“On September 6, we recorded our 64th oral history for the museum. Participating were Rich Falk, Rick Lopossa, Dave Downey and Bill Small. Conducting the interview was Jim Sheppard. All of them are IBCA Hall of Famers. The University of Illinois also came out to record this interview for their archives. Each of the players spoke about the influence their families and coaches had on them. They also spoke of their college playing days (1960-63) and other great players in the Big Ten. One of the stories we recorded was the first game played in the Assembly Hall (Northwestern vs. the University of Illinois) and last game played in Huff Gym (Wisconsin vs. Illinois). Rich Falk and Rick Lopossa still hold Northwestern scoring records and Dave Downey’s 53 point game is still the record for the “Fighting Illini”. Bill Small had a great chance to make the 1964 United States Olympic Team until an arm injury sidelined him.

The interview concluded with their discussion on how the college game has changed since their playing days. It was a great afternoon of stories, but even better than the stories was watching how these “old rivals ” enjoy their friendships. It was a great example of how Illinois Basketball develops lasting relationships.

You will be able to read more on this special event in our next museum newsletter (coming out in October).