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JAYHAWKERS reveals how a small group of unlikely allies in 1950s Kansas modernized college sports and changed a community.
Kevin Willmott
Blake Robbins Jay Karnes Justin Wesley Kip Niven Trai Byers
NR 1 hour, 40 minutes

4.01.164.07.16

JAYHAWKERS

by Kevin Willmott

JAYHAWKERS reveals how a small group of unlikely allies in 1950s Kansas modernized college sports and changed a community.

Synopsis

Director Kevin Willmott will attend the opening night screening of his movie on Friday, April 1 at 7:30 p.m. for a Q&A with the audience following the screening.

Jayhawkers is the new movie from Kevin Willmott, the acclaimed director of C.S.A (Confederate States of America). The film reveals how a small group of unlikely allies in 1950s Kansas modernized college sports and changed a community, serving as a parallel to the Civil Rights Movement that would transform an entire American society.  Teams across the country wanted him, and their efforts resulted in the first modern competitive attempt to land a superstar. His goals were to play in an integrated community and to win a national championship. To the dismay of bigger colleges in bigger markets, University of Kansas (KU) was his final choice – the place where he could learn from the man who created the modern game, and learned coaching from the inventor of basketball himself - James Naismith.  While most people know that Wilt Chamberlain was a gifted athlete, the full extent of his gifts – both physical and intellectual – are rarely understood. There was simply no one like him, certainly not before, and according to many sports enthusiasts, not since. What Wilt Chamberlain could do bordered on the magical – a seven foot giant who could bring the ball down the court, could leap from the foul line to lay the ball through the rim, or could catch a ball thrown from behind the backboard and drill it through. He so frightened the traditionalists that rules were changed to protect the game. Famed sportswriter Jimmy Breslin even asked in a column, “Can Basketball Survive Wilt Chamberlain?”  During his years at University of Kansas, hounded by the media and fans alike, Wilt created a second world, in the black community of Kansas City jazz music and nightlife. Naive to the institution of segregation, Wilt Chamberlain almost left Kansas before he started when he discovered that Lawrence, Kansas was a world separated by black and white. That bleak reality threatened to strain his relationship with Coach Phog Allen, but with the backing and support of Chancellor Murphy, his presence helped to change a community.  The movie’s emotional climax comes during the triple overtime 1957 National Championship bout between the University of Kansas Jayhawks and their bitter rivals from The University of North Carolina, a game that is decided in the final seconds, and one that has been called the greatest in college history.


Visit Movie Website

With

Blake Robbins, Jay Karnes, Justin Wesley, Kip Niven, Trai Byers

Director

Kevin Willmott

Run time

1 hour, 40 minutes

Country

USA

Hearing Assistance

Assisted Listening Devices Available

Showing

Apr 1 through Apr 7

Showtimes for the upcoming week are published on Tuesdays. Please check back for additional times as they are added.

nr

Many of the films shown at The Ross are not rated due to the prohibitive cost of acquiring a rating from the Motion Picture Association of America. Consequently, as many of these films contain graphic content, viewer discretion is advised.

Reviews

Ben Sachs Chicago Reader
Lisa Gutierrez Kansas City Star

Ticket Information

Evening Prices

$9.50
Adults
$7.00
Students
$7.00
Children
$7.50
Military
$7.50
Seniors
$6.50
Members
$5.00
UNL Students

Matinee Prices

$7.50
Adults
$6.50
Students
$6.50
Children
$6.50
Military
$7.00
Seniors
$6.00
Members
$5.00
UNL Students
  • Showtimes change on a regular basis and will not always be the same each day. Visit the individual film pages for a list of showtimes.
  • Children are 12 and under. Seniors are 60 and older
  • Students and Military must show a valid ID to receive discount
  • We accept cash, check, NCard, Visa, and Mastercard
  • The Ross Box Office opens 30 minutes before the first screening of the day
  • Assistive listening headsets and closed caption devices available for select titles. Check the individual film pages or inquire at the box office for details.

Tickets are available for purchase online.

Buy Tickets

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