Sunday, March 1, 2009

Carolinas Mount Rushmore: Davidson

Fourth of a series.

ESPN is naming its "Mount Rushmore" for sports in each of the 50 states. We liked the idea, so we're taking a smaller slice.
Today, the Mount Rushmore of Davidson athletics.

Lefty Driesell, basketball: The old Lefthander (above) took a tiny school with no basketball tradition and led it to the upper levels of the sport. He posted a record of 176-65 in nine remarkable seasons, taking Davidson games from Friends & Family outings to the place to be in Charlotte. In 1968 and '69, his Wildcats reached the NCAA Regional finals, just missing trips to the Final Four each time.

Bob McKillop, basketball: When McKillop (above) arrived at the school two decades ago, the Wildcats' time in college basketball's sun appeared done. Slowly, patiently and the right way, he resurrected the program. He now sports a record of 363-231, and took Davidson to the Elite Eight last season. His kids get it as well; they graduate.

Mike Maloy, basketball: He didn't just break the color barrier at Davidson, he smashed it. Maloy (above), a 6-foot-7 post player with long arms and great instincts, was a three-time all-American and twice named the Southern Conference Player of the Year. He led Driesell's Elite Eight teams, and remains the Wildcats' all-time leading rebounder.

Stephen Curry, basketball: You knew this was coming. Curry (above) will wind up his career as Davidson's leading scorer, but more important was that magical run last season, when he led the Wildcats past three heavily favored opponents and to within a basket of the Final Four. One of the few players capable of simply taking over a game, and of graciously handling all the publicity that comes with that ability.

-- Stan Olson

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Disagree? Think we left someone out? Tell us in the comments below who you'd add, and which of our picks yours should replace.

19 comments:

Robert said...

Terry Holland

Anonymous said...

apparently basketball is the only thing davidson is worth a crap in.

Anonymous said...

Not much to choose from?

Anonymous said...

I hear they are going to rename the arena after Curry!

Never has one guy been so overly hyped. He is an above average player. Superstar, he is not.

Anonymous said...

Geez, what does the Observer have against Davidson. You mentioned Wake, Clemson, UNC Concrete all before you got to the thing that Mecklenburg County has going for it.

Stephen Curry is wicked awesome!

Anonymous said...

Charlie Slagle. In an era without Basketball dominance, Slagle's soccer teams not only captivated the college's students, but carried the mantle of being the ultimate student-athletes (often the top GPA on campus). Remember: Slagle's team's run to the Division I final four in 1992 was nearly every bit as special as McKillop's teams run last year - save the media attention.
For most of the 1990's there was no more recognizable face on Davidson's campus than that of Charlie Slagle.

Anonymous said...

DICK SNYDER ! How can this list omit him? Who in the world world would forget this guy?

Anonymous said...

Dick Snyder.


You mean Dick Snyder?




The Dick Snyder?

Sorry, I forgot all about him.

greeneman said...

hobby cobb in basketball, jake and ham wade who beat nc state in football, coach homer smith who took davidson to a bowl game.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mr. 11:05 anonymous ! Glad someone else remembers. He was something else... was he not?

Anonymous said...

Jimmy K. Poole, He was the QB for the Davidson team when they when to the Tangerine Bowl

Anonymous said...

John Gerdy, Fred Hetzel and Dick Snyder (the NBA player NOT MLB player). Curry's teams made it no farther than Lefty's teams and they were consistently in the top 15 playing a much tougher schedule. They also were selling out the Coliseum, which is now called Bojangles Arena. That's 11,666 capacity. Terry Holland also continued the tradition Lefty started.

Anonymous said...

Maloy was such a good guy. I believe he also was a member of the KA Fraternity at Davidson College during a time when racism and Confederate pride was sprouting its ugly head in the South. What a great little village Davidson was back then. The college wasn't even coed back then, either.

Anonymous said...

Coach Frank was a mainstay out there as Tennis Coach and one of the nicest guys to ever walk that campus.

Anonymous said...

So I guess "Black Pride" is acceptable however "Confederate Pride" has a ugly head. Seems to me like a double standard.

Anonymous said...

Neither "pride" is very attractive for our society and I am a born and bred southern white male. My dad also is a very proud SCV member. Both sides create a divisive mentality which always makes for some nasty rhetoric by radicals on both sides. Better to appreciate people for who they are not the color of one's skin.

Anonymous said...

Had it not been for Lefty, we never would have heard of most of the other basketball names mentioned. Had it not been for a serious knee injury the best (and certainly most exciting) would have been Brian Adrian. Minor sports...Coach Parker coached the Pan-Am wrestling team.

Anonymous said...

Ace Tanner

valueconvert said...

Lefty, Hetzel, Snyder, Maloy and Curry