Born: June 23, 1931 - Arkansas City, KS
Graduated: Winfield High School, 1948; University of Kansas, 1952
Deceased: October 27, 2014
Nicknamed "Trigger" because of his quick release and deadly accuracy from long range on the basketball court, Winfield's Bob Kenney was pivotal to the success of the University of Kansas basketball teams in the early 1950s, including the 1952 championship season.
Small Town Star
Kenney was raised in the basketball tradition rich town of Winfield in Cowley County. The town has produced some of the greatest stars of Kansas basketball history, including Gerald Tucker, Ernest Schmidt, and Bob Brannum. Kenney was an all-around athlete, lettering in baseball, football, and basketball at Winfield High School before his arrival at the University of Kansas, where he lettered in both football and basketball.
A National Champion
Kenney broke into the starting line-up for the Jayhawks his junior season of 1950-1951. That year, Kenney finished second on the team in scoring behind All-American Clyde Lovellette. In 1952, Kenney was a named a senior co-captain for the Jayhawks and once again was second on the team in scoring behind Lovellette, averaging over thirteen points per game for the national champion KU team. Kenney was a constant outside scoring threat that kept defenses honest. He was named an All-Big Seven and second-team Helms Foundation All-American in 1952. One of his best performances of the year came in the NCAA Tournament Championship game where he reeled off a dozen points in a KU blow-out of St. John's.
Kenney was one of seven Jayhawks chosen to represent the United States at the 1952 Olympics. Once again, Kenney was second on the team in scoring behind Lovellette and he averaged nearly eleven points per game against the best players in the world. Kenney scored six points in the gold medal game against the U.S.S.R.
Following the Olympics, Kenney continued his playing career as a member of the 1954 U.S. Air Force national championship squad. He was also a member of the 1954 All-Service national championship team, the 1955 U.S. Pan America championship team, and a member of the AAU Wichita Vickers team from 1955 to 1957. He is an inductee of the University of Kansas Athletics Hall of Fame.