From left to right: Ray Jackson, Chris Webber, Juwan Howard, Jalen Rose, and Jimmy King
On Sunday March 13 at 9 pm EST, "The Fab Five" premieres on ESPN. Billed as "warts and all", the 100 minute documentary tells the story of the University of Michigan’s 1991 men’s basketball recruiting class of Chris Webber, Juwan Howard, Jalen Rose, Jimmy King and Ray Jackson. The documentary features interviews by many of the key players in the Fab Five saga. The glaring holdout is star forward Chris Webber who after much prodding, declined to participate.
With their baggy shorts, black socks (with shoes to match), and trash talk, the Fab Five revolutionized basketball by bringing a hip-hop flavor to the game. This didn't sit well with many as the documentary displays racist letters sent to U of M and its players at that time. Among the racist letter writers were alums from the school who actually signed their name and year of graduation! The documentary also details how the Fab Five felt about their nemeses Duke and its recruiting practices when it came to black players.
The Fab Five never won an NCAA title during their two years at the University of Michigan (losing in the championship games in 1992 and 1993 to Duke and the University of North Carolina, respectively). However, they remain one of the most talked about stories in college hoops history.
Below is a clip of Ray Jackson, Jimmy King, and Jalen Rose during an appearance on ESPN First Take in which they discuss the documentary. For more on The Fab Five and the accompanying documentary, click here for an article by Detroit Free Press sports writer Mark Snyder.