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1978-79 Topps Basketball Cards

By Patrick Mondout

I find it hard to be objective about this set. This was the first set of basketball cards I collected as a child of the Super70s, though I later filled in my collection with the earlier Topps cards, and I like them more than I should. As yet another undistinguished set of 132 cards with no subsets, there is no rational reason I should be as tough on this set as I was on the '77 set. 

I do feel the design of the set is an improvement over the previous year, and the cards do feature better photography than earlier in the decade as well as an addition head shot in the bottom right of the card. The positioning of the head shot actually caused a problem in the case of the Rick Barry card (see below). They had to reverse the negative in order to not chop off his legs with the head shot (you can tell because of the "Warriors" on his jersey is backwards). They are also more colorful than the previous year, even if the colors have little or no relation to the team colors.

With the nation mired in double-digit inflation, prices for the 10 card wax packs rose to 20 for 1978. The card backs featuring the usual assortment of biography/vitals and statistics, but also feature a "Star Stats" panel at the bottom that tells you when the player achieved his career-high game.

Rookie cards include Walter Davis, Bernard King, Dennis Johnson, Quinn Buckner, Marques Johnson, Jack Sikma, Norm Nixon, and James Edwards. The set can be had for substantially less than any of the pre-1977 sets, making it accessible to those who might want a vintage set. Featuring in-their-prime cards of Kareem, Dr. J, Dan Issel, George Gervin, Bob McAdoo, Bill Walton, Elvin Hayes, Moses Malone and Pete Maravich, this set us worthy of consideration to new collectors.

1978-79 Topps at a Glance
Back Checklist Wax Pack
King Rookie Bill Walton Sweet D Rookie
Reversed Neg. Pistol Pete Sikma Rookie

Here's a checklist:

1 Bill Walton
2 Doug Collins
3 Jamaal Wilkes
4 Wilbur Holland
5 Bob McAdoo
6 Lucius Allen
7 Wes Unseld
8 Dave Meyers
9 Austin Carr
10 Walter Davis
11 John Williamson
12 E.C. Coleman
13 Calvin Murphy
14 Bobby Jones
15 Chris Ford
16 Kermit Washington
17 Butch Beard
18 Steve Mix
19 Marvin Webster
20 George Gervin
21 Steve Hawes
22 Johnny Davis
23 Swen Nater
24 Lou Hudson
25 Elvin Hayes
26 Nate Archibald
27 James Edwards
28 Howard Porter
29 Quinn Buckner
30 Leonard Robinson
31 Jim Cleamons
32 Campy Russell
33 Phil Smith
34 Darryl Dawkins
35 Don Buse
36 Mickey Johnson
37 Mike Gale
38 Moses Malone
39 Gus Williams
40 Dave Cowens
41 Bobby Wilkerson
42 Wilbert Jones
43 Charlie Scott
44 John Drew
45 Earl Monroe
46 John Shumate
47 Earl Tatum
48 Mitch Kupchak
49 Ron Boone
50 Maurice Lucas
51 Louie Dampier
52 Aaron James
53 John Mengelt
54 Garfield Heard
55 George Johnson
56 Junior Bridgeman
57 Elmore Smith
58 Rudy Tomjanovich
59 Fred Brown
60 Rick Barry
61 Dave Bing
62 Anthony Roberts
63 Norm Nixon
64 Leon Douglas
65 Henry Bibby
66 Lonnie Shelton
67 Checklist
68 Tom Henderson
69 Dan Roundfield
70 Armond Hill
71 Larry Kenon
72 Billy Knight
73 Artis Gilmore
74 Lionel Hollins
75 Bernard King
76 Brian Winters
77 Alvan Adams
78 Dennis Johnson
79 Scott Wedman
80 Pete Maravich
81 Dan Issel
82 M.L. Carr
83 Walt Frazier
84 Dwight Jones
85 Jo Jo White
86 Robert Parish
87 Charlie Criss
88 Jim McMillian
89 Chuck Williams
90 George McGinnis
91 Billy Paultz
92 Bob Dandridge
93 Ricky Sobers
94 Paul Silas
95 Gail Goodrich
96 Tim Bassett
97 Ron Lee
98 Bob Gross
99 Sam Lacey
100 David Thompson
101 John Gianelli
102 Norm Van Lier
103 Caldwell Jones
104 Eric Money
105 Jim Chones
106 John Lucas
107 Spencer Haywood
108 Eddie Johnson
109 Sidney Wicks
110 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
111 Sonny Parker
112 Randy Smith
113 Kevin Grevey
114 Rich Kelley
115 Scott May
116 Lloyd Free
117 Jack Sikma
118 Kevin Porter
119 Darnell Hillman
120 Paul Westphal
121 Richard Washington
122 Dave Twardzik
123 Mike Bantom
124 Mike Newlin
125 Bob Lanier
126 Marques Johnson
127 Foots Walker
128 Cedric Maxwell
129 Ray Williams
130 Julius Erving
131 Clifford Ray
132 Adrian Dantley


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Year: 1978

Manufacturer: Topps

# of Cards: 132

Value/Price: Check eBay (see links below)

Size: 2 x 3

Image courtesy of Topps

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