought of the rim collapsing. McQueen had done the same thing after the Pack won the West Regional in Ogden, Utah, albeit with a caveat the backboard had been lowered.
There was so much joy and happiness we didnt even think about it in Albuquerque, Myers said. We had so many people who had doubted us and Cozell wanted everyone to know the Pack was the No. 1 team in the country. We threw caution to the wind.
Until Pack coach Jim Valvano finally caught his breath long enough for a look.
Coach was saying, Get em down, get em down, Myers said, laughing. You know coach. He was already thinking about the next year. He didnt want us getting hurt.
Thats something you may never see again, two guys having a ball on top of a backboard. It was crazy.