It was fifteen years ago today that Oklahoma basketball legend Wayman Tisdale became the first Sooner basketball player to have his jersey retired. Of course by that time Tisdale was used to being the first when it came to basketball accomplishments.
In 1983 Tisdale was named as a first-team All-American after his freshman season. He would receive the honor again in 1984 and 1985 to become the first collegiate basketball player to be named as a first team All-American his freshman through junior seasons. He was also a three-time Big 8 Player of the Year during that same time span. In 1984 Tisdale helped the US Olympic basketball team win the gold medal in Los Angeles.
Following his collegiate career he was the second overall pick in the 1985 NBA Draft. Over the course of twelve NBA seasons (Pacers, Kings, Suns) he averaged 15.3 points and 6.1 rebounds per game. He still holds Oklahoma records for points scored (2,661) and rebounds (1,048) in a career. That feat becomes even more incredible once you consider that he only played three seasons.
Off the court Tisdale had a highly successful music career with a total of eight albums released. His 2001 album Face to Face reached #1 on Billboard's Contemporary Jazz Chart.
On May 15th 2009 Wayman Tisdale lost his battle with cancer at the age of 44. He left behind a wife, Regina, who had also been his high school sweetheart, and four children. The legacy of Wayman Tisdale, both on and off the court, will never be forgotten by Sooner fans.