Jamal Mashburn received a rousing ovation from a sea of fans wearing blue on Friday night at the SEC Tournament when he accepted the Kentucky legends award at halfcourt at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville.
It has been 20 years since Mashburn earned SEC Player of the Year and first team All-American honors while leading the Wildcats to the 1993 Final Four. Mashburn, a one-time NBA all-star, finished his professional career with more than 11,000 points before blossoming into a successful entrepreneur.
Mashburn, who owns 40 Papa John’s restaurants, 38 Outback Steakhouses, two car dealerships and partners with Rick Pitino in a horse racing stable, believes business considerations could factor into the selection committee’s decision regarding Kentucky.
“The one thing I’ve always said since I played professional basketball is I understand the business of basketball,” Mashburn said on Friday night.