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Sunday, September 21, 2008

Hinrich’s jersey to hang in fieldhouse rafters

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Kirk Hinrich's jersey No. 10 will be hung in the rafters of Allen Fieldhouse in a halftime ceremony at a yet-to-be-determined game during the 2008-09 college basketball season.

"It's a great honor," said Hinrich, starting point guard for the Chicago Bulls, referring to the highest honor that can be accorded a Kansas University basketball player. "To have my jersey up in this building - a place that means so much to me - it's an amazing feeling."

KU coach Bill Self says the 27-year-old Hinrich, who was a 2003 Wooden All-American, 2003 NCAA West Regional MVP and member of the '03 all-Final Four team, is richly deserving.

"Without question, he's one of the greatest to ever play here," Self said of Hinrich, a first-team all-Big 12 pick his junior and senior seasons. He was third-team Associated Press All-American in 2003 and honorable-mention selection in '02.

"His teams won, and he was a huge part of that. He's been a great pro and is one of the great ambassadors of this university," Self added.

The Sioux City, Iowa, native said he isn't sure when he'll be back for the retirement ceremony. It'll depend on his NBA schedule.

His jersey likely will hang in the vicinity of his buddy and fellow Iowan Nick Collison's No. 4. Collison returned for his jersey-retirement ceremony in 2004.

KU officials, by the way, explained Saturday that though there have been guidelines for the hanging of jerseys in the south rafters of the fieldhouse in the past, there are currently no hard and fast rules. School administration in studying a player's career can, at any time, deem such player worthy of enshrinement.

Comments

Carter Patterson 10 years, 8 months ago

I thought that the only "rules of enshrinement" that needed to be enhanced was to make a player eligible if he made the US Olympic Team. The bar is not being lowered by this decision. Kirk deserves this honor without question.

JNHawks 10 years, 8 months ago

I am embarrassed to write, but I never thought he was that great until he was gone. It wasn't until I was watching past clips that it hit me how lightning quick he was. I remember him saying a couple years ago how Allen Field house was the best place in the country to play basketball, he is a great ambassador for us.

agraves 10 years, 8 months ago

all I can say...its about timehe is one of my favorite jayhawks of all time. he had an endless motor. played great defense and then would push the ball on offense every time. while he was at point...ku got so many easy lay-ups and dunks because kirk would beat the opposing team down the floor...he is well deserving of this honor

Displayhawk 10 years, 8 months ago

Unless I'm missing something here, it's not a "Retirement Ceremony"! They are not retiring the number, they are just "enshrining" or honoring the player by hanging his jersey in the rafters.That being said, I always liked watching the way Kirk hustled, and personally feel the honor is just.

KEITHMILES05 10 years, 8 months ago

So, there are no "hard and fast rules" now?That is baloney. We will now see a huge campaign by many people to get their "man" in there.

100 10 years, 8 months ago

With CJ signing with the Lakers, its pretty astounding to think of the quantity of NBA signees that suited up for the Jayhawks the past 4 years. If I'm not mistaken, its Julian, JR, 5 from last year's team, and now Giles. That's eight. Not sure if Padgett made the NBA or not. And Russel played for an NBA summer team but had to shift his dreams overseas. Presuming Padgett is at least playing overseas, that's 10 who are playing professionally. And, to top it off, Case just grabbed a very prestigious basketball coaching job at the most prestigious coaching University in America.

kubbjunkie 10 years, 8 months ago

If you let Kurt in then Otto Schnellbacher and several others should be included also. There has NEVER been anyone who was a better example of what a True-Blue Jayhawk is that Otto. Several others sold the university, but they were or are empoloyed there. He gave his blood, sweat, heart and soul and when he was at death's door, Lew slapped him in the face and made his flunky tell Otto he wasn't worthy.

Gil Ek 10 years, 8 months ago

Who is next in line/projected for this honor? Simien? Rush? Tommie Smith?

oregonjhawk 10 years, 8 months ago

Although C.J. was much maligned here in Oregon, let's not forget that he did play 2 seasons at KU and just got signed by the Lakers. I'm sure he's got plenty of friends in Lawrence...

KEITHMILES05 10 years, 8 months ago

There is no "Heinrich" or "Kurt".KIRCK HINRICH.

kansaspike 10 years, 8 months ago

Jaybate, had to skim that, but I agree. Heinrich is great, but if he gets in......so do 25 others in my book.Before long there will only be 20 #'s for the freshman to choose from to wear.Is Rex Walters next?

rockchalkAZ 10 years, 8 months ago

So did anybody else see C.J. Giles around Lawrence this weekend? I saw him at the Hawk on Friday night with Rush, Morningstar, and a few others. Why would that guy ever even come back to this city? After getting kicked off our team, then getting kicked off Oregon State, I might be a little ashamed to show my face.

KEITHMILES05 10 years, 8 months ago

Absolutely Chalmers and Rush need to be honored. Any team which won a national championship HAS to have members more deserving.

100 10 years, 8 months ago

Great KU/NBA point guard, very deserving. Will be fun to see Hinrich and Chalmers square off in the NBA for years to come. What about Darnell Valentine? Besides Jo-Jo (who didnt bring the ball up very often), he's the best pull up shooting guard I've ever seen play in Allen. Rex could hit them from long range, but Darnell was devastating to guard -- his quickness, paired with a lightening fast crossover, were incredible, and he doubled as a devastating defender. He was an all out winner and a great role model on a, historically rare, mediocre run of KU teams.

Ed Fox 10 years, 8 months ago

Well, I guess I'll have to change my name officially now, but it's more than worth it. I'll keep this until he goes up there. It wasn't right to have Nick (and Drew) up there without Kirk. Yes, there were "guidelines" but Nick probably wouldn't have been in line to meet those guidelines without Kirk. Those two go together and they kick-started a KU program that had stagnated a little at the end of the 90's (98-2001'ish). Those guys helped bring KU back to prominence and set up the program for the incredible run we're in right now. No one has deserved, in my opinion, to be enshrined in the Fieldhouse more than Kirk who represented the program on and off the court like we would all want it represented.And, to answer one question, yeah, Mario will probably be up there someday too. He was the Final Four MOP, which is a classic accomplishment that entitles you to having your jersey hung. After "the shot" I don't think that there should be much argument about the possibility of seeing "Chalmers" permanently in the rafters, along Hinrich, Collison, Gooden, etc.

DSommersby 10 years, 8 months ago

Congratulations to Captain Kirk! He definitely deserves it. Rock Chalk Jayhawks!

jaybate 10 years, 8 months ago

The 6'5" Bridges rebounded in a way that no small man had ever done in the college or pro game. The excellence of his small man rebounding was not eclipsed until Dennis Rodman did it in the NBA, but Rodman was two inches taller. But most persons cannot even remember Bill Bridges, much less view him as the utterly remarkable precedent shattering player that he was. Not playing on great teams has relegated one of KU's truly super players to the vaguely remembered good player list.Brandon Rush IMHO redefined the three position defensively in college basketball and expanded the role of the superstar in college basketball. He was, again IMHO, the greatest defensive 3 to ever play the college game. He was easily the best defender at the three I have ever seen in college basketball. He had the widest defensive range of any 3 in college basketball history I have seen. He locked down on PGs, 2 guards, 3s, 4s and played an incredible amount of help on 5s. But unsurpassed as he was defensively, he was also the greatest jack of all trades 3 that ever played the game. He was deadly outside, he could create when he had to, he could work the baseline, he could dribble end to end, he could finish, he could rebound, he could steal the ball and on and on. And he has to be the first anchor player/leading scorer ever to come back from a serious knee injury and surgery and lead his team to a national championship. And yet we should not vote on hanging Brandon's jersey for another ten years, because it will take that long to assess exactly how much he did accomplish and how unprecedented he was. I may be in the throes of recent passion for what he did. Maybe ten years from now, his defense will not seem so remarkable in retrospect. Maybe it will just seem very, very, very good...like what Collison and Hinrich did now appears.

KUFan90 10 years, 8 months ago

dude there's no "kirck" either. Hinrich was great and one of my fav players but he shouldn't be up there. We need criteria to prevent these kinds of arguements. I was fine with the old rules. Opening the floodgates like this diminishes the accomplishments of guys like lovellette, wilt, and manning.Kansaspike - don't worry about running out of numbers. KU retires jerseys not numbers. Haven't you noticed the #25s we've had since manning?

jaybate 10 years, 8 months ago

KU should have a hall of fame for all the guys like Hinrich and Collison where were the top two players on one of KU's excellent teams that occur every few years.No way should players like these have their jerseys hanging in the field house. No way!The only jerseys that should hang in the field house are jerseys of guys who advanced their position, or the college game through unprecendented play at their position at the time they performed. Lovellette took the hook shooting post man to its zenith at the time he played.Wilt was the first true super center, the guy who could do everything out of the post better than anyone who had ever played the position before.Danny Manning was the first center gifted enough to play every position on the floor, plus he was the first truly great jump hook shooter, and took the jump hook to a level that has never been approached, much less surpassed since.Hinrich and Collison were marvelous players. But they didn't expand the envelope of the game in ANY way. KU probably has a dozen players, maybe more, as deserving as Hinrich and Collison are one way or another. La Frentz. Gooden. Vaughn. Wesley. Robisch. Randall. Calvin Thompson, Ron Kellogg, Pierce, B.H.Born and probably many more from the 20s, 30s and 40s that I do not know. But even Paul Pierce who was significantly better than Hinrich and Collison, or probably anyone else on this short list I've mentioned, did not elevate his position beyond what had come before, nor did he add anything fundamentally new to the game. Pierce is such a great player that he carried his pro team to an NBA championship. But, again, he is an exceptional player that has not pushed out the envelope of the game in any significant way.Darnell Valentine should not have a jersey in the field house for the same reason Hinrich and Collison and Pierce should not. He was a very, very good player, but he did not push the envelope of the guard position, or of the college game.Two players that I think exemplify what I'm talking about may surprise you: Bill Bridges and Brandon Rush. I am not saying they should be hung. I'm just saying these two had the kind of impact at their positions that might a least merit consideration.

jaybate 10 years, 8 months ago

Under my strict criterion, at least 10 years should pass before ANY player is considered. It takes at least that much time to get perspective and get a handle on just how important the player was to KU and the college game. Passions run so high, and our love for the players and the game is so intense, that I could almost vote for at least one guy getting a jersey hung off every team that made it into the Madness since I started watching the game. But I don't want to turn the jersey hung in the field house into something about good or even great players. EVERY college basketball program does that sort of popularity contest style jersey hanging. KU ought to have the highest standards. KU jerseys ought to be about players who changed the game. If we don't set this high standard, then we might as well get a really long dowel rod hung across one end of the field house and just hang the top two players off every team that reaches the Elite Eight. It ought very soon to look like a dry cleaners up their. Don't even hang them so you can read the names and numbers. Just hang'em sideways so hundreds of them can accumulate in the coming years.

Lance Hobson 10 years, 8 months ago

You can't have Collison's jersey up there without Kirk Hinrich right next to it - they were such a great tandem for us. Simeon really needs to be up there, and Chalmers and Rush should be there as well, they did win us a title.

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