Befitting its distinction as the “Birthplace of College Basketball,” Geneva College organized a game of knockout with a world-record breaking number of participants mere weeks after a new record was established.
Six hundred and fifty-six students, professors, staff and friends of the college gathered on the basketball court in Geneva’s Metheny Fieldhouse on Monday, May 6, 2013 for the “Dean Smith Ascent to Glory Knockout Tournament.” After nearly three hours of play, junior business major Scott Stewart, of Manhattan, Kan., emerged as the knockout tournament champion.
In addition to celebrating the career of beloved professor Dr. Dean Smith, who is retiring at the end of the semester, Geneva’s tournament also raised funds for a Geneva College trip to Haiti taking place later this month. The trip is being conducted in partnership with Haiti H2O, which was co-founded by Geneva College Professor of Student Ministry Doug Bradbury, a 1987 graduate. Participants were asked to donate at least $1 toward the trip, and a total of $740 was raised through the tournament.
The “Dean Smith Ascent to Glory Knockout Tournament” was organized by Dr. Terry Thomas, recipient of the 2011 Excellence in Teaching award and Professor of Biblical Studies, along with Graduate Assistant in Student Ministries Jimmy Fabrizio and Bible Department Administrative Assistant Debbie Michalik. The organizers are currently pursuing ratification of the record by Guinness World Records’ officials.
The largest recorded number of people previously assembled for a game of knockout was 586, which happened on April 19, 2013 at Grove City College.
In knockout, players form a line at the free-throw line on a basketball court. If the first player does not make a basket from the line, the next in line tries to hit the shot before the first player can retrieve the ball and make a layup. If the second player makes the free-throw shot before the first player can score, the first player is out. The game continues until only one player is left.
The first intramural college basketball game was organized by Geneva students in February 1892 under the coaching of Professor Charles O. Bemies, Geneva's first Athletic Director. He was a protégé of Dr. James Naismith, who is credited with inventing the sport in 1891 at the YMCA Training School in Springfield, Mass. Geneva first played in collegiate competition on April 8, 1893 using peach baskets as goals, defeating the New Brighton YMCA 3 - 0.
View the knockout tournament video here.
Geneva College invites students to accept the challenge of an academically excellent, Christ-centered education. Offering nearly 40 undergraduate majors, an Adult Degree Completion Program with fully online and campus-based options, and seven graduate degrees, Geneva has programs that place students at the forefront of higher learning. Adhering to the inerrancy of scripture, the liberal arts core curriculum fosters a breadth of knowledge through the study of humanities, social and natural sciences, and experiential learning.