Triumph to turmoil



April 14 -- Len Bias, a forward who averaged 25 points during his senior year at Northwestern High in Hyattsville, signs to play at Maryland.

Nov. 27 -- Bias plays his first game for Maryland in its season opener against Penn State, a 97-79 loss at the Baltimore Civic Center. He gets eight points and five rebounds in 18 minutes.


Feb. 26 -- Bias gets his first start and produces 13 points and six rebounds in an 83-75 win over Wake Forest.

March 17 -- Bias makes a jumper from the top of the key with one second left to push Maryland past Tennessee-Chattanooga, 52-51, in the first round of the NCAA tournament.


March 11 -- Bias earns Most Outstanding Player honors in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament.


March 11 -- Bias earns ACC Player of the Year honors and garners a second-team All-America spot after a junior season in which he averaged 18.9 points and 6.8 rebounds.

May 2 -- Bias tells coach Lefty Driesell he'll return for his senior season.


Feb. 14 -- Driesell gives Bias, Jeff Baxter and John Johnson a one-game suspension for violating curfew.

March 6 -- Bias wins his second ACC Player of the Year award after averaging 23.2 points and 7.0 rebounds.

March 11 -- Bias is named to the Associated Press All-America first team.

March 16 -- Bias' college career ends in a 70-64 NCAA tournament loss to Nevada-Las Vegas in Long Beach, Calif. He scores the Terps' final 13 points and finishes with 31 points and 12 rebounds.

June 17 -- Bias is selected by the Celtics with the second overall pick.

June 18 -- Bias spends the day in Boston at a dinner party and agrees to a multiyear shoe deal with Reebok.

June 19 -- Bias collapses at about 6:30 a.m. in his College Park dormitory room with Brian Tribble and teammates Terry Long and David Gregg. Bias is pronounced dead from cardiac arrest at about 8:50 a.m. at Leland Memorial Hospital in Riverdale. By the end of the day, reports emerge that cocaine was detected in his urine, police seal off the Washington Hall dormitory, and his body goes to the state medical examiner's office in Baltimore for an autopsy.

June 20 -- Nine grams of cocaine are found in Bias' car by campus and Prince George's County police. Authorities rule Bias' death suspicious.

June 23 -- Bias is buried.

June 24 -- Maryland State Medical Examiner John Smialek issues an initial report that there is no evidence Bias had ever used cocaine.

July 1 -- A Prince George's County grand jury begins an investigation into Bias' death.

July 3 -- The Maryland Medical Examiner's office releases new evidence saying that Bias had often used cocaine.

July 22 -- It is revealed that Bias was 21 credits short of graduation despite having used all his athletic eligibility.

July 25 -- The grand jury returns indictments against Tribble (possession and intent to distribute), Long (possession and obstruction of justice) and Gregg (possession and obstruction of justice). Three other indictments of Tribble - one count of conspiracy to obstruct justice and two counts of obstruction of justice - come Oct. 30.

July 29 -- Tribble surrenders to authorities.

July 31 -- Long and Gregg are suspended from the team, but Long - dismissed academically after the spring semester - is reinstated to the university.

Aug. 1 -- Tribble pleads not guilty.

Aug. 8 -- Long and Gregg plead not guilty.

Aug. 26 -- State's Attorney Arthur Marshall says that in the hours after Bias' death, Driesell told players to remove drugs from Bias' dorm room.

Aug. 28 -- Bias' father, James, blasts the University of Maryland generally and Driesell specifically for negligence of athletes' academics.

Oct. 7 -- Dick Dull resigns as athletic director.

Oct. 20 -- Prosecutors drop charges against Long and Gregg in exchange for testimony against Tribble.

Oct. 29 -- Driesell resigns as Maryland's basketball coach after 17 years.

Oct. 30 -- Kenneth Mark Fobbs, Tribble's roommate, is charged with perjury for allegedly lying to the grand jury about the last time he saw Tribble.

Nov. 2 -- Chancellor John Slaughter replaces Driesell with Bob Wade, longtime coach of Dunbar High.


Feb. 26 -- The Bias grand jury issues a final report that criticizes Maryland's athletic department, along with the campus police and the admissions office.

March 24 -- The state drops perjury charges against Fobbs.

May 8 -- Maryland names Lew Perkins athletic director.

June 3 -- A jury acquits Tribble on all charges in the Bias case.

June 18 -- Bias' family sues his agent, Advantage International, for $27 million, alleging fraud and negligence. The family also sues Reebok and Fidelity Security Insurance Co. for breach of contract. The suit was thrown out a year later by a U.S. District Court judge, and ended in 1990 when the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the case.

Copyright © 2021, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad