June 12, 2013
Video: K-State Family: A Parents' Perspective
This appeared in the June 12 edition of the K-State Sports Extra.
Senior Rodney McGruder enjoyed a stellar four-year career at Kansas State. Not only did McGruder lead the Wildcats to their first regular-season conference title in 36 seasons as a senior in 2012-13, he was part of the winningest senior class in school history (101) and one of just four Wildcats to appear in four consecutive NCAA Tournaments (Steve Henson, Jordan Henriquez and Martavious Irving).
McGruder earned his bachelor's degree in Family Studies and Human Services this past May, joining fellow seniors Jordan Henriquez and Martavious Irving and junior Omari Lawrence. He was the only Big 12 men's basketball player to earn recognition to the All-Big 12 First Team in both athletics and academics, while he was named to both the Fall 2012 and Spring 2013 Big 12 Commissioner's Honor Roll.
The product of Washington, D.C., led Big 12 champion Kansas State (27-8, 14-4 Big 12) in eight categories, including scoring (15.6 ppg.), double-digit scoring games (29), 20-point games (11), field goals (204), field goals attempted (462), rebounding (5.4 rpg.), free throws attempted (117), starts (35) and minutes (33.5).
He was just the third player to earn All-Big 12 First Team honors since the inception of the league, joining Michael Beasley (2008) and Jacob Pullen (2010, 2011). For the season, he averaged 15.6 points on 44.2 percent shooting, including 33.6 percent from 3-point range, with 5.4 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.3 steals in 33.5 minutes per game.
Following the 2012-13 season, he was selected as an honorable mention All-America by The Associated Press, becoming the school's first All-American since Jacob Pullen earned recognition to several third teams in 2011. He is the fifth player to earn some type of All-America distinction (first, second, third, fourth, honorable mention and freshman) since 2008.
In addition to his All-America honors, McGruder was named to the U.S. Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) and National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) All-District teams. He also was selected to the Big 12 All-Championship Team after averaging 22.3 points and 7.0 rebounds in guiding the Wildcats to the title game. He was the only men's basketball player to earn recognition to the All-Big 12 First Team in both athletics and academics.
McGruder departs K-State in the Top 10 of 14 career categories, including first in games played (135), second in consecutive starts (102), third in minutes played (3,708), fourth in 3-point field goals made (188) and attempted (494), fifth in double-digit scoring games (86), steals (116) and starts (102). He joins two-time All-American Bob Boozer as the only Wildcats to rank in the Top 10 in both career scoring (1,576, seventh) and rebounding (654, seventh).
Note from McGruder:
"I want to sincerely thank all the great fans and people of Kansas for all the love and support they have shown to me, my family and the K-State men's basketball team during my four years. The opportunity to attend Kansas State University was an awe-inspiring experience for me and my family. The education I received is first rate. The friends I gained and the overall experience of taking part in NCAA Division I Men's Basketball was great. I enjoyed my time in Manhattan and I will miss those who allowed me to excel and flourish during my tenure. Again, thank you for everything and God Bless each and every one of you!"