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December 2, 2013

The Shocker Invitational

I’ve had this idea for a while now to pick 16 teams of current and former Wichita State basketball players – the best players in the history of the program (or at least the mid-1950s) and play off a tournament.

I’ve done the easy part, and it wasn’t that easy. I have gone through my brain and the Wichita State media guide to choose 80 players who devise the teams. I’ve split them into positions – each team has a center, power forward, small forward, shooting guard and point guard.

In some cases, I’ve fudged on the positions. But not a lot.

What I don’t know is how I’m going to play off the tournament. I certainly don’t know of a computer program that could work. So, most likely, I’ll show these teams to some folks whom I know are as interested in Wichita State basketball – past and present – as I am. Maybe a panel of 10 or so to provide their opinions and insights as to which of these 16 teams might be crowed the Shocker All-Time champion.

I know you’re dying to see how the teams turned out. Right? I know I was.

I first selected the 80 players by trying to come up with the 16 best at each position. I’m surely going to leave some players off who you think should be on. But I spent quite a bit of time coming up with the lists.

Then I randomly put the teams together by drawing numbers out of a hat. In a few cases, I made a change for the sake of competition. Mostly, though, the numbers out of the hat thing worked really well.

I’m curious to get the feedback of Wichita State basketball fans, too. Some of you obviously don’t go back to the 1950s with Shocker basketball. Even I don’t go back that far. But there are folks out there who know a lot about the history of WSU hoops and I want your input on what you think of the teams. I’ll devise a bracket soon and start to seek the wisdom of others as to how a Shocker Invitational with these starting players might turn out.

Team 1 (Cleo Littleton team)

C – Sasha Radunovich

PF – Bill Lang

SF – Cleo Littleton

SG – Dwight Praylow

PG – Fred VanVleet

Team 2 (Ron Heller team)

C – Nate Bowman

PF – Ron Heller

SF – Jason Perez

SG – L.D. Swanson

PG – Malcolm Armstead

Team 3 (Toure Murry team)

C – John Smith

PF – Jamie Arnold

SF – Ron Washington

SG – Toure Murry

PG – Lanny Van Eman

Team 4 (Dave Stallworth team)

C – Henry Carr

PF – Dave Stallworth

SF – Rob Kampman

SG – Leonard Kelley

PG – Randy Smithson

Team 5 (Xavier McDaniel team)

C – Ev Wessel

PF – Xavier McDaniel

SF – Ron Baker

SG – Bob Trogele

PG – Terry Hankton

Team 6 (Kelly Pete team)

C – Garrett Stutz

PF – Cliff Levingtston

SF – Dave Leach

SG – Kelly Pete

PG – Fridge Holman

Team 7 (Warren Armstrong team)

C – Carl Hall

PF – Don Woodworth

SF – Warren Armstrong

SG – Greg Carney

PG – Matt Braeuer

Team 8 (Paul Miller team)

C – Paul Miller

PF – Rich Morsden

SF – Al Tate

SG – Bob Wilson

PG – Robert George

Team 9 (Antoine Carr team)

C – Darin Miller

PF – Antoine Carr

SF – Robert Gray

SG – Paul Guffrovich

PG – Tony Martin

Team 10 (Robert Elmore team)

C – Robert Elmore

PF – Jamar Howard

SF – Ron Harris

SG – Ron Mendell

PG – Jimmy Bolden

Team 11 (Kyle Wilson team)

C – Claudius Johnson

PF – Kyle Wilson

SF – John Cooper

SG – Maurice Evans

PG – Clevin Hannah

Team 12 (Jamie Thompson team)

C – Terry Benton

PF – Steve Grayer

SF – Jamie Thompson

SG – Aubrey Sherrod

PG – Paul Scheer

Team 13 (Cheese Johnson team)

C – Ozell Jones

PF – Cheese Johnson

SF – P.J. Couisnard

SG – Randy Burns

PG – Joe Ragland

Team 14 (Joe Stevens team)

C – Troy Mack

PF – J.T. Durley

SF – Vince Smith

SG – Joe Stevens

PG – Calvin Bruton

Team 15 (Gene Wiley team)

C – Gene Wiley

PF – Cleanthony Early

SF – Darrin Williams

SG – Terrell Benton

PG – Preston Carrington

Team 16 (Ernie Moore team)

C – Bob Hodgson

PF – Gus Santos

SF – Ray Shirley

SG – Sean Ogirri

PG – Ernie Moore

So, what do you think. Which teams are loaded? Which teams are in first-round danger? There are lots of good players on these teams. And some interesting starting fives. I look forward to your thoughts.

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