FIND YOUR LOCAL
GUS MACKER TOURNAMENT
March 10 ~ Grand Rapids, MI Indoor
THE GUS MACKER 45th ANNIVERSARY
Basil Hampton, also known as “Doc Rise,” estimates with Macker dunk contests on the tour and dunk contests put on by other groups he competed in as many as 125 contests over a six or seven-year stretch. In one year on the Gus Macker World Tour he remembers winning 17 dunk contests – consecutively. Steve…Read More
Jamey Mullen and Tom Revoir lead the Norwich, N.Y. tournament that Scott McNeal, a.k.a. Gus Macker, said is a clear snapshot of the modern Macker. “It’s a great small town and the Macker shuts it down like a county fair where it’s all about family and kids and the same two guys have created this…Read More
Gus Macker, a.k.a. Scott McNeal, remembers Tony Wysinger being carried off a tournament court after winning the Top Men’s competition one year at the Peoria Gus Macker. “It was the first time I saw a Macker crowd react like that, and they were so happy for the team that it looked like a scene you…Read More
Kathy MacLean figures the answer to why Gus Macker Basketball has been a huge summer hit in Ludington for 27 years is as simple as location, location, location. “Who wouldn’t want to play basketball at the beach?” Ludington is a Lake Michigan beach town that annually attracts 800 to 900 teams to play 3-on-3 in…Read More
Dr. Tim “T.O.” Otteman and Dr. Lori Irwin of Mt. Pleasant, Mich., two Central Michigan professors, add class to the Gus Macker Hall of Fame. They also teach a class. Otteman and Irwin lead the effort at Central Michigan where they have created a class (RPL 333 Production of Festivals and Events) that with 35…Read More
“Sugar” was the dominant Top Men’s Division player starting in the early Lowell days. He played at Grand Rapids Creston High School and Central Michigan University. He hit the famous “Hindenberg Shot” to win the 1982 championship in Lowell. He is still making jump shots in recreation basketball, and has popular skills clinics he produces…Read More
Alex, a premier writer for Sports Illustrated Magazine, played in the 1984 Gus Macker in Belding. A year later he wrote the story that appeared in SI and helped launch Gus Macker into national prominence. That story is credited with leading Macker into developing the national tour of today.Read More
Miss Elizabeth’s Fan Club dates back to 1989 when four men who worked in different roles at a school in San Diego – Jerry Fike, Richard Paff, Ralph Mora and Bernard Balaney – suited up to play in a local Gus Macker World Tour stop. The team, named for the late Miss Elizabeth (Hulette, 1960-2003),…Read More
Rick Thomson is the “Nickname Originator.” Yes, he was the guy who gave Scott McNeal the nickname “Gus Macker.” It happened when they were both in the seventh grade. Thomson was one of the original driveway players, of course, and played in that famous first tournament in 1974. Thomson, a true original Macker character, made…Read More
Orloe and Mary Ann Gwatkin were neighbors of the McNeal family, and they are remembered in Mackerville for three things. They had the first rented port-a-john installed in their yard as the tournament started to outgrow the Lowell driveway. The lights installed on the pole in their backyard would light up the original driveway court…Read More
Tom, the guy with the long blonde hair, became known as the “Georgia Gunner.” He was a longtime McNeal family friend who grew up in Lowell and then moved to Georgia just prior to high school. He would fly the friendly skies to return to Lowell and Belding to play in Macker tournaments.Read More
The Frankovich Family, a.k.a. “The Frankies,” proudly hailed from Sharon, Pa., and traveled across the country to numerous Macker tournaments. They had a tradition of making a basket on every hoop set up for each Macker they visited prior to the tournament starting. Yes, they came to Belding for the record turnout year of over…Read More
When the move from the original home in Lowell became necessary, the 1987 Belding City Council and City Manager stepped up. They accepted the Macker despite its last-minute move and supported the “home” tournament. Belding remains the home of the original tournament, and is the site of Macker’s World Headquarters. The council members in 1987…Read More
Kipp and Kita, the Jones brothers, first came on the Macker scene in 1987 in Decatur, Ill., a serious basketball town. They played strong hoops, too, and won that Top Men’s Division title. It was the first of many, including two in Belding. They had the great team name of “Above The Rim,” and that…Read More
This duo made the Port Huron tournament happen. They represent the many great local tournament organizers from the first 25 years of Macker basketball. Don is also known as the father of some pretty good basketball players, Jon (Michigan State) and Jay (Marquette), twin stars from back in the day.Read More
Jumpin’ Jack Kelly was a Grand Rapids guy who could fly and dunk. He became a Macker dunk legend. Tall, gangly and bearded he thrilled many in Macker dunk contests throughout the 1980s. He is best known for winning the ultimate dunk championship in Belding, which offered a $10,000 cash prize. He will still show…Read More
The Root Brothers defined the Macker family tradition. The VERY large family from Durand, Mich., played in Mackers for many years starting in the 1980s in many combinations. They were usually easy to find, too. Their team colors were usually of the sweet orange variety. They were inducted with the 25th anniversary class.Read More
They hailed from Columbus, Ohio, and were another dominant Top Men’s Division team. Players included Marvin Stevens, Karl Newman, Hank Comley and Derek Fields. They won several championships, including three in Belding. Marvin Stevens was also known as a dunker. He won several dunk contests with his favorite dunk that included him leaping over a…Read More
Larry went in with the 30th anniversary class and joined his usual teammate in early Macker tournaments, World Mattern. World was known for holding mandatory practices leading up to Macker tournaments, and Larry was known for never missing one of those practices. When inducted in 2003 Abbey was still playing in tournaments, and had still…Read More
Chris The Artist is the Picasso of Gus Macker. He brought the Macker Man design and logo to life, Gus likes to say. The Artist created numerous player shirt designs, DQ program covers and other artwork for Macker during the 1980s and ’90s. He was inducted with the 30th anniversary class.Read More
Rodney Glassnor is part of Macker lore as a dunk legend – a ferocious dunk legend. Now a wellness coach, personal trainer and basketball trainer at the YMCA of the Blue Water Area in Port Huron, Mich., he was also a formidable player on the Top Men’s Court. Gus Macker said Rodney was a quiet guy who…Read More
The Flying Knueppel Brothers – Klint, Kon, Kole and Klay – are noted for their numerous set plays and uncanny 3-point shooting. They played in Mackers across the country, always in the Top Men’s Division, and won the 2003 Macker World Championship in Hilton Head. Based in Milwaukee, Wis., by 2003 they had played 3-on-3…Read More
Huckleberry and Manute, who were also sometimes known as King Ding Ding and Captain Crunch, are former Macker employees who started working for the company right out of high school. They were dedicated diaper dandies, worked hard and spent many hours behind the scenes making sure Macker tournaments found success.Read More
Carlton is a Macker Hall of Famer because he was a humble, big-hearted space-eating gentle giant who set rock-solid picks and had a nasty jump hook shot. These days he is best known as the father of NBA player and former Michigan State star Denzel Valentine. Carlton, who played at famed DeMatha Catholic High School in Hyattsville,…Read More
Bill Buckey is called the ultimate Macker hoop junkie by the folks in Mackerville. He is from Granville, Ohio, and traveled the 3-on-3 basketball trail most often with his brothers Dan and Dave and Uncle Kenny. They started playing in Macker tournaments in 1996 after an older brother, Mike, was killed in a motorcycle accident.…Read More
Bob was the sports editor at the Grand Rapids Press for 29 years and retired in 2007. He put Macker in the headlines starting with the early days in Lowell when the guys simply called him and suggested he have a reporter and photographer check out this 3-on-3 tournament in Lowell. Becker loved it, and…Read More
Seven guys from the Grand Rapids area made up the West Michigan All-Stars. They included Bob Mitchell, Steve Harvey, Todd Hennink, Steve Honderd, Tim Muller, Brad Holwerda and Shawn O’Mara. They played at area colleges with great success, and played in various combinations of the seven at tournaments around the Midwest. They won a lot…Read More
They are known as the original Gus Busters. Joe and Art were two Macker national staff leaders and pioneers in the GusBuster program. These days most tournaments use registered officials, but in the early years players called their own fouls. In 1985 it was Joe and Art who brought the Central Michigan University Intramural and…Read More
Zach won the 1984 dunk contest at the Macker, and a photo of it made the 1985 Sports Illustrated article by Alex Wolff, who is also in the Macker Hall of Fame. Gus Macker calls him “The Happy Macker Hoopster” because, well, he is always smiling and the kids from Grand Rapids who know him seem…Read More
Shaun, a Wyoming, Mich., resident, is a numbers guy. He knows how many Macker Tournaments he has played in since 1994, how far he traveled to each of them, how many teammates he has played with and how many times his teams finished first, second or third. Gus Macker calls him the “Quiet Stat Man.” He…Read More
It can’t be confirmed, but we hear it went down like this: Gus Macker stumbled into a room behind some gas station in Ohio. It was dark, eerie and foreboding. He finds Larry Wray seated at a desk, and doesn’t waste time with small talk. “I got an offer you can’t refuse Godfather,” Gus stammers.…Read More
The sponsoring local Exchange Club fittingly has the Macker in Quincy, Ill., set up in a downtown area known as Washington Park Central Square. It’s perfect for the tournament, says Gus Macker, and things usually go perfect because of Macker Hall of Fame inductee Mike Lavery’s guidance. “He’s the Founding Father, this elder statesman, like George…Read More
When inducted five years ago into the Macker Hall of Fame, Dawson Wood was age 12, Chase Kinzinger, 13, Trenton Cooper, 11, Jalen Broussard, 12, and Jamoni Jones, 11. They were nicknamed the DreamKids, and to Gus Macker they were a clear reflection of the growing popularity of Macker among the younger set. They are the youngest…Read More
GUS MACKER 3-ON-3
The Original 3-on-3 Basketball Festival of Family Fun
A Gus Macker Tournament is designed for basketball players who love the fun of the driveway game – male or female, from age 7 to 70-plus, short and tall, the most experienced or those with little or no experience who just want to play.
This year, 2018, is the 45th year of Gus Macker Basketball. For the first 13 years it was a single tournament started by a pair of brothers and their friends in 1974, but became a festival phenomenon and America’s Original 3-on-3 Basketball Tour in 1987.
Through the years there have been 1,421 sanctioned Gus Macker Tournaments presented for over 670,800 teams or almost 2.7 million players and played in front of over 27.5 million spectators.
Teams are computer-matched into male and female divisions in one of three categories: Junior, Adult, or Top. The age, height and experience of all four players on each team are considered in bracketing.
Teams receive at least three scheduled games each tournament. A Macker is a double-elimination tournament, but with a consolation bracket historically called “The Toilet Bowl” for teams that lose the first two games.
Our modern tournaments maintain order in almost all cases with registered officials calling fouls and violations.
Family fun in a festival atmosphere is always the goal of a Gus Macker Tournament, and we proudly serve as the most popular basketball tournament for outdoor play in downtown streets, parking lots and community parks across the country.