Nov. 27, 2012
Laramie, Wyo. - At halftime of this Saturday's Wyoming-Colorado men's basketball game, the University of Wyoming will honor Cowboy great Kenny Sailors for his recent induction into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame. Saturday's game is scheduled to tip off at 8 p.m., Mountain Time from Wyoming's Arena-Auditorium.
Sailors, who is credited with developing the modern-day jump shot and is the oldest living Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA Tournament, was one of 10 individuals who were recently inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame on Sunday, Nov. 18 in Kansas City, Mo.
Sailors led Wyoming to the 1943 NCAA Championship while being named the National Player of the Year that season.
Joining Sailors in the 2012 class of inductees were: Georgetown center Patrick Ewing; Kansas center Clyde Lovellette; North Carolina guard Phil Ford; Winston-Salem State guard Earl Monroe; Grambling center Willis Reed; Kentucky coach Joe B. Hall; Virginia Union coach Dave Robbins; and contributors Jim Host, founder of Host Communications; and Joe Dean, of Converse and LSU.
Sailors, who turned 91 on Jan. 14, 2012, and his former head coach, Everett Shelton, are the only two representatives from the state of Wyoming in the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame. Shelton was inducted in the inaugural class of the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006.
After teaming with Shelton to lead Wyoming to the NCAA Championship in 1943, Sailors enlisted in the Marines and served in the South Pacific during World War II. After being away from the game he loved for two years, Sailors returned to Wyoming for the 1945-46 season and once again earned All-America honors.
While the induction ceremonies were not televised live on Nov. 18, ESPNU will telecast a show on the ceremonies on Sunday, Dec. 9 at 8 p.m., Mountain Time.
This year's class of inductees was also recognized during this past year's NCAA Final Four in New Orleans.
In 2006 the first class was inducted into the newly formed National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame. That class included the game's inventor, James Naismith, and possibly its greatest coach in John Wooden. Anyone who was enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame for men's college basketball prior to 2008 was a member of the Founding Class of the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame.
Former Wyoming head coach Everett Shelton, who died on April 16, 1974, was inducted as a member of that Founding Class in 2006. Shelton was inducted posthumously into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1982.