Annually, since 1940, the Kentucky Lions All Star Basketball Game has matched the best Kentucky high school players with the Indiana All Star teams. It has produced a rich history and an intense rivalry in the two “Basketball States.” The Kentucky Lions All Star Basketball Game is the longest running all-star game in the country.
The highlight of each year’s game is the naming of Kentucky’s Mr. and Miss Basketball. This year the Mr. and Miss Kentucky Basketball VIP Awards Ceremony will be held Friday, March 29 at 6:00 pm at the Seelbach Hotel in Louisville. Coach Winston Bennett, 1983 Mr. Basketball and UK alumnus, and his wife Peggy, are the Honorary Chairs for the event.
Many All-Star players have went on to greatness. Ralph Beard of the 1945 team was part of the “Fabulous-Five” at University of Kentucky and won NCAA championships in 1948 and 49 for legendary coach Adolph Rupp. Frank Ramsey of the 49 All Stars starred for many years with the Boston Celtics. Frank Selvy of the 1950 team played nine years in the National Basketball Association, the final four with the Los Angeles Lakers; and some like Larry Conley of the 1962 team played ABA ball and went into broadcasting the games. More recent All-Stars include Winston Bennett, Allan Houston, John Pelphrey, Darius Miller, Crystal Kelly, Tia Gibbs and Adia Mathies.
As well as a premier sporting event, the Kentucky Lions All Star Classic benefits The Kentucky Lions Eye Foundation. The game traditionally has been a major funding source for the Foundation. The Foundation has received over $2,000,000 in proceeds from this game. The Foundation supports an eye bank, eye clinics, eye research, and programs including the Vision Van and KidSight programs throughout the state.
What a great way to have stars shine so others can see!