Originally published January 24, 2013 at 10:58a.m., updated January 25, 2013 at 12:02a.m.

Mario Chalmers to have jersey retired at halftime of Texas game

Kansas' Mario Chalmers and Sherron Collins celebrate after beating Memphis on Monday, April 7, 2008 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.

Kansas' Mario Chalmers and Sherron Collins celebrate after beating Memphis on Monday, April 7, 2008 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.


Former Kansas University basketball guard Mario Chalmers, whose three-pointer against Memphis sent the 2008 NCAA championship game into overtime, on Feb. 16 will become the first member of the title team to have his jersey hung in the Allen Fieldhouse rafters.


Kansas guard Mario Chalmers elevates for the three-pointer that put the game into overtime. Chalmers connected with 2.1 seconds left to tie it at 63, and the Jayhawks went on to win, 75-68 in overtime, April 7, 2008, in San Antonio.

“I have seen the shot more than you guys (media) have, believe it or not, and it still gives me goosebumps,” KU coach Bill Self said Thursday in announcing jersey No. 15 will be unfurled at halftime of the KU-Texas game.

“I think he is probably liked or loved as much as anybody in large part because of who he is, but also the shot obviously didn’t hurt at all,” Self added. “I’d say he, moreso than anybody because of that moment, probably is more recognized.

“We’ve had more dogs and first-borns named ‘Mario’ or ‘Rio’ than probably anybody else we’ve had here,” 10th-year coach Self added, smiling.

Self said Chalmers, the Most Outstanding Player of the 2008 NCAA Final Four, is the most clutch player he’s coached at KU.

“Absolutely,” Self said. “I would put Sherron (Collins) probably second. Hopefully we can have somebody else step up and be like him in late-game situations, but he made a lot of big plays for us.”

The 6-foot-2, 190-pounder, who earned an NBA title ring with the Miami Heat last season, is also “best” in another KU category.

“He was the best stealer of the ball I’ve seen in my life,” Self said of Chalmers, who ranks second on KU’s all-time steals list (283 from 2006-08), trailing only Darnell Valentine, who had 336 thefts from 1978-81.

His 1,341 three-year Kansas point total ranks 27th on KU’s scoring list and he also is among the school career records in three-pointers made (seventh, 180) and assists (14th, 420).

“He was great defensively and he anticipated as well as anybody. He had an orneriness and toughness that a lot people didn’t see because they saw the smile. He was an assassin on the court,” Self noted.

Chalmers, a McDonald’s All-American out of Anchorage’s Bartlett High, said this honor classifies as a dream come true.

“One of my goals when I first came to KU was to make a name and make sure my name lasts forever in Kansas history,” Chalmers said. “It means a lot to me, being up there in the rafters with guys like Paul Pierce, Drew Gooden, Wilt Chamberlain. It’s a great accomplishment and makes me proud to be a Jayhawk.”

He remembers gazing into the south rafters as a recruit.

“The first time would probably be Late Night 2004. Just being there for the first time, experiencing the atmosphere, just seeing what KU was all about,” he said of thinking about becoming a KU great.

As to how he accomplished the feat ... “Just by working hard every day,” Chalmers said. “I had great teammates. We had a family atmosphere, great coaching. It was a great system at KU.”

As far as future members of the 2008 team who may also be honored, Self said: “He (Chalmers) is a special kid. We had so many special guys on that team. He’ll be the first one off that team that has his jersey retired. We’ll see if there are any others after that. I’m certainly very proud of him.”

Former KU consensus All-America honoree Wayne Simien (2002-05) was the last Jayhawk to have his jersey hung in the 2010-11 season.

Guidelines: Here are jersey retirement guidelines as stated in KU’s 2012-13 media guide:

“The concept of retiring the jerseys of outstanding Jayhawk basketball players was initiated prior to the 1991-92 season, when banners honoring Clyde Lovellette, Danny Manning, B.H. Born, Charlie Black, Paul Endacott, Wilt Chamberlain and Charlie Black were unveiled in the south end of Allen Fieldhouse. The original criteria for a retired jersey included KU players named college basketball player of the year, most valuable player of the NCAA Tournament or being named a four-time All-American. The list was expanded in 1997 to include Ray Evans, who holds the distinction of being an All-American in both football and basketball.

Kansas Men’s Basketball Retired Jerseys

Tus Ackerman • 1923-25

Charlie B. Black • 1942-43, 1946-47

Charlie T. Black • 1922-24

B.H. Born • 1952-54

Bill Bridges • 1959-61

Wilt Chamberlain • 1957-58

Nick Collison • 2000-03

Paul Endacott • 1921-23

Howard Engleman • 1939-41

Ray Evans • 1942-43, 1946-47

Max Falkenstien • 1946-2006

Drew Gooden • 2000-02

Gale Gordon • 1925-27

Kirk Hinrich • 2000-03

Raef LaFrentz • 1995-98

Clyde Lovellette • 1950-52

Danny Manning • 1985-88

Al Peterson • 1925-27

Paul Pierce • 1996-98

Fred Pralle • 1936-38

David Robisch • 1969-71

Wayne Simien • 2002-05

Bud Stallworth • 1970-72

Darnell Valentine • 1978-81

Jacque Vaughn • 1994-97

Walter Wesley • 1964-66

Jo Jo White • 1966-69

Kansas Women’s Basketball Retired Jerseys

Angela Aycock • 1992-95

Tamecka Dixon • 1994-97

Lynette Woodard • 1978-81

“The criteria were expanded prior to the 2002-03 season to include consensus first-team All-Americans, two-time first-team All-America selections and Academic All-Americans of the Year.”

KU officials said Thursday that the athletic director has the authority to adjust the criteria in special circumstances. In other words, a Jayhawk great can have his jersey retired without meeting one of the above guidelines.

“Mario definitely deserves to have his jersey hung,” Self stated. “He was the most outstanding player in a 2008 Final Four, which featured four No. 1 seeds. He was a guy that seemed like the bigger the stage, the brighter he shined. Mario cares about winning. Points are great and steals are great and he was the best stealer of the ball we’ve ever had here, but he cares about winning.

“Guys that play here understand that winning trumps everything and he understood that. Brandon (Rush) understood that, Shady (Darrell Arthur), Sherron (Collins), Sasha (Kaun), Darnell (Jackson), Russell (Robinson), they all understood that. That is what made that (2008) team so cool. There were games when Mario would take four shots in a game and I’d say, ‘Shoot the ball’ and he’d say, ‘Why? Everybody else is making shots.’ It was such a fun team to be around, but he was clutch. Everybody throughout his tenure here would ask me who’s our go-to guy and in our players’ minds there was never a doubt who our go-to guy was. There are not many guys out there, regardless of the school, that have held that distinction.

“I’m proud of the career he has had since he left here. Being a world champion and a national champion, there’s not too many people that could have that distinction. He was an absolute treat to coach. He had great teammates and they all liked each other. It was such a fun time to be around. We’re all so proud of what he accomplished,” Self added.

Winning’s the ultimate goal: Self is amused there’s been some discussion of the fact his team (17-1 overall, 5-0 Big 12) has scored in the 50s or 60s four straight games.

“I think so many times we get hung up on maybe not looking great and winning on the road and people think that’s a big deal. Really, any win on the road is a big deal,” said Self, whose Jayhawks next meet Oklahoma (13-4, 4-1) at 3 p.m., Saturday, in Allen. “Everything is so distorted when you look at it statistically. I’m watching TV the other day and they are talking about how great Georgetown’s offense is against Notre Dame, (that it is) great, hard to guard and they score 65 points. Then you talk about us, how lame our offense is and we score 65 points. ... I love to rip and run and play fast and do all those things, but seems to me sometimes that’s not the best formula to win on the road because if those possessions go awry all it does is give the home team the advantage.”

No. 1 coming?: Considering No. 1 Duke lost, No. 3 KU could move to No. 1 in the polls next week. Michigan is No. 2.

“No, no, no,” Self said if it is a goal to be No. 1 during the season. “We were on the bus, on the plane the other night and you had young kids that said, ‘Why couldn’t we be No. 1 when Louisville lost?’ And you had a fifth-year guy, Travis Releford, say, ‘Hey guys, we’re right where we need to be.’ So I think that’s fine to be where we’re at. It would not disappoint me or thrill me either way to be really honest.”

Noted Releford: “I’ve been on No. 1 teams for the whole year and end up losing first round. Being No. 1 this early in the season doesn’t mean much. The standings are where they are right now. We are just going to continue to play how we are.”

This, that: Saturday’s game will be the 800th regular-season contest played in Allen Fieldhouse. KU is 692-107 in the building. ... A member of KU’s coaching staff on Thursday attended a game of Leron Black, a 6-7, 215-pound power forward from Memphis’ White Station High, reported. He is ranked No. 15 in the Class of 2014.


HawkKlaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Next, Brandon Rush and Sherron Collins, come on down!

tical523 9 years, 3 months ago

im curious to see who all else gets the retired number, honestly i could see him being the only one from that team tho but could be wrong

HawkKlaw 9 years, 3 months ago

I think Rush may be a stretch, but Sherron is deserving, IMO. National Champ, a multitude of Big 12 Championships, being the team leader for two-straight years and ending his career with the most wins in Jayhawk history (Morningstar has more than Sherron now though, I believe). Also, I'm biased because Sherron is my favorite PG at KU ever.

702Hawk 9 years, 3 months ago

I'm pretty sure That Tyrel Reed has the honor of most win Jayhawk. Morningstar redshirted the 08 year; I don't believe you get credited with wins during the year you don't play. Sherron will get it and HCBS has practically already said he and TRob will both get their jerseys retired. But don't be surprised if Rush ends up on the wall too. The real two questions are: 1. Where are they going to find room for all the guys Bill gets up on the wall? 2. When HCBS retires will they hang a tie or does he get a jersey like Max?

HawkKlaw 9 years, 3 months ago

You're right about Tyrel, forgot about him earlier when I posted.

It's too bad the Morris twins weren't on teams that did great in the NCAA tourney or I would bet that they'd be in the discussion too. I think Aldrich may have a shot at getting his jersey hung too.

kufaninmo 9 years, 3 months ago

That's just it: Tyrel is somewhat forgettable (not a knock against him, but he had nowhere near the impact of many of the players he got to ball with during his tenure). Sherron is also my fave pg of ku history! I gotta say it's close between him and Captain Kirk though.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

I think Rush will definitely get his jersey retired. Even though he wasn't a "Consensus" first team All-American he was a two time first teamer in 07 and 08 just like Jacque Vaughn (96,97), Dave Robisch (70, 71), Jo Jo White (68,69), Walt Wesely (65,66), and Ray Evans (42,43) and none of those guys were ever "Consensus" All Americans and all of them have their jersey's retired.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Plus, he did something none of those other guys did...Win A National Championship!

mae 9 years, 3 months ago

I disagree. They aren't anywhere near Kansas banner level. To put them up with the likes of Hinrich, Pierce, even Falkenstien is just ridiculous. Neither did anything in the NBA on the next level. Just because you were a bench player on a championship team does not warrant you a banner. Brandon was good, but still wouldnt've stuck around and could've done a selby. Are we putting him up next? I'm not against one and done's up there, but can you compare selby or brandon to ben? If he keeps it up he deserves to go on and be recognized for maturing so quickly on our court. It doesn't seem like the other two did over years here.

mae 9 years, 3 months ago

BTW, tickets are sold out. Looking for some

mejayhawk 9 years, 3 months ago

good on you for your persistence. hope it pays off:)

mitchcomstein 9 years, 3 months ago

You don't get put in the rafters for what you don in The League. Sherron Collins scored 1900 points at Kansas. Brandon Rush may have been the most unselfish kid Self has ever had. He could have been a one and done, but wasn't. He stayed, and was instrumental in winning the first championship in 20 years. They both are more than worthy.

Ron Prichard 9 years, 3 months ago

What they do in the NBA or after they leave KU has no bearing on whether or not their jersey gets retired. This is a snippet from a article when Simien had his jersey retired:

"The concept of retiring the jerseys of outstanding Jayhawk basketball players was initiated prior to the 1991-92 season, when banners honoring Clyde Lovellette, Danny Manning, B.H. Born, Charlie Black, Paul Endacott, Wilt Chamberlain and Charlie Black were unveiled in the south end of Allen Fieldhouse. The original criteria for a retired jersey included KU players named college basketball player of the year, most valuable player of the NCAA Tournament or being named a four-time All-American. The list was expanded in 1997 to include Ray Evans, who holds the distinction of being an All-American in both football and basketball.

The criteria were expanded prior to the 2002-03 season to include consensus first-team All-Americans, two-time first-team All-America selections and Academic All-Americans of the Year."

With that, I don't think Rush will make the cut. However, Collins is clear-cut and there isn't even an argument. His biography on under 1,000 point scorers lists him as a concensus All-American First Team. TRob had the exact same distinction. Case closed for both of them. Their jerseys will be hanging in the Fieldhouse. Collins is also KU's #5 all time leading scorer with 1,888 points.

It is clearly premature to ask about McLemore. His legacy will be determined in March (and hopefully April), but its reasonable to think he could be a consensus AA or MVP of the NCAA Tourney if KU advances far enough (and by far enough, I mean winning it all).

Sam Constance 9 years, 3 months ago

Did you just ask if you can compare Brandon to Ben? And with a straight face?

I would tend to agree that Ben has more raw talent and athleticism than Rush, but Rush was no slouch:

2006 Big 12 Freshman of the Year

2006 First Team All Big 12

2007 Big 12 All Tourney Team

2008 Big 12 All Tourney Team

MVP of the 2008 Final Four game vs. UNC

Not to mention a career 43% long-range shooter and a standout player on a team filled with NBA draft picks.

Rush absolutely deserves a banner (although will probably not get one, due to the specificity of the requirements, which seem to hurt team players on a team filled with good players), as does Collins. Their NBA careers have nothing to do with it.

I have no idea how to react to your suggestion that Rush "could've done a Selby" other than with disgust.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Don't forget that Rush was Wooden Award All-American in both 07 and 08.

HawkKlaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Looks like everyone beat me to it, but I'll echo the sentiments that a player doesn't get his jersey hung at KU based off what he does in the NBA. This is Kansas and we retire jerseys of players based off what they did in Lawrence. What they do afterwards isn't even considered.

Brandon was not a one and done, so I'm not sure why you mention him with Selby there. Selby definitely isn't deserving. Brandon, in my opinion, is.

Both Sherron and Brandon did far more for KU than Ben McLemore has so far. If Ben leads this team to a National Championship, there will be a debate. Until then, don't diminish all the great things that Rush and Collins did while they were at KU by comparing them to a freshman who, as great as he is, in the grand scheme of things hasn't accomplished a whole lot yet.

theboehr 9 years, 3 months ago

Although this list of specific requirements does exist, I remember KU saying within the last few year that the list is just a rough set of guidelines to help them decide which jerseys to retire, however if a player does not meet these guidelines but the university feels they are still deserving of this honor, their jersey can be retired anyway. Sorry that I don't have a link/reference for that, but I do specifically remember reading a quote from KU in the not-too-distant-past, and I believe it was on this website.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Well Deserved! Chalmers was a stud! Going to be awesome seeing his Jersey Retired. Ben McLemore, go get your Final 4, A National Championship, and your retired jersey in your only year as a Jayhawk.

Man, that facial on Derrick Rose never gets old.

mejayhawk 9 years, 3 months ago

As memorable as that game-tying shot was, when I think of Mario, I mostly remember those long arms of his, in the passing lanes, getting steal after steal. A well-deserved honor.

mejayhawk 9 years, 3 months ago

Totally agree about his play against Texas. And some of those games were instant classics. Both teams coming in ranked and fighting for conference championship. From tip-off to the final buzzer, both teams playing at a high level on both ends of the court. Thanks for the clips.

Scott Smetana 9 years, 3 months ago

Thanks for the links. Very fun. Even though we're great this year, this makes me realize we're nowhere near where we were in 08. Luckily, neither is most of the country.

archercc 9 years, 3 months ago

Texas is another reason Rush should have his retired as well. He was like how Relford is now regarding D. Once Self shifted and kept Rush painted on Durant he basically took him out of the game in the second half. One of those things that is critical in a game but doesnt make the stat sheet.

archercc 9 years, 3 months ago

Texas is another reason Rush should have his retired as well. He was like how Releford is now regarding D. Once Self shifted and kept Rush painted on Durant he basically took him out of the game in the second half. One of those things that is critical in a game but doesnt make the stat sheet.

FarSideHawk 9 years, 3 months ago

I thought he attended the game in Austin. Is he coming to the one in Lawrence also?

Marcia Parsons 9 years, 3 months ago

Last I heard he was making his official visit to for the Texas game. I don't know if he went to the game in Austin.

Kevin Huffman 9 years, 3 months ago

That is true. Though the Chalmers' Jersey Retirement is new news.

Michael Pannacciulli 9 years, 3 months ago

Would be cool if the article listed the jersey numbers too.

TRob will be the next one to go up..

FLAjayhawker 9 years, 3 months ago

Love that! I hope he signs with us, not really big on the one and done's but he would make a potentially good team really good!

jayhawkinnc 9 years, 3 months ago

Regarding Sherron and Morningstar.....Sherron did in fact leave KU at the time as the winningest KU player ever: 130 wins. Morningstar left with 128 (165 if you count his redshirt season of 2008, but I don't believe the wins in a redshirt season count for him). Tyrel Reed is currently the all time winningest KU b-ball player with 132 wins. Elijah Johnson has a shot at passing Reed. EJ currently has 117.

Andy Godwin 9 years, 3 months ago

Maybe Mario can recreate "the shot" live.

Janella Williams 9 years, 3 months ago

Aww, I liked Jeff Graves!

I thought that event was great and think they should to every 2-4 years!!

clevelandjayhawker 9 years, 3 months ago

My fav memory was his freshmen year I think (2006 ish) when he nailed a floater against oklahoma while driving down the lane, we won 59-58 I think but it was a battle to the end. Even Self left the court with his arms held high, showing some rare emotion after a victory.

702Hawk 9 years, 3 months ago

That was one of the best games I ever attended. We were down huge in the second half, 18 points comes to mind. Then we surge late to win. I thought the Phog was going to collapse with everyone screaming and jumping in it.

LittleRockJayhawker 9 years, 3 months ago

Question: What effect, if any, does a retired jersey have on a current player's jersey? I heard or read somewhere that a retired jersey also retires the number unless granted permission by the retired player. However, Wayne Simien's jersey #23 is worn by BMac, and Chalmers' #15 is currently worn by EJ. Someone please enlighten. Thanks!

Michael Sizemore 9 years, 3 months ago

retiring a jersey is different than "retiring a number".

jayhawkinATL 9 years, 3 months ago

I believe that KU simply practices the retirement of the jersey (name and number) and not the number itself.

DCLawHawk 9 years, 3 months ago

I thought Wilt Chamberlain's #13 was retired? I thought that was why his jersey in the rafters is a different color from all of the others.

Michael Pannacciulli 9 years, 3 months ago

Nope that just signifies he had more women than any other man on the planet

Eric Mitchell 9 years, 3 months ago

CJ Henry wore #13 in the 2009-2010 season.

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

We'll leave the retired numbers for places like KSUck that don't have enough of them to matter. It would be impossible for KU because we would run out of numbers!

Damian Glaze 9 years, 3 months ago

I wish this could have been done for the Big Monday game earlier that week against the kitties. I'm sure the schedule worked out this way, but I would think the Big Monday crowd will be a better audience - especially if KSCC keeps winning and Texas is still in the cellar.

texashawk10 9 years, 3 months ago

The UT game is a better option for a few reasons. Most importantly, Mario will be able to be there since he won't be involved in NBA All-Star game activities this season. The players ability to be at the game his jersey is retired is the biggest determining factor in when a jersey gets retired. Secondly, ESPN Gameday will be in Lawrence that day so all of college basketball's eyes will be on Lawrence that day and the more publicity for KU, the better. Lastly, Chalmers best games always seemed to come against Texas so how fitting to have his jersey retired against the team whose heart he broke multiple times throughout his career.

Benjamin Simon 9 years, 3 months ago

perfectly timed for julius randle's visit. nice!

Michael Pannacciulli 9 years, 3 months ago

What really would repel a guy like Randle from coming here? I am too jaded and can't be objective but really...KU is the Mecca and he would be the center piece if he is as good as advertised - which I truly believe he is. Someone help me understand.

KU_alum_2001 9 years, 3 months ago

God knows I'll be crucified for this comment but I disagree in retiring his jersey. Don't get me wrong, I love Chalmers. I was even at the game in SA when he hit the shot so in no way am I an uncaring fan or biased against hiim. However, he was never even a Big 12 First Team selection. He was never an All-American. He never averaged over 13pts/game or 5 assists/game. Yes, he hit THE SHOT of KU history. No question about that. However, that was a team effort, his shot sent us to OT where the team won it. I just don't see this being a jersey worthy of the rafters. I'm not saying I don't have a love for Chalmers. I'm simply saying that hanging in those rafters for the rest of time should be limited to the absolute greatest players we've seen. And while he's been as important for KU's record books as anyone not named Danny Manning, he as an individual did not dominate the competition like a Simien, Gooden, Pierce, White, Collison, etc.

I can probably get behind Rush's jersey being retired. Collins I'd be acceptable with as well as TRob.

Marcus, Cole, Tyshawn, Chalmers just don't quite make my cut of the absolute elite of KU history.

Kevin Huffman 9 years, 3 months ago

Would love to be there for College Game Day in 2017 when it's T.Rob's turn.

702Hawk 9 years, 3 months ago

KU_alum, I do completely understand your point and mostly agree with it but I do make exceptions with the NCAA tournament. I think anyone with the "Most Outstanding Player" in the tournament gets a case, and for Mario he won the case. I am a little surprised Rush didn't get it first.

DrPepper 9 years, 3 months ago

Who votes for MOP? I want names. He/she/they are responsible, in this case, for a name being hung in Allen Field House. That is a huge responsibility.

702Hawk 9 years, 3 months ago

The AP does. The AP also helps in deciding All American Teams.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

You are forgetting one very meaningful part of this equation. He was the Most Outstanding Player in the 2008 Final 4 which is one of the criteria for getting your Jersey Hung.

Plus, he was the most dominate guard defensviely I've ever seen in a Jayhawk uniform. Steals do account for something these days. Chalmers did it all. Not all about the statistics. It is a team game.

KU_alum_2001 9 years, 3 months ago

I'll definitely agree on the MOP. You're right about that so I suspect he's deserved the honor.

In terms of the second part, though, I think we'd all agree that Withey wouldn't make our cut and he will likely go down as the all-time blocks leader and arguably one of the best big man defenders we've seen. I realize Withey is no Chalmers but I'm just saying...

And I completely agree on it being a team game and let's face it, the '08 team as as evenly distributed with talent as any team KU has ever had (except for perhaps '96 and '97). That's exactly why I question Chalmers getting in. He wasn't the dominant guy and he himself didn't rule the court. I felt Rush was the clear leader (if there was one) but the fact is that Mario, Rush, Russell, Kaun, Shady, Sherron, and Darnell were all so critical to that team's success. Those guys fit together perfectly.

But back to your first point, you're correct that he does pass that test and thus is granted this honor. I'm happy for him no doubt.

DrPepper 9 years, 3 months ago

Very well said. That MOP could have gone to several different players, yet it is the only reason the Chalmers name will be in the rafters.

Allen Shepard 9 years, 3 months ago

Retiring a Jersey is what you do for a legend. Mario's legend is bigger than any of those guys. I'd say retire his jersey even if it was the only game he ever played.

Sam Constance 9 years, 3 months ago

No offense intended, but I really just don't get your reasoning.

What's the point of retiring any jersey in the first place? To give historic players a place in permanent history in the halls of Allen Fieldhouse, correct? What's more fitting than hitting perhaps the biggest single shot in KU basketball history? Even if you don't like that reasoning, the simple fact is that he achieved one of the pre-established standards to have his jersey hung: MOP of the 2008 NCAA tournament.

Aside from that, I have never understood people who suggest that Chalmers didn't dominate competition. He didn't do it night in and night out because he didn't have to--the teams he was on weren't built that way, and his humility and ability to do what was needed for the team rather than fill up the stat sheet makes him an even better player, imho. His defense was absolutely dominant, and he had games where, when we needed him, he would completely go off and take over a game.

KU_alum_2001 9 years, 3 months ago

None taken. But to answer your question, I guess I see having one's jersey retired as being about the same as being inducted into the team's Hall of Fame. Generally, Hall of Fame inductions are based on the quality of one's career. You wouldn't see John Paxson have his jersey retired because he hit the winning shot for the Bulls' championship, Buster Douglas inducted for beating Tyson, Robert Horry for his countless game-winning shots in the playoffs, etc? If Michael Lee had hit the shot against Syracuse, would his jersey be retired? That one still pains me.

Anyway, my point is that individual teams usually retire a player's number for their career accomplishments with that team. While Chalmers was certainly a great player on that team, he was never once considered the best guard in his own conference, let alone in the nation. So that is where I'm coming from on this.

Again, though, yes, the whole MOP is one of the criteria so he's officially qualified for it.

As for the second part, we could say that about a lot of guys. Withey dominates the competition defensively. And in terms of justifying his less-than-All-American stats because of the dynamics of the team, we can apply that aspect to the first 7 guys on that team. Shady was definitely a force to be reckoned with but he didn't always need to be thanks to Kaun and Darnell.

And what about Aaron Miles? He's our all-time assists leader but he didn't need to score because he had the likes of Simien, Langford, and Collison there. But his number isn't retired despite being arguably (Jacque was amazing, too) the best distributor in KU history because he was never considered to be the elite guard of college basketball when he played. Of course, to your point, he didn't hit a game-winning shot to win the title.

DCLawHawk 9 years, 3 months ago

The fact that Chalmers was named MOP and that was a pre-existing criteria settles the matter for me, but the Michael Lee question is a good one. That would have been "THE SHOT" at the time. The difference being I suspect that Carmello Anthony still would have been named the MOP of that Final Four in a losing effort. Another way to look at it: what if Memphis had gone on to win in overtime? Would Mario's shot loom as large? Surely not. For me it comes down to the fact that Mario was the leader of a team that won a National Championship, he was the "go to" guy as HCBS said, and his body of work at KU was elite even putting aside the Final Four.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

KU ALUM: You make some outstanding points especially in reference to Aaron Miles. However, you comparing Mario Chalmers to John Paxon, Buster Douglas, Robert Horry (A little different and I will explain in a minute), Withey and Michael Lee is basically saying that Mario Chalmers was a one trick pony. You are comparing apples to oranges and I'll tell you why.

Remember, these are the best "Jayhawks" of all-time that get their Jersey's hung from the rafters. One University, One Gymnasium, One Basketball team throughout the last 115 years. We are not talking about the Big 12 Hall of Fame...We are not talking about the College Basketball Hall of Fame and we are not talking about the prestigious Naismith Hall of fame. Just the Kansas Jayhawks and the jersey's that hang from the Allen Fieldhouse rafters.

With that said, you could argue that John Paxson may have a shot at the Chicago Bulls HOF or have his jersey retired in the rafters of the United Center, but that won't ever happen because he was a role player that came off the bench that hit one magnificent shot. Would John Paxson be considered for the Naismith Hall of Fame? Absolutely no effing way! If he isn't going to be considered for the Chicago Bulls, he sure as hell isn't going to be considered for Naismith Basketball HOF. Paxson was a role player that was a one trick pony.

Buster Douglas-One Trick Pony

Michael Lee-Even if he makes the shot against Syracuse (To tie it by the way), Lee doesn't even remotely have the body of work to be considered. He was a role player.

Robert Horry-He won 7 NBA Championship with 3 different teams. Houston (2), LA (3), or even San Antonio (2) could have an argument if they wanted to hang his jersey from their rafters, but they probably won't because they have standards as well. He was a heck of a role player and I commend him for it. His teams won because of him, but any of his teams could have an argument to hang his jersey. As for the Hall of Fame no shot in hell.

Withey-You can't even determine his legacy yet. What happens if Kansas wins the National Title or gets to another Final 4? Withey is a defensive genius that has so so offensive numbers, but what happens if he re-writes the record books again in the Final 4. What happens if he wins MOP as a defensive specialist. We simply don't know yet.

KU_alum_2001 9 years, 3 months ago

Sorry, I should have been more clear. When I referenced Paxson and Horry, I was referring to them not having their jerseys retired for their team. I wasn't trying to imply them being inducted into the Hall of Fame. I agree that's a completely different level. What I was implying, though, is that neither the Bulls, Spurs, nor Lakers have opted to retire Paxson or Horry's jerseys because their overall body of work (outside of some clutch shots) hasn't justified it. I mean those guys had Chalmer-esque moments themselves but their teams have chosen not to permanently honor them by retiring their jerseys or inducting them into the team HOF. Of course, that's their choice adn thus that doesn't make them the benchmark by which KU must follow. My point, though, is that I think generally-speaking, if you were to look around at athletes who have had shining moments but haven't necessarily been superstars (again, Mario was never even First-Team All-Big 12), they generally haven't been given such a lifelong, permanent recognition such as Mario is now receiving.

I just view the rafters as being such a high, HIGH honor and see him being honored alone as a bit questionable given a) how much of a team effort that was in 2008, b) how he never really had that many individual honors aside from the tourney MOP, and c) the fact that none of his teammates have been honored equally.

I will say now, though, that as much as I love Withey, if KU were to win this year and he were to be the MOP of the tourney, I'd also probably dispute him getting his name up in the rafters. Perhaps like many, I'm simply biased towards offensive stats. I'd likely plead guilty to that if charged.

Sam Constance 9 years, 3 months ago

I'm glad you mentioned the All Big 12 issue, because I think that is a good illustration of how the national and regional accolades that players get (and which we use to help determine a player's worthiness to have his jersey retired) can be flawed.

Chalmers never being First Team All Big 12 was ridiculous at the time and is still ridiculous. So was his falling to the second round of the NBA Draft. If nothing else, he had a strong case to join Rush on the 2008 All Big 12 first team instead of D.J. Augustin or Curtis Jerrells.

The reason he didn't, imho, is a combination of sportswriters not wanting put too many players from one team on the all-conference team (unless there are two unbelievably dominant and remarkable players) and the difference in how Chalmers was used in KU's offense compared to how Jerrells and Augustin were used in Baylor 's and Texas' offenses, respectively. Just look at some of these (per game) numbers from the 2008 season:

Points: Chalmers (12.8), Jerrells (15.3), Augustin (19.2)

Assists: Chalmers (4.3), Jerrells (3.8), Augustin (5.8)

TOs: Chalmers (1.9), Jerrells (2.1), Augustin (2.8)

A/T: Chalmers (2.3), Jerrells (1.8), Augustin (2.1)

Steals: Chalmers (2.7), Jerrells (1.5), Augustin (1.2)

FG%: Chalmers (52%), Jerrells (43%), Augustin (44%)

3P%: Chalmers (43%), Jerrells (33%), Augustin (38%)

In every category except raw scoring and raw assists, Chalmers is superior. He was a better defender, a more efficient scorer and better at creating for his teammates while minimizing mistakes. But Rush was chosen first team, so the writers relegated Chalmers to second team all-conference so that they could have some diversity on the first team.

(to be continued...)

Sam Constance 9 years, 3 months ago


Players like Chalmers are a perfect example of how it's easy to forget how good a player is if he isn't filling up the basket with 15+ points per game every night. He's been underrated at almost every step of his career, because if you miss that game or three where he needs to carry the team and does, then you don't realize he's more than just a good defender who can occasionally score. He's a go-to type player who wasn't required to fill that role except occasionally.

My argument is that Chalmers WAS a superstar who didn't get recognized as such. I think it's a disservice to classify his body of work as a collection of "shining moments". It's not like he was a roleplayer who randomly had a couple good games. He was clearly a player who was capable of doing that with consistency, but didn't need to or want to, given how balanced the teams he played on really were.

Withey would be an interesting argument, because this is the only really "standout" year he's going to have in his career, whereas Chalmers was consistently solid from the start of his career to the very end. There was no slow development to an experienced and quality player. He was always good. Given that Withey's success has been much more isolated, I think it therefore has to be that much more impressive, so a first team All American selectoin or Tourney MOP would be absolute MUSTS for him to get consideration.

All that being said, I appreciate the perspective you've shared.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Well said, MarchPhog. I agree with most of it!

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Take Sherron Collins-He was a big factor in Kansas winning the National Championship. Even though he didn't start he was always in at the end of the game. If Collins would have left in 2008 after his sophomore year...there is no way he is even considered for the rafters. He stayed two more years and racked up statistics on 1 okay team and 1 decent team and became an All-American. Collins was not a one trick pony. He had a full body of work.

As for Mario...he's not going to be in the College Basketball HOF. He's simply going to have his jersey hung as one of the best "Jayhawks" of all time. He averaged, 11.5, 12.2, and 12.8 in his 3 seasons. He averaged 2.7, 2.6, and 2.5 steals a game and is the all time steals leader in Kansas basketball history.

Mario was the lead guard on his teams and was the second leading scorer on the squad all 3 of his seasons behind only who? Brandon Rush all 3 seasons. Mario was the leader of his team in 2008. Everybody followed his "Swag" and when it was time to hit a big shot everybody knew who was getting the basketball. Mario was in no way shape or form a one trick pony which is basically what you are saying when you are comparing him to everyone above except for Withey.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Personally, I think Miles should be up there despite not meeting the so-called criteria. Not only is he the all-time leader in assists, he went to two Final 4's.

As a Jayhawk, IMO his resume is better than Jacque Vaughn's, but Vaughn is up there and Miles isn't.

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

I believe Vaughn is up there because of being an Academic All-American, which would put him ahead of Miles.

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

Well said, ralster. Another thing I would add is that I believe a lot of us thought that Chalmers never got the credit he deserved from the national pundits. I realize that the criteria is there for a reason, but Chalmers should have been honored a lot more than he was; his numbers weren't as great as they would have been at most other places because he was on such a good team, but KU fans knew how great a player he was. Case in point: a lot of people around the country, even fairly knowledgeable basketball fans, seemed surprised that Chalmers had been the one to hit the big shot. But if you had asked KU fans before the game who would be the one to take a big shot, I would bet you that over 90% would have named Chalmers.

KU_alum_2001 9 years, 3 months ago

Ralster, my point is that there shouldn't necessarily be a jersey to honor the 2008 championship squad. The banner does that, the trophy does that, and the record book does that. Hanging of jerseys is about individual accomplishment. If hanging jerseys were about team achievement, Simien's might not be up there. However it is because he was a rock star, an All-American, and he crushed the competition (when healthy).

Titles aren't about an individual, though. That's a team effort... even in the case of Danny Manning (although let's both agree without his effort, that didn't happen). So to your point, I just don't think KU should hang a jersey because of a title. Jerseys and the name on the back of them is about that individual and their accomplishment. And while Chalmers was VERY GOOD and while he did hit the shot that sent us to OT (as would Michael Lee's had it gone in), he as an individual was not GREAT. And yes, that's a very subjective term so what I really mean is that he wasn't the best, even at his own position and even in his own conference. For that, I simply struggle to hang his jersey.

And to be clear, I also wouldn't hang Rush's. Again, those men are honored through their accomplishment through that banner that hangs high above the Fieldhouse. That is their recognition. On an individual basis, though, I don't feel either was the dominant player that Simien, Lafrentz, Collison, or Sherron were.

Anyway, we could of course debate this for a long time but appreciate your thoughts thus far.

KU_alum_2001 9 years, 3 months ago

I didn't intentionally list Roy's players only. If I did, that was just coincedence. I'd list Simen, TRob, Cole, Sherron, and the Morris Bros in there, as well. I certainly wasn't trying to suggest it's just Roy's recruits.

And I agree with you that I'd rather have a balanced team of stars (i.e. 2008 or even dare I say last year's UK team) than a team which revolves around one or two guys. So I agree on that, but that's also a separate issue from Chalmers as an individual having his jersey retired when he was on more of a "true" team than the others. In other words, Chalmers didn't dominate the competition like a TRob because he didn't have to because he had such amazing teammates. However, that doesn't change the fact that he didn't dominate and THAT is what I consider the key factor in having one's jersey retired. If not, then that entire 2008 squad should have their jerseys retired.

Sam Constance 9 years, 3 months ago

I think recognizing the difference between why Chalmers didn't always dominate and why his teammates didn't always dominate is important.

I love that entire team, but saying we should recognize all of them or none of them ignores the fact that there WERE differences in their ability levels. Kaun and Jackson were instrumental in hanging that banner, but no one--not even the most die-hard Kansas fan--would suggest that they deserve to have their jerseys retired. They were the definition of role players. Chalmers was the definition of a primetime star who tempered his own dominance for the good of the team. In some ways, that makes him even BETTER than otherwise considered, because he had the ability to put up the numbers of Curtis Jerrells or D.J. Augustin, but had the basketball I.Q., maturity, and desire to win to understand that his team's best chance to win came with him putting up superstar numbers only when it was absolutely needed. I think he also should get some credit for being able to flip a switch like that. It's an innate skill that many players--even superstar level--don't possess.

Perhaps the criteria shouldn't necessarily be ACTUAL domination and merely the ability to dominate. I realize this makes it even more subjective than it already is, but I think we can agree that Chalmers had that ability, while everyone on the 2008 title team did not.

JHAWKNPHX 9 years, 3 months ago

How about Cole Aldrich being an academic all American!! HCBS should push that ASAP. He knows first hand how difficult it is to be a student athlete and still make excellent grades.

HawkKlaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Yep, I see Cole getting his jersey hung soon too.

clevelandjayhawker 9 years, 3 months ago

Makes me feel old that it has already been 5 years since the Orange Bowl and NC year..

Joe Joseph 9 years, 3 months ago

Are there certain standards players have to meet to have their jersey retired? I remember there used to be, but then Lew Perkins came around and started retiring everyone's.

Is it just a length of time? 5 years?

Or All-American (on some level)?

Final four MOP?

I was thinking players had to be named to an all-american team (academic included).

texashawk10 9 years, 3 months ago

The loosening of the guidelines was so KU could honor older players from the 60's and 70's who deserved to be recognized. Mario Chalmers will be only the 9th player who's played at KU in the past 25 years to have his jersey retired. Manning, Pierce, Vaughn, LaFrentz, Gooden, Hinrich, Collison, Simien, and now Chalmers.

Of those 9 names, only 2 players were never voted a 1st team All-American, NPOY, or Final Four MOP and those are Jacque Vaughn and Kirk Hinrich so if you want to argue players who don't deserve to have their names retired based on the old guidelines, those are the two that an argument can be built for.

Manning: NPOY, Final Four MOP, 2x 1st team All American Vaughn: 2x Consensus 2nd team All-American Pierce: Consensus First team All-American LaFrentz: Consensus 2x First team All-American Gooden: NPOY, Consensus First team All-American Collison: NPOY, Consensus Frist team All-American Hinrich: 2x 3rd team All-American Simien: Consensus First team All-American Chalmers: Final Four MOP

The 5 year waiting period is a Bill Self rule because Gooden and Collison each had their jerseys retired the year after they left KU.

Kevin Huffman 9 years, 3 months ago

Surprising to me that Hinrich seems to have the worst resume of those 9.

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

I think Hinrich is a similar situation to Chalmers, in that he never got the recognition he deserved. I still find it hard to believe that he was never an All-American, and I think he was at least as deserving as Collison. So I'm glad they relaxed the rules for him (especially since he's still my all-time favorite Jayhawk).

Jesse Newell 9 years, 3 months ago

Gary said that there are only guidelines now, but there are no set rules for jersey retirement.

Self did mention in the press conference that they waited five years before honoring Chalmers.

Ron Prichard 9 years, 3 months ago

I posted this above in a comment, but here is a clip from a article when Simien had his name retired:

"The concept of retiring the jerseys of outstanding Jayhawk basketball players was initiated prior to the 1991-92 season, when banners honoring Clyde Lovellette, Danny Manning, B.H. Born, Charlie Black, Paul Endacott, Wilt Chamberlain and Charlie Black were unveiled in the south end of Allen Fieldhouse. The original criteria for a retired jersey included KU players named college basketball player of the year, most valuable player of the NCAA Tournament or being named a four-time All-American. The list was expanded in 1997 to include Ray Evans, who holds the distinction of being an All-American in both football and basketball.

The criteria were expanded prior to the 2002-03 season to include consensus first-team All-Americans, two-time first-team All-America selections and Academic All-Americans of the Year."

Marcia Parsons 9 years, 3 months ago

I think Bill Self put the five year period in place. He felt it meant more to players after they had been gone for a while. The requirements themselves were made less difficult when Roy was here.

Kevin Huffman 9 years, 3 months ago

so maybe in the next 4 years, if the rules have been relaxed as they say in addition T.Rob we might see Rush's retired too then perhaps? Sherron MIGHT have a case.

Ron Prichard 9 years, 3 months ago

Sherron and TRob will be in automatically according to the KU guidelines. They were both consensus First Team All Americans. (See my posts above.) Rush is probably on the outside looking in.

Sam Constance 9 years, 3 months ago

Personally, I don't like the idea of hard & fast rules for jersey retirement. Especially when those rules are based on the opinions and votes of the national media (who we all know doesn't seem to give KU and its players as much slobbering love as some other "blue chip" programs).

To me, a player deserves to be in the rafters if he made an extraordinary and/or significant contribution to Kansas bball. Or if he was the best player on a great team. Or if that player single-handedly gave Kansas' team one of the many accolades we've racked up over the years.

For example, putting a team on your back in significant tourney game, like Chalmers in the 2008 Big 12 title, or Hinrich in the 2003 NCAA Elite Eight game against Arizona, or Nick Collison in the 2003 NCAA Sweet Sixteen game against Duke (everyone remembers Collison's 20-20 Dick Vitale standing ovation game in AFH vs. Texas, but people never seem to recall his game against Duke where he poured in 33 points and ripped down 19 rebounds to lead us against JJ Reddick's dookies).

I don't think there's a problem with having a fluid standard to account for teams like 2008, who I think most of us agree was one of the best all-around Jayhawk teams of the last 20 years, and was filled with NBA guys, many of whom could have been the primary option on some of the less talented Jayhawk teams. Guys like Rush and Arthur suffer because they bought into being a member of a team, rather than being "The Guy" and filling up box scores like we know they were capable of doing.

I'd LOVE to see a voting formula that involves a combo of votes from Jayhawk sportswriters (active and retired) former players, season ticket holders (for the seasons of the player being voted upon), and Kansas fans/alumni. I don't know what the distribution of each of those groups would have to be to make sure you got results that weren't skewed by the fan vote, but I think you could come to a pretty decent formula.

Maybe make the vote 60% sportswriters, 25% former players, 5% season ticket holders and 10% Kansas fans and/or alumni... I dunno. It's a hard thing to do, but as long as we aren't sticking every Jayhawk that played on a winning team in there, I don't have a problem with relaxing the jersey retirement rules. Kansas Basketball is basketball history, and people who play here and excel deserve to be credited for it.

Maybe a tiered system of retired jerseys would do the trick... you have a Blue level (reserved for the more stringent requirements that were in place over a decade ago), Crimson level (for the updated 2003 standards) and a Chalk level (reserved for players that may not have had the kind of national recognition, but were hugely important to Kansas basketball). Perhaps the Chalk level could involve some kind of vote.

At this point, I'm rambling. I just love my Jayhawks and want to be able to honor them--even the ones who may not have achieved national recognition.

Tony Bandle 9 years, 3 months ago

I sure picked a good game to go to for the year. Gameday, Beat down of Texas, Julius Randle, off on the following Monday and now Mario's jersey ceremony......think I'll head over to the casino tonight!!!

jaybate 9 years, 3 months ago



The whole jersey thing always defaults into a popularity contest. And anyone that thinks what players do as pros doesn't matter, or what university political connections players build in the years after they leave doesn't matter, is kidding him/herself.

There is no basis of comparison among Mario Chalmers, Nick Collision, Wilt Chamberlain, Ray Evans, Fred Pralle and Al Petersen. Each was great in his own era in his own way. I love everyone of them. I want each of them honored and remembered, but not in the field house in this way.

The field house is the most sacred ground we have. Up there, only the greatest "champions" of all time belong.

Champions are the gold standard. Everything else is Fed note ready print. I'm not knocking the non champions, like Wilt, Jo Jo, and Nick. They deserve ample recognitions in the hall of fame.

But in the field house?

I wish they would take all the jerseys down and hang them up on the Boothe Sports Hall. At the rate this is going, we're going to need one of those conveyor racks from a laundry to hold all the retired jerseys.

The only thing that should be hanging up in the field house besides National Championship banners are giant team photos of NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP TEAMS.

Seriously, its a team game. No player can ever become a champion by himself.

We play the game to try to become champions.

I would bet everything I have that not one of KU's great coaches has ever walked into the field house at the beginning of the season and said, "Okay, boys, the goal this year is to try to develop some guy so his retired jersey is hanging up there by the windows."

Each season, its team. Each season the coach says, "We're trying to become the best team we can possibly be and we're playing to win a conference title and a national championship."

If trying to become the best team a group of players can be in a hunt to be a champion is not what KU basketball is about, if what we honor in the field house is stars that were great athletes, then I personally would much rather start hanging the lingerie of super models up there, because even the worst looking super model is better looking that one of our players and I prefer beauty to anything but champions.

Champions are rare. Champions are special. Champions are greatness personified. Champions are gold in a talus field of excellent teams, not so great teams, and lousy teams.

But most of all, in basketball, champions are TEAMS!!!!!

Honoring champions would resolve all of these debates about standards immediately.

If your team is a champion, then a picture of you and your teammates is up there.

jaybate 9 years, 3 months ago


If you are not a champion, it doesn't make any difference how many points you scored, how many AA teams you were selected to, how you did in the pros, who you got on the good side of after your playing days, and how many times the rules for admission for individual players get reindexed like so many BEA statistics.

Its a harsh truth. Wilt Chamberlain was by my personal standards that greatest player in the history of the game. Frankly, none of the other guys with retired jerseys could hold his jock strap as an individual player. In a game of one on one, he would beat every guy up on the field house wall without much effort.


As much as I love Wilt, as much as I love Bill Bridges, as much as I love every guy up on that wall, the ones that weren't champions don't deserve to be up there.

And the ones that were champions, don't deserve to be up there without their teammates.

To do this to Kansas basketball is sacrilege in my book.






DCLawHawk 9 years, 3 months ago

If your criteria for what belongs in the rafters at Allen Fieldhouse excludes Wilt Chamberlain, then there is something wrong with your criteria (not with the current rafters). Wilt Chamberlain belongs on the Mount Rushmore of basketball. The rules of the game were changed in response to his greatness. Having Wilt's jersey in the rafters is not sacrilege to Kansas basketball. Indeed, if we could only have one thing in the rafters it ought to be Wilt Chamberlain's jersey. He was greatness personified on the basketball court. His example is well worth every Jayhawk player's trying to emulate. The criteria for retiring jerseys may be too loose right now (and I'm surprised in retrospect at how weak the relative case is for Hinrich), but any criteria that excludes Wilt is too cramped for me.

Mike Skiles 9 years, 3 months ago

Amen! Any talk of Wilt not being in the rafters is just plain nutty. There were a lot of long time members of this site who were arguing against Mario being in the rafters as well, about a year or two ago. Obviously they are out of step with the majority. No matter, different viewpoints makes the world go 'round! RCJH

Sam Constance 9 years, 3 months ago

So much this. The idea of having standards that exclude The Big Dipper is just inane.

Recognizing only Championship teams in the rafters would be a little like inverse double jeopardy. Those teams are already recognized--with a trophy and a championship banner that is 10x the size of any of the retired jersey banners. It seems a little overkill to have the championship banners, and then the individual jerseys of every individual who played on that championship team.

mattiesdad 9 years, 3 months ago

I agree. Before the Roy era when the world turned into the "you're all winners," "you all get a medal" culture, there were hard-fast criteria that made it a true feat to be placed in the rafters. Then Roy tweaked it so Jacques could get in. Now I loved JV, still one of my favs, but he did not belong. I like the idea of boosting the exposure in the HOF, and putting team banners/pics in the rafters. Let's start a movement!

texashawk10 9 years, 3 months ago

If you're going to take Vaughn out, you have to take Hinrich out as well because Hinrich's resume is not as strong as Jacque's was.

texashawk10 9 years, 3 months ago

Team accomplishments are not part of the equation. Current requirements are National POY, Final Four MOP, Consensus 1st team All-American, non-Consensus 1st team All-American in 2 seasons, or Academic All-American of the Year. If team accomplishments mattered on this subject, then there would be someone from the early 90's teams with their jerseys retired because there were people on teams that played in multiple Final Fours.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate, I like part of it and I don't. I guess before I truly answer, how many jersey's were actually hanging before the rule changed? How many and who were put up after?

The only reason I ask is that there are currently 26 Jersey's that are hanging from the rafters and Mario will be #27. After 115 years of basketball that is technicaly one jersey hanging every 4.3 years. Longer than I spent in High School or College.

Now I looked up the 1923 Kansas roster and surprisingly they had 13 players on that squad (I thought it was going to be lower). With that said, let's just round down to 12.5 players over the 115 years of Kansas Basketball. I am sure there is a way to find out the exact number of players that have come through Kansas over the years, but after doing the math on the above numbers that comes out to 1438 players.

Based on that math only 1.8 percent of the players that have played for Kansas Basketball over the last 115 years have had their jersey retired and technically Chalmers isn't even retired yet. I think that's still a pretty damn good prestigious number and fantastic honor. 27 out of 1438? And we're talking about 11.5 different decades of basketball.

Kevin Huffman 9 years, 3 months ago

I went to school there in '91 - '98. I don't remember but maybe 4 or 5 being up there. Trying to remember exactly who they were. I guess it would've been too early for Manning even.

I know Lovellette's was up there. Jo Jo White, maybe? Born I think? And one other I'm not thinking of right now.

I think WHILE I was there they ended up retiring Manning's.

Chris Shaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Now, I just looked up North Carolina's criteria and jersey stats and it's even more lose than Kansas'.

Here is North Carolina's critera;

1)MVP of a National Championship-winning team

2)Member of a gold medal-winning Olympic team

3)First- or second-team All-America

4)ACC Player of the Year

5)NCAA Tournament MOP

With all that said, Carolina has 47 Jersey's hanging from the rafters of the dean Dome and 8 of those 47 are "Retired" meaning nobody can ever wear those numbers again.

DCLawHawk 9 years, 3 months ago

Any idea whether Roy loosened those too?

MimiHawk 9 years, 3 months ago

It will be fun to see how many of the 2008 team will be at the game for Rio.

Kevin Huffman 9 years, 3 months ago

At least two of them (Arthur & Aldirch) could have NBA games that night though.....hadn't looked at the Grizzlies or Rockets schedules.

Rush is out injured so maybe he could attend.

Not sure whether Robinson or Collins are in D-league, Europe or playing elsewhere and could attend.

Kaun over in Russia - not sure if their season is underway or what-not.

D.Jackson - I think he's back down to the D-league again. As I know Morningstar (was he on the '08 roster....I know T. Reid was) is on the Tulsa 66ers.

So I'd only be CERTAIN that Rush could be there FOR SURE.

Brak 9 years, 3 months ago

Well considering it is NBA All-Star weekend, there won't be any games which I'm sure is a big reason why they are doing it then. I would be more curious if anybody from his current team might show up, Julius Randle meet Lebron James.

Sam Constance 9 years, 3 months ago

Robinson just had his best game as a pro against Phoenix the other night:

12 points, 14 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal and 6-9 shooting in 26 minutes.

None of the players should have games that night because I think it's All-Star Weekend, and since Paul Pierce was snubbed in favor of less productive players, no Jayhawk will be participating in AS Weekend this year.

So there's a good chance that any NBA player could be there. That being said, Robinson wasn't on the 2008 team, so...

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

I believe he means Russell, not Thomas.

Ethan Berger 9 years, 3 months ago

I feel like ranting about how the 08 team gets no respect. First, they are the only team to ever win a final four with all number 1 seeds. Now here is the list of guys we played on that trip

Steph Curry, Ty Lawson, Hansflopper, Wayne Ellington, Danny Greene, Derek Rose,

Here was the final four teams: UCLA, UNC, KU, Memphis

Here are players who played in the final four: Russell Westbrook, Kevin Love, Darren Collison, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, Lawson, Ellington, Green, Hansflopper, Derek Rose

Here are the Coaches: Calapari, Williams, Self, Howland

For the love of God, I beg someone to find a better team in the past 50 years. Find a better championship tourney. KU 08 should easily be number 1 of the past decade, but yet most rank them at 8 or 9.

Rant over

DCLawHawk 9 years, 3 months ago

I've posted this before, but add to your rant the fact that the 2008 KU team beat the 2007 championship team (Florida) and the 2009 championship team (UNC). Is there another NCAA champion who has done that?!? If so, I'm not aware of it.

mejayhawk 9 years, 3 months ago

i just watched the highlight clips from that team that Bigmanu posted above. Five times. Good gawd that was a great team! The ball movement. The team defense. The transition passing. The althleticism at every position.

Gotta say, this is one of the most enjoyable threads I've read in quite awhile.

Kevin Huffman 9 years, 3 months ago

Um, they may not have won a championship, but our '96/'97 team was BETTER!!!

HawkKlaw 9 years, 3 months ago

Yes, I agree wholeheartedly! I will be surprised if KU ever has a better team than what we had in '08, and that team is my pick for best NCAA team in the past 50 years. They had so many accolades, but one that still gets me is they were the only team (at the time) to win 37 games plus a National Championship. Bill Self called that team the greatest in the history of KU. I can't disagree with him there.

Ron Franklin 9 years, 3 months ago

2008 was my favorite year ever of watching any basketball team. The way they shared the ball and valued the 'team' concept made incredibly proud. Still does to this day. I've never seen a team move the ball like that since or before. Of course, I'm still in my 20's.

Ron Franklin 9 years, 3 months ago

Congrats, Mario. You deserve it. A few others do to, so I hope to see them up there soon.

Woody Cragg 9 years, 3 months ago

Right, wrong, jersey, number, Allen, or Booth-it's all about boosting the university and Bill Selfs' abilities to recruit. In this social media, tech savvy, generation Y age, kids are just different. Hell 95% of them have had a cell phone as long as they can remember & most of them text 50 to 100 times a day. Game Day? Julius Randle? Hello? This thing will probably be seen around the entire planet within a couple of day, maybe less. It's great that they can do this for Mario because it's what the kids & fans want to see, and he deserves the recognition. He's a great young person, player and has a heart of gold. It doesn't have squat to do with what any of us think, or JB's objective post or anyone else but the young people. They are the ones going to school there now & this is part of their legacy. It's time to let them have the reins and let them have these moments. Mario deserves the recognition like many before & many to come. And I really do agree with JB that the entire team that wins the NC should be immortalized for the whole public to see. That most certainly should be a valid suggestion to the university going forward.

DB Ashton 9 years, 3 months ago

I've seen 15 players on the list. Two or three seem lesser candidates, as does Mario. But the criteria are clearly flexible, the current staff will have its reasons, and they will be mindfull not to devalue the honor to the point of irrelevance. I'm happy to defer to them.

Scott Smetana 9 years, 3 months ago

Top Mario moments besides 'the shot'? Time to reflect.
Off the top of my head, I might be off on a few: - 3 point barrage in big 12 tourney as senior against Durant - putback jam against Georgia Tech - loooong 3 to seal win at Cal - others anyone?

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

I believe you're thinking of sealing the win at USC, not Cal. I was at that game at USC, and remember it well.

texashawk10 9 years, 3 months ago

I had a long post about what personal criteria would be and it's not as strict as the original, but not as loose as it is now. If my research was right, I believe it would take 4 names down and exclude two future players who will most likely be going up in the next few years.

My personal criteria would be National Player of the Year, Final Four MOP, Consensus 1st team All-American, or non-consensus 1st team All-American in multiple years. Because there are quite a few organizations that hand out awards like this, I would restrict NPOY to the AP, NABC, USBWA, and Wooden Awards, or equivalent groups of the time. I would restrict the All-American teams to only the AP, NABC, and USBWA while excluding the Wooden All-American team. I would exclude the Wooden All-American team because they consider all 10 finalists to be 1st team instead of splitting the top 5 vote getters and bottom 5 vote getters into a 1st and 2nd team which can boost the resume of players like Jacque Vaughn and Brandon Rush. I would also not use Academic All-American of the Year as a criteria which also boosts the resume of Jacque Vaughn and of Cole Aldrich.

I would also like to see a banner or banners on the north end that recognize the top 10 career leaders in points, rebounds, assists, and steals. This would be a way to recognize some of the better players in KU's history that aren't quite good enough to be considered worthy of being hung in the south end such as Keith Langford, Aaron Miles, Scot Pollard, Marcus Morris, or Tyshawn Taylor.

Alex Laughlin 9 years, 3 months ago

It'd have to be next year since it has to be 5 years from the last time he played.

ManCrushOnCaptainKirk 9 years, 3 months ago

Mario arguably owns the 2nd biggest shot in NCAA tournament history and perhaps the biggest shot in an NCAA Championship Game.

After Laettner, it's one of the all-time great shots in the NCAA tournament.

And, one could make the case that Mario's shot was more clutch than Keith Smart's baseline shot (and better defended).

Dyrk Dugan 9 years, 3 months ago

it's more clutch than Laettner's. it's the greatest clutch shot in college bball history, and quite possibly, all of basketball. he had to hit a three...otherwise, the game is over. Laettner didn't HAVE to make a three...Smart's could have been tipped in. Chalmers shot must go, or it's over. plus, it was in the title game.....either we win it, or Memphis wins it.

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

It drives me crazy that they never show Mario's shot when showing tournament highlights. It's a shame that his shot wasn't for the win, because it would have been viewed by everyone as the greatest shot in NCAA history.

jaybate 9 years, 3 months ago

For anyone that wants to see how explode all over a thread, set the find routine in your browser to "dragonslyr" and read his series of posts under "Bill Self: Kansas Thinks It Should Win". It was a great performance. He's finding his voice and he's got a lot worth saying.

jaybate 9 years, 3 months ago

I know everyone loves these great players and no one more than me.

But it just breaks my heart to hear Self talk about steals on the '08 the team without mentioning Russell Robinson. Mario would not have gotten half the steals he got without Russell. This is the quintessence of what I mean when I say we should be honoring TEAMS. Talking stealing with Mario without mentioning Russell is like talking about John Lennon without mentioning Paul McCartney. Talking shooting with Mario without mentioning Brandon is Astaire without Rogers. Talking winning with Mario without mentioning the entire '08 team is unthinkable!!! And wrong, wrong, wrong!

Mario's shot means nothing without Sherron's steal.

The essense and beauty and meaning of basketball is entirely, inextricably, irreducibly tied up in TEAM and Self of all persons should speak out for this. Jayhawk nation is a team. It is what makes it different. Jimmy gave us a team game so young men wouldn't fight amongst themselves in the dead of winter, but would still compete. This is the the strongest thread in the legacy.


The Legacy survives wars, depressions, -isms, technologies, generations, politics, greed, corruption, and success because after each episode, we come back to TEAM.

To belong to something worthwhile.

To vote with our feet and our hearts for team.

We need it now more than ever.

Marcia Parsons 9 years, 3 months ago

I understand your point, but I'm sure Self endorses the team concept since that's how he coaches. But in this instance he was asked for a quote about Chamers, so that's what he gave.

Tony Bandle 9 years, 3 months ago

For some reason, I am totally hardass, old school on the jersey thing [truly not my normal MO]. If it was up to me, I would have Wilt Chamberlain, Clyde Lovellette and Danny Manning with their jerseys AND their numbers retired...and find some other form of recognition for the remaining honorees.

I'm sure I will be totally blasted, but I would do that with the NC banners also by finding another means of listing the conference championships, NCAA appearances, etc.

As Mies van der Rohe famously quoted.."Less Is More".

Sam Constance 9 years, 3 months ago

I can get behind this idea.

Have really hardcore standards and retire numbers of the most memorable, dominant players. Then have some kind of "ring of honor" with much more lax standards that doesn't involve any number retirement.

Speaking of NC banners--KU should take down the two "national championship" banners from 1922 and 1923 and hang a different, smaller, properly-labeled "Helms Championship" banners in proximity to the three bonafide banners: 1952, 1988, 2008.

But I think I'm in the minority on that one, given how many Jayhawk fans ignorantly cite our "five" national titles, when in fact we have three titles and two retroactive "best in season" awards.

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

I'm not sure I agree with you about the jerseys, marchphog, but I DEFINITELY agree with you about the Helms titles. In fact, I always feel embarrassed when someone acts like those "championships" are on the same level as our three NCAA championships.

JayHok 9 years, 3 months ago

It was a vote. If these aren't recognized then most of the football NCAA champions shouldn't be recognized either. Those were votes. The 1922 and 1923 teams were obviously pretty good to get back to back. If it was an isolated year your point has more validity. It's not our fault there wasn't an NCAA tournament. Nebraska and Oklahoma football can complain about the same thing.

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

As ridiculous as the football system has been throughout the years, at least the vote was done at the end of the SAME SEASON.

Our Helms "championships" were voted on in 1936, for crying out loud!!! And keep in mind that this was long before the days of ESPN. So you're trying to tell us that there's any SEMBLANCE of legitimacy to titles that were voted on over a DECADE later, based solely on people's memories?!?!?

boomrsoonr26 9 years, 3 months ago

Rio Adams nickname should be Goose. Why you ask? A RIO or Radar Intercept Officer is the backseater on a F-14 (TopGun) or newer F/A-18 fighter jets. Who is the most famous RIO of all time? "Talk to me Goose." I know its a stretch, and I've been pushing hard, and noone is biting. So do me a favor and call him Rio "Goose" Adams. Thank you for your time

Tony Bandle 9 years, 3 months ago

How about boomrgoosesoonr26? Sorry, I'm afraid your nickname is going to land in the same trash pile as mine, "Rio De Jamero"., did!! :)

wildjayhawk 9 years, 3 months ago

Good to see that Mario will hang in the Phog. Also should be added to this list are Rush, and Collins. They are the onces that made KU go. As far as Morningstar. tell him to pickup a sixpack and we will hang his stupid ass in the rafters.

David Gisi 9 years, 3 months ago

On the "dogs named Mario" subject- my son chose to name our lab mario. Got him in may 2008 and he was born during "march madness" '08. From the night we first brought him home he would sneak up and start biting toes and fingers. So his full name became Mario Chompers

Tony Bandle 9 years, 3 months ago

OH PLEASE...don't start this argument again. The world of Jayhawk Nation is made up of two distinct factions..those that thought Morningstar was the ultimate glue guy and those who thought Morningstar was a guy who sniffed glue!!

actorman 9 years, 3 months ago

Wow. I was reading it and thinking, "This isn't so bad," and then I saw the line where he said, "I mean, it's Kevin Young." Not that KY needs any additional motivation, but that sounds like bulletin-board gold to me. I can't wait to see KY battle against Mouthwell ... er, Southwell next time.

Michael Pannacciulli 9 years, 3 months ago

Kevin please post this on every wall in your room, print a copy and put in your gym bag, your wallet, locker, etc. as if I needed more reasons to hate KSU...

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