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Image 8 of Basketball, 1954

Part of University of Kentucky Basketball Media Guides (Men)

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Brown Suit." The latter stems from Rupp's superstitious preference of brown as the color of his game-night wardrobe. However, none of the titles seem adequate to describe the man's contributions to the sport, his human interest and colorful personality. Only the title of "Mr. Basketball" seems a fitting summation of the many nicknames, by which he has become internationally known and respected. Rupp came to Kentucky in 1930 from Freeport, III., high school, where he had compiled an outstanding record. Although the competition was nowhere near as rugged as the schedules played by today's nationally-recognized Wildcat basketball brigade, Rupp's very first team compiled a respectable 15-3 record. In the days before the Baron became headmaster, UK had better-than-average teams, but received little recognition, even in their own Southeastern bailiwick. Today, however, when one thinks of the sport of basketball, one thinks of Kentucky and Adolph Rupp—maker of champions. With his 23rd season at the Blue Grass school behind him, Coach Rupp can look back over an approximately two-decade regime of unparalleled success that has made Kentucky a consistent national power and earned him recognition as the nation's most winning cage mentor. He has written books on virtually every phase of the game—including the good seller, "Championship Basketball"—and his style of play has been copied by coaches all over the world. The Wildcats have compiled, under his direction, an amazing record of 471 victories against only 82 losses—a winning average of better than 85 percent over nearly a quarter-century. In major tournament competition, Rupp's teams can boast an unequalled record of 98 victories against 21 defeats covering play in 20 national classics (NCAA, NIT and Sugar Bowl Tournaments), 21 conference tournaments and the 1948 Olympic Games. Under the guidance of Adolph Rupp, Kentucky in 1951 became the first and only basketball team in history to annex three NCAA crowns and one National Invitation Tournament title. He also has seen his squads win 14 Southeastern Conference championships, including the last nine in a row before Louisiana State became interim titlist during UK's enforced absence from competition last season. Coach Rupp and his "Fabulous Five" of 1948—generally recognized as one of the greatest collegiate cage aggregations of all time— 6