Sponsored Project

Memphis and the Mountaintop

Daniel Forer
Dexter Reed, Calvin Taylor, Chris Armentano, Daniel Forer

Memphis and the Mountaintop, a compelling story that transcends the world of sports, focuses on local heroes and the college basketball team that lifted a city deeply injured by the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.  The success of that team, the 1973 Memphis State University Tigers, and Larry Finch, its most beloved hero, helped heal the city in a time of turmoil and left an indelible mark that continues to resonate in the hearts of Memphians.  The documentary begins in 1968 with the sanitation workers strike that brought Dr. King to Memphis and culminates with the 1973 NCAA Championship game. The Tigers, who’d defeated the Providence Friars in a dramatic semi-final upset, faced UCLA and Bill Walton in college basketball’s most watched final. All of Memphis sat in front of radios and TVs hoping for the perfect ending to the Tigers magical season.  More than a sports story Memphis and the Mountaintop will illuminate the societal trauma that crippled the city and reveal how Memphis State’s heroic journey helped Memphis move forward. The tale is an important reminder of past challenges and of the work that remains unfinished.  It is time to tell this story.

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