Watch City Dump: The Story of the 1951 CCNY Basketball Scandal
- 57 min
City Dump: The Story of the 1951 CCNY Basketball Scandal is a 1998 documentary that tells the story of one of the biggest sports scandals in American history. The movie takes us back to 1951, when the City College of New York (CCNY) basketball team shocked the world by winning both the NCAA and National Invitation Tournament (NIT) championships.
The CCNY team was made up entirely of local boys, many of whom were Jewish and African American. Led by head coach Nat Holman, they played a fast-paced, aggressive style of basketball that was ahead of its time. But beneath the surface, there was a dark secret. The players had been paid to throw games, both during the regular season and in the postseason tournaments.
The scandal rocked the basketball world and sent shockwaves through America. It was the first time that a major college sports program had been caught engaging in bribery and point-shaving. The movie explores how the scandal unfolded and the impact it had on the lives of those involved.
The documentary features interviews with some of the key players and coaches from the CCNY basketball team, including Nat Holman himself. The film also includes archival footage of games from the 1951 season and interviews with sportswriters who covered the story at the time.
One of the most compelling aspects of the movie is its portrayal of the players themselves. Most of them came from working-class backgrounds and had never had the opportunity to attend college before receiving scholarships to CCNY. They were thrust into the spotlight and put under immense pressure to win games and bring glory to their city. The temptation to take bribes and throw games was too great for some of them to resist.
The documentary also explores the broader societal context of the scandal. In 1951, New York City was a place of great social and political upheaval. The Civil Rights Movement was gaining momentum, and the Red Scare was in full swing. The CCNY scandal played into fears about corruption and moral decay in American society. The fact that the players were mostly Jewish and African American only added to the sense of outrage.
Liev Schreiber narrates the movie, and his voice provides a measured, reflective tone that suits the subject matter. Marty Glickman, a legendary sports announcer who covered the CCNY team in 1951, is also interviewed and provides valuable insights into the scandal. Director George Roy uses a mix of talking head interviews, archival footage, and reenactments to bring the story to life.
Overall, City Dump: The Story of the 1951 CCNY Basketball Scandal is a powerful and thought-provoking documentary that shines a light on a dark chapter in American sports history. It shows how corruption and greed can undermine even the most honorable of endeavors and reminds us of the importance of integrity in all aspects of life. The movie will appeal to anyone interested in sports history or social justice issues.
City Dump: The Story of the 1951 CCNY Basketball Scandal is a 1998 documentary with a runtime of 57 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.4.