June 28, 2012
The Washington, D.C. native, is the 10th Jayhawk to be drafted in the lottery since 2000, which is tied for the lead in the nation with Connecticut and North Carolina. The selections make Robinson the 14th and Taylor the 15th Jayhawk drafted under head coach Bill Self.
Since the inception of the Big 12 in 1996-97, KU has had 23 players drafted in the NBA, which is the most of any league member. Over the last decade, KU among the top-five for producing the most NBA Draft picks in the nation with 17. Three KU draft picks recently played for the 2012 NBA Championship, with 2008 second-rounder Mario Chalmers helping the Miami Heat win the crown.
“I want to thank the organization for taking me with the fifth pick and I couldn’t be more excited to be a part of the organization,” Robinson said. “I didn’t really know where I was going to end up at, but this is a bit of a surprise. I didn’t work out for Sacramento at all and I probably talked to them once. I’m here, so I’m meant to be here.”
Robinson and Taylor helped lead Kansas to 32-7 record on the season, advancing to the school’s 14th Final Four where it finished runner-up, won its school-record eighth straight and 12th Big 12 regular-season championship and finished the year No. 2 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches’ Poll and No. 6 in the Associated Press poll, which is released prior to the NCAA Tournament. Additionally, KU finished the season 16-0 in Allen Fieldhouse, upping its home-court winning streak to 22 games.
Robinson leaves Kansas as one of the most decorated players in school history. Declaring for the 2012 NBA Draft, the Washington, D.C., native became Kansas’ 28th Consensus All-American following his junior year where he was the only player in the Big 12 to average a double-double with 17.7 points and 11.9 rebounds per game. The 2012 Big 12 Player of the Year who was also named the conference’s player of the week four times, Robinson set a Kansas single-season record and led the nation with 27 double-doubles and his 463 rebounds were second only to former KU legend Wilt Chamberlain’s 510 boards in 1956-57. His 11.9 rebound average was second in NCAA Division I in 2011-12.
Taylor, from Hoboken, N.J., was a four-year starter at Kansas amassing a 127-21 record with four Big 12 regular-season titles, two Big 12 tourney championships, two NCAA Elite Eights and one Final Four. A Bob Cousy Award finalist as a junior and senior, Taylor was a two-time Big 12 Player of the Week in 2011-12 where he averaged 16.6 points and a team-best 4.8 assists per game. Taylor, who was named to numerous 2012 All-America teams as either a third team or an honorable mention selection, had 13 games of 20 or more points scored his senior season.
Robinson and Taylor are the 71st and 72nd Jayhawks to be drafted in Kansas men’s basketball history. It marks the third-straight year in which at least two Jayhawks have been selected in the draft.