Naismith Hall of Fame to induct George McGinnis

  • 04/01/2017 2:37 pm in

In a press release sent out early Saturday afternoon, it was announced former Indiana standout George McGinnis will be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.

The ceremony will take place on September 8.

McGinnis will be inducted along with former NBA star Tracy McGrady, Kansas coach Bill Self, former UConn and WNBA star Rebecca Lobo, Notre Dame women’s coach Muffet McGraw, Texas high school coach Robert Hughes, former Bulls executive Jerry Krause, who died on March 21, former NCAA vice president Tom Jernstedt, European star Nikos Galis and two members of the Harlem Globetrotters — Zack Clayton and Mannie Jackson.

Here’s the full text of a press release issued on Saturday afternoon by IU athletics:

The Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame announced its 2017 inductees Saturday and former Indiana Hoosier men’s basketball player George McGinnis is among the 11 inductees. McGinnis, who perhaps authored the greatest single season individual effort in the history of the program, wore the Cream and Crimson during the 1970-71 season.

The graduate of Washington High School in Indianapolis led the Big Ten in both scoring (29.9) and rebounding (14.7). His single season scoring average remains an IU record and his single season rebound mark is the fourth best in Hoosier lore. McGinnis scored 20 or more points in 21 of his 24 college games, including an Indiana record 14 times in a row. He also scored over 30 points on 12 different occasions, a Hoosier single-season record.

“On behalf of all Hoosier Nation, I want to congratulate George McGinnis on making the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame,” said IU Vice President and Director of Athletics Fred Glass. “I remember watching him as a kid at Hinkle Fieldhouse when he played for Washington. He is one of the greatest players in IU history, a Pacers’ legend and an icon in the State of Indiana. We could not be more thrilled for ‘Big George’ to receive this most prestigious honor.”

Following his one season with IU, he began his professional career with the Indiana Pacers helping the Pacers to ABA Championships in 1972 and 1973. With the Pacers he was named the 1975 Co-MVP with future teammate Julius Erving. He was traded in 1975 to the Philadelphia 76ers where was part of a team, including Dr. J, which played in the 1977 NBA Finals. He was traded to Denver in 1978 and finished his career with two and a half more seasons as a Pacer. He was a three-time ABA and NBA All-Star and was selected to the all-time ABA Team.

He played in 842 games as a professional and averaged 20.2, 11.0 rebounds and 3.7 assists.

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  • Donnie Vick

    About time.

  • Mark Bando

    McGinnis might just be the best player ever at IU

  • AndyCapp

    Was thinking the same thing… there’s no WAY it should have taken this long for George Mac to get inducted. I guess better late than never…

  • AndyCapp

    Hate those kinda comparisons but I know what you are saying. We’ve had so many great players come through our system but Mac’s stats really stand out, even to this day!

  • Koko

    Congratulations George…..well done!

  • marcusgresham

    Basically 30 and 15. Those are ridiculous numbers.

  • BL4IU

    If Mac’s family situation were better (father died in construction accident just before he enrolled) he might have stayed for his junior season. Had that happened, we’d be searching for banner seven. Last game his Dad saw him play was the 53 and 30 performance George hung on the Kentucky All-Stars after being labeled “overrated” by a Kentucky player.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    Excellent, I was truly a big fan!
    This is the man who got me watching basketball!
    I had me a ‘Red White and Blue’ ABA ball, and me and all my friends were big into the Pacers then.
    I was very young.
    Then, IU went undefeated through the 75, and 76 seasons in the Big 10 and we all became Hoosier fans.
    Been around ever since.

  • HooHeel

    Saw him play in HS. The “man among boys” cliche comes with his picture.

  • Greg M. Bailey

    Especially for his first and only year of college ball. He was a man playing with boys.

  • Zora Clevenger

    I remember watching the afternoon game of the HS final four George’s senior year at Washington. He got into a jump ball situation at his offensive end (this is when ‘held balls’ were settled with a jump ball at the nearest circle). Against some poor overmatched kid, George went up for the jump ball and tipped the ball into the basket from the free throw line. The refs had to stop the game to make sure you could do that. Also saw him stumble into the baseline seats at Ohio State. Some fool fan grabbed at him to keep him from getting back on the floor and got thrown about three rows back. In my book, the most talented and most entertaining IU (and Pacer) player ever.

  • IU Hoosiers # 34, 1979-83

    His numbers/ averages were historical. What a tremendous player.

  • nmstan

    As a kid, I started becoming cognizant of basketball during the late 60s listening to the HS playoffs and the state championship being televised. When George and the Washington Generals won that magnificent final four that year and he did that beat down of the Kentucky allstars that summer, I was hooked on George and it was on to IU. George left, but I ended up being interested in that team and school. Our HS track teams would go down to the Hoosier Relays and thought the campus was pretty cool. Really? Was there ever any place for me to even apply to but IU. Congrats George. You really did influence my life.

  • beppecolo

    This is a well-deserved recognition of an underappreciated talent. I remember watching him in the HS Tournament and he would play inside scoring and rebounding until the game was under control and then would come down and start putting up what would be NBA 3s today, and hitting most of them. I love BB and George McGinnis is one of my all time favorites.

  • Ohio Hoosier

    I was at that Ohio State game. He was actually arguing with Stan White
    the Ohio State linebacker who was in the bleachers at that end of the
    court. IU had a front court of McGinnis, Downing and Joby Wright.
    That team didn’t play much defense though.