Cougars Claw Their Way To #1 In 1983

Today in 1983, the Houston Cougars moved to #1 in the AP Poll. It was UH’s first time in the top spot since 1968.

At the beginning of 1983, the Coogs were #19 in the country but had moved into the top-10 after a 15-point home win over previously unbeaten Arkansas. When February started, UH was #8 and went to #6 then #4 then #2 in the next three polls.

After #1 UNLV lost twice in the last week of February, the Houston Cougars jumped to #1. The Phi Slama Jama craze went into overdrive later in the week when the Cougars went to Fayetteville and knocked off #5 Arkansas, 74-66. It was UH’s first-ever win at Barnhill Arena.

Clyde Drexler on 2/28/83 after learning UH moved to #1 / Victoria Advocate
Guy V. Lewis leaving campus flashes the 1. The AP spelled Dena’s name incorrectly / Fort Worth Star Telegram
AP story / The Northwest Arkansas Times

E Cullen was decorated with a huge 1 when the Coogs moved to the top spot / The Houstonian
Phi Slama Jama mania took over campus / The Houstonian

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