1954 Milan team inspiring local teams

1954 Milan team inspiring local teams (WKRC)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - March Madness time was on and the NCAA Tournament includes several local teams.

If the local teams needed a little inspiration, who better to turn to than the team with a real Cinderella story. Two guys who were part of the "Miracle in Milan" had some advice for the teams.

The movie "Hoosiers" was based on a small town team from Milan, Indiana, that made it to the state championships in spite of the odds. Local 12 News had a chance to talk to a couple of the team members that inspired that movie and they were still inspiring others in so many ways.

It was easy to remember the last two points of the championship game, such as the one in the movie Hoosiers. But talk to Ray Craft and Gene White, who were part of the original 1954 Milan High School Championship basketball team, and they'll say it really was all about taking one for the team.

Ray Craft said, "If one kinda had a bad game, then a couple others would step up."

That's what they said got the University of Cincinnati, Xavier University, and of course Northern Kentucky University to the NCAA Championships. Since NKU made it in their first year of eligibility, Local 12 asked the players from the smallest school to ever make it to the state championships, was there still room for Cinderella at the dance?

They felt there was just so many teams now it was tougher for small town teams to stand out. But don't tell that to NKU!

As for the advice to hometown teams ? Teamwork still stands. Don't ever be afraid to give your best shot.

NKU plays UK Friday night, March 17, and people can watch it on Local 12 News.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off