LAWRENCE (KSNT) – The man who arguably made one of the most famous shots in Kansas basketball history in the 2008 NCAA National Championship game returned to Lawrence on Monday for the 6th annual Mario V. Chalmers Foundation Golf Tournament.
“Just seeing all the friendly faces that took care of me while I was here,” said Chalmers. “It’s always good to see them, and see that they still miss me.”
“It’s always like home,” said Almarie Chalmers, Mario’s mother. “It’s almost like the Wizard of Oz, you click your heels and say there’s no place like home. So every summer we click our heels and come back (to Lawrence) and do the golf tournament.”
The event included Kansas head basketball coach Bill Self, several assistant coaches, as well as the Kansas marching band.
“The Mario V. Chalmers Foundation is a foundation that I set up back in ’08 to help support the research of breast cancer and youth initiatives,” said Chalmers. “We do little events around the country just to get kids inspired, and to get people interacting with the community.”
“Being in a position to make a difference in the lives of others, as it applies to our breast cancer initiative, because it was a personal experience, and still is unfortunately, it’s an opportunity to give back in some way,” said Almarie Chalmers. “We’re not able to maybe make the millions of dollars of contributions, but it’s the little things that count as well.”
In the NBA, Chalmers recently agreed to a two-year extension with the Miami Heat. Miami will be without superstar and four-time NBA MVP LeBron James after he announced he’ll be returning to Cleveland to play with the Cavaliers.
“It’s going to be a different challenge that we got to face, but we’re ready for it,” said Chalmers. “You can’t replace a guy like him. He was like a mentor and big brother to me. We still got a long ways to go, but I’m only 28, and I’m still ticking.”