“I’m just in shock, I really don’t know what to say,” Chris Webber said.
The charismatic Webber is usually a man of many words, but on Sunday morning he was still processing one of the biggest occurrences in his life.
Webber was nominated to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.
Webber was Michigan born and bred, winning Michigan’s Mr. Basketball award along with being named the National High School Player of the Year in 1991. Webber would then go on to be a star at the University of Michigan and an integral part of the Fab Five including Jalen Rose, Juwan Howard, Jimmy King, and Ray Jackson. Michigan reached the National Championship in consecutive years during Webber’s time in Ann Arbor. Webber was an All-Big Ten and All-American selection in 1993.
Appearing on ESPN on Sunday, Webber reflected on his journey that has led to this honor and told a childhood story about he and lifelong friend and teammate Jalen Rose.
“Whoever says they think they’d get into the hall of fame — it’s not true. I remember taking a tooth brush and some beat up white gym shoes over to Jalen’s house, walking ‘em down the street and we would get soap, water, and white shoe polish and try to make our shoes new,” Webber said. “Who knew later that he’d be on the team wearing long shorts, rocking what we do, just being ourselves. I didn’t know that being yourself was good enough to change the game and influence people, but thank God we had an impact.”
Webber was the No. 1 overall pick in the 1993 NBA Draft, the 1994 Rookie of the Year, and would go on to play until 2008, being named to the All-Star Team and All-NBA Team five times apiece.
The next @Hoophall class of 2021 has been announced ... featuring Chris Bosh, Paul Pierce, Ben Wallace, Chris Webber, Toni Kukoc, Bob Dandridge, Rick Adelman, Cotton Fitzsimmons and Bill Russell (already in as a player and now going in as a coach) from the NBA. The full list: pic.twitter.com/BQtqP9rqs7— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) May 16, 2021