Former IU Standout George McGinnis Headed To Basketball Hall Of Fame

Stu Jackson, Staff Writer
The Hoosier

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Photo Courtesy of Indiana Athletics

George McGinnis is headed to the Basketball Hall of Fame.

The institution made the announcement Saturday afternoon, ending a long wait for the former IU standout. He will be inducted alongside Jerry Krause, Rebecca Lobo, Tracy McGrady, Muffet McGraw and Bill Self among others later this summer as part of the 2017 class.

McGinnis becomes the fourth former Hoosier player to be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, joining Walt Bellamy, Slick Leonard and Isiah Thomas.

McGinnis arrived at IU in the fall of 1969 following a decorated career at Indianapolis George Washington High School which included winning Indiana Mr. Basketball during his senior season.

However, the NCAA would not pass a rule allowing freshmen to play at the varsity level until 1972, which meant McGinnis had to wait until his sophomore season (1970) before playing higher competition.

In that lone season of varsity competition, McGinnis averaged 29.9 points and 14.7 rebounds per game en route to earning All-Big Ten and All-American honors. He turned pro after the 1970-71 season, with the Indiana Pacers selecting him with the first overall pick in the 1971 American Basketball Association NBA Draft.

After four ABA seasons with the Pacers, McGinnis spent the next eight seasons of his pro career in the NBA. He played his first three seasons with the Philadelphia 76ers, then more than half a season with the Denver Nuggets before getting traded to the Indiana Pacers with 28 games remaining in the 1979-80 season. He played two more NBA seasons with the Pacers before retiring.

A three-time NBA All-Star who also led the Pacers to back-to-back ABA titles in 1972 and 1973, McGinnis averaged 20.2 points and 11 rebounds across his 12-year professional basketball career.

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