This week marks the 12th anniversary of the 2008 National Championship and “Mario’s Miracle.” The latest edition of The Jayhawker podcast tells Mario Chalmers’ life story including his ascension from high school hoops sensation in Alaska to author of the biggest shot in Kansas basketball history. But what went into preparing for that fateful night in San Antonio and which KU veteran helped keep a young Chalmers at Kansas when things didn’t click early in his freshman season?
Thanks to Chalmers’ heroics that brought a 5th national title to KU, Mario was instantly immortalized in Jayhawk hoops lore, but his story doesn’t end there. Despite being the Most Outstanding Player of the 2008 Final Four, Chalmers was overlooked by NBA teams, falling into the second round of the draft before eventually ending up with the Miami Heat. He would go on to win back-to-back world championships with Miami, playing a key role on both teams. So, how did he do it? How did he go from Anchorage to Lawrence to Miami—winning titles at every stop—and showing up in a big way when it mattered most? This is one clutch story.