Loyola Championship: 50th Anniversary

We talk with the author of a new book and two players from the 1963 Loyola University NCAA Championship team about the adversity it overcame to win the title on Chicago Tonight at 7:00 pm. Watch web-exclusive videos below, read an excerpt from Ramblers, by Michael Lenehan, and view a photo gallery.

Watch the thrilling conclusion to the 1963 NCAA Championship game between Loyola University and the University of Cincinnati. The late Red Rush describes the action—which we join with 1 minute left in the first overtime period, and the score tied 58-58.

Watch our 2003 story about Loyola’s championship team featuring Jerry Harkness, John Egan, Leslie Hunter and more.

Loyola basketball star Jerry Harkness talks about the racism he and his team faced during their careers, including in the 1963 NCAA Championship season. He begins by talking about the “unwritten rule” coaches had about how many African-American ballplayers should be in a game at the same time.

Harkness talks about playing the all-white Mississippi State team in the 1963 NCAA tournament. Mississippi State players had to sneak out of Mississippi in order to play; the government of Mississippi had banned the team from competing in an interracial game.

Loyola basketball star Jerry Harkness talks about the 1963 NCAA Championship game, including the poor start the team had, his shot at the end of regulation that sent the game into overtime, and the final basket that clinched the title.