KANSAS CITY, Mo. – DePaul’s Mark Aguirre, Kansas State’s Bob Boozer, Illinois State’s Doug Collins, La Salle’s Lionel Simmons, UCLA’s Jamaal Wilkes and Georgia’s Dominque Wilkins headline the players in the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame’s induction class of 2016. Joining them for the 11th enshrinement ceremony are multi-school coaching legends Hugh Durham and Mike Montgomery. The Class of 2016 will be inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame Friday, November 18, 2016, at the Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland in Kansas City.
The National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame is located in the College Basketball Experience (CBE), a world-class experiential entertainment facility adjacent to Kansas City’s Sprint Center, which will serve as the venue of the annual CBE Hall of Fame Classic. The annual four-team tournament will take place at the end of the enshrinement weekend on Monday, November 21, and Tuesday, November 22.
Six of this year’s inductees are being inducted as players, beginning with DePaul University’s Mark Aguirre, who, during his three collegiate seasons, averaged 24.5 points per game. As a freshman, he led the Blue Demons to the Final Four, and, following his junior season, he was named the national player of the year by Associated Press, USBWA, UPI and Sporting News while also receiving the James Naismith Award. A two-time consensus first-team AP All-American, Aguirre was selected as the top pick overall in the 1981 NBA Draft and went on to a 14-year NBA career.
Known for his versatility, Kansas State small forward Bob Boozer led the Wildcats to the 1958 Final Four as a junior and helped them maintain a No. 1 ranking in the final regular-season poll as a senior. He averaged 25.2 points per game in his final season, which is second only in K-State history to Michael Beasley’s 26.2 points per game in 2007-08, before being selected as the top pick in the 1959 NBA Draft. Boozer would turn down the draft to maintain his amateur status and compete as a member of the gold-medal 1960 Olympic men’s basketball team before eventually going on to an 11-year pro career. Boozer passed away in 2012 at the age of 75 and will be honored posthumously.
In his three-year varsity career at Illinois State, Doug Collins averaged 29.1 points per game and totaled 2,240 career points while being named both an All-American and Academic All-American after each season. Following his junior season, he represented the U.S. in the 1972 Olympics and was later selected by the Philadelphia 76ers as the No. 1 pick in the 1973 NBA Draft. Collins went on to become a four-time NBA All-Star with the 76ers and, after retiring, began a multi-decade NBA coaching career and successful turn as an NBA analyst on ESPN.
From 1986 to 1990, La Salle University small forward Lionel Simmons scored 3,217 career points—the third-most in NCAA history. The Naismith, Wooden, AP and NABC National College Player of the Year in 1990, as well as a consensus first-team All-American, Simmons became the only player in NCAA history to score more than 3,000 points and notch more than 1,100 rebounds. While leading the Explorers to three straight NCAA Tournament appearances (1988-90) and earning three MAAC Player of the Year awards, he set the NCAA basketball record for most consecutive games with double-figure scoring (115).
Two-time consensus first-team All-American Jamaal Wilkes made history as part of the UCLA Bruins’ legendary 88-game win streak that ran from January 1971 to January 1974. Averaging 15.0 points and 7.4 rebounds per game over the course of his three-year career, Wilkes helped Coach John Wooden and UCLA to two national titles and one third-place finish from 1972-74 and, in the process, earned three first-team Academic All-America nods. Wilkes went on to play 12 seasons in the NBA, winning four titles, three All-Star selections and the 1975 NBA Rookie of the Year Award. His jersey has been retired by both UCLA and the Los Angeles Lakers.
Known as “The Human Highlight Film,” Dominque Wilkins averaged 21.6 points per game for the Georgia Bulldogs and earned SEC Player of the Year honors in 1981. After just three seasons at UGA, Wilkins had scored 1,688 points—the most in school history at the time—and earned two All-America nods. He departed Georgia after three seasons to become the third overall pick in the 1982 NBA Draft and went on to a legendary NBA career, earning nine All-Star selections, seven All-NBA Team recognitions and one NBA scoring title (1986) before finishing his career as the all-time leading scorer in Atlanta Hawks history.
The man who coached Wilkins to success at UGA—Hugh Durham—was the first and only coach in NCAA Division I history to lead two different schools to their lone Final Four appearance: Florida State in 1972 and Georgia in 1983. Upon his retirement in 2005, Durham also was the first and only coach in Division I history to be the all-time most successful coach at three different universities, earning 230 wins at FSU, 148 at UGA and 106 at Jacksonville University. To honor Durham's legacy, the Hugh Durham Coach of the Year Award goes to the top NCAA Division I mid-major coach at the conclusion of each season.
Also being inducted as a coach, Mike Montgomery became one of the most successful coaches in the history of the Pac-12 during his 26-year coaching career. After taking over a Stanford program that had not advanced to the NCAA Tournament since winning the national title in 1942, Montgomery transformed the Cardinal into a perennial power, eclipsing the 20-win mark in just his second season at the helm. In his third season, he guided his team to a 26-7 record and the school’s return to the NCAA Tournament. At Stanford, Montgomery reached the tournament 12 times with 10-straight second-round appearances and a trip to the 1998 Final Four and was named the 2000 Naismith College Coach of the Year. Also experiencing successful stints at Montana and Cal, Montgomery was awarded the John R. Wooden Legends of Coaching Lifetime Achievement Award in 2004.
“We are starting our second decade of inductions with another outstanding class,” said Reggie Minton, deputy executive director of the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) and chair of the Hall of Fame selection panel. “The men selected as players include some great all-around athletes who helped lead their teams to championships in the NCAA, Olympic Games and the NBA. The two coaches in this year’s class both established tremendous success and helped define the benchmark in our profession.”