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McLendon to be Enshrined September 9th


1936 University of Kansas graduate John B. McLendon was enshrined for a second time into the Naismith Hall of Fame on Friday evening, September 9, 2016. Originally enshrined as a conributor, McLendon was inducted as a coach along with 9 other inductees into the class of 2016.

McLendon, a Hiawatha native, was mentored by the game’s creator James Naismith while at KU and would go on to become the first African-American to receive a bachelor’s degree in physical education. He enjoyed a significant college coaching career, winning three straight NAIA championships (1957-1959 in Kansas City) while at Tennessee A&I. He also became the first professional African-American coach in the ABL for Cleveland.

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McLendon died on October 8, 1999, at the age of 84.

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