Jerry Tarkanian - New Strategy Begins To Click
New Strategy Begins to Click
Using the new strategy, Tarkanian's second season got off to a slow start, with the UNLV team losing its first three games. Once things began to click, however, the team, which came to be known as the Runnin Rebels, sailed to a 24-5 record for the season and made it to the second round of the NCAA tournament. The new playing style proved extremely popular with UNLV basketball fans, who said the new strategy created the energy of a high school game played with a lot more skill. Things got even better during the 1975-1976 season when the team ended the season, 29-2, and again advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament.
Tarkanian's Runnin Rebels made it into the NCAA Tournament's Final Four on the strength of a 1976-1977 record of 29-3. In September 1977 the NCAA placed UNLV on two years probation, the penalties for which included a ban on postseason play for two years. At the same time the NCAA called for a two-year suspension of Tarkanian as coach, a sanction that was eventually blocked by the courts. The ban on postseason play remained in effect, however, so despite impressive records in both 1977-1978 (20-8) and 1978-1979 (21-8), the UNLV team saw no postseason action during this period.
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