In the months since Andrew Wiggins signed to play basketball at Kansas, he has avoided autographs seekers outside his on-campus apartment, done a photo shoot with GQ, and helped attract close to 25,000 fans to the most anticipated “Late Night in the Phog” since Bill Self arrived at Kansas.
Well, here’s one more thing: Andrew Wiggins, Sports Illustrated cover subject.
Wiggins, a 6-foot-8 swingman, will appear on this week’s cover, flanked by photos of Wilt Chamberlain and Danny Manning. The photo shows Wiggins facing away from the camera, accompanied by the words: “The Freshman From Wilt to Manning to Wiggins.”
Wiggins, of course, won’t play his first regular-season game for another month. But after drawing comparisons to former high school phenoms LeBron James and Kevin Durant, Wiggins’ arrival at KU has been met with unprecedented hype — well, unprecedented since perhaps Manning or Chamberlain arrived in Lawrence.
The cover story, authored by Sports Illustrated writer Luke Winn, details the parallels between Chamberlain, Manning and Wiggins arriving at Kansas.
“The notion of what Andrew Wiggins could be, if he can cultivate a relentlessness to pair with his talent, is why he is being received differently — even at a school that’s won nine straight regular-season Big 12 titles and has two other potential first-rounders in guard Wayne Selden and center Joel Embiid,” writes Winn. “Even in a college town that’s seen this already, twice.”