When you think of blue bloods in men's college basketball, the Kansas Jayhawks are one of the first to come to mind -- and for good reason. They've won six overall national championships and have been the runner-up in the national championship six more times. They currently have the longest active streak of making it to the NCAA Tournament, the most winning seasons with the most wins, and the most conference championships in Division I history.
A good reason for this success is the Allen Fieldhouse; since it opened in 1955, it has been considered to provide one of the best home field advantages in college basketball. They also have had some excellent coaches throughout their storied career, starting with Phog Allen and most recently having Roy Williams and Bill Self. Talent has also been a major reason for Kansas' success, and they've had their fair share of some incredible players come through their program. But who would make the All-Team Starting Lineup for the Jayhawks? Well, keep reading to find out.
Point Guard - Frank Mason III
As a sophomore at Kansas, Frank Mason III, from Petersburg, Virginia, was selected to the All Big 12 second team for the 2014-15 season. He averaged 12.6 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game that year. During his junior season, Mason averaged 12.9 points and 4.6 assists and was named to the Big 12 All-Defensive Team. As a senior, Mason became the first player in Big 12 history to average 20 points and five assists a game during the regular season. That year, he was unanimously named as the Big 12 Player of the Year. He was also named a consensus First Team All-American; the Bob Cousy Award recipient, given the nation's best point guard; and the consensus National Player of the Year his senior year.
Shooting Guard - Kirk Hinrich
As a sophomore during the 2000-21 season, sharpshooter Kirk Hinrich from Sioux City, Iowa, ranked eighth in the nation in assists per game (6.9), led his team in steals and set a Kansas Jayhawks record with a .505 3-point shooting mark. Hinrich was also voted onto the AP All Big 12 second Team and earned All Third Team status from the NCAA coaches. During his senior year, he helped lead the Jayhawks to the Final Four, where they lost to Syracuse in the national championship game. That year, he led his team in free throw and 3-point shooting. On March 1, 2009, Hinrich's No. 10 jersey became the 25th jersey to be retired by Kansas.
Small Forward - Paul Pierce
A native of Oakland, California, Paul Pierce spent three years with the Jayhawks, from 1995 to 1998. During his first year, he was honored as the Big Eight Co-Freshman of the Year along with Colorado's Chauncey Billups. As a sophomore, Pierce captured the first of two Big 12 Conference Tournament Most Valuable Player awards after averaging 21.7 points and guiding Kansas to the inaugural tournament championship. As a junior in 1997-98, Pierce won Most Valuable Player honors in both the Preseason NIT and the Big 12 Conference tournament. He was selected First Team All Big 12 Conference by both the AP and coaches. He was also named a finalist for the Wooden and Naismith awards in 1998. He scored 777 points as a junior, which is the fifth most in Jayhawk history.
Power Forward - Danny Manning
Hailing from Hattiesburg, Mississippi, Danny Manning could be considered one of the best college players of all time. He is currently the Kansas all-time leading scorer and rebounder. He is the 13th leading scorer of all time in men's college basketball history, with 2,973 points. He won the John R. Wooden Award, the Naismith College Player of the Year and the NABC Player of the Year his senior year, when he led the Jayhawks to a national championship. In the title game against Oklahoma, Manning scored 31 points and recorded 18 rebounds, five steals, and two blocks. His No. 25 jersey hangs in the rafters of the Allen Fieldhouse. And in 2020, The Sporting News deemed Manning the second-best player of all time since the expansion of the NCAA Tournament.
Center - Wilt Chamberlain
Speaking of greats, possibly one of the greatest players in basketball history donned the Jayhawk jersey before going on to score 100 points in a game as a pro. Wilt Chamberlain not only made a huge impact for Kansas, he also made a huge impact in the rulebook. He was capable of making free throws by dunking from the free throw line, so the rule was changed that both feet had to be behind the line during a free throw attempt. They also banned inbound passes over the backboard because of Chamberlain. He is a two-time consensus First Team All-American, and he won the NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player in 1957. In his last year at Kansas, his junior year, Chamberlain averaged 30.1 points per game, the most by any Jayhawk in a season.
With players like this, it's no wonder why Kansas is considered a blue blood.
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