Billionaire Michael Jordan’s NCAA Memorabilia: 3 Intriguing Facts About 1982’s Rare Item That Is Up for Auction

Published 12/14/2023, 6:35 AM EST

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A rare piece from Michael Jordan‘s NCAA championship run is going up for auction. The allure of Jordan’s game memorabilia never stops captivating collectors. Auction houses are also eager to showcase the iconic pieces tied to His Airness, with bids going as high as $2.2 million! The frenzy surrounding the latest item from the $3.5 billion legend’s oldest championship is understandable.

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Before he was a Chicago Bull, Jordan was already a national icon. His 3-year stint with the North Carolina Tar Heels built up his reputation as one of the best pure hoopers in the country. After all, we all know about the iconic game winner from his 1982 NCAA championship. Well, that very game is the origin of this new MJ collectible. Here are three important features of the item that add to its rarity.

What makes the latest Michael Jordan memorabilia so special?

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For avid collectors, this signed ticket stub, hailing from Jordan’s 1982 NCAA basketball championship game is enough to entice them. The North Carolina Tar Heels and Michael Jordan took on Georgetown University and Patrick Ewing. It’s often forgotten just how popular the game was. It earned a viewership of 17.52 million.

After the iconic Magic Johnson-Larry Bird final in ’79, the 1982 NCAA finals was the second-largest game in the history of college basketball. Little did the attendees at the Louisiana Superdome know that they were witnessing the rise of a global phenomenon. As a result, many discarded the tickets leaving only a few at present. 

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The second highlight is only 11 instances of the rare blue variation stub have been graded by the Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA). This feature makes it one of the rarest ones to go up at an auction. And the cherry on top of the cake is that this stub features MJ’s signature as well. 

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Fans might be aware that this was Jordan’s first and only NCAA championship title. It was a pivotal moment, that gave a glimpse of the iconic career that would soon unfold in the NBA.

A look back at Jordan’s NCAA championship game

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The legend averaged 20.0 points, and 5.5 rebounds in his sophomore season, while in his junior campaign, he averaged 19.6 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 2.1 assists per game. Though James Worthy led the team in scoring with 28, it was Michael Jordan who delivered the dagger.

With his team down 61-62 and 18 seconds remaining, Mike sealed the victory with a game-winning shot. Worthy has admitted how MJ came in and overtook him as the best player on the Tar Heels. But in that moment, even Worthy threw his hands up in celebration. 

This was truly an iconic moment for both the 6x NBA champion and the University of North Carolina. The ticket stub from the 1982 championship game marks the beginning of a journey spanning basketball, business and culture.

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The item will be auctioned at the PWCC’s December Premier Auction. How much do you think this will sell for? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section.

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Written by:

Pritha Debroy

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One take at a time

My love for basketball kicked off with the Portland Trail Blazers. The team's spirit, their thrilling plays, and the dedicated fan base had me hooked from the get-go. Now, I'm all about blending my passion for the game with my love for writing.
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Edited by:

Aakash Nair

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