See our gallery of the 1988 NCAA Championship Jayhawk players and coaches Â»
Co-Big 12 Preseason Freshman of the Year Cliff Alexander has made steady progress during Kansas University’s practice sessions the past several weeks.By Gary Bedore
Plans are in the works for Bill Self, Mario Chalmers and the rest of the NCAA Champion Kansas Jayhawks to ride down Massachusetts Street in the city's first championship parade in two decades.Joining the team as parade participants Sunday will be athletics support staff, the pep band and members of the Spirit Squad. Unlike years past, there will be no room for public floats, good-luck charms or other folks who might want to join in.
Where were you, when the clock hit 10:09 p.m. on April 4, 1988? Where were you, when Ricky Grace heaved a three-pointer that thunked off the backboard and fell into Danny Manning's hands at the buzzer? When Kansas University's men's basketball team beat Oklahoma, 83-79, to win its last national championship 20 years ago - a jubilant Monday night in Kansas City, Mo. - just where were you?
Rarely did Larry Brown's barking fall on deaf ears. The Kansas University basketball coach in 1988 had demanded respect from his players through what guard Jeff Gueldner called "intimidation and fear.""He was a little guy," Gueldner said, "but he was godlike in that way." But this one time, just before tipoff of the 1988 NCAA championship game between Kansas and Oklahoma, the players went their own way.
Mark Randall was on two Final Four basketball teams at Kansas University, and played parts of four seasons in the NBA. That included a half-season with the Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls during their dynasty run. Now working in community relations for the Denver Nuggets, kids often ask Randall who he considers the best player he's ever faced. "They think it's Michael Jordan," Randall said. "But the best player I ever played against was Danny Manning. Every day in practice for two years."
Two NCAA men's basketball championships. One common denominator. Both of Kansas University's national-title teams were regarded as one-man shows - uncannily similar tours de force by Clyde Lovellette in 1952 and Danny Manning in 1988.
The phone rang for a man I presumed to be Lincoln Minor, the former Kansas University basketball player who played 34 games in the 1987-88 season. "Hello?" the man on the other end answered. "Hi, is this Lincoln?" I asked. "Yes," he said. "The Lincoln who played basketball for the Kansas Jayhawks?" "No," the man replied. "This is his father." Hey, that's progress.
With the 20th anniversary of KU's title run in the 1987-88 season upon us, KUSports.com and the Lawrence Journal-World are digging up our coverage from the year of Danny and the Miracles for a one-stop source for what happened on any given day in the world of KU basketball 20 years ago.