Widely regarded as one of the greatest basketball players to ever live, even the first Jerry Lucas appearance for a competitive basketball team – his Middletown High School team – brought unprecedented notoriety and media coverage. He led Middletown High to undefeated seasons and back-to-back Ohio state high school championships. In addition, Lucas’s high school games regularly drew more fans than the local NBA team.
Lucas was offered more than 150 athletic scholarships and could have attended just about any university in the country. However, Lucas elected to stay close to home and attend Ohio State. He also required the school to award him an academic scholarship instead of an athletic scholarship, since he was nearly a straight-A high school student.
At Ohio State, alongside John Havlicek , Mel Nowell, Larry Siegfried, Joe Roberts, and even Bob Knight, Lucas led the buckeyes to three straight NCAA Finals and won the National Championship in 1960. He was the Big Ten Player of the Year all three years of his varsity eligibility, and, in 1961, he was selected Sports Illustrated’s “Sportsman of the Year,” beating out every other college and professional athlete.
With such a decorated college career, it was little question that Lucas would be an NBA star. Although his pro career started rocky – he tried to join the ABL at first, but the league folded – Lucas eventually wound up in New York playing for the Knicks. Lucas helped the Knicks to the NBA Finals multiple times, and even won the 1973 NBA championship.
**Jerry Lucas Speaker**
Although Lucas is known first and foremost as a basketball player, he is also widely regarded as one of the most intelligent men to ever play the game. As a result, a Jerry Lucas speaker appearance is an opportunity to learn about basketball from a uniquely insightful and articulate perspective.
**Jerry Lucas Appearance**
In 1999, there was a Jerry Lucas appearance in Sports Illustrated’s five-man college Team of the Century..
**Jerry Lucas Endorsement**
Early in his professional career, Lucas helped open a fast food chain and gave it the Jerry Lucas endorsement by naming it Jerry Lucas Beef-N-Shakes.
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