Wichita State unveils Dave Stallworth statue

WICHITA, Kan. (WSU) A statue of legendary Wichita State men's basketball player Dave Stallworth was unveiled in front of Charles Koch Arena on Dec. 1 in front of his teammates and fans.

The statue and fund-raising were final tributes from his teammates – and fans of the 1960's era teams – to ensure Stallworth's contributions to the university and community were remembered. With Stallworth leading the way, the Shockers won their first Missouri Valley Conference title and made their first NCAA Tournament appearance in 1964. They became a regular in the national rankings and packed fans into what was then known as the WU Fieldhouse.

Dave Stallworth rose from humble origins. Born in Dallas, Texas and raised by his mother, Doris, he learned the game of basketball on the outdoor courts of the South Oak Cliff housing projects but went on to play it on some of the world's biggest stages.

Stallworth won team championships at three different levels, leading Madison High School to a Texas state title, the University of Wichita to a Missouri Valley Conference crown and the New York Knicks to their first NBA title.

Recruited to Wichita by hall of fame coach Ralph Miller, Stallworth was a three-time All-American and three-time first team All-MVC selection for the Shockers. In parts of four seasons from 1961-65, he averaged 24.2 points and 10.5 rebounds. Stallworth was a consensus first team All-American in 1964 when the Shockers made their NCAA Tournament debut. The following year, the program achieved another first – rising to No. 1 in the national polls. Though Stallworth's eligibility expired at semester of the 1964-65 season, his teammates would go on to play in the Final Four after successfully defending their MVC championship.

Selected third overall in the 1965 NBA Draft, Stallworth played eight professional seasons for New York Knicks and Baltimore Bullets. He was a key member of the Knicks' 1970 World Championship team.

After professional basketball, Stallworth returned to Wichita – the city that he loved – and worked 25 years at the Boeing Company. He and his wife Gloria raised five children: Dana, Lanita and Paul and two step-children, Aylah and Hameed.

Stallworth's No. 42 jersey was retired in 1974, never to be worn again by another Shocker player. He was a charter member of both the Pizza Hut Shocker Sports Hall of Fame (1980) and Missouri Valley Conference Hall of Fame (1997).

He will forever be remembered for his kind, gentle nature and trademark smile. Wichita will always be proud of Dave "The Rave" Stallworth.

Stallworth by the numbers

1,936 – Career points, ranking No. 3 in Wichita State history

24.2 – Career scoring average, No. 1 in Wichita State history

46 – Points scored in a 65-64 win over No. 1 Cincinnati

40 – Points scored in his final game, a win over Louisville on Jan. 30, 1965

24 – Career high rebounds in a 1964 NCAA Tournament win over Creighton

12.6 – Rookie scoring average with the New York Knicks in 1965-66

10.5 – Career rebound average, No. 6 on Wichita State's list

8 – NBA seasons with the New York Knicks and Baltimore/Capital Bullets

3 – Drafted third overall by the New York Knicks in 1965, four spots ahead of Shocker teammate Nate Bowman (Cincinnati Royals)

2 – Consensus All-American honors in 1964 (first team) and 1965 (second team)