1986 Men's Basketball


A case could be made that the 1985-86 men’s basketball team was arguably the best team Hall of Fame coach Dick Reynolds ever put together.

With a starting lineup consisting of three seniors and two juniors, the Cardinals swept through their Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) competition, posting a perfect 16-0 mark in the regular season and winning the post-season OAC Tournament. The Cardinals advanced into the NCAA Tournament for the second straight season. All five starters—point guard Frank Gioffre, forward Dave Langdon, center Mike McKinney, forward Dick Hempy, and shooting guard Steve Brown—earned All-OAC honors.

The Cardinals entered the NCAA Tournament on a 20-game winning streak and were ranked No. 3 in the country. Otterbein, serving as host for the NCAA Great Lakes Regional, swept 11th-ranked Calvin, 100-84, second-ranked DePauw, 82-76, to advance to the Elite Eight. Hempy and McKinney combined for 115 points and 42 rebounds over the two games and were named to the all-regional team.

Otterbein, however, fell one game shy of making the Final Four, losing, 87-82, in single overtime at fourth-ranked Nebraska Wesleyan in the quarterfinals played in Lincoln, Neb. Three Otterbein starters fouled out of the game, and Nebraska Wesleyan outscored Otterbein, 29-10, from the free-throw line.

Hempy earned first team All-American honors and was named Player of the Year by the National Association of Basketball Coaches. McKinney earned third team All-American honors.