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Official Site of the Fab Five


The Legacy of the Fab Five

 

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The Fab Five was the nickname for a 1991 University of Michigan men's basketball team recruitment class that is considered by some to be "the greatest class ever recruited." The class consisted of Detroit natives Chris Webber and Jalen Rose, Chicago native Juwan Howard, and Texas high school stars Jimmy King and Ray Jackson. They reached the 1992 and 1993 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship games as both freshmen and sophomores, while starting a combined 304 of a possible 350 man-games.

Originally, the players rebelled against the moniker and attempted to give themselves the nickname Five Times' (written 5X's). As high school players all five members of the Fab Five were rated in the top 100 of high school prospects in 1991. Chris Webber was ranked #1, Juwan Howard was ranked #3, Jalen Rose was ranked #6, Jimmy King was ranked #9, and Ray Jackson was ranked #84. All but Jackson participated in the McDonald's All American game in 1991.

As students, they became pioneers in bringing "hip hop flavor" to the game with their trash talk, long baggy shorts, shaved heads, black shoes, and black socks.Their controversial antics on the court garnered much attention from the media.In the elite eight round of the 1992 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament, Michigan earned a rematch against a Jimmy Jackson-led Ohio State Buckeyes team that had beaten them twice during the regular season by double digits.Michigan won the rematch as all but two Wolverines points were scored by the Fab Five.Despite their talent, they never won a championship. They reached the NCAA championship game as freshmen in 1992 and again as sophomores in 1993. They lost to Duke 71–51 in the 1992 title game and lost 77–71 to North Carolina in 1993, a game which is remembered mostly for Chris Webber's costly "timeout", which resulted in a technical foul because Michigan did not have one remaining. Today their legacy has been tarnished due to a University of Michigan basketball scandal that developed after they had left and forced the university to forfeit many of its achievements.

Four of the five members went on to play in the NBA. Ray Jackson was the only player of the five to never suit up in the NBA. Jimmy King played two seasons. Juwan Howard was a one-time NBA All-Star and is the only member still active (as of the 2010–11 NBA season). Jalen Rose emerged as one of the top small forwards between 1999 and 2003, leading the Indiana Pacers in scoring the year they won the Eastern Conference (2000). Chris Webber was a five-time NBA All-Star and is the only one of the five expected to get nominated and possibly inducted into the Hall of Fame. No member of the Fab Five has ever won an NBA Championship.