B.H. Born, the Most Outstanding Player of the 1953 Final Four, passed away Sunday. He was 80.
The university released a story on Born and his time with the Jayhawks.
Born played under legendary Phog Allen from 1951-1954, playing as a reserve on the team’s 1952 National Championship squad behind All-American Clyde Lovellette. He broke out the next year averaging 18.9 points per game as the starting center. That season, he was named an All-American and All-Big Seven Conference.
It was in the national title game that Born broke out. In a 69-68 loss to Indiana, the Medicine Lodge, Kansas native scored 26 points, pulled down 15 rebounds and blocked 13 shots. While it’s unofficial, it was believed to be the first triple-double in program history.
As a result, Born was the first player to ever win the M.O.P. from a losing team.
As a senior, Born led the team again in scoring at 19 points per game, was named all-conference again and after his time in Lawrence, went on to play for the 1954 gold medal-winning United States team in the world championships.
Photo courtesy of the University of Kansas Athletics Department.