Misconception

Kentucky has so much talent, how they ever lose is beyond me. They must have ten McDonalds All-Americans on their team.


The Facts

Kentucky had four McDonald's All-Americans on the 1995-96 national championship team. Namely, they were Tony Delk, Antoine Walker, Ron Mercer and Wayne Turner. Schools such as North Carolina, Duke, Michigan, Kansas and even LSU had at least that many.

In 1996-97 Kentucky returned to the national championship game with Ron Mercer and Wayne Turner being the only McDonald's All Americans. Kentucky got great production out of former walk-ons including Anthony Epps and Cameron Mills and from lightly recruited players such as Scott Padgett and Nazr Mohammed.

The following year, with Wayne Turner the sole remaining member, Kentucky won the National Championship. On the way, they defeated a Duke team loaded with eight McDonalds All-Americans.

In fact, UK has had a total of five McDonald's All-Americans in the 1990's up to the 1997-98 season. (The others was Rodrick Rhodes.) Other notable schools have had that many on one team in the 1990s and failed to make it past the second round of the NCAA tournament (or even make the tournament).


1995-96 UK Team Photo

1995-96 Kentucky Wildcats

NCAA National Champions

Front Row L-R: Asst. Coach Delray Brooks, Head Coach Rick Pitino, Allen Edwards, Derek Anderson, Jeff Sheppard, Tony Delk, Anthony Epps, Cameron Mills, Wayne Turner, Asst. Coach Jim O'Brien, Asst. Coach Winston Bennett

Back Row L-R: Equipment Manager Bill Keitley, Administrative Assistant George Barber, Jason Lathrem, Oliver Simmons, Nazr Mohammed, Mark Pope, Walter McCarty, Antoine Walker, Jared Prickett, Ron Mercer, Trainer Eddie Jamiel, Assistant Strength Coach Layne Kaufman, Strength Coach Shaun Brown


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Jon Scott