Rush And Aldrich Have More In Common Than Just Signing With The Wolves
Brandon Rush and Cole Aldrich both signed with the Minnesota Timberwolves this offseason. You’re at Timberwolves.com, so chances are you already know that. If not, well, sorry about the spoiler.
The two have something else in common.
They both starred on the 2007-08 Kansas Jayhawks team that won the National Championship.
That Kansas team made it through Portland State, UNLV, Villanova, Davidson (and Steph Curry), North Carolina (and Tyler Hansbrough) and Memphis (and Derrick Rose) to win the championship.
Mostly, we’ll remember Mario Chalmers’s shot to send the game to overtime.
Kansas would go onto win 75-68. It remains Bill Self's only championship win.
Aldrich was a freshman center on that team. Three years later, he would become a lottery pick in the NBA Draft, but throughout his freshman season, he averaged just 2.8 points and three rebounds per game.
In the National Championship game, he played just four minutes.
Rush was a much bigger part on that team, averaging a team-high 13.3 points per game while shooting 41.9 percent from the 3-point line. In the National Championship, Rush played 42 minutes and finished with 12 points, six rebounds, two assists, one steal and one block. He shot an efficient 5-for-9 from the field.
Rush was taken 13th overall in the 2008 NBA Draft, forgoing his senior season.
That team produced NBA players such as Chalmers, Aldrich, Rush, Sherron Collins, Sasha Kaun and Darnell Jackson.
Of course, seven years later another future Timberwolves’ player would become a Kansas Jayhawk. He goes by the name of Andrew Wiggins and you may have heard of him.
Chances are, come March Madness, the three former Jayhawks will find a place to watch the games.
“I did a radio interview this morning and said we need to do a throwback Timberwolves with a Jayhawk patch on the jersey or something,” Aldrich said when the Wolves introduced him to the Minneapolis media.
There’s a good chance Shabazz Muhammad and Zach LaVine, two UCLA guys, will vote against that.