Sunday, April 8, 2012

The 1976 Boys All-Tournament Team: Marshall-U Places 5 on All-Tournament Team, or Do They?

During the recent high school tournament, you were of course aware that it was the 100th year of stat tournament basketball and that the MSHSL was celebrating same--as well they should.

One thing I heard and/or read a couple times was that Minneapolis Marshall-U's 1976 state champs were the only team in tournament history to place all 5 players on the all-tournament team. I have to set the record straight on this. It's not true.

I mean it's true in a manner of speaking that all 5 Marshall-U players made the all-tournament team. But only in a manner of speaking. And it's not true that they're the only one. Rochester placed 5 boys on the all-tournament team in 1917. Otherwise, Marshall-U is indeed the only other team that's done it.

And yet, there was in fact NO OFFICIAL ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM IN 1976. The tournament that year underwent a variety of changes. There would no longer be an A vs. AA "overall" championship game. The ranks of Class AA had been enlarged from just 64 teams to 128. It was the year of the first "official" girls tournament.

And so the MSHSL also initiated a practice--just for a 2-year period--that it would not pick an all-tournament team. Now the girls coaches and other influencers had insisted that there would be no all-tournament team among the girls, and there was not for many many years. And for 2 years, that went for the boys, too, until in 1978 a boys all-tournament team was picked again.

And so, at the end of the 1976 tournament, an enterprising young historian wanna-be picked his own all-tournament teams.

Class AA

Steve Lingenfelter, Al Hutchison, Brent Knight, Jefferson
Kevin McHale, John Retica, Hibbing
Doug and Brian Pederson, Prior Lake
Milo Backowski, Doug Fregin, Little Falls
Ron Schoenecker, New Prague
Dave Herzan, Cretin
Johnny Hunter, Mpls. North

Class A

Ronnie Hadley, Rodney Hargest, Ronnie Henderson, Jim Ludgate, Steve Newby, Minneapolis Marshall-U
Paul Biewen, Brian Mitchell, Mankato Wilson
Dan Carpenter, Scott Holmen, Windom
Doug Luebbe, Winona Cotter
Brady Lipp, Breckenridge
Nate Dahlman, Orr

I noted the following scoring averages for the M-U players: Hargest 19, Henderson and Newby 14, Hadley and Ludgate 11.7. I also designated Henderson as the Class A MVP.

For the record the other Class A all-stars averaged somewhere between 24 ppg (Carpenter and Lipp) and 12 (Mitchell).

Probably the best player who didn't make my all-tournament 12 was Brad Olson of Montevideo who scored 19 points (including the final 4 in a 53-51 win), then 15 points. He scored something less than 16 points in the final but I don't know exactly how many. Or Joe Westlund of runner-up Mankato Wilson who scored 14, and then scored in double figures including a 40-footer to end the 1st half. I don't know how many he scored in the championship game, won by M-U 64-59 in OT.

Of course, the fact that I picked 12 players to my all-tournament team is arbitrary, too. But I could just as well have picked more as less. During the 2-class era the MSHSL had picked 15 players each in A and AA in 1971, 12 each in 1972, 14 each in 1973, then 10 each in 1974 and 1975. They would pick 10 again in 1978, so maybe 10 is the best number.

But the fact is I picked 12 and I did it in the heat of the moment, right after having seen the tournament. So I stick with my picks. The only question is whether you want to allow my unofficial all-tournament team to sub for the one the MSHSL didn't pick. It's not like they picked one and I overruled it or threw it out.

4 or 5 Picks

So here are the schools that got 4 or 5 players on the all-toyurnament team.

1917--Rochester 5. The 1st 5 included guards Enke and Kitzman. Enke went on to win all-Big 10 honors at the U, Kitzman started by Carleton, then a small college powerhouse. The 1st and 2nd teams both included forwards Bay "or" Mattson. And the 2nd team included center Kruse.

1918--Waseca's state champs. L. Juhnke, Jacobson and E. Juhnke made the 1st team, Wyman the 2nd. My dad was an 8-year old boy in Waseca at the time and almost surely would have been at the local train depot to welcome the boys home.

1922--Red Wing 4. Forward Oliver Nordly and guard "Butsie" Maetzold were on the 1st team, and center Chuck Hartupee and guard Kenneth Brown made the 2nd.

During the period from 1917 to 1922, there were generally 10 players on the all-tournament team. They went to just 5 in 1923 through 1937, then 8 through 1951, then finally back to 10 in 1951. During the 5 to 8 honoree era from 1923 to 1950 only St. Paul Mechanic Arts (1925), Moorhead (1929 and 1930), Minneapolis Edison (1937), Minneapolis North (1938), Mountain Lake (1939), Breckenridge (1940), Buhl and Marshall (1942) and Gilbert (1951) got as many as 3.

The all-tournament team went to 10 in 1952, then 12 in 1957, and it remained in double figures forever, except when there was no all-tournament team.

1960--Edgerton: Veenhof, Verdoes, Kreun, Graphenteen

1967--Edina; Zender, Shellhas, Wright, Kiedrowski

1970--South St. Paul: Stoeve, Peterson, Virgin, Mettler

1997--Hancock and Caledonia. Hancock: Tony and Justin Thielke, Nuest, Jepma; Caledonia: Middendorf, Foster, King, Diersen

2010--New London-Spicer: Aaron Johnson, Jayme Moten, Eric Tengwall, Justin Zylstra

2011--Hopkins: Coleman, Chambers, Singleton, Stahl

In Summary

Last summer I met with the MSHSL and other "historians" of high school basketball. the goal was to pick the best players, coaches, teams, games, moments for the MSHSL promo. I mentioned that Marshall-U was the only team ever to place 5 boys on the all-tournament team. Next thing I knew it was heard on TV. So again, it's not quite right, specifically in that Rochester also did it.

And, technically, I guess they didn't do it at all. But I was there, I saw them, I picked my all-tournament team and the MSHSL dropped that ball. To the best of my knowledge 1976 and 1977 are the only years since 1916 that no all-tournament team was picked. So in spirit, M-U did indeed place five players on the (only) all-tournament team. I'm good with that.

1 comment:

  1. Jim Ludgate All I can say is we each got a letter of all tourney team notification, and all tourney team medals, so there were indeed all tourney teams picked.