Las Vegas Sun

November 19, 2019

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Thomas & Mack Turns 25:

No. 18: ‘Woo-Woo’ steals show in Tark’s return

Rosegreen grabs 21 boards as Rebels beat Tarkanian in front of 18,000

Beyond the Sun

Editor's Note: In conjunction with the 25th anniversary of the Thomas & Mack Center's opening on Nov. 21, 1983, the Sun is celebrating the building's colorful history with a top 25 countdown - to No. 1 on Nov. 21, 2008 - of the biggest events held inside the arena located on UNLV's campus.

They called him “Rosey,” and occasionally, “Woo-Woo.” His name was Warren Rosegreen. He was a quiet type who brought to mind the saying, “Still waters run deep.” But once in a while he’d spurt out, “Woo-Woo,” for no evident reason. It was always worth a laugh, coming from the usually sullen Runnin’ Rebel.

Woo-Woo started at forward for the 1996-97 UNLV basketball team. He was listed at 6-feet-5 inches, but hardly seemed taller than 6-3. He had an off-kilter build — powerful upper-body but no trunk and somewhat thin legs. Woo-Woo was never much of an offensive force — his shooting range was restricted to fast-break dunks. He wasn’t a terribly good foul shooter and his lack of size prevented him from developing into a true low-post threat.

But Woo-Woo was a holy terror on the boards. He was a fighter, a bully who could leap fast and high, firing through clusters of players like a jack-in-the-box. Woo-Woo wanted every danged rebound, and no Rebel worked harder at his game than the probably 6-foot-3 Warren Rosegreen.

February 17, 1997, amid the dizzying hype of former UNLV coach Jerry Tarkanian’s first game at the Thomas & Mack as a visiting coach, was Rosegreen’s time to shine. He collected, often violently, 21 rebounds as the Rebels beat Fresno State 78-64 in a Western Athletic Conference battle in front of 18,024 at the T&M. It was the largest crowd in more than three years to see a game at the arena. “I’ll be over it,” Tarkanian said afterward. “I just wish we should’ve shot better. We haven’t rebounded well all year, so that’s nothing new. But I thought we would shoot better.”

The Rebels outrebounded the Bulldogs 61-44, which, in retrospect, seems an arbitrary stat. What I’ll remember – and I did cover that game for the Review-Journal – was Rosegreen flying high above Tark’s team, and afterward a white towel was thrown on the court from the Fresno State bench. At the time it seemed to come from Tark, but a replay showed it was actually Fresno guard and resident loose cannon Chris Herren. No matter. It served as the exclamation mark ending one of the few nights Tark left the tank without a “W.”

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