Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf (born Chris Wayne Jackson on March 9, 1969) is an American former professional basketball player. Abdul-Rauf played basketball for Gulfport High School before enrolling at Louisiana State University to play college basketball for the Tigers.
His nine-year NBA career, spent with the Denver Nuggets, Sacramento Kings and Vancouver Grizzlies, was marked by an appearance in the Slam Dunk Contest as well as by one of the most accurate free-throw shooting records ever. Considered one of the greatest free-throw shooters in the history of the game, Abdul-Rauf missed the all time free-throw shooting NBA season record by only a single miss in the 1993â€“94 season. He sparked controversy for refusing to stand for the national anthem, and calling the flag of the United States a symbol of oppression. After his NBA career, he played in multiple leagues around the world.
Abdul-Rauf was born in Gulfport, Mississippi, the son of Jacqueline Jackson. He was raised in a single-parent family, along with his two brothers, Omar and David. His childhood was characterized by poverty, as there were times that he and his brothers were not able to have proper nutrition. Abdul-Rauf missed the fourth grade and, later on, he was placed in special education classes. He suffered from a moderate form of Tourette syndrome, a condition that went undiagnosed until he was 17. Abdul-Rauf managed to overcome difficulties to become a basketball prodigy for Gulfport High School. In his senior season in high school he averaged 29.9 points and 5.7 assists per game and was called up to the McDonald's All-American Game. He was also named Mississippi Mr. Basketball twice, in 1987 and 1988.
Abdul-Rauf was a standout freshman for LSU scoring 48 points against Louisiana Tech, in just his third game for the school. He set the record in scoring for a freshman with 53 points against Florida. On March 4, 1989 he scored 55 against Ole Miss to break his own record, also setting career-high for three pointers made with 10. In the same game Ole Miss's Gerald Glass scored 53, making their 108 combined points the most ever by two players in a SEC game He appeared in 32 games in his freshman season, setting the NCAA record for points by a freshman (965) and points per game by a freshman (30.2). He was named SEC Player of the Year and First-team All-Americans. In his sophomore season, he produced similar numbers with his scoring average slightly falling to 27.8 per game. On February 10, 1990 he tied his career-high for three pointers made, while finishing the game with 49 points. He was named SEC Player of the Year and First-team All-American for a second year in a row.