Kansas University’s 2006-07 basketball team was inducted into the Kansas Athletics Hall of Fame in a ceremony Friday morning in the Booth Family Hall of Athletics. Also inducted: track and field thrower Egor Agafonov and soccer player Holly Gault.
“That’s probably the most talented team we’ve had here, maybe by far,” Self said of the Big 12 regular-season and postseason championship team which advanced to the Elite Eight. “Think about it. We had Russell (Robinson) at the 1, Mario (Chalmers) at the 2, Brandon (Rush) at the 3, Julian (Wright) at the 4, Sasha (Kaun) at the 5. We brought ‘Shady’ (Darrell Arthur), Darnell (Jackson) and Sherron (Collins) off the bench. How many teams can bring three NBA guys off the bench? That was a fun team to coach.”
Brennan Bechard, Matt Kleinmann, Brady Morningstar and Brad Witherspoon represented the team Friday, as well as Self and assistant coach Joe Dooley. Bechard is KU’s assistant director of basketball operations; Kleinmann is an architect in Kansas City; Morningstar is a member of Tulsa’s NBADL team; and Witherspoon serves as an assistant coach at John Wood Community College in Quincy, Ill.
Agafonov, who works in management for a large construction company in Moscow, won indoor national championships in the weight throw in 2007 and 2008.
“When I got here yesterday, I felt like I was at home,” said Agafonov, who attained a degree in economics from KU despite the fact he knew no English upon arriving here. “I came to KU to learn something new, to see the world and to meet new people. It happened that I became a good athlete and good student. This is home for me.”
Gault, a fourth-year KU Med student from Spring Hill, was a two-time All-America defender for the Jayhawks from 2003-06.
“I’ve always been a Jayhawk. I was born and raised in Kansas,” Gault said. “It’s such an honor to know that my picture will be in the Hall of Fame at KU with all the amazing athletes that came before me and all the amazing athletes that will come after me. It’s a dream come true.”
Approximately 100 former KU swimmers and divers returned to honor former KU swim coach Dick Reamon. Two granite pavers dedicated to Reamon were revealed in front of the fieldhouse.
Reamon was a KU student-athlete and coached men’s swimming and diving at KU from 1963-77. Under Reamon, KU won eight straight Big Eight Conference men’s swimming and diving championships from 1968-75.
“I can’t say there are too many people who have their name in stone and are still standing up and can talk about it,” Reamon joked. “This is an amazing place. The university has been with me forever. I never left Lawrence so KU has been there through thick and thin forever. To get a chance to have this many people care enough to come back to Lawrence and for us all to get together, (this) is a very, very special moment.”