Dan Smith’s eyes lit up when the subject was broached. The longtime voice of Long Beach State had just been asked to talk about the first and second rounds of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament in 1990 that were played at Long Beach Arena and included Loyola Marymount University.
Smith was PA announcer for those games, which were played just days after the March 4 death of LMU star Hank Gathers during the West Coast Conference Tournament.
“In 30 years of announcing, without question the biggest game I ever did was that Michigan-Loyola Marymount game,” Smith said of No. 11-seeded LMU’s 149-115 upset of third-seeded Michigan in the second round. “It was amazing. ESPN’s done a couple of ‘30 for 30’ (films), one on the Hank Gathers story and one on (LMU coach) Paul Westhead. Both of them actually used my voice in them, which is really cool for me.
“I actually watched the Paul Westhead one just the past month. I still get chills when (Bo) Kimble hits that first left-handed free throw. The place was just crazy.”