Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Four KU seniors to graduate together


Kansas University's four senior men's basketball players are "student-athletes" in the true sense of the word.

Keith Langford, Michael Lee, Aaron Miles and Wayne Simien, who have won 110 games and lost just 26 with three Big 12 titles and two Final Fours to their credit in their four years at KU, are all set to graduate this May.

What's more, Jeff Hawkins, who red-shirted his freshman year, also is set to graduate and will continue postgraduate studies next season as he completes his hoop career.

"You come to school to graduate and we will all get to do that this spring," said Portland, Ore., native Lee, a criminal justice major. "You also come to school to win a national championship, and we want to do that as well."

Miles, a communications major also from Portland, says he's "proud" of his academic record.

"It takes hard work. I give a lot of credit to our academic advisers," Miles said. "They do a great job of getting us on track early in our college careers.

"They and our coaches stress the important thing is graduating. When we found out all of us were graduating on the same time, it made us happy."

Simien, a sociology major from Leavenworth, said the seniors were graduating on time by design.

"One of the plans coming in together was that we'd all leave together," Simien said. "We are all student-athletes. It's why we came to college, to get an education. It's an honor we are all on track to graduate this spring."

Langford is a journalism major and Hawkins a communications major.

"They've all done a nice job in the classroom. It is a tribute to them," KU coach Bill Self said Tuesday.

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