Two of the finest performances in Capital Classic history were turned in by US All-Star Darrell Griffith and Capital All-Star Charles “Hawkeye” Whitney in 1976. While Whitney and Griffith dueled, the US All-Stars outrebounded the locals 77-52 enroute to a 138-107 victory at the Capital Centre. Capital All-Star Most Valuable Player JoJo Hunter (Mackin High) kept the locals within striking distance, scoring 12 points and continually delivering the ball to Whitney in the post. But the US All Stars led 63-52 at intermission and added to that advantage throughout the second half. “It was no contest after that (half-time). I couldn’t buy a shot,” Hunter said. “And our big men did the best they could.” Darrell Griffith scored 19 of his game high 29 points in the second half. His scoring, great leaping ability, and slick moves around the basket earned him co-Most Valuable Player honors for the U.S. All-Star squad. Griffith and his running mates impressed Boston Celtics president Red Auerbach, who was among the crowd of 16,616. Griffith, co-MVP Ricky Brown and 6-8 Mike O’Koren simply ran the home team ragged in the second half. “The second half was no contest,” observed US coach Speedy Morris. “We wanted to run them in the second half.” The US team did just that, piling up 75 second-half points, compared to 55 for the Capital All-Stars.
DR. DUNKENSTEIN Preceding Darrell Griffith to the 1976 Capital Classic was his reputation as a phenomenal scorer and athlete. After a slow start, Griffith heated up to score 29 points and was name co-MVP of the US All-Stars. Known to Louisville fans as “Dr. Dunkenstein,” Griffith averaged 22.9 points per game as a senior and led the Cardinals to the 1980 NCAA National Championship. He earned consensus first-team All America status in his final collegiate campaign.