McLemore Goes in First Round, Withey Second in 2013 NBA Draft

 Kansas First Round NBA Draft Picks
2013 Ben McLemore
2012 Thomas Robinson
2011 Marcus Morris; Markieff Morris
2010 Cole Aldrich; Xavier Henry
2008 Darrell Arthur; Brandon Rush
2007 Julian Wright
2005 Wayne Simien
2003 Nick Collison; Kirk Hinrich
2002 Drew Gooden
1998 Raef LaFrentz; Paul Pierce
1997 Scot Pollard; Jacque Vaughn
1995 Greg Ostertag
1993 Rex Walters
1991 Mark Randall
1988 Danny Manning
1981 Darnell Valentine
1976 Norm Cook
1972 Bud Stallworth
1969 Jo Jo White
1966 Walt Wesley
1961 Wayne Hightower
1958 Wilt Chamberlain
1952 Clyde Lovellette

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BROOKLYN, N.Y. - For the second-straight season, a Kansas men’s basketball player was taken in the top-10 as NBA Commissioner David Stern announced Ben McLemore was selected seventh overall by the Sacramento Kings. Jeff Withey followed him with a second round selection – 39th overall – by the Portland Trail Blazers in the 2013 NBA Draft Thursday night at the Barclays Center.

McLemore and Withey became the 73rd and 74th players to be drafted in Kansas men’s basketball history. The duo marks the 23rd time – and fourth-consecutive year – that multiple Jayhawks were drafted.

McLemore, who was joined by head coach Bill Self in the “Green Room,” became the 29th first-round draft pick in Kansas men’s basketball history and marks the fourth-straight season a Jayhawk has been selected in the first round. The seventh overall pick marks the second-straight season that a Jayhawk has gone in the top-10 overall, both of which coming from Sacramento. The Kings selected Thomas Robinson fifth overall in the 2012 NBA Draft.

“He means a lot to me as far a maturity and helping me grow as a person on and off the court,” McLemore said to ESPN analyst Shane Battier regarding Self. “We have a good bond with each other and the staff. I enjoyed playing for Coach Self.”

KU is among the top-five for producing the most NBA Draft picks in the nation with 19 drafted over the last decade. Since the inception of the Big 12 in 1996-97, KU has had 25 players drafted to the NBA, which is the most of any league member. KU has sent 29 players to the NBA during the past 20 years, passing North Carolina for third-most among all NCAA Division I schools and only trails Kentucky (32) and Duke (31). Playing for the Kings, McLemore will join Cole Aldrich as former Jayhawks on the roster. 

The second guard selected in the 2013 draft class, McLemore was a Consensus All-America Second Team selection and an All-Big 12 First Team honoree. He led Kansas in scoring in 2012-13 with 15.9 points per game, good for third in the Big 12. The 6-foot-5 St. Louis, Mo., native led the Big 12 with an 87.0 free throw percentage and also ranked among the league leaders in field-goal percentage (49.5, 8th), three-point field goal percentage (42.0, 2nd), three-point field goals made (2.0, 6th) and rebounds (5.2, 20th).

Additionally, McLemore’s 15.9 points per game this season broke the KU freshman record of 14.6 ppg posted by Jayhawk legend Danny Manning in 1985. McLemore’s 589 points and his 87.0 free throw percentage also broke KU freshman marks, previously held by Manning and Greg Gurley, respectively.

“We’ve coached a lot of good players,” Self said. “Maybe about as many good players as anybody has coached, but we haven’t had a lot of top-five picks, or guys that come into the program with everybody believing he’s a for sure lottery pick. If you were with Ben every day and know how much he has improved and how hard he’s worked, but still know how green he is and how naïve he is and how he’s just staring to figure things out, I think you would realize his ceiling is about as high as I think it is and I think it’s very, very high.

McLemore had 11 games of 20 points or more in 2012-13, including three 30-point contests. His 36 points against West Virginia (3/2) broke the KU freshman single-game scoring record and his three 30-point efforts also set a KU freshman single-season mark.

During the 2012-13 season, McLemore was a three-time Big 12 Rookie of the Week and was named the league’s Player of the Week on Jan. 14. He became only the second Jayhawk in the 17-year history of the Big 12 to have earned Big 12 Player and Rookie of the Week in the same season. Mario Chalmers also accomplished the feat during the 2005-06 season.

The National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Co-Defensive Player of the Year, Withey broke his own Kansas and Big 12 single-season record blocked shots record with 146 blocks in 2012-13. Last season Withey blocked 140 shots to set the school and league mark. The 2012 and 2013 Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year, Withey is also the KU and Big 12 career blocked shots leader ending his career with 312 all-time blocks.

More than merely a defensive threat, Withey led Kansas in rebounding at 8.5 boards per game to complement his 13.7 scoring average. The 7-foot San Diego native was named the Most Outstanding Player of the 2013 Big 12 Championship.

“He can shoot,” Self said of Withey on ESPN Radio. “He can make a pick-and-pop 17-foot shot, and I wouldn’t say he has the greatest face-up game, but he can make a face-up jumper. Then he has another skillset – that regardless of who he’s guarding – he’ll be hard to score over. He’s unbelievable at creating that separation so he gets a free jump to try to block or alter a shot. He’s as I’ve ever seen at that. Those are two skills that a lot of people wish they had.”

A three-time Big 12 Player of the Week this season, Withey led the Big 12 with 3.95 blocked shots per game, which ranked second nationally. That mark also set the KU and conference per game average season record. Withey was named to the Consensus All-America Second Team along with McLemore.

Kansas All-Time Draft Selections
Year – name (round)
1948 – Otto Schnellbacher (Providence region)
1952 – Clyde Lovellette (1)
1953 – Dean Kelley (8), Gil Reich (11)
1954 – B.H. Born (3), Alan Kelley (7)
1957 – Maurice King (6)
1958 – Wilt Chamberlain (1)
1959 – Ron Loneski (10)
1961 – Wayne Hightower (1), Bill Bridges (3)
1963 – Nolen Ellison (4)
1966 – Walt Wesley (1), Al Lopes (13)
1967 – Ron Franz (10)
1968 – Roger Bohnesnstiel (9)
1969 – Jo Jo White (1), Dave Nash (4), Bruce Sloan (11)
1971 – Roger Brown (3), Dave Robisch (5), Pierre Russell (13)
1972 – Bud Stallworth (1)
1974 – Ken Koenigs (5)
1975 – Rick Suttle (7), Roger Morningstar (8)
1976 – Norm Cook (1)
1977 – Herb Nobles (6)
1978 – John Douglas (6)
1979 – Paul Mokeski (2), Randolph Carroll (10)
1981 – Darnell Valentine (1), Art Housey (3), John Crawford (7)
1982 – Tony Guy (2), David Magley (2)
1984 – Carl Henry (4), Brian Martin (9)
1986 – Greg Dreiling (2), Ron Kellogg (2), Calvin Thompson (4)
1988 – Danny Manning (1), Archie Marshall (3)
1990 – Kevin Pritchard (2)
1991 – Mark Randall (1)
1993 – Rex Walters (1), Adonis Jordan (2)
1994 – Darrin Hancock (2)
1995 – Greg Ostertag (1)
1997 – Scot Pollard (1), Jacque Vaughn (1)
1998 – Raef LaFrentz (1), Paul Pierce (1)
1999 – Ryan Robertson (2)
2001 – Eric Chenowith (2)
2002 – Drew Gooden (1)
2003 – Nick Collison (1), Kirk Hinrich (1)
2005 – Wayne Simien (1)
2007 – Julian Wright (1)
2008 – Brandon Rush (1), Darrell Arthur (1), Mario Chalmers (2), Darnell Jackson (2), Sasha Kaun (2)
2010 – Cole Aldrich (1), Xavier Henry (1)
2011 – Markieff Morris (1), Marcus Morris (1), Josh Selby (2)
2012 – Thomas Robinson (1), Tyshawn Taylor (2)
2013 - Ben McLemore (1), Jeff Withey (2)

Ben McLemore’s 2012-13 Accolades 
-Consensus All-America Second Team
-Associated Press All-America Second Team
-John R. Wooden Award All-American
-NABC All-America Second Team
-Lute Olson All-America Team
-USBWA All-America Second Team
-USBWA Freshman All-America
-Third Team All-America by Sporting News
-All-Big 12 First Team (Big 12, AP)
-Big 12 All-Rookie Team
-John R. Wooden Award Final Ballot
-Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week (3/4)
-USBWA Oscar Robertson Player of the Year Finalist (1 of 14)
-USBWA Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Finalist (1 of 8)
-Naismith Award Top 30 Candidate
-Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week (1/21)
-Sporting News Mid-Season All-American
-Phillips 66 Big 12 Player of the Week (1/14)
-Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week (12/24)
-CBE Hall of Fame Classic All-Tournament Team

Jeff Withey’s 2012-13 Accolades
-NABC Co-Defensive Player of the Year
-Consensus All-America Second Team
-Associated Press All-America Third Team
-NABC All-America Third Team
-Lute Olson All-America Team
-USBWA All-America Second Team
-Big 12 Championship Most Outstanding Player
-USBWA All-District VI
-Second Team All-America by Sporting News
-All-Big 12 First Team (Big 12, AP)
-Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year
-Big 12 All-Defensive Team
-Wooden Award Final Ballot
-USBWA Oscar Robertson Player of the Year Finalist (1 of 14)  The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.

twittersmall.png LeBron James
They sleeping on Ben McLemore. Just Watch.
twittersmall.png Jimmer Fredette
Congrats to my new teammate @BenMcLemore! Looking forward to meeting you man.
Bill Self
Ben is relieved and happy. Family feels so blessed. Proud to be here. Our man is so proud to represent Kansas and his teammates.

twittersmall.png NBA
Hey @SacramentoKings fans… It’s @BenMcLemore. How do I look?

twittersmall.png Dick Vitale
@Dickie V 
Sacramento Kings will have 10 yr player in Jayhawks’ McLemore.
NBA Breaking News
Draft Interview: Ben McLemore: Ben McLemore sits down with the NBA TV crew after being selected seventh.  

twittersmall.png KU Alumni Assoc.
#WitheyBlockParty heads to Portland! Congrats to @JeffWithey! #KUbball #NBADraft13 #KUAlumni

twittersmall.png Sacramento Kings

With the 7th Pick, the Kings select Ben McLemore! #KingsAllDay  
Matt Tait
The inside of McLemore’s suit coat. #KUbball
Big 12 Conference
Congrats to @KU_Hoops Jeff Withey on being selected by @pdxtrailblazers in the 2nd round of the #NBADraft. #Big12

twittersmall.png Trail Blazers
Welcome to Rip City, @JeffWithey! #RipCityDraft #RockChalk

Big 12 Conference
Congrats to Ben McLemore, selected No. 7 by the @SacramentoKings in the #NBADraft #Big12