With a basketball tradition as rich as the one we have here at Kentucky, we have had numerous legendary teams who have stepped on the courts of Memorial and Rupp. I’ve grown up hearing stories about players and teams in UK’s history that have had a great impact on our legendary program here at UK. Every time I hear a story from my grandpa or someone else who was able to witness UK’s glory days, I always find myself wishing I could go back in time and watch these teams in person. With the team this year being one of the best to come through UK in quite a while, it got me reminiscing again on specific years I wish I was alive to witness certain teams as a student at UK.
While there are many teams I wish I could go back in time to watch, my number one would have to be the Fabulous Five under Adolph Rupp, the 1947-48 season. Ralph Beard, Wallace “Wah Wah” Jones, Cliff Barker, Alex Groza, and Kenny Rollins are all legends to me. Rupp once said about this team, “You won your own SEC tournament. You won the NCAA championship. You’ve kept training and made sacrifices to do these things.” Not only were these athletes amazing individually, but they were even more amazing as a team. They accomplished many great feats, not only winning the SEC tournament, and National Championship, but they went on to the Olympics and earned gold medals. They were a group of guys who not only made Kentucky proud, but their country proud as well.
We all have moments in UK basketball history that we will always remember and carry with us forever. I’ve been able to watch some great teams come through UK, and watch some amazing athletes. But if you were granted a wish where you could go back in time to watch one team in the history of UK basketball, which team would you chose to watch? Would it be any of the national championship teams? Would it be the Fabulous Five? Would it be the 1966 team in Glory Road? Or maybe you just wish you could go back and see a specific player grace the court? With Kentucky being the greatest tradition in college basketball we have plenty of teams to choose from, and with Calipari bringing in top recruiting classes, Kentucky will continue to produce great teams, who could eventually be mentioned among these other legends.