Ranking the top 10 KU dunks of 2012-13


After getting some feedback from Twitter followers, the following is my list of the top 10 dunks for the Kansas men's basketball team from the 2012-13 season.

Honorable mention

Jamari Traylor gets stickback vs. Michigan State

Jeff Withey slams with authority against American

Travis Releford goes with the overhead reverse jam against Belmont

Jeff Withey throws down one-handed slam against North Carolina

Top 10

10. Ben McLemore dunks over teammate Jamari Traylor against Washington State

It's hard enough to get dunks in traffic when your own teammate isn't trying to keep you away from the rim. McLemore just started to show his athleticism with this dunk, which is more impressive after you watch it a couple times on replay.

9. Kevin Young puts in reverse alley-oop against Texas Tech

Going reverse seemed to be Kevin Young's specialty this year, but doing so on an alley-oop is something you don't see often — especially with a defender right there.

8. Ben McLemore rattles rim against Belmont

McLemore just beat the halftime buzzer with this jam, and he probably deserved a technical foul for his violent shaking of the rim afterwards. He didn't get one, so it ends up being a fun play to watch again on repeat.

7. Ben McLemore puts in windmill dunk over San Jose State

Man, McLemore can jump. I'm wondering if I could even do this on a 7-foot goal. I doubt it.

6. McLemore goes baseline for jam against TCU

McLemore gets bonus points here for a couple reasons: 1. The dunk gives KU a 38-9 halftime lead over TCU, which had beaten KU a few weeks earlier; 2. McLemore's celebration is great, as he throws a few boxing uppercuts on his way back down the court.

5. Kevin Young gets fancy with reverse dunk against Texas Tech

KU was playing without any emotion before this pick-me-up dunk by Young, which appeared to fire the Jayhawks up. This one took some courage, as it was still a close game and KU needed two points more than it needed style points. Young was able to give KU both.

4. Jeff Withey posterizes Kansas State's Jordan Henriquez

This has all the makings of a memorable dunk: 1. Going right over a tall defender and putting it in over him; 2. Playing against the team's biggest rival at home; 3. Celebrating with "The Superman" shirt opening — an emotional outburst that was rare for a quiet guy like Withey.

3. Ben McLemore's inbounds slam against Ohio State

One of the interesting things about this dunk is that you can see it coming. McLemore uses great footwork to come around the screen, and about two seconds before the pass, the lane completely opens up.

McLemore gets unbelievably high on this jump as well ... so high that he's almost at eye level with the rim at the top of his leap. Because of that, he spikes the ball almost straight down through the rim — something you don't see often in college basketball.

2. Ben McLemore goes 360 on dunk against Texas

The degree of difficulty on this dunk is just crazy.

I know it's a blowout, but this is jam that is usually reserved for slam-dunk contests. The fact that McLemore tried it — and made it — pushes this attempt way up the charts. It's another one we won't likely see at KU for a long time.

1. Ben McLemore goes up and over Oregon State defender

McLemore decided early he was going to dunk this one. And then he did without caring if anyone was in his way.

When a dunk makes you gasp when you witness it in person, it's worthy of the No. 1 spot.

More from Jesse Newell

  • How a fingertip, a late rotation and a great player contributed to Michigan's frantic comeback over KU
  • Five plays that show how Releford shut down Bullock — and how KU’s ‘D’ forced UNC into ‘one bad shot’
  • KU players' tattoos tell life stories
  • Amazing grace: Jeff Withey made late grandmother proud, proved to coach he belonged
  • Comments

    rcjgku94 9 years, 7 months ago

    I was on the front row at the Oregon State game right in front of where McLemore threw down that dunk (dude in the white shirt). Needless to say I will never forget that moment. Love this post Jesse!

    Bobby Burch 9 years, 7 months ago

    GRRRREAT call on the McLemore dunk against Oregon St. — If I recall, this is right about when all his No.1 pick hype started to pick up steam. Rock Chalk

    Brandon Pope 9 years, 7 months ago

    Good stuff. Love how McLemore just steals the show near the top.

    justinryman 9 years, 7 months ago

    Two things.

    One, where is the Releford Dunk when he posed in mid air?

    Two, the look on the guys faces after some of those dunks, showed how much fun they were having playing a game, that as fans we stress about and do this or that and get all fidgitty. Yet they are out there smiling, laughing, showing that while playing hard and winning you still can go out and have fun doing it.

    KGphoto 9 years, 7 months ago

    The Withey dunk against North Carolina is way higher on my list. I never thought he would be able to reach the rim from where jumped.

    clevelandjayhawker 9 years, 7 months ago

    That was my fav of the year too. He was a good 5 feet out and slammed it with authority

    Sam Constance 9 years, 7 months ago

    I would have put Withey's posterization of Henriquez higher on this list. I also think this dunk (EJ receiving an ally-oop to dunk in a WVU player's face for the and-one) is a glaring omission:

    I tend to favor dunks that happen over the top of defenders, so...

    dylans 9 years, 7 months ago

    How can Releford's "hand behind head" dunk be left off this list? Pretty sweet!

    justinryman 9 years, 7 months ago

    This is the one that got left out!

(sorry couldn't find the video on short notice)

    This is the one that got left out! (sorry couldn't find the video on short notice) by Justin

    Scott Smetana 9 years, 7 months ago

    Somebody has to post this Releford dunk, I don't remember it.

    justinryman 9 years, 7 months ago

    The dunk I was talking about is at the 47 sec mark.

    Scott Smetana 9 years, 7 months ago

    Fun Dunk, but not sure it belongs in the top 5. I'd take several of his hanging full speed layups first and will dearly miss them. BTW, I'm thinking we dunked about 30 times against American!

    Nikki May 9 years, 7 months ago

    I was partial to EJ's at the end of Iowa State. I'm only half joking for real. Mostly because of the tirade they made over it. But, great list; I, too, would have put Withey's up higher.

    ccarp 9 years, 7 months ago

    Love and agree with the #1! That dunk is the only play I've ever rewound, recorded with my phone, and sent to someone. Only thing missing from the clip is the half court steal off the in bounds that leads to the dunk. Many good memories, thanks for compiling!

    Phoggie_Thinking 9 years, 7 months ago

    I didn't know which ones were going to be 2-10, but I knew #1 before I even read the article. I knew it would be #1 two seconds after it happened. Some dunks define an entire game or perhaps even season.

    Michael Luby 9 years, 7 months ago

    Ben Ben Ben, We will miss you and your Jordan like airness.

    archercc 9 years, 7 months ago

    If youre just looking at the dunk itself then obviously Ben has to win for the sheer athleticism he puts into them, he flys more than jumps.

    But for me Jeff's against UNC takes the cake for what it did. It really lit up the room in a game that mattered (and it was great watching Hairston? chicken out on the charge)

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