Kevin McCullar Jr. to Return to Kansas for the 2023-24 Season

Via Kansas Athletics

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kevin McCullar Jr. has announced he will return to Kansas for the 2023-24 season. Following the 2022-23 season, McCullar declared for the NBA Draft and participated in the recent NBA Combine, however he has elected to return to Kansas for his final year of eligibility.

“How about one more year Jayhawk nation,” McCullar said. “To be able to play in front of the best fans in the country; to play for the best coach in the nation, I truly believe we have the pieces to hang another banner in the Phog. Rock Chalk! Let’s do it!”

McCullar (6-foot-6, 210 pounds) was a redshirt senior at Kansas in 2022-23 after transferring from Texas Tech. A three-time All-Big 12 selection, the San Antonio guard is a two-time Naismith Defensive Player of the Year semifinalist in 2021-22 and 2022-23.

“Kevin went through the pre-draft process, which is designed to do exactly what it did,” Kansas head coach Bill Self said. “Even though he has improved his status as an NBA prospect, there is still work to be done and he has informed us that he is going to return to Kansas for his last year of college.”

This past season at Kansas, McCullar started 33 of 34 games played, averaged 10.7 points per game and was fourth in the Big 12 with a 7.0 rebound average. McCullar finished fourth in the Big 12 and 33rd nationally with 2.0 steals per game, while often guarding the opponents’ best scorer. He was the only player in the league to rank in the top five of the Big 12 in rebound and steal average. Additionally, McCullar’s seven double-doubles were third in the Big 12.

“This is a big day for Kansas basketball,” Self said. “We’ve had a lot of good things happen through recruiting this offseason, but nothing that has transpired this offseason was bigger for KU basketball than having a seasoned veteran like Kevin McCullar return to our program.”

A three-time Academic All-Big 12 selection, McCullar has played in 112 career games with 82 all-time starts. He has amassed 1,040 points, 589 rebounds, 231 assists and 178 steals for his career. Additionally, McCullar earned his bachelor’s degree in liberal arts and sciences from Kansas in May 2023.

“Kevin is not only a terrific player, but a terrific teammate,” Self said. “He fit in so well in year one and we’re excited about what he’ll do with our program from a leadership standpoint.”

All Big 12 Third Team [2023]
Big 12 All-Defensive Team [2023]
Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Semifinalist [2023]
All-Big 12 Honorable Mention [2022]
Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Semifinalist [2022]
Academic All-Big 12 First Team [2022]
All-Big 12 Honorable Mention [2021]
Academic All-Big 12 First Team [2021]
Academic All-Big 12 First Team [2020]

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2020 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.


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