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Ranking KU's Greatest

Who doesn't love a subjective sports ranking list in the summer? I know I do.

Gary Woodland's win at the U.S. Open got me thinking: what are the top University of Kansas sports-related achievements of all time (whether it be while a Jayhawk, after college or a combination of the two)?

Here is my Top 5 list, with a small explanation of each.

1. Al Oerter

It's hard to imagine just how dominant Al Oerter was in his prime. In all, he won two NCAA titles and four consecutive Olympic gold medals in the discus. He set the World Record in 1962.

2. Clyde Lovellette

Clyde Lovellette starred during and after his time at KU. He won a national title for the Kansas basketball team in 1952 while earning Player of the Year honors. After winning the NCAA title, he won a gold medal in Helsinki. As a pro, he won three NBA titles and made four NBA All-Star teams.

3. Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain didn't win a national title at Kansas, but he did just about everything else. He was a two-time NBA champion, a four-time league MVP, a seven-time scoring champion and an 11-time rebounding champion. He also led the league in assists one year.

4. Gary Woodland

At the age of 35, Gary Woodland won his first major championship at the 119th U.S. Open. For Woodland, it's his fourth PGA TOUR win. Obviously, he's the first KU alum to claim one of golf's majors – and it might not be his last.

5. Billy Mills

Billy Mills shocked the track world at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. The former Kansas and Haskell Institute standout won a gold medal in the 10,000 meters with one of the most unbelievable finishes ever caught on camera. Mills set the Olympic record in that race and is still the only American to ever win the 10K at the Olympics.

Other Considerations:

  • Lynnette Woodward
  • Gayle Sayers
  • Danny Manning
  • Paul Pierce
  • Aqib Talib
  • Chris Harris
  • Mario Chalmers
  • Diamond Dixon
  • Tamecka Dixon

Did I leave something or someone out? Let me know. This list was carefully handcrafted by only one person: me.

Filed Under Basketball | College