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From the WKVI Archives

Knox native Jerry Johnson played in the 1969 NCAA Basketball Final game on this date. His Purdue Boilermakers lost to UCLA 92-72.

Chicago gangster, Diamond Joe Esposito, who owned a cottage at Bass Lake, was shot and killed in a gangland slaying in the Windy City. He had his hand in bootlegging and prostitution. He was killed on this date in 1928.

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Jerry Johnson will Never Forget Playing Against Lew Alcinder in the 1969 NCAA Championship Game

Jerry Johnson guards Lew Alcinder in the 1969 NCAA championship game. Indy Star file photo

“Coach, I just stood by this guy he must be at least 7 feet, 4 inches tall.” That’s what Jerry Johnson said to Head Coach, George King, in the huddle before Purdue met UCLA in the final game of the 1969 NCAA basketball tournament.

Ted Hayes remembers

“I’m 6-10 and he towers over me,” Johnson said.

“Don’t worry about it Jerry,” King replied. “We’re just counting on you to hold him under 33 points.”

Jerry tried and he did pretty well. Kareem Abdul Jabbar, known in those days as Lew Alcinder, only scored 37 against Johnson.

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Jerry Johnson Talks of His Memories of John Wooden on ‘Ted Hayes Remembers’

John Wooden

How would you like to sit and have pizza with the greatest college basketball coach ever? Well Ted Hayes’ guest on tomorrow’s “Ted Hayes Remembers” program got to do that a few years ago. Jerry Johnson, who played basketball at Purdue, got to enjoy listening to “The Master”, Johnny Wooden, at banquets and once over pizza. Jerry said it was a thrill.

“I had many occasions in his later years to go down and listen to him at least four times and give speeches at different banquets for basketball, or for different things,” said Johnson. “He was a super gentlemen. He was getting pretty frail, but when we got done with what he was doing, he met us at Brunos for pizza and he had his secretary friend with him who took good care of him. He was a nice gentleman and just an unbelievably astute player, mentor, coach and teacher.”

Jerry Johnson and Ted will talk basketball this Friday on “Ted Hayes Remembers” at 12:20 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. CT.

Jerry Johnson to Talk Basketball on ‘Ted Hayes Remembers’

1969 Purdue Basketball Team. Jerry Johnson is the third person in the second row

How many people live next door to a person who started in an NCAA Final Basketball game? Ted Hayes does.

Jerry Johnson will be Ted’s guest this Friday on “Ted Hayes Remembers”.

Back in 1969, the Purdue Boilermakers, winners of the Big 10 Conference, were seeded into the NCAA tournament. Although they were not expected to win, the Boilers ended up in the final game against John Wooden’s UCLA Bruins.

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Jerry Johnson to be Featured on ‘Ted Hayes Remembers’ This Friday

It was on this date in 1969 that UCLA beat Purdue in the final game of the NCAA Basketball Tournament at Freedom Hall in Louisville, Kentucky.

Jerry Johnson of Knox started in that game going up against Lew Alcinder, who eventually became Kareem Abdul Jabbar.

Jerry Johnson will be Ted Hayes’ guest on “Ted Hayes Remembers” this Friday at 12:20 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. CT.

Too bad Jerry won’t be able to cheer, cheer, for old Purdue during the program as the Boilermakers stumbled against VCU Sunday evening.