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Kevin Durant Donates $3 Million to Texas, Record Gift by Ex-Basketball Player

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistJanuary 4, 2018

Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant dribbles during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Dallas Mavericks in Dallas, Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2018. (AP Photo/LM Otero)
LM Otero/Associated Press

Golden State Warriors superstar Kevin Durant is donating $3 million to the University of Texas to support the basketball program and the Center for Sports Leadership and Innovation, according to a press release from the school. 

"My time as a Longhorn helped build the foundation for who I am today as a player and a person, and the UT team will always be my family," Durant said. "It's important to me to continue to give back to The University and ensure that future student-athletes have all the opportunities they need to succeed. It's an honor to have such a close and unique relationship with Texas Basketball, and I'm grateful to be able to contribute." 

According to the press release, Durant's donation was the largest in school history from a former basketball student-athlete and amongst the largest ever from a professional athlete to his or her former school. Texas will name the main entrance to Denton A. Cooley Pavilion the "Kevin Durant Texas Basketball Center."

Durant spent one season with the Longhorns, averaging 25.8 points, 11.1 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game. He was a consensus first-team All-America selection and swept the Player of the Year awards, winning the Naismith and Wooden awards and the Rupp Trophy. 

He led Texas to the Round of 32 in the 2006-07 season before declaring for the NBA draft, where he was selected No. 2 overall by the Seattle Supersonics behind only Ohio State's Greg Oden, who was taken by the Portland Trail Blazers.

He's since gone on to be an eight-time All-Star, four-time scoring champion, one-time NBA champion and the 2013-14 NBA MVP. But he hasn't forgotten his time with the Longhorns.

"Durant has an incredibly strong and personal connection with not only our basketball program, but the University of Texas as a whole," head coach Shaka Smart said. "Each time I've had the opportunity to visit with Kevin, I've been impressed with his genuine appreciation for his time, growth and development at Texas. This gift means a great deal to our entire University, but it's more of a reflection of how meaningful the relationships that Kevin built while at Texas remain true to this day."

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