Arizona Basketball

Arizona Wildcats hoops countdown: Banks open on Sunday with Simon’s 65-foot buzzer beater




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This year’s countdown to tipoff includes an overall look at the best play in Arizona Wildcats history, which will be determined as the days leading up to tipoff comes to a close. Today marks 55 days until Arizona starts its 2014-15 season against Mount St. Mary’s on Nov. 14 at McKale Center. Along with the mentioning of the top plays, the countdown will once again display the top players who wore the number that corresponds with the day.

Here’s the next top play (they will be listed randomly during the countdown until a determination is made in a bracket about which play is the best):


Miles Simon quipped that he did not call a bank shot against Cincy because banks are closed on Sundays

Miles Simon quipped that he did not call a bank shot against Cincy because banks are closed on Sundays

Miles Simon’s 65-foot shot that banked in at the buzzer, giving Arizona a 79-76 victory over No. 5 Cincinnati, was significant in more ways than one.

It also gave Lute Olson his 500th coaching victory. The game was played on Sun., Feb. 11, 1996, in Phoenix’s Veteran Memorial Coliseum.

After Cincinnati missed a shot in the closing seconds, Simon picked up the loose ball at the top of the Bearcats’ free-throw circle, took one dribble and heaved it with two hands for the winning basket.


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Tom Tolbert’s no-look, twisting shot against North Carolina in the 1988 Elite Eight win over North Carolina.

UA HOOPS-RELATED TWITTER REACTIONS (following last night’s Hail Mary pass that enabled Arizona to beat Cal):


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“I’m not lying. When the shot went up, I sat down and put my hands in the air — I knew it was going in,” teammate Ben Davis told reporters after the game.

Cincinnati guard Damon Flint: “Shooters know when a shot’s going in, and I knew once it left his hands he made it.”

Olson quipped: “Miles called it off the glass.”

Simon answered: “I didn’t call ‘bank.’ Most banks are closed on Sunday anyway.”

Before the shot, Simon was in a shooting slump, having made 4 of 23 3-pointers his previous six games, including an 0 for 5 performance on 3-pointers before his winning shot.


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[/ezcol_1half_end] publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He also writes articles for Bleacher Report and Lindy’s College Sports.

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