Iowa History Daily: On March 23, 1956, the Iowa Hawkeyes fell in the NCAA men’s basketball championship to Bill Russell and the Dons of San Francisco. Capping back-to-back trips to the Final Four for the Hawks, the team stands as one of the greatest in the state’s history.
Known as the ‘Fabulous Five,’ Sharm Scheuerman, Bill Logan, Carl Cain, Bill Seaberg, and Bill Schoof led Iowa to their second consecutive Big Ten title with a 20-6 (13-1) record. Playing in the Iowa Field House, Bucky O’Connor’s team racked up 17 straight wins after starting the season 3-5.
Rising to No. 4 in the AP poll, Iowa opened the tournament with back-to-back wins in Iowa City over Morehead State and Adolph Rupp’s Kentucky team. Heading to McGaw Hall in Evanston, Illinois, the Hawkeyes dispatched Temple in the Final Four 83-76 to meet San Francisco in the championship.
Featuring two future Boston Celtics greats Bill Russell and KC Jones, the defending champion Dons came in a perfect 28-0 and ranked No. 1 in the country. Although Iowa’s ‘Fabulous Five’ put up a valiant effort against Phil Woolpert’s Dons, the Hawkeyes ultimately fell 83-71. #IowaHistoryDaily #IowaOTD #IowaHistoryCalendar