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Thirty Years Ago Today…

Today, we hop into our Time Machine and take a look back at some of the major sports headlines on March 19, 1990 – exactly thirty years ago. The University of Hawaii Rainbow Warrior basketball team was gearing up for one of the biggest games of the Riley Wallace era. Spring training was set to begin for Major League Baseball. And the UH football team, led by fourth-year head coach Bob Wagner, opened spring practice sessions.

Here were the top sports events of the day:

♦ The Rainbow Warrior basketball team was preparing for its second-round NIT game against Long Beach State. The ‘Bows, under third-year head coach Riley Wallace, were 24-9 at this point of the season, having just beaten Stanford in the tournament’s opening round. (Note: Hawaii would beat Long Beach State, 84-79, in front of a sold-out crowd at the Blaisdell Center. Forward Terry Houston led UH with 27 points and 10 rebounds. Troy Bowe added 16 points, while Chris Gaines and Vincent Smalls each chipped in with 15.)

♦ The UH football team opened spring practice with a series of drills. Head coach Bob Wagner told the Honolulu Star-Bulletin’s Randy Cadiente: “We were in shorts today so there was a lot of teaching, running around, nothing physical. I liked what we saw. I’m also happy we don’t play tomorrow.”

♦ Hawaii’s Saleva’a Atisanoe, known in Japan as Konishiki, powered his way to another win in the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament. For the 513-pound Atisanoe, it was his ninth win against only one loss.

♦ After a bitter 32-day lockout, MLB owners and players agreed to a new four-year labor deal, paving the way for the start of spring training. Top players that year included Darryl Strawberry, Orel Hershiser and a young second-year player named Ken Griffey, Jr.

♦ Charles Barkley scored 29 points, grabbed 15 rebounds and dished 10 assists – his 10th career triple-double – and led the Philadelphia 76ers to a win over the New Jersey Nets. The victory propelled the Sixers to the top of the NBA’s Atlantic Division – a half-game above the New York Knicks.

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