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BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: Which Jersey Numbers have been Most Successful?

So, I have this girlfriend (yeah, it’s hard to believe) and she is a big UK fan (of course).  But she has this weird fascination when following UK basketball.  No, she can’t recite championship runs or great team names.  She, for whatever reason, loves jersey numbers.  She can pretty much give you the jersey number of anybody from the 1990’s on.  So anyway, she batted this idea around with me over the weekend: which jersey number has seen the most success in UK history?  You know I love research and numbers, so that was right in my wheelhouse.  For me, I split the jersey numbers into 2 categories: TOTAL POINTS and TOTAL CHAMPIONSHIPS.  Then, at the bottom of the article, I give you my reasoning for picking #12 as the greatest UK number:

#44: 9,381 (Nash, Issel, Hayes)  *DAKARI JOHNSON
#12: 8,799 (Beard, Feldhaus, Knight, Parker)
#10: 8,445 (Dampier, Minnifield, Bogans)
#24: 8,444 (Cox, Mashburn, A.Walker, Azubuike)  *EJ FLOREAL
#32: 8,246 (Casey, K. Walker, Pelphrey, Padgett)

I have to say I was somewhat surprised that #44 would take this category, even with Issel being the school’s scoring leader.  Because 15 players have worn the number 44 at UK, but a total of 9 other numbers have been worn by 15 or more players (5, 10, 11, 12, 14, 24, 25, 32, and 42).  But after looking at it, it is hard to find a number with a better trio at the top than Cotton Nash, Dan Issel, and Chuck Hayes.  Plus, Dakari Johnson will likely add a decent chunk of points to that lead this season.

Championships (8 total)
6 Championships
#13 (Day (x2), Lansaw, Mohammed (x2), Malone)
#25 (Line (x2), Shidler, Epps, Anthony, Teague)  *DOMINIQUE HAWKINS

5 Championships
#5 (Stough (x2), Turner (x2), Polson)  *ANDREW HARRISON
#14 (Holland, Townes, Johnson, Evans, Gilchrist)
#15 (Groza (x2), Gettlefinger, Sheppard (x2))  *WILLIE CAULEY-STEIN
#20 (Campbell, Castle, Howe, Casey, Lamb)
#32 (Whitaker, Crigler, Lee, Prickett, Long)

Note: Scott Padgett wore #34 in the 1998 season

4 Championships
#12 (Beard (x2), Cassady, Harrow)
#23 (Barker (x2), D.Anderson, Davis)
#30 (Jordan, Ramsey, Stephens, Vargas)  *JULIUS RANDLE
#33 (Ross, Mercer, M.Bradley, Wiltjer)  *KYLE WILTJER

First things first, the only modern number (only using the numbers 0-5) that has not been a part of at least 1 championship is the #2.  This season, Aaron Harrison will wear that jersey, meaning either the team is cursed by that number or Harrison will break that streak.  To be fair, the last 3 guys to wear the number 2 at UK are Rashaad Carruth, Ravi Moss, and Matt Sccherbenske.  So, it’s safe to say the level of talent wearing that jersey is taking a leap this season.

So, which number do I consider to be the best in UK history?  Well, for me it’s pretty simple.  There are only 2 numbers that show up on both lists.  The number 12 is the 2nd leading scored in UK history and also has 4 championships.  The number 32 is 5th in UK history in scoring and has 5 championships.  So, how do I break that tie?  I choose the number that had the best player.  And for me, that is number 12.  Ralph Beard might have had the greatest UK career in history when combining individual success and team success.

Article written by Bryan the Intern

31 Comments for BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: Which Jersey Numbers have been Most Successful?

  1. Dr. J
    9:07 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Eric Bledsoe also wore #24

  2. RealCatsFan
    9:11 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    BTI, Charles “Atlas” Hurt also wore #44.

  3. Nathan
    9:15 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    1 and 2, you guys are idiots, he only listed the top couple scorers that weared the number, not all 15 or so.

  4. Nathan
    9:16 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Of course now I’m the idiot for putting weared instead of wore lol

  5. Spot Cleanup
    9:18 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    We are gonna be really tough if all this about Randle and Poythress battling like warriors in practice is true. If so we are already a year a head of where our team was at this point last season cause their was none of that. Can’t wait to see Young Andrew and Aaron battle it out, sure hope Polson Hawkins and floreal are prepared to push them, Jon and Tod will be ready.

  6. Spot Cleanup
    9:19 am June 17, 2013 Permalink


  7. Burger-N-Shake
    9:22 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    I don’t believe # 23 has 4 Championships. Dwight Anderson was not on a championship team. He was a Sr in High School in ’78 when Goose delivered Title #5.

  8. Cat Lover
    9:23 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Kenny Walker was #34, not #32

  9. GoCatsWin#9
    9:32 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    I was fortunate enough to see the Cats that are on campus play a pickup game this weekend. I don’t know what number Marcus Lee will wear, but you will see him on Sportscenter. You can count on the goal camera getting some close-ups of him this season. He plays above the rim. I don’t even know who to compare him to… He is awesome, guys. I see him being a fan favorite.

  10. Tony Dedman
    9:32 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Yeah change that to #34.

  11. blairato
    9:34 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    7 – Derek Anderson

  12. tltaworl
    9:40 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Padgett was 34, not 32.

  13. Kev
    9:51 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    How bout # 3? And Ford adds to the #5 list.

  14. Kev
    9:52 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Whoops. Just championships….disregard.

  15. Lucas
    9:54 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Don’t forget Joe Crawford also wore #32!

  16. Derek Anderson
    9:57 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Hmmm, wasn’t I on the 1996 Championship team?

  17. KyWampusCat
    9:57 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Did Padgett ever not wear 34?

  18. Bertway
    9:59 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    So who is the Parker that wore #12 after Knight? I’m drawing a complete blank on that one.

  19. KyWampusCat
    10:00 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Harrow wore 12 after Knight

  20. mudcreekmark
    10:01 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    I also got to watch the Cats play on campus this weekend and I’ll have to say the two that stood out to me was Lee and E.J. Floreal. Or at least I assume it was Floreal. He was really quick and can jump out of the gym. I just wish these guys would have went hard at each other rather than just running up and down the court throwing wild lops with the defense just standing there watching.

  21. btowncatfan
    10:02 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    This is the type of BTI post we have grown to expect and love/hate.

  22. D
    10:07 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Rod Rhodes a good #12, Derrick Hord at #32

    Now who would have best team by 1st letter / last name? I’m thinking the D’s, M’s, W’s would be pretty good.

  23. TAXman
    10:32 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Wow, over 20 posts and not a single “BTI Sucks” Congrats!

  24. tltaworl
    10:32 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    How about a post to evaluate the recruiting success by coach & state. Cal & Pitino were all over the place but it would still be interesting

  25. K. Walker
    11:23 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    I wore 34, not 32.

  26. Travis
    11:28 am June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Anderson and Davis were both 23 along with Meeks.

  27. bart edwards
    12:46 pm June 17, 2013 Permalink

    This was actually an uncharacteristically interesting and fact-filled post to have been created by the BTI. I never thought I’d see the day when I told BTI, “Good post,” but even a blind sow finds an acorn every now and then I suppose.

  28. Dee
    1:12 pm June 17, 2013 Permalink

    BTI Sucks. 😉 Good post.

  29. blue!!!!!!
    1:30 pm June 17, 2013 Permalink

    WHAT ABOUT BOOGIE!!!!! #15!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  30. DEASY
    1:48 pm June 17, 2013 Permalink

    29.) SMH.

  31. Duke sucks
    2:05 pm June 17, 2013 Permalink

    Only Parker I can think of is Jason Parker.