It’s hard to quantify the significance of SMU’s 76-55 victory over No. 7 Cincinnati on Saturday night.

The last time the Mustangs defeated a Top 10 team was in 1987 over No. 7 Florida. But that was at Reunion Arena.

Since SMU beat a Top 10 opponent on campus, Jimi Hendrix and the Rolling Stones have staged concerts there and the Dallas Chaparrals came and went. It was on Dec. 29, 1967 over No. 3 Indiana.

Given the long drought, it was understandable that fans stormed the court, celebrating a dominating win that should put SMU back on the national stage. They should make their first top-25 appearance since 1984-85.

“It was crazy,” said senior Cannen Cunningham, who has seen plenty of open seats during his career. “They rushed the floor and everybody’s my best friend. Our goal is to win the national championship. That may sound crazy, but that’s what we’re shooting for.”

The Mustangs improved to 19-5 overall and 8-3 in the American Athletic Conference. They became only the second team to score more than 70 points against the defensive-minded Bearcats (22-3 11-1).

Continuing their transformation under coach Larry Brown, the Mustangs have defeated two ranked teams in one week. They began their three-game homestand with a victory over then-No. 22 Memphis.

Fans have embraced the Mustangs, who are 13-0 at home this season, including a 7-0 mark since the reopening of renovated Moody on Jan. 4. The overflow crowd of 7,278 marked the fourth sellout, and the upcoming game against Louisville has already sold out.

It seemed fitting that, given the dramatic change in atmosphere, seniors Cunningham and Nick Russell would play a big role.

Cunningham stepped up after Markus Kennedy got into foul trouble early, finishing with 11 points, three rebounds, two steals and a block. Russell had 15 points, three rebounds and three steals.

“We’ve seen the bottom, now we want to see the top,” Russell said. “At the beginning of the year, we knew we could do this. Nobody expected us to be here, I’m sure, but we knew what we had. The sky’s the limit.”