The 6-foot-10 center who won an NBA title with the Miami Heat was voted to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Monday, adding that honor to becoming a board member at his alma mater.
“I didn’t understand the prestige of this university, the global prestige of this university,” Mourning said. “Never in my wildest dreams would I ever thought as a freshman that I would be sitting on the board of that university. Now I’m rubbing elbows with CEOs and billionaires and individuals that helped change this world.”
Mourning was elected along with former NBA star Mitch Richmond and NCAA championship-winning coaches Nolan Richardson and Gary Williams. The women’s team from Immaculata College, which won three consecutive national championships in the 1970s, also was chosen.
They joined the previously announced class of 2014 that includes retired NBA Commissioner David Stern. The induction ceremony is Aug. 8 in Springfield, Mass.
Richardson was honored 20 years after leading Arkansas to the NCAA title over Duke.
Williams led Maryland, his alma mater, to the 2002 title. He retired in 2011 with 668 wins.
Mourning was a seven-time NBA All-Star and two-time defensive player of the year who was among the league’s best shot-blockers, while Richmond was an elite scorer who won a title in a secondary role with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2001-02, his final season.
Lithuania star Sarunas Marciulionis was among several candidates already selected by various committees.
Stern went in via the contributors committee, and former Indiana Pacers coach Bob “Slick” Leonard was chosen by the ABA committee.
The late Nat “Sweetwater” Clifton, of the New York Knicks, was chosen by the early African-American pioneers committee, and the late Guy Rodgers, of Temple, by the veterans committee.