Basketball rules on display at KU

Courtesy: Tom Weineck

LAWRENCE, Kan. (KSNT) —  The rules are the most important part of any game including basketball and the original rules for basketball are now on display for the public at the University of Kansas. It cost a pretty penny to bring the original rules home. The original rules of basketball were written by James Naismith, the inventor of basketball. They consist of 13 rules. The two sheets of paper which the rules take up, are the reason why donors gave more than $21.7 million for the building that the rules now call home.

“This is a little bit bigger than something you put in a small display case and set it in the field house,” Curtis Marsh, the Director of KU Information said

Courtesy: Tom Weineck
Courtesy: Tom Weineck

KU having these two pieces of paper on campus is a very big deal, many people showed up to see the rules. This is something the university is glad to have.

“When they originally went up for auction there wasn’t a formal plan created by the university to purchase them,” Marsh said.

“Thankfully we had a donor that was passionate enough about it and had the winning bid,” Marsh said.

The hall of fame is only the most recent part of KU’s storied history with basketball starting with this man.

“He created our basketball program, he was our first coach,” Marsh said.

There are many people are in the hall of fame at KU because of those original rules and the creation of basketball. And that $21 million? Marsh says it was worth it.

“It’s the one of a kind element,” Marsh said.

“I expected them to be put into a small building, not this gigantic thing,” Frank Janzen said about the new building.

“There’s just this mystique to it, so it was really cool to see,” Eddie Munoz, who saw the rules for the first time, said.

“It’s very interesting to see the original rules of basketball and all of the things written out about scoring and things like that,” Janzen said after seeing the rules for the first time.

Janzen told KSNT News he has been to Naismith’s childhood home in Canada. He also said he noticed a staple of basketball isn’t in the original rules.

“There is no mention of dribbling,” Janzen said.

Even for Marsh, who can see the rules whenever he wants, today was a good day.

“Being this much of a part of the origins of the sport makes it the perfect place to house the rules,” Marsh said.

The DeBruce Center was dedicated to the main donor of the building, Paul DeBruce.

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