The 30 Most Influential NCAA MBB Groups of SLAM’s 30 Years: ‘08 Kansas State  


To have a good time SLAM’s thirtieth anniversary, we’re spotlighting the 30 most influential males’s school groups from our previous 30 years. Stats, information and chips aren’t the principle issue right here, it’s all about their contribution to the sport’s cultural cloth.

For the following 30 days—Monday by way of Friday— we’ll be unveiling the full checklist right here. We’ve additionally acquired an unique retro collegiate assortment, out now, that pays homage to every squad’s threads. Store right here.

Phrase to SLAM 117. Michael Beasley was the freshest of all of them in ‘08 when he was suiting up for Kansas State. On the time, “Be Straightforward” was ranked No. 1 in rebounds and described by former SLAM “scribe” Bonsu Thompson as having “sticky fingers, small ahead hops, Chris Brown physique management plus gluttonous urge for food for meals off the glass…” (you may learn the unique cowl story within the SLAM Digital Archive, fyi). Beasley didn’t maintain again when describing his personal recreation, both: “As soon as I step on the ground, I’m superhuman. I really feel unstoppable.” 

And he was. Averaging a double-double of 26.2 factors and 12.4 rebounds, Beasley was hungry for a Huge 12 championship, and a natty. He was ultra-competitive in opposition to, properly anybody, too, telling us in his personal phrases, “…as quickly as anyone get to runnin’ they mouth, that’s after I flip it up.” On a group led by first-year head coach Frank Martin, the Wildcats have been younger— ranked second and third in scoring have been freshman ahead Invoice “Henry” Walker and guard Jacob Pullen—and stressed to win. Within the season-opener, they beat Sacramento State by virtually a 30-piece and, by January, went on a six-game profitable streak. The potential was all there: Beasley’s scoring prowess, coupled with the group’s tenacious protection and unselfish ball motion, turned the hallmark of their method.

In actual fact, Beasley felt like the one factor he wanted to essentially enhance upon was “making it look really easy”—a testomony to his confidence and the star position he embraced. Whereas his postseason ambitions didn’t come into fruition—the Wildcats finally misplaced within the second spherical to Wisconsin—he did take residence particular person accolades together with a consensus first-team All-American choice, USBWA Nationwide FOY, the Pete Newell Huge Man Award, Huge 12 Participant of the 12 months, the checklist goes on. He went on to take his expertise to the League and was chosen No. 2 in the identical ‘08 NBA Draft that his teammate, Walker, was drafted in within the second-round.

That ‘08 season could be remembered not only for the wins and losses however for the electrifying moments and the promise it held for the continued success of this system. It was just the start…

Images through Getty Photos.


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