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Deconstructing Wayne Selden Jr.’s Epic Dunk against Baylor

Wayne Selden. With no regard for human life.

There are few things in sports as athletically mesmerizing as a massive, contested dunk. On Friday, March 11th, Wayne Selden treated Jayhawk fans and dunk enthusiasts alike to one of the more memorable dunks of the 2015-16 college basketball season.

The date was March 11, 2016. The site was Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri. Kansas was already a lock for a No. 1 seed in the upcoming NCAA tournament, and their opponent in the semifinal round of the Big 12 tournament was the Baylor Bears. The Jayhawks entered the Baylor match at 27-4 and had already won their 12th straight Big 12 regular-season championship.

In a game that featured four Jayhawks in double-figures, it was one sequence that resulted in just two of Kansas’ 70 points that will live on in KU highlight reels for years to come.

With Kansas leading by 10 and just under 11 minutes to go in the game, Wayne Selden secured a rebound and elected to lead the break by himself.


As  Selden approaches midcourt, he takes inventory of Baylor’s transition defense, as well as the bunched group of Jayhawks at the top of the frame. It is at this point that he must decide whether to give the ball up to Devonte Graham (near side of the frame) and run a half-court set, or continue moving forward in transition.


In  the two seconds it takes Selden to get from midcourt to the top of the arc, he has completely turned Baylor’s Taurean Prince (#21) around, setting up the possibility of a two-on-one with Carlton Bragg, or, if the near side defender helps, a wide open three for Devonte’ Graham in the corner.


In  that split second, Selden has made up his mind, and prepares for take-off just inside the Big 12 logo donning the middle of the key. Baylor’s similarly sized Ishmail Wainwright moves over to help, clear in his intention to try and defend what Selden is about to do next.


Selden, with a full head of steam, elevates and puts Wainwright in his proverbial grave (which was also his fifth foul), hammering home the dunk and drawing a foul in the process.


Here is an aerial view of Selden’s assault on both the rim and Ishmail Wainwright’s humanity.

Wayne Selden scored 11 points in this semifinal game vs. Baylor, one that Kansas would win 70-66 after staving off an insane run in the final four minutes. However, it could be argued that these were the most memorable two points of Selden’s Kansas career. Not only did he provide one of the dunks of the year, he spawned one of the best memes of March, as his Uncle Anthony’s celebration went viral in the moments that followed.

Click here for full footage of the dunk, along with Brent Musberger’s classic commentary, and of course, Uncle Anthony’s reaction.

Caleb Feist contributes content weekly each Thursday. View his archive, or follow him on Twitter.

Caleb Feist

Writer for Rock Chalk Blog who loves threes, the crying Jordan meme, and watching Mario Chalmers' game-tying shot on YouTube. Follow me on twitter, @cjfeist.

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