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Tuesday, February 23, 1999

RYAN ROBERTSON WAS ECSTATIC TO HIT THE GAME-WINNING FREE THROW IN HIS FINAL GAME AT ALLEN FIELDHOUSE.

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No matter what Ryan Robertson does for the rest of his life, he'll never forget his final shot in Allen Fieldhouse.

Robertson's no-time-left free throw Kansas a 67-66 overtime win over Oklahoma State.

"This was a very, very special game and a wonderful way to go out," Robertson said. "I think this will be one of those games that people will remember 30-40 years from now."

Robertson was fouled by OSU's Adrian Peterson while attempting a three-pointer as time expired. The St. Charles, Mo. senior was awarded three free throws, but needed only one to end it.

"I'm sure glad I made the first free throw," Robertson said. "I would have been really scared to miss the first two and have to depend on the last one to make one."

Robertson is the Jayhawks' best free throw shooter, but he admitted he had a lump in his throat when he stepped to the stripe.

"There's only been a few times in my life where I've been on the free throw line and my knees where shaking and I couldn't feel the ball cause my hands were shaking, and that was one of them," he said.

Robertson's heroics began with :01.6 remaining. After a timeout, Eric Chenowith was assigned to make the in-bounds pass.

"The play was designed for Ryan to come off the pick and try for a shot," Jeff Boschee said.

The execution was perfect. Nick Bradford set a pick to free Robertson and Chenowith hit him in the mitts.

Robertson shot, Adrian Peterson tried to get out of the way and referee Scott Thornley blew his whistle. OSU coach Eddie Sutton thought it should have been a no-call, but Robertson stressed he was fouled.

"I made sure I grabbed the ball and took one good dribble and I kind of jumped into it," Robertson said. "It was a definite foul. He had my arm and I couldn't get a close shot up there."

After his aborted shot, Robertson wasn't sure what had happened.

"I didn't hear the buzzer," Robertson said. "I went down to the ground and when I got up all I saw was three zeros on the clock."

Robertson said he glanced over his shoulder before he took the shot and saw Chenowith with his hands over his face. That made him realize how important the shot was.

"It just was one of those times where I didn't feel the shot go off," Robertson said. "Not many people get to end their career like that. I wouldn't trade the feeling for the world."

After hitting the free throw, Robertson clutched his fist in the air and received what he said made for a great ending -- a hug from teammate and fellow senior T.J. Pugh.

"It was awfully special to have my roommate for three years to come over and give me a hug," Robertson said. "Very, very special."

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