"People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it." - George Bernard Shaw
Could a short ex-hoopster in college contribute in a big way in the first college football playoff? Oregon wideout/punt returner Johnathan Loyd, who caught a TD pass from Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota against Wyoming and returned a punt for 51 yards at Utah, is the winningest player in the Ducks' basketball history (97 victories). Loyd led them in assists last season when he supplied a game-high six scoring feeds in an NCAA tourney opening-round win against BYU and team-high five assists when they were eliminated by Wisconsin.
Loyd isn't the first such versatile athlete. South Carolina football wide receiver/basketball guard Bruce Ellington, after throwing a touchdown pass to the Gamecocks' quarterback on a reverse and catching a go-ahead TD pass in the second half of the Capital One Bowl against Wisconsin last year, is among the all-time Top 10 "Men For All Seasons." In an era of specialization, preliminary research reveals Ellington is the first major-college basketball regular to compete the same academic school year in three consecutive football bowl games. Living up to George Bernard Shaw's credo, he joined Terry Baker (Oregon State), Rick Casares (Florida), Ronald Curry (North Carolina), Charles Davis (Purdue), Pete "Bump" Elliott (Michigan), Fred Gibson (Georgia), Teyo Johnson (Stanford), Matt Jones (Arkansas), Terry Kirby (Virginia), Dave Logan (Colorado) and Tony "Zippy" Morocco (Georgia) as athletes who scored a touchdown in a bowl game shortly before or after switching uniforms and making significant contributions to the school's basketball squad. Ellington, after pacing USC in pass receptions, cut short both his college football and basketball career by declaring early for the NFL draft (started two of three early-season hoop contests).
In the ultimate one-and-only achievement, Baker is the lone football Heisman Trophy winner to play in the basketball Final Four (1963). Kirby, a running back, and Matt Blundin, a quarterback, were teammates who competed in back-to-back years for Virginia football squads in bowl games (Florida Citrus following 1989 season and Sugar following 1990) before becoming members of Cavaliers hoop teams participating in the NCAA playoffs.
A striking number of athletes did Loyd one better by playing both sports at the highest collegiate level in the same school year. Retiring from the NFL last season, all-time great tight end Tony Gonzalez (California) is among the following alphabetical list of versatile athletes since World War II who played in at least one football bowl game the same school year they were a hoop regular (bowl year denotes when regular season was played):
|Football-Basketball Player||College||FB Pos.||Bowl Game(s)||Two-Way Athlete Summary in Same Academic School Year|
|Doug Atkins||Tennessee||DE||1950 Cotton||Eventual NFL first-round pick helped defeat Texas 20-14 before averaging 9.9 ppg for Volunteers' basketball squad.|
|Terry Baker||Oregon State||QB||1962 Liberty||MVP's 99-yard run from scrimmage accounted for only points in 6-0 victory against Villanova before becoming runner-up in scoring (13.4 ppg) with Beavers' NCAA Tournament fourth-place finisher.|
|Connor Barwin||Cincinnati||TE||2006 International||One solo tackle in 27-24 triumph against Western Michigan before averaging 1.2 ppg and 1.4 rpg for Bearcats' basketball team.|
|Matt Blundin||Virginia||QB||1989 Florida Citrus/1990 Sugar||Backup in two defeats (31-21 vs. Illinois and 23-22 vs. Tennessee) while averaging 3.3 ppg and 4.6 rpg with two NCAA playoff teams for Cavaliers.|
|Larry Brown||Georgia||TE||1997 Outback||Defeated Wisconsin 33-6 before averaging 6.3 ppg and 4.2 rpg for Bulldogs' NIT third-place team.|
|Rick Casares||Florida||FB-PK||1952 Gator||Rushed 21 times for 86 yards, scoring first TD in Gators' bowl history, and kicked both extra points in 14-13 nod over Tulsa before All-SEC second-team selection paced hoop squad in scoring (15.5 ppg) and rebounding (11.5 rpg).|
|Ronald Curry||North Carolina||QB||1998 Las Vegas||Curry's 48-yard TD scamper put Tar Heels in front to stay in 20-13 win over San Diego State before averaging 2.8 ppg and 1.7 apg for hoop squad upset in first round of NCAA playoiffs by Weber State.|
|Charles Davis||Purdue||TE||2004 Sun||His 6-yard TD reception from Kyle Orton put Boilermakers ahead with just over one minute remaining but Arizona State marched 80 yards in four plays to win 27-23 before Davis averaged 2.9 ppg and 3.1 rpg in coach Gene Keady's swan song.|
|Matt Davison||Nebraska||SE||1999 Fiesta||Leading Husker receiver in three bowl games, including 31-21 nod over Tennessee, before starting two Big 12 Conference basketball contests.|
|Rickey Dudley||Ohio State||TE||1994 Florida Citrus||Caught two passes for 26 yards in 24-17 setback against Alabama before averaging team-high 7.5 rpg.|
|Bruce Ellington||South Carolina||WR||2011 Capital One/2012 Outback/2013 Capital One||Season-long 45-yard kickoff return in 30-13 win over Nebraska and caught game-winning TD pass with only seconds remaining in 33-28 victory against Michigan before averaging 10.5 ppg while finishing Gamecocks' leader in either assists or steals.|
|Pete "Bump" Elliott||Michigan||B||1947 Rose Bowl||Rushed seven times for 53 yards and caught 1-yard TD pass in 49-0 romp over Southern California before averaging 6 ppg for Wolverine hoopsters.|
|Percy Ellsworth||Virginia||S||1994 Independence||Integral part of defense leading nation in interceptions helped Cavaliers end four-game bowl losing streak with 20-10 verdict over TCU before appearing in all four contests with Midwest Regional runner-up in NCAA tourney.|
|James Francis||Baylor||LB||1986 Bluebonnet||Eventual NFL first-round pick helped Bears beat Colorado 21-9 before averaging 2.2 ppg and 2.2 rpg while shooting 52.2% from floor.|
|Fred Gibson||Georgia||WR||2001 Music City||Opened scoring with 15-yard TD reception but Boston College rallied to prevail 20-16 before Gibson averaged 4.9 ppg with Bulldogs' NCAA playoff team.|
|Tony Gonzalez||California||TE||1996 Aloha||Established Cal bowl record with nine receptions in 42-38 reversal against Navy before averaging 6.8 ppg and 4.5 rpg with Bears' squad losing against North Carolina in East Regional semifinals.|
|Gregg Guenther||Southern California||TE||2003 Rose||Part-time starter for national champion managed one reception for 19 yards from QB Matt Leinart in 28-14 win against Michigan before averaging 5.6 ppg and 4.7 rpg with Trojans' hoop squad.|
|Joe Howard||Notre Dame||WR||1983 Liberty||Caught one pass for 43 yards in 19-18 decision over Doug Flutie-led Boston College before averaging 5.5 ppg and 3.3 apg as part-time starter with Irish NIT runner-up.|
|Teyo Johnson||Stanford||WR||2001 Seattle||A 4-yard fourth-quarter TD reception closed gap prior to bowing against Georgia Tech 24-14 before averaging 5.8 ppg and 4 rpg with Cardinal NCAA playoff squad.|
|Matt Jones||Arkansas||QB||2003 Independence||Scored go-ahead TD, rushed 7 times for 74 yards and completed 6 of 14 passes in 27-14 verdict over Missouri before averaging 5 ppg and 4.5 rpg as Hogs hoop freshman.|
|Jeff King||Virginia Tech||TE||2004 Sugar||Caught three passes for 12 yards in 16-13 setback against Auburn before collecting 18 points and 23 rebounds in 16 games as hoop freshman with Hokies.|
|Terry Kirby||Virginia||RB||1989 Florida Citrus/1990 Sugar||Rushed for 139 yards in 29 carries with one TD in losses against Illinois (31-21) and Tennessee (23-22) before averaging 2.8 ppg in two seasons with Cavaliers' hoops squad.|
|Dave Logan||Colorado||WR||1975 Bluebonnet||His 4-yard TD reception gave Buffaloes 14-0 lead prior to them succumbing against Texas 38-21 before becoming basketball team's runner-up in scoring (12.7 ppg) and rebounding (6.5 rpg).|
|Leonard Mitchell||Houston||DE||1978 Cotton||UH squandered 34-12 lead when Joe Montana-led Notre Dame scored 23 unanswered points in fourth quarter to win by one before Mitchell averaged 5.4 ppg and 5.6 rpg for Cougars' hoop squad.|
|Tony "Zippy" Morocco||Georgia||HB||1950 Presidential Cup||Scored two second-half touchdowns (30-yard run from scrimmage and 65-yard punt return) as Co-MVP in 40-20 setback against Texas A&M before averaging 9.7 ppg with Bulldogs' basketball team.|
|Nate Robinson||Washington||CB||2002 Sun||His QB sack helped Huskies get off to strong start before bowing against Purdue 34-24 prior to freshman pacing hoopsters in scoring (13 ppg).|
|Reggie Rogers||Washington||DL||1984 Orange||Eventual NFL first-round draft choice helped upend Oklahoma 28-17 before averaging 5.7 ppg and 3.9 rpg with Huskies' hoop squad.|
|Bill Saul||Penn State||LB||1959 Liberty||Defeated Alabama 7-0 before averaging 6.1 ppg and 4 rpg with Nittany Lions' hoopsters.|
|Austin Seferian-Jenkins||Washington||TE||2011 Alamo||Caught five passes for 59 yards in highest-scoring regulation bowl game in history (67-56 loss to RGIII-led Baylor) before collecting seven points and nine rebounds in four NIT contests for Huskies' semifinalist.|
|Dick Soergel||Oklahoma State||QB||1958 Bluegrass||Completed 6 of 12 passes for 77 yards and 2-point conversion in 15-6 win against Florida State before averaging 8.5 ppg and 4.9 rpg for Pokes' basketball squad plus posting 8-1 pitching record and winning national championship baseball game.|
|Wilson Thomas||Nebraska||WR||2001 Rose||Huskers leading receiver caught three passes for 36 yards in 37-14 loss against Miami (Fla.) before averaging 4.6 ppg and 3.8 rpg.|
|Willie Townsend||Notre Dame||WR||1972 Orange||Irish's top pass catcher and teammates lost to Johnny Rodgers-led Nebraska 40-6 before averaging 2.1 ppg for Digger Phelps-coached hoop squad.|
|Charlie Ward||Florida State||QB||1992 Orange/1993 Orange||Completed 39-of-73 passes for 473 yards in back-to-back victories over Nebraska (27-14 and 18-16) while pacing FSU in assists and steals average his final two hoop campaigns.|
|Ron Widby||Tennessee||P||1965 Bluebonnet/1966 Gator||Nation's top punter for coach Doug Dickey's second of first two Vols football teams that both went to bowl games (wins over Tulsa 27-6 and Syracuse 18-12) while also being an All-SEC basketball selection (including 50-point outburst in final home game).|
"We will either find a way or make one." - Hannibal, Carthaginian military commander
UCLA, in a stellar 10-year stretch from 1963-64 through 1972-73 ruling the scene much like Hannibal, accounted for four of only 12 squads to go undefeated since the start of national tournament postseason competition in the late 1930s. After Louisville failed to catch Kentucky with a post-Christmas hangover, the Wildcats could become #13 insofar as the SEC appears particularly mediocre.
UK was soundly whipped by undefeated LIU in 1938-39 before the Wildcats went unbeaten themselves 15 years later. The average number of defeats the previous year for the first 12 unbeaten teams was five. Thus the Wildcats will need to buck history because they dropped 11 games last season. The only time in major-college history that two undefeated major colleges met in a national postseason tournament was the 1939 NIT final between Loyola of Chicago and Long Island University. LIU (23-0) defeated Loyola (21-1), 44-32.
In a seven-year span, all-time greats Lew Alcindor (UCLA in 1966-67), Bill Walton (UCLA in 1971-72) and David Thompson (North Carolina State in 1972-73) weren't freshmen but they were in their first season of varsity eligibility when leading their unbeaten teams in scoring. Following are the schedules and team statistics for the 12 squads, including the last one to achieve the feat in 1975-76 (Indiana won five regular-season games by fewer than five points or in overtime), to go undefeated since the start of national tournament postseason competition:
Long Island (23-0 in 1938-39)
Coach: Clair Bee (eighth of 18 seasons with Blackbirds)
|1938-39 LIU Opponents||Score||LIU's High Scorer|
|Newark University (N.J.)||64-14||George Newman 14|
|Panzer College||41-35||Daniel Kaplowitz 15|
|Princeton/Seminary||82-37||John Bromberg/Irv Torgoff 10|
|McGill University (Quebec)||77-39||Irv Torgoff 12|
|Montclair Teachers College (N.J.)||63-40||Irv Torgoff 10|
|East Stroudsburg Teachers (Pa.)||63-33||John Bromberg 14|
|Southern California||33-18||Daniel Kaplowitz 12|
|Kentucky||52-34||John Bromberg 12|
|Marquette||41-34||Arthur Hillhouse 14|
|New York Athletic Club||64-43||Arthur Hillhouse 15|
|Toledo||46-39||Irv Torgoff 18|
|Geneva College (Pa.)||48-39||Irv Torgoff 15|
|Duquesne||48-31||John Bromberg 13|
|Scranton (Pa.)||65-53||Daniel Kaplowitz 16|
|Canisius||62-50||Myron Sewitch 15|
|St. Francis (N.Y.)||61-20||Ossie Schechtman 13|
|St. Bonaventure||70-31||Irv Torgoff 12|
|University of Baltimore||52-34||Daniel Kaplowitz 9|
|John Marshall College||65-25||Irv Torgoff 11|
|at La Salle||28-21||Daniel Kaplowitz 7|
|New Mexico State (NIT)||52-45||Irv Torgoff 14|
|Bradley (NIT)||36-32||John Bromberg 12|
|Loyola of Chicago (NIT)||44-32||Irv Torgoff 12|
NOTES: La Salle game technically played on a neutral court (Philadelphia Convention Hall). . . . NIT games played at Madison Square Garden.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR LIU REGULARS
|Oscar "Ossie" Schechtman||G||Soph.||22||4.8|
|Seymour "Cy" Lobello||C||Soph.||22||4.4|
*Hillhouse completed eligibility at the end of the first semester.
**King became eligible at the start of the second semester.
Seton Hall (19-0 in 1939-40)
Coach: John "Honey" Russell (fourth of 18 seasons with Pirates)
|1939-40 Seton Hall Opponents||Score||Pirates High Scorer|
|Alumni||45-29||Nick Parpan 12|
|Mount St. Mary's||58-32||Ed Sadowski 13|
|Tulane||53-25||Bob Davies 9|
|Florida||43-41||Bob Davies/Ed Sadowski 13|
|William & Mary||51-35||Ed Sadowski 17|
|at Scranton||48-32||Ed Sadowski 17|
|Becker||69-29||Ed Sadowski 14|
|at Kutztown (Pa.)||42-34||Ed Sadowski 15|
|Loyola (Md.)||50-40||Ed Sadowski 13|
|at St. Peter's||55-27||Bernie Coyle 13|
|at Brooklyn||51-34||Bob Fischer 13|
|Rider||44-32||Bob Davies/John Ruthenberg 8|
|St. Francis (Pa.)||48-36||Bob Davies 17|
|St. Bonaventure||46-41||Bob Davies 19|
|Kutztown (Pa.)||53-33||Bob Davies 15|
|Canisius||52-46||Bob Davies 17|
|Catholic (D.C.)||53-27||Edward Ryan 13|
|Brooklyn||43-41||Frank Delany 16|
|Scranton (Pa.)||68-39||Bob Davies 16|
NOTE: Seton Hall played its home games at five different arenas - East Orange High School, Elizabeth Armory, Orange Armory, Orange High School and Dickinson High School (Jersey City).
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR SETON HALL REGULARS
*Sadowski missed the second half of the season because of a broken kneecap.
Army/U.S. Military Academy (15-0 in winter of 1944)
Coach: Ed Kelleher (first of two seasons with Cadets)
|1943-44 Army Opponents||Score||Army's High Scorer|
|Swarthmore (Pa.)||80-29||Bob Faas 20|
|Colgate||69-44||Dale Hall 18|
|St. John's||49-36||Dale Hall 21|
|at Columbia||55-37||Dale Hall 17|
|Penn State||49-38||Dale Hall 14|
|Coast Guard||55-37||Doug Kenna 11|
|West Virginia||58-31||Dale Hall 18|
|at Rochester (N.Y.)||57-43||Dale Hall 23|
|Pittsburgh||66-32||Ed Christl 16|
|Hobart (N.Y.)||69-36||Dale Hall/Doug Kenna 20|
|Pennsylvania||55-38||Dale Hall 18|
|Villanova||34-22||Dale Hall 23|
|New York University||46-36||Dale Hall 18|
|Maryland||85-22||Dale Hall 32|
|Navy||47-40||Doug Kenna 17|
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR ARMY REGULARS
Kentucky (25-0 in 1953-54)
Coach: Adolph Rupp (24th of 41 seasons with Wildcats)
|1953-54 UK Opponents||Score||UK's High Scorer|
|Temple||86-59||Cliff Hagan 51|
|at Xavier||81-66||Frank Ramsey 27|
|Wake Forest||101-69||Cliff Hagan 18|
|at St. Louis||71-59||Frank Ramsey 21|
|Duke||85-69||Cliff Hagan 27|
|La Salle||73-60||Cliff Hagan 28|
|Minnesota||74-59||Frank Ramsey 23|
|Xavier||77-71||Cliff Hagan 20|
|Georgia Tech||105-53||Cliff Hagan 34|
|DePaul||81-63||Cliff Hagan/Frank Ramsey 22|
|Tulane||94-43||Frank Ramsey 26|
|at Tennessee||97-71||Frank Ramsey 37|
|at Vanderbilt||85-63||Frank Ramsey 24|
|Georgia Tech*||99-48||Cliff Hagan 23|
|Georgia||106-55||Frank Ramsey 29|
|Georgia*||100-68||Cliff Hagan 29|
|at Florida||97-55||Cliff Hagan 22|
|Mississippi||88-62||Cliff Hagan 38|
|Mississippi State||81-49||Cliff Hagan 26|
|Tennessee||90-63||Cliff Hagan 24|
|at DePaul||76-61||Cliff Hagan 29|
|Vanderbilt||100-64||Cliff Hagan 22|
|Auburn*||109-79||Frank Ramsey 28|
|at Alabama||68-43||Cliff Hagan 24|
|Louisiana State* (SEC Playoff)||63-56||Frank Ramsey 30|
*Neutral court games.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR KENTUCKY REGULARS
San Francisco (29-0 in 1955-56)
Coach: Phil Woolpert (fifth of nine seasons with Dons)
|1955-56 USF Opponents||Score||USF's High Scorer|
|Chico State (Calif.)||70-39||Bill Russell 15|
|Southern California||58-42||Bill Russell 24|
|San Francisco State||72-47||Bill Russell 20|
|Marquette*||65-58||Bill Russell 16|
|at DePaul||82-59||K.C. Jones 23|
|at Wichita||75-65||Bill Russell 17|
|at Loyola of New Orleans||61-43||Bill Russell 20|
|La Salle*||79-62||Bill Russell 26|
|Holy Cross*||67-51||Bill Russell 24|
|UCLA*||70-53||Bill Russell 17|
|Pepperdine||62-51||Bill Russell 20|
|Santa Clara||74-56||Mike Farmer 18|
|at Fresno State||69-50||Bill Russell 22|
|at California||33-24||K.C. Jones 15|
|San Jose State||67-40||Bill Russell 21|
|Loyola of Los Angeles||68-46||Carl Boldt 20|
|at Pacific||77-60||Bill Russell 24|
|Fresno State||79-46||Bill Russell 23|
|at San Jose State||76-52||Bill Russell 21|
|at St. Mary's||76-63||Bill Russell 28|
|at Santa Clara||80-44||Bill Russell 29|
|Pacific||87-49||Bill Russell 28|
|at Pepperdine||68-40||Carl Boldt 14|
|at Loyola of Los Angeles||65-48||Bill Russell 24|
|St. Mary's||82-49||Bill Russell 22|
|UCLA* (NCAA Tournament)||72-61||Gene Brown 23|
|Utah* (NCAA Tournament)||92-77||Bill Russell 27|
|Southern Methodist* (NCAA Tournament)||86-68||Mike Farmer 26|
|Iowa* (NCAA Tournament)||83-71||Bill Russell 26|
*Neutral court games.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR USF REGULARS
*Ineligible for NCAA Tournament as a fifth-year player.
North Carolina (32-0 in 1956-57)
Coach: Frank McGuire (fifth of nine seasons with Tar Heels)
|1956-57 UNC Opponents||Score||Carolina's High Scorer|
|Furman||94-66||Lennie Rosenbluth 47|
|Clemson*||94-75||Pete Brennan 28|
|George Washington||82-55||Lennie Rosenbluth 27|
|at South Carolina||90-86||Tommy Kearns 29|
|Maryland||70-61||Lennie Rosenbluth 26|
|at New York University||64-59||Bob Cunningham 16|
|Dartmouth*||89-61||Lennie Rosenbluth 30|
|Holy Cross*||83-70||Lennie Rosenbluth 23|
|Utah*||97-76||Lennie Rosenbluth 36|
|Duke*||87-71||Lennie Rosenbluth 32|
|Wake Forest*||63-55||Lennie Rosenbluth 18|
|at William & Mary||71-61||Pete Brennan 20|
|Clemson||86-54||Lennie Rosenbluth 34|
|Virginia||102-90||Lennie Rosenbluth 30|
|at North Carolina State||83-57||Lennie Rosenbluth 29|
|at Western Carolina||77-59||Lennie Rosenbluth 26|
|at Maryland||65-61 (2OT)||Lennie Rosenbluth 25|
|Duke||75-73||Lennie Rosenbluth 35|
|at Virginia||68-59||Lennie Rosenbluth 23|
|Wake Forest||72-69||Lennie Rosenbluth 24|
|North Carolina State||86-57||Lennie Rosenbluth 28|
|South Carolina||75-62||Pete Brennan 26|
|at Wake Forest||69-64||Lennie Rosenbluth 30|
|at Duke||86-72||Lennie Rosenbluth 40|
|Clemson* (ACC Tournament)||81-61||Lennie Rosenbluth 45|
|Wake Forest* (ACC Tournament)||61-59||Lennie Rosenbluth 23|
|South Carolina* (ACC Tournament)||95-75||Lennie Rosenbluth 38|
|Yale* (NCAA Tournament)||90-74||Lennie Rosenbluth 29|
|Canisius* (NCAA Tournament)||87-75||Lennie Rosenbluth 39|
|Syracuse* (NCAA Tournament)||67-58||Lennie Rosenbluth 23|
|Michigan State* (NCAA Tournament)||74-70 (3OT)||Lennie Rosenbluth 31|
|Kansas* (NCAA Tournament)||54-53 (3OT)||Lennie Rosenbluth 20|
*Neutral court games.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR NORTH CAROLINA REGULARS
UCLA (30-0 in 1963-64)
Coach: John Wooden (16th of 27 seasons with Bruins)
|1963-64 UCLA Opponents||Score||Bruins High Scorer|
|Brigham Young||113-71||Walt Hazzard 20|
|Butler||80-65||Walt Hazzard 21|
|Kansas State*||78-75||Gail Goodrich 21|
|Kansas*||74-54||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Baylor*||112-61||Walt Hazzard 23|
|Creighton*||95-79||Walt Hazzard 26|
|Yale||95-65||Gail Goodrich 25|
|Michigan||98-80||Gail Goodrich 30|
|Illinois||83-79||Gail Goodrich 21|
|at Washington State||88-83||Gail Goodrich 28|
|at Washington State||121-77||Gail Goodrich 21|
|Southern California||79-59||Walt Hazzard 21|
|Southern California||78-71||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Stanford||84-71||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Stanford*||80-61||Walt Hazzard 31|
|UC Santa Barbara||107-76||Gail Goodrich/Walt Hazzard 21|
|UC Santa Barbara*||87-59||Gail Goodrich 31|
|at California||87-67||Gail Goodrich 26|
|at California||58-56||Walt Hazzard 17|
|Washington||73-58||Walt Hazzard 17|
|Washington||88-60||Gail Goodrich 22|
|at Stanford||100-88||Walt Hazzard 27|
|at Washington||78-64||Keith Erickson/Walt Hazzard 21|
|Washington State||93-56||Walt Hazzard 19|
|California||87-57||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Southern California||91-81||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Seattle* (NCAA Tournament)||95-90||Walt Hazzard 26|
|San Francisco* (NCAA Tournament)||76-72||Walt Hazzard 23|
|Kansas State* (NCAA Tournament)||90-84||Keith Erickson 28|
|Duke* (NCAA Tournament)||98-83||Gail Goodrich 27|
*Neutral court games.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR UCLA REGULARS
UCLA (30-0 in 1966-67)
Coach: John Wooden (19th of 27 seasons with Bruins)
|1966-67 UCLA Opponents||Score||Bruins High Scorer|
|Southern California||105-90||Lew Alcindor 56|
|Duke||88-54||Lew Alcindor/Lucius Allen 19|
|Duke||107-87||Lew Alcindor 38|
|Colorado State||84-74||Lew Alcindor 34|
|Notre Dame||96-67||Lew Alcindor 25|
|Wisconsin||100-56||Lew Alcindor 24|
|Georgia Tech||91-72||Lew Alcindor 18|
|Southern California||107-83||Lew Alcindor 25|
|at Washington State||76-67||Lew Alcindor 28|
|at Washington||83-68||Lew Alcindor 28|
|California||96-78||Lew Alcindor 26|
|Stanford||116-78||Lew Alcindor 37|
|Portland||122-57||Lew Alcindor 27|
|UC Santa Barbara||119-75||Lew Alcindor 37|
|at Loyola of Chicago||82-67||Lew Alcindor 35|
|Illinois*||120-82||Lew Alcindor 45|
|at Southern California||40-35 (OT)||Lew Alcindor 13|
|Oregon State||76-44||Lew Alcindor/Lucius Allen 22|
|Oregon||100-66||Lucius Allen 20|
|at Oregon||34-25||Lew Alcindor 12|
|at Oregon State||72-50||Lew Alcindor 28|
|Washington||71-43||Lew Alcindor 37|
|Washington State||100-78||Lew Alcindor 61|
|at Stanford||75-47||Lew Alcindor 20|
|at California||103-66||Lew Alcindor 30|
|Southern California||83-55||Lew Alcindor 26|
|Wyoming* (NCAA Tournament)||109-60||Lew Alcindor 29|
|Pacific* (NCAA Tournament)||80-64||Lew Alcindor 38|
|Houston* (NCAA Tournament)||73-58||Lynn Shackelford 22|
|Dayton* (NCAA Tournament)||79-64||Lew Alcindor 20|
*Neutral court games.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR UCLA REGULARS
UCLA (30-0 in 1971-72)
Coach: John Wooden (24th of 27 seasons with Bruins)
|1971-72 UCLA Opponents||Score||Bruins High Scorer|
|The Citadel||105-49||Henry Bibby 26|
|Iowa||106-72||Henry Bibby 32|
|Iowa State||110-81||Bill Walton 24|
|Texas A&M||117-53||Bill Walton 23|
|Notre Dame||114-56||Henry Bibby 28|
|Texas Christian||119-81||Bill Walton 31|
|Texas||115-65||Bill Walton 28|
|Ohio State||79-53||Bill Walton 14|
|at Oregon State||78-72||Henry Bibby 17|
|at Oregon||93-68||Bill Walton 30|
|Stanford||118-79||Bill Walton 32|
|California||82-43||Bill Walton 20|
|Santa Clara||92-57||Keith Wilkes 16|
|Denver||108-61||Henry Bibby/Larry Farmer 19|
|at Loyola of Chicago||92-64||Henry Bibby/Bill Walton 18|
|at Notre Dame||57-32||Henry Bibby 15|
|Southern California||81-56||Bill Walton 22|
|Washington State||89-58||Bill Walton 25|
|Washington||109-70||Bill Walton 27|
|at Washington||100-83||Bill Walton 31|
|at Washington State||85-55||Larry Hollyfield/Keith Wilkes 16|
|Oregon||92-70||Bill Walton 37|
|Oregon State||92-72||Bill Walton 26|
|at California||91-71||Bill Walton 24|
|at Stanford||102-73||Greg Lee 16|
|at Southern California||79-66||Bill Walton 20|
|Weber State* (NCAA Tournament)||90-58||Henry Bibby 16|
|Long Beach State* (NCAA Tournament)||73-57||Henry Bibby 23|
|Louisville* (NCAA Tournaqment)||96-77||Bill Walton 23|
|Florida State* (NCAA Tournament)||81-76||Bill Walton 24|
*Neutral court games.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR UCLA REGULARS
UCLA (30-0 in 1972-73)
Coach: John Wooden (25th of 27 seasons with Bruins)
|1972-73 UCLA Opponents||Score||Bruins High Scorer|
|Wisconsin||94-53||Bill Walton 26|
|Bradley||73-38||Bill Walton 16|
|Pacific||81-48||Keith Wilkes 18|
|UC Santa Barbara||98-67||Bill Walton 30|
|Pittsburgh||89-73||Keith Wilkes 20|
|Notre Dame||82-56||Keith Wilkes 18|
|Drake*||85-72||Bill Walton 29|
|Illinois*||71-64||Bill Walton 22|
|Oregon||64-38||Larry Farmer/Keith Wilkes 14|
|Oregon State||87-61||Keith Wilkes 19|
|at Stanford||82-67||Larry Farmer/Larry Hollyfield/Bill Walton 18|
|at California||69-50||Larry Farmer/Keith Wilkes 18|
|San Francisco||92-64||Bill Walton 22|
|Providence||101-77||Larry Farmer 21|
|at Loyola of Chicago||87-73||Bill Walton 32|
|at Notre Dame||82-63||Keith Wilkes 20|
|at Southern California||79-56||Bill Walton 20|
|at Washington State||88-50||Bill Walton 17|
|at Washington||76-67||Bill Walton 29|
|Washington||93-62||Bill Walton 26|
|Washington State||96-64||Bill Walton 29|
|at Oregon||72-61||Keith Wilkes 18|
|at Oregon State||73-67||Bill Walton 21|
|California||90-65||Bill Walton/Keith Wilkes 15|
|Stanford||51-45||Bill Walton 23|
|Southern California||76-56||Bill Walton/Keith Wilkes 17|
|Arizona State (NCAA Tournament)||98-81||Bill Walton 28|
|San Francisco (NCAA Tournament)||54-39||Larry Farmer 13|
|Indiana* (NCAA Tournament)||70-59||Tommy Curtis 22|
|Memphis State* (NCAA Tournament)||87-66||Bill Walton 44|
*Neutral court games.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR UCLA REGULARS
Assists leader: Walton 168.
North Carolina State (27-0 in 1972-73)
Coach: Norman Sloan (seventh of 14 seasons with Wolfpack)
|1972-73 N.C. State Opponents||Score||Wolfpack High Scorer|
|Appalachian State||130-53||David Thompson 33|
|Atlantic Christian||110-40||David Thompson 32|
|Georgia Southern||144-100||David Thompson 40|
|South Florida||125-88||David Thompson 30|
|Wake Forest*||88-83||David Thompson 29|
|North Carolina*||68-61||David Thompson 19|
|Davidson*||103-90||Joe Cafferky 25|
|at Georgia||97-83||David Thompson 26|
|at Virginia||68-61||Monte Towe 17|
|Duke||94-87||Monte Towe/Tom Burleson 20|
|Lehigh||115-53||Tom Burleson 30|
|at Maryland||87-85||David Thompson 37|
|at Clemson||86-76||David Thompson 24|
|at Furman||98-73||David Thompson 27|
|Maryland||89-78||David Thompson 24|
|Virginia||64-59||David Thompson 18|
|North Carolina||76-73||David Thompson 22|
|Clemson*||68-61||David Thompson 30|
|Georgia Tech*||118-94||David Thompson 36|
|East Carolina||105-70||David Thompson 33|
|at Wake Forest||81-59||David Thompson 21|
|at Duke||74-50||David Thompson 31|
|UNC Charlotte||100-64||Tom Burleson 26|
|at North Carolina||82-78||David Thompson 18|
|Wake Forest||100-77||Tom Burleson 27|
|Virginia* (ACC Tournament)||63-51||Tom Burleson/David Thompson 14|
|Maryland* (ACC Tournament)||76-74||Tom Burleson 14|
*Neutral court games.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR N.C. STATE REGULARS
INDIANA (32-0 in 1975-76)
Coach: Bob Knight (fifth of 29 seasons with Hoosiers)
|1975-76 IU Opponents||Score||IU's High Scorer|
|UCLA*||84-64||Scott May 33|
|Florida State*||83-59||Scott May 24|
|Notre Dame||63-60||Scott May 25|
|Kentucky*||77-68 (OT)||Kent Benson/Scott May 27|
|Georgia||93-56||Scott May 18|
|Virginia Tech||101-74||Scott May 27|
|Columbia*||106-63||Kent Benson 15|
|Manhattan*||97-61||Scott May 32|
|at St. John's||76-69||Scott May 29|
|at Ohio State||66-64||Scott May 24|
|Northwestern||78-61||Kent Benson 22|
|at Michigan||80-74||Kent Benson 33|
|at Michigan State||69-57||Kent Benson 23|
|at Illinois||83-55||Scott May 27|
|Purdue||71-67||Scott May 32|
|at Minnesota||85-76||Tom Abernethy 22|
|at Iowa||88-73||Scott May 32|
|Wisconsin||114-61||Scott May 30|
|Michigan||72-67 (OT)||Scott May 27|
|Michigan State||85-70||Kent Benson 38|
|Illinois||58-48||Kent Benson 17|
|at Purdue||74-71||Scott May 26|
|Minnesota||76-64||Tom Abernethy 22|
|Iowa||101-81||Quinn Buckner 24|
|at Wisconsin||96-67||Scott May 41|
|at Northwestern||76-63||Scott May 24|
|Ohio State||96-67||Kent Benson/Scott May 21|
|St. John's* (NCAA Tournament)||90-70||Scott May 33|
|Alabama* (NCAA Tournament)||74-69||Scott May 25|
|Marquette* (NCAA Tournament)||65-56||Kent Benson 18|
|UCLA* (NCAA Tournament)||65-51||Kent Benson 16|
|Michigan* (NCAA Tournament)||86-68||Scott May 26|
*Neutral court games.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS FOR INDIANA REGULARS
Assists leader: Wilkerson 171.
Blocked shots leader: Benson 39.
Steals leader: Buckner 65.
John Groce inherited a gross situation three years ago after two fellow mid-major coaches rejected overtures from Illinois. The Illini are one of the 10 schools with the most Top 20 appearances and aspire to avoid the disarray of the 1970s when they failed to finish in the Top 20 of a final wire-service poll or appear in the NCAA playoffs the entire decade.
There is no question Gross' program is progressing but Illini Nation won't be all it can be unless he fends off Duke (lost Jahlil Okafor this year to Chicago native Mike Krzyzewski) and Kansas (Cliff "Hat Trick" Alexander) for elite in-state recruits. Illini fans are disheartened because close only counts in hand grenades and bombs, horseshoes plus drive-in movies; not recruiting. Former Illini coach Bill Self previously lured Chicago-area All-Americans Sherron Collins and Julian Wright to KU. Additional Windy City regal recruits shunning the Illini since they reached the NCAA title game in 2005 include Jalen Brunson (Villanova), Quinn Cook (Duke), Anthony Davis (Kentucky), Eric Gordon (Indiana) and Derrick Rose (Memphis).
After compiling a losing Big Ten Conference record over the last eight years, it boils down to in-state recruiting. Among the Illinois natives who earned All-American status during the '70s with other universities were DePaul's Mark Aguirre (from Chicago), Minnesota's Jim Brewer (Maywood), Indiana's Quinn Buckner (Dolton), Penn's Corky Calhoun (Waukegan), Illinois State's Doug Collins (Benton), DePaul's Dave Corzine (Arlington Heights), Marquette's Bo Ellis (Chicago), Michigan's Rickey Green (Chicago), Kentucky's Dan Issel (Batavia), Iowa's Ronnie Lester (Chicago), Colorado's Cliff Meely (Chicago), Bradley's Roger Phegley (East Peoria), Kansas' Dave Robisch (Springfield), Marquette's Lloyd Walton (Chicago) and Jerome Whitehead (Waukegan) plus Georgia Tech's Rich Yunkus (Benton). Four of these standouts were All-Americans in the same season - Buckner, Ellis, Green and Walton in 1975-76.
Kansas has been a thorn in the Illini's side for an extended period. Alexander, Collins, Wright, Robisch and current frontcourter Jamari Traylor were joined at KU by the following '70s recruits from Illinois:
- Roger Brown (Chicago) - Leading rebounder for KU's 1971 Final Four squad.
- Seven of top eight scorers for Jayhawks' 1974 Final Four team - Norm Cook (Lincoln/All-Big Eight Conference first-team selection), Dale Greenlee (Rockford), Tom Kivisto (Aurora/all-league first-team selection), Roger Morningstar (Dundee/two-time all-league second-team selection), Tommie Smith (Kewanee), Rick Suttle (East St. Louis/three-time all-league selection) and Dave Taynor (Bethalto).
- Donnie Von Moore (Chicago) - End-of-the-bench forward for 1974 Final Four squad averaged 8.2 ppg, 5.8 rpg and 1.6 bpg the next three seasons.
- Herb Nobles (East St. Louis) - Leading rebounder and second-leading scorer in 1976-77.
Comparable to several decades ago, focusing its recruiting on Chicago won't be a panacea for the Illini. The "audacity-of-hype" truth is that the Windy City might be delusional and won't always supply a Messiah providing the "hope and change" you're seeking. Groce's staff needs to take every back road in the state. After all, Issel and Yunkus were among 22 different major-college All-Americans in less than 30 years to come from Illinois high schools in towns with populations smaller than 20,000. Bigger isn't always better or worth your time and energy. The Illini can't let a player such as Fred VanVleet (Rockford) leave the state and become an All-American at Wichita State.
"Holy shadows of the dead, I am not to blame for your cruel and bitter fate, but the accursed rivalry which brought sister nations and brother people to fight one another. I do not feel happy for this victory of mine. On the contrary, I would be glad, brothers, if I had all of you standing here next to me, since we are united by the same language, the same blood and the same visions." - Alexander the Great
After 105 years steeped in history amid off-the-chart contempt, the rivalry between Kansas and Missouri expired for the foreseeable future when Mizzou departed the Big 12 Conference for the SEC. KU has a commanding edge in nearly every category (winning percentage, victories away from home and close games decided by single digits), but the Tigers have been enough of a tormentor to make the series as energetic and entertaining as you can find anywhere. Their border war stacked right up there with the more nationally-acclaimed "Clash of the Titans" between Duke and North Carolina.
Making about as much sense as Dennis Rodman becoming the de facto U.S. ambassador to North Korea, it was shortsighted of KU and Mizzou to let their rivalry end. They simply join top six conference members DePaul/Illinois, Maryland/Georgetown and Cincinnati/Ohio State as potentially great natural non-league match-ups that their fans can't enjoy.
If bruised egos heal in the near future, perhaps sounder minds will prevail with Mizzou annually opposing KU in Kansas City much like it does in St. Louis against Illinois. But Mizzou can't complain if the Jayhawks continue to act like a jilted lover because the self-centered Tigers fail to oppose competent in-state foes such as Missouri State and Saint Louis.
By almost any measure including Alexander the Great's perspective, KU has a superior program to Mizzou. But Jayhawks coach Bill Self should rein in his rhetoric as the divorce dialogue intensified or at least take a crash course in college basketball history. When comparing the significance of the Kentucky/Louisville rivalry to the termination of KU's home-and-home conference conflicts with the Tigers, Self said: "Well, they've always played every year (out of league). That's all they know."
Well, Self needs to "always know" that UK and Louisville went 61 years from 1923 through 1983 without a regular-season matchup before they came to their senses and saw the light. Speaking of light, KU and Mizzou simply have to shed one lightweight apiece to keep a good thing going for the sport in general and for their fans specifically like the entertaining Philly Big 5. KU shouldn't also deny hoop fans a Top 20 matchup with Wichita State.
By toning down picking on patsies, there is plenty of room on their respective non-league schedules to keep playing each other. Ditto for Indiana and Kentucky plus Memphis and Tennessee resuming their rivalries, which would definitely be among the top 10 such confrontations in the country. If the century-old KU/Mizzou spectacle returns, it could immediately surpass Kentucky/Louisville and go atop the following list of the nation's top 20 non-conference rivalries if only because of longevity:
- Indiana/Notre Dame
- Brigham Young/Utah
- Iowa/Iowa State
- St. Joseph's/Villanova
- Georgia/Georgia Tech
- Florida/Florida State
- Clemson/South Carolina
- New Mexico/New Mexico State
- Utah/Utah State
- La Salle/Villanova
- Florida/Miami (FL)
- Iowa/Northern Iowa
- Colorado/Colorado State
T20. Providence/Rhode Island
Due to voter deficiencies, Georgia State's R.J. Hunter will be fortunate to become an All-American; let alone national player of the year such as last season's recipient (Creighton's Doug McDermott). But coupled with his coach/father Ron, the Hunters already have buttressed their case as one of the all-time top 10 father-son, coach-player combinations. Can they crack the top five?
Consider how far Georgia State has come from a dry spell when the Panthers posted one winning record (12-11 in 1975-76) in a 27-year span from 1963-64 through 1989-90. Following are the all-time Top 10 of sons playing under their dad at the same school:
|Rank||Coach/Father||School(s)||Record||Player/Son||Pos.||Son's Career Summary Under Father|
|1.||Greg McDermott||Creighton||107-38||Doug McDermott||F||Doug was three-time NCAA first-Team All-American from 2011-12 through 2013-14 after originally signing with old MVC rival Northern Iowa. As a sophomore and junior, he was MVC MVP before earning same award when BlueJays moved to the Big East Conference.|
|2.||Press Maravich||Louisiana State||49-35||Pete Maravich||G||Pete, a three-time unanimous NCAA first-team All-American, became the NCAA's career record holder for total points (3,667 in three years from 1967-68 through 1969-70) and scoring average (44.2 ppg). In his senior season, the Tigers had their highest SEC finish (2nd) and only postseason tournament appearance (NIT) in a 24-year span from 1955 through 1978.|
|3.||Wade Houston||Tennessee||60-68||Allan Houston||G||Allan, a four-time All-SEC first-team selection, averaged more than 20 ppg each of his four seasons en route to becoming the Volunteers' all-time leading scorer (2,801 points from 1989-90 through 1992-93). They participated in the NIT in his freshman and junior campaigns.|
|4.||Bill Berry||San Jose State||46-41||Ricky Berry||G-F||Ricky, after playing his freshman season with Oregon State, averaged 21 ppg, 5.6 rpg and 3.2 apg for the Spartans from 1985-86 through 1987-88 en route to becoming their all-time leading scorer (1,767 points). He was a three-time All-Big West Conference first-team selection.|
|5.||Dick Acres||Oral Roberts||47-34||Mark Acres||C||Dick coached his sons (including Jeff) from midway through the 1982-83 campaign through 1984-85. Mark, a three-time All-Midwestern City Conference first-team selection, averaged 18.5 ppg and 9.6 rpg and shot 56.4% from the floor. Mark was a two-time Midwestern City MVP who led the Titans in scoring and rebounding all four seasons. ORU participated in the 1984 NCAA Tournament.|
|6.||Homer Drew||Valparaiso||88-36||Bryce Drew||G||Bryce, who averaged 17.7 ppg, 5.2 apg and 1.5 spg from 1994-95 through 1997-98 en route to becoming the school's all-time leader in scoring and assists, was the Mid-Continent Conference MVP his last two seasons. The Crusaders won the MCC regular-season and league tournament championships all four years.|
|7.||Dick Bennett||Wisconsin-Green Bay||87-34||Tony Bennett||G||Tony, a three-time All-Mid-Continent Conference first-team selection, averaged 19.4 ppg and 5.1 apg from 1988-89 through 1991-92, finishing as UWGB's all-time leading scorer (2,285 points). He holds the NCAA career record for highest three-point field-goal percentage (.497/minimum of 200 made) and won the Frances Pomeroy Award his senior year as the nation's top player shorter than six feet tall. The Phoenix won the 1991 MCC Tournament and 1992 regular-season title.|
|8.||Ron Hunter||Georgia State||TBD||R.J. Hunter||G||R.J. averaged 18.2 ppg and 4.8 rpg in first 2 1/2 seasons with Panthers from 2012-13 to 2014-15.|
|9.||Sonny Allen||SMU/Nevada-Reno||64-48||Billy Allen||G||Billy averaged 13.1 ppg and 8.2 apg in 1981-82 and 1982-83 after transferring from SMU. The two-time All-Big Sky Conference selection set a UNR single-season record with 8.6 apg as a junior when he was a second-team choice before moving up to first-team status the next year. Billy led the SWC in assists as a freshman in 1978-79 (9 apg) and sophomore in 1979-80 (9.1 apg). He also paced the Mustangs in free-throw percentage both years. In his sophomore season, SMU tied its highest win total (16) in a 15-year span from 1967-68 through 1981-82.|
|T10.||Jerry Tarkanian||UNLV||77-19||Danny Tarkanian||G||Danny led the Rebels in assists and steals each of his three seasons from 1981-82 through 1983-84 after transferring from Dixie Junior College (Utah). The All-Pacific Coast Athletic Association second-team selection finished second in the nation with 8.5 apg as a senior. UNLV participated in the NIT in 1982 and NCAA Tournament in 1983 and 1984. The Rebels captured the PCAA regular-season championship in 1983 and 1984.|
|T10.||Fred A. Enke||Arizona||60-18||Fred W. Enke||G||Fred W., a future NFL quarterback, was a three-time All-Border Conference first-team selection from 1945-46 through 1947-48. The Wildcats participated in the 1946 NIT after their first of three consecutive league championships.|
Notre Dame guard Jerian Grant, leading the ACC in scoring, could become only the ninth son of an All-American to receive the same national recognition as his father (Oklahoma All-American forward Harvey Grant in 1987-88).
No father-son combination ever earned All-American status for the same university. Virginia Tech probably should have been the first school in this category but the Hokies didn't pursue the son (Stephen Curry) of their lone NCAA consensus All-American (Dell Curry) in a meaningful fashion, which is a principal reason why they never thrived during Seth Greenberg's coaching stint. Grant's Army could join the following alphabetical list of the first eight father-son tandems in this elite family tree:
|Father||School||A-A Year(s)||Son||School||A-A Years(s)|
|Henry Bibby||UCLA||1972||Mike Bibby||Arizona||1998|
|Dell Curry||Virginia Tech||1986||Stephen Curry||Davidson||2008 and 2009|
|Bob Ferry||St. Louis||1959||Danny Ferry||Duke||1988 and 1989|
|Stan Love||Oregon||1971||Kevin Love||UCLA||2008|
|John Lucas Jr.||Maryland||1974 through 1976||John Lucas III||Oklahoma State||2004|
|Scott May||Indiana||1975 and 1976||Sean May||North Carolina||2005|
|Doc Rivers||Marquette||1982 and 1983||Austin Rivers||Duke||2012|
|Jimmy Walker||Providence||1965 through 1967||Jalen Rose||Michigan||1994|
At least three Heisman Trophy winners in three straight decades - 1940s, 1950s and 1960s - are among the football players who also competed in college basketball. But Florida State's Charlie Ward (1993) is the only such multi-sport athlete in the last 50 years to achieve the feat.
Three recipients in a 10-year span from 1947 through 1956 were from Notre Dame. Following is an alphabetical list of Heisman Trophy winners who played varsity basketball at some point in their college careers:
|Heisman Winner||Year||School||FB Pos.|
|Terry Baker||1962||Oregon State||QB|
|Paul Hornung||1956||Notre Dame||QB|
|Johnny Lattner||1953||Notre Dame||HB|
|Johnny Lujack||1947||Notre Dame||QB|
|Doak Walker||1948||Southern Methodist||HB|
|Charlie Ward||1993||Florida State||QB|
In 1965-66, the best team in the country might have been UCLA's freshman squad. The Bruins' frosh, led by 7-1 Lew Alcindor's 31 points and 21 rebounds, defeated the two-time NCAA champion UCLA varsity, 75-60. The yearlings compiled a 21-0 record, outscoring their opponents 113.2 points per game to 56.6. Starters for what is considered by some as the best freshman team in NCAA history included Alcindor (33.1 ppg and 21.5 rpg), forwards Lynn Shackelford (20.9 ppg and 9.3 rpg) and Kent Taylor (7.2 ppg) and guards Lucius Allen (22.4 ppg and 7.8 rpg) and Kenny Heitz (14.3 ppg).
Freshmen became eligible for varsity competition seven years later, but there are no guarantees despite a recruit's regal high school resume. In fact, UCLA had a couple of the most disappointing classes in memory thus far in the 21st Century. Michigan saw both ends of the spectrum with a couple of its freshman recruiting crops in the 1990s that were highly acclaimed. One lived up to expectations while the other went from feast to famine.
The "Fab Five" in the first half of the decade probably will stand the test of time and earn recognition among the best classes in college basketball history. On the other hand, guard Louis Bullock was all that was left at the conclusion of the Wolverines' promising 1995-96 freshman class that included Tractor Traylor (left early to become an NBA lottery pick) and Albert White (transferred to Missouri where he was the Tigers' leading scorer in 1998-99 with 16.3 ppg). Minus Traylor and White, Michigan posted an anemic 12-19 record in 1998-99 and finished in a tie for ninth place in the Big Ten (5-11).
In the aftermath of Michigan's recruiting hauls, Duke had an amazing series of regal freshman classes. The Blue Devils' 1997-98 freshman crop (William Avery, Shane Battier, Elton Brand and Chris Burgess) dominated the ACC and was well on its way toward challenging Indiana's superb group in the mid-1970s as the premier class of all time until Avery and Brand left school early for the NBA and Burgess transferred to Utah. The splendid original class was eventually regarded as superior to Michigan's "Fab Five" but with only two years intact won't boast the extended excellence to supplant Indiana's brilliant crew that included Quinn Buckner, Scott May and Bobby Wilkerson.
In 1999-00, Duke's stunning freshmen included Carlos Boozer, Mike Dunleavy Jr. and Jason Williams. In 2002-03, the Devils' frosh class included guards Sean Dockery and J.J. Redick plus centers Shavlik Randolph and Shelden Williams. All of these groups were Final Four-bound.
As a means of comparison, the Blue Devils' outstanding class comprised of Mark Alarie, Jay Bilas, Johnny Dawkins and David Henderson embarked with an 11-17 mark in 1982-83 before concluding their collegiate careers with an NCAA single-season standard for victories (37-3 in 1985-86).
Ranking recruiting classes regarding their long-term impact on college basketball is risky business. For instance, does Michigan's Fab Five deserve more acclaim than Butler's mid-major level class that also reached back-to-back NCAA championship games? Where does Kentucky's terrific title trio in 2012 deserve to be ranked insofar as it was around only one year? And what does the future hold for the elite recruiting classes assembled again this season by Kentucky? Each year's UK crop of late immediately goes to being labeled as perhaps the greatest in collegiate history but it will do well to simply be better than four previous Wildcats classes (1978, 1983, 2013 and 2015).
It is a simplistic copout to accept the instant visibility of icon programs and automatically cite them among the most influential in college history. Classes from Alcorn State, Butler, East Tennessee State, San Francisco, Southern Mississippi and Wichita State are mentioned in this appraisal. In an era of "one 'n done" freshmen, extended impact becomes an even more vital factor in separating the premier recruiting classes.
There is little doubt Kentucky's 2012 title team frosh class would have quickly moved up the pecking order if they had chosen to return. It's unlikely the NCAA will tamper with a nation's fascination with freshmen by making them ineligible. Following is CollegeHoopedia.com's view, factoring in length of tenure (undergraduates declaring for the NBA draft), of the premier recruiting crops (excluding junior college signees) since the introduction of freshman eligibility in 1972-73:
1. Indiana (class of '76)
Recruiting Class: Tom Abernethy, Quinn Buckner, Jim Crews, Scott May, Bobby Wilkerson.
Achievements: Last NCAA champion to go undefeated compiled a 63-1 record in last two seasons this class was intact, climaxing a run of four Big Ten titles. Reached 1973 Final Four with freshmen Buckner and Crews as starting guards under coach Bob Knight (May was ineligible as a freshman for academic reasons). Posted an amazing 59-5 conference mark while capturing four consecutive Big Ten titles. Abernethy, Buckner, May and Wilkerson all played at least five seasons in the NBA while Crews went on to coach Evansville and Army for more than 20 seasons
2. Duke (class of '01)
Recruiting Class: William Avery, Shane Battier, Elton Brand, Chris Burgess (transfer/Utah).
Achievements: Won 31 of 32 ACC games in two seasons together before Avery and Brand left early for the NBA draft. NCAA playoff runner-up in 1999 under coach Mike Krzyzewski
3. Georgetown (class of '85)
Recruiting Class: Ralph Dalton, Patrick Ewing, Anthony Jones (transfer/UNLV), Bill Martin.
Achievements: Won NCAA title in 1984, runner-up in 1985 and reached Final Four in 1982. Went 30-7, 22-10, 34-3 and 35-3 under coach John Thompson. The Hoyas' worst Big East record in that span was 11-5 in 1982-83 although their only conference crown was in 1984. Ewing was the only one of the group to play more than three season in the NBA.
4. Florida (class of '08)
Recruiting Class: Corey Brewer, Taurean Green, Al Horford, Joakim Noah.
Achievements: Brewer, Horford and Noah were top nine NBA draft choices as undergraduates after capturing back-to-back NCAA crowns in 2006 and 2007.
5. North Carolina (class of '06)
Recruiting Class: Raymond Felton, Rashad McCants, Sean May, David Noel, Bryon Sanders.
Achievements: Felton, McCants and May earned All-ACC honors in their final seasons as juniors when they captured the NCAA crown before becoming top 14 NBA draft choices.
6. Kansas (class of '03)
Recruiting Class: Nick Collison, Drew Gooden, Kirk Hinrich.
Achievements: Collison, Gooden and Hinrich each became an NBA lottery pick. After Gooden left early for the NBA draft, Collison and Hinrich were All-Americans in 2003 when the Jayhawks finished NCAA Tournament runner-up under coach Roy Williams. KU went unbeaten in the Big 12 Conference in 2002.
7. Duke (class of '03)
Recruiting Class: Carlos Boozer, Mike Dunleavy Jr., Jason Williams.
Achievements: Might have been the school's best if any of them had exercised all of their eligibility similar to teammate Shane Battier. Reached NCAA playoff final in 1999 and 2001 under coach Mike Krzyzewski.
8. Michigan (class of '95)
Recruiting Class: Juwan Howard, Ray Jackson, Jimmy King, Jalen Rose, Chris Webber.
Achievements: NCAA Tournament runner-up in 1992 (25-9) and 1993 (31-5) as freshman and sophomore starters. Howard, Rose and Webber became NBA first-round draft choices as undergraduates and each played more than 12 years in the league. Principal drawback is that none of the "Fab Five" was a member of a Big Ten Conference title team under coach Steve Fisher.
9. North Carolina (class of '10)
Recruiting Class: Wayne Ellington, Ty Lawson, Alec Stephenson (transfer/Southern California), Deon Thompson, Brandan Wright.
Achievements: Wright was a "one 'n done" recruit, but core of group cruised to 2009 NCAA crown by winning their playoff games by an average of 20.2 points.
10. Notre Dame (class of '81)
Recruiting Class: Tracy Jackson, Gilbert Salinas, Kelly Tripucka, Stan Wilcox, Orlando Woolridge.
Achievements: Final Four participant in 1978 and Midwest Regional runner-up in '79. Irish went 23-8, 24-6, 22-6 and 23-6 under coach Digger Phelps. Jackson, Tripucka and Woolridge were its top three scorers each of their last three seasons. Tripucka (26.5 ppg/15.3) and Woolridge (25.1/10.6) had long NBA careers where they flourished as scorers, posting a pro career-high scoring average significantly higher than their college career mark.
11. Louisville (class of '82)
Recruiting Class: Wiley Brown, Jerry Eaves, Scooter McCray, Derek Smith, Pancho Wright.
Achievements: Won NCAA title in 1980 with Brown, Eaves and Smith starting while McCray was sidelined with a knee injury. Reached the 1982 Final Four under coach Denny Crum. Went 24-8, 33-3, 21-9 and 23-10 with Metro Conference crowns the first three years.
12. Kentucky (class of '15)
Recruiting Class: Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Marquis Teague, Kyle Wiltjer (transfer/Gonzaga).
Achievements: Undefeated SEC worksheet before capturing an NCAA title in their lone season together. Outside marksman Wiltjer was the only one not to declare for the NBA draft after their 38-2 freshman campaign under coach John Calipari.
13. North Carolina (class of '97)
Recruiting Class: Guy McInnis, Jerry Stackhouse, Rasheed Wallace, Serge Zwikker.
Achievements: Zwikker was the only Tar Heels representative for each of their three 28-win campaigns in this four-year span under coach Dean Smith.
14. Kentucky (class of '83)
Recruiting Class: Sam Bowie, Derrick Hord, Charles Hunt, Dirk Minniefield.
Achievements: Oft-injured Bowie played five years, reaching Final Four in 1984. Original class had respective records of 29-6, 22-6, 22-8 and 23-8, but never advanced beyond second game of NCAA playoffs. Captured three SEC championships in that span under coach Joe B. Hall.
15. UCLA (class of '77)
Recruiting Class: Marques Johnson, Wilbert Olinde, Gavin Smith (transfer/Hawaii), Jim Spillane, Richard Washington.
Achievements: Won [John Wooden's](coaches/john-wooden) final NCAA title in 1975. Washington left for the NBA a year early. Bruins went 26-4, 28-3, 28-4 and 25-4 with four Pacific-8 Conference crowns. Reached Final Four in '76 under coach Gene Bartow.
16. Ohio State (class of '10)
Recruiting Class: Mike Conley Jr., Daequan Cook, David Lighty, Greg Oden.
Achievements: Known as the "Thad Five" (when adding juco recruit Othello Hunter), the Buckeyes compiled a 35-4 as NCAA Tournament runner-up in 2007. Oden and Conley were top four NBA draft choices following freshman campaign.
17. North Carolina (class of '77)
Recruiting Class: Bruce Buckley, Walter Davis, John Kuester, Tom LaGarde.
Achievements: Lost 1977 NCAA playoff final (28-5 record) after posting similar marks (composite of 70-18) the previous three years. Captured ACC regular-season championships their last two seasons under coach Dean Smith.
18. North Carolina (class of '94)
Recruiting Class: Eric Montross, Derrick Phelps, Brian Reese, Clifford Rozier (transfer/Louisville), Pat Sullivan.
Achievements: Won NCAA title in 1993 after reaching 1991 Final Four as freshmen. Compiled records of 29-6, 23-10, 34-4 and 28-7 under coach Dean Smith. Only ACC regular-season championship was in 1993.
19. Illinois (class of '06)
Recruiting Class: James Augustine, Dee Brown, Deron Williams, Kyle Wilson (transfer/Wichita State).
Achievements: Bill Self's recruits became NCAA Tournament runner-up in 2005 under coach Bruce Weber.
20. Kentucky (class of '13)
Recruiting Class: Eric Bledsoe, DeMarcus Cousins, Daniel Orton, John Wall.
Achievements: Regional runner-up after winning SEC regular-season and league tournament titles in 2010 in their lone season together. All four recruits became NBA first-round draft choices.
21. Michigan State (class of '81)
Recruiting Class: Mike Brkovich, Magic Johnson, Rick Kaye, Jay Vincent.
Achievements: Recovered from embarrassing 18-point defeat to league cellar dweller Northwestern to win 1979 NCAA championship under coach Jud Heathcote with an average victory margin of 20.8 points. Went 25-5 and 26-6 and captured Big Ten titles in Johnson's two seasons before posting losing records (12-15 and 13-14) after he turned pro early.
22. Duke (class of '86)
Recruiting Class: Mark Alarie, Jay Bilas, Johnny Dawkins, David Henderson.
Achievements: Runner-up in 1986 NCAA playoffs with an NCAA-record 37-3 mark after going 24-10 and 23-8 the previous two years following an 11-17 worksheet as freshmen under coach Mike Krzyzewski. Senior season accounted for the group's lone ACC regular-season championship.
23. San Francisco (class of '79)
Recruiting Class: Winford Boynes, Bill Cartwright, Erik Gilberg, Raymond Hamilton (left after two seasons), James Hardy.
Achievements: Went 22-8, 29-2, 22-5 and 22-7 with WCAC championships the last three years. Boynes and Hardy were among the top 13 NBA draft picks after leaving school following their junior season when Dan Belluomini succeeded Bob Gaillard as coach. Cartwright was the third selection overall the next year.
24. Duke (class of '06)
Recruiting Class: Sean Dockery, Lee Melchionni, Shavlik Randolph, J.J. Redick, Shelden Williams.
Achievements: Three seasons with at least 28 victories as All-Americans Redick and Williams exercised all of their collegiate eligibility. Can't be ranked ahead of Michigan's Fab Five because they never reached a Final Four.
25. Kansas (class of '09)
Recruiting Class: Mario Chalmers, Micah Downs (transfer/Gonzaga), Brandon Rush, Julian Wright.
Achievements: Wright left school early for the NBA prior to KU's NCAA title in 2008. None of group was around for the 2008-09 campaign.
26. Syracuse (class of '06)
Recruiting Class: Carmelo Anthony, Billy Edelin, Gerry McNamara.
Achievements: Anthony, the 2003 Final Four MOP, led the champion Orange in scoring in five of its six playoff games. McNamara was Big East Conference Tournament MVP as a senior.
27. Connecticut (class of '07)
Recruiting Class: Josh Boone, Charlie Villanueva, Marcus Williams.
Achievements: Won 2004 NCAA title before each of them left school early for the NBA the next two years.
28. Kansas (class of '05)
Recruiting Class: Keith Langford, Michael Lee, Aaron Miles, Wayne Simien.
Achievements: Splitting time between coaches Roy Williams and Bill Self, this quartet combined for nearly 5,100 points.
29. Marquette (class of '09)
Recruiting Class: Dominic James, Wesley Matthews, Jerel McNeal.
Achievements: Recruited by Tom Crean and playing senior season under Buzz Williams, they combined for more than 5,400 points in compiling four 20-win seasons.
30. Arizona (class of '76)
Recruiting Class: Al Fleming, John Irving (transfer/Hofstra), Eric Money, Coniel Norman, Jim Rappis.
Achievements: Overshadowed by UCLA, UA's "Kiddie Korps" started off 16-10 before members of the original group went 19-7, 22-7 and 24-9 under coach Fred Snowden. Norman averaged 23.9 ppg and Money averaged 18.5 ppg before they turned pro after two seasons. Irving played one season with the Wildcats before transferring to Hofstra, where he led the nation in rebounding in 1975. Fleming became the school's all-time leading rebounder.
31. Purdue (class of '88)
Recruiting Class: Jeff Arnold, Troy Lewis, Todd Mitchell, Dave Stack, Everette Stephens.
Achievements: "The Three Amigos" (Lewis, Mitchell and Stephens) were instrumental in helping the Boilermakers compile a four-year record of 96-28 (.774), including a glittering 29-4 mark as seniors under coach Gene Keady. Lewis and Mitchell still rank among the school's all-time top 10 scorers. Group captured Big Ten Conference titles their last two seasons together. Stephens went on to have the most NBA experience with 38 games.
32. Wichita State (class of '83)
Recruiting Class: Antoine Carr, James Gibbs, Ozell Jones (transfer/Cal State Fullerton), Cliff Levingston.
Achievements: Posted marks of 17-12, 26-7, 23-6 and 25-3 under coach Gene Smithson. Group is somewhat overlooked because the school was on NCAA probation in 1982 and 1983. Levingston left after his junior year. Captured Missouri Valley Conference regular-season championships in 1981 and 1983. Jones played in the NBA with Carr and Levingston.
33. North Carolina (class of '99)
Recruiting Class: Vince Carter, Antawn Jamison, Ademola Okulaja.
Achievements: Coach Dean Smith must have been frustrated in his last two seasons that teams with talents such as Carter and Jamison lost a total of 18 games in 1995-96 and 1996-97.
34. Arizona (class of '05)
Recruiting Class: Will Bynum (transfer/Georgia Tech), Isaiah Fox, Channing Frye, Dennis Latimore (transfer/Notre Dame), Salim Stoudamire.
Achievements: Might have ranked higher if they didn't go through the turmoil of coach Lute Olson's swan song.
35. Kentucky (class of '78)
Recruiting Class: Jack Givens, Dan Hall (transfer/Marshall), James Lee, Mike Phillips, Rick Robey.
Achievements: Freshmen on UK's national runner-up in 1975. Givens (Final Four MOP), Lee, Phillips and Robey represented four of the Wildcats' top five scorers for the Wildcats' 1978 NCAA titlist under coach Joe B. Hall. UK had to settle for participating in the 1976 NIT when Robey missed more than half of the season because of a knee injury.
36. Kansas State (class of '11)
Recruiting Class: Ron Anderson Jr. (transfer/South Florida), Michael Beasley, Fred Brown, Jacob Pullen, Dominique Sutton (transfer/North Carolina Central), Bill Walker.
Achievements: Notched a 21-12 record in their only season together as Beasley and Walker departed for the NBA after freshman campaign.
37. Maryland (class of '81)
Recruiting Class: Ernest Graham, Albert King, Greg Manning.
Achievements: Graham, King and Manning all finished their careers with more than 1,500 points. The Terrapins went 15-13, 19-11, 24-7 (won 1980 ACC regular-season title) and 21-10 under coach Lefty Driesell.
38. Pittsburgh (class of '91)
Recruiting Class: Bobby Martin, Jason Matthews, Sean Miller (RS in 1990), Darelle Porter, Brian Shorter (Prop 48).
Achievements: All five players became 1,000-point scorers in their careers. The Panthers went 24-7 with a Big East Conference title in 1987-88 when they were freshmen before struggling the next couple of seasons under coach Paul Evans.
39. UCLA (class of '83)
Recruiting Class: Darren Daye, Rod Foster, Michael Holton, Cliff Pruitt (transfer/UAB).
Achievements: NCAA Tournament runner-up in 1980 as freshmen under coach Larry Brown. Won Pacific-10 title in '83 under Brown's successor (Larry Farmer). Compiled records of 22-10, 20-7, 21-6 and 23-6.
40. Georgia (class of '83)
Recruiting Class: Terry Fair, Lamar Heard, Dominique Wilkins.
Achievements: The Bulldogs averaged 19 victories annually from 1979-80 through 1982-83 after winning more than 14 games only once the previous 29 seasons.
(Underrated classes that didn't generate the headlines they deserved.)
Alcorn State (class of '85)
Recruiting Class: Eddie Archer, Aaron Brandon, Tommy Collier, Michael Phelps.
Achievements: Archer, Brandon, Collier and Phelps all finished their careers with more than 1,200 points. The Braves won three SWAC championships in four years from 1982 through 1985 under coach Davey Whitney, winning NCAA playoff games in 1983 and 1984 when they were eliminated by Georgetown and Kansas by a total of six points.
Butler (class of '12)
Recruiting Class: Gordon Hayward, Shelvin Mack, Ronald Nored, Chase Stigall (redshirt).
Achievements: Hayward nearly hit a game-winning half-court shot in 2010 NCAA title contest. Mack and Nored appeared in back-to-back NCAA championship games. Stigall went on to become one of the Bulldogs' top three-point shooters.
East Tennessee State (class of '91)
Recruiting Class: Greg Dennis, Major Geer, Keith Jennings, Alvin West.
Achievements: All four players became 1,000-point scorers in their careers. East Tennessee State coasted to three consecutive Southern Conference Tournament titles from 1989 through 1991 under coaches Les Robinson and Alan LeForce.
Illinois (class of '86)
Recruiting Class: Doug Altenberger, Bruce Douglas, Scott Meents, Efrem Winters, Reggie Woodward.
Achievements: Illini won more than 20 games four consecutive campaigns under coach Lou Henson.
Indiana (class of '93)
Recruiting Class: Calbert Cheaney, Lawrence Funderburke (transfer/Ohio State), Greg Graham, Pat Graham, Chris Lawson (transfer/Vanderbilt), Todd Leary, Chris Reynolds.
Achievements: Reached 1992 Final Four en route to compiling 105-27 record. Cheaney became IU's all-time leading scorer.
Iowa (class of '89)
Recruiting Class: B.J. Armstrong, Ed Horton, Les Jepsen (freshman redshirt), Roy Marble.
Achievements: George Raveling's final recruiting class with the Hawkeyes (including J.C. signee Kevin Gamble) all played in the NBA after helping Tom Davis capture national coach of the year acclaim in 1986-87.
Michigan State (class of '92)
Recruiting Class: Parish Hickman (transfer/Liberty), Mark Montgomery, Mike Peplowski (freshman redshirt), Matt Steigenga.
Achievements: Coming off back-to-back losing campaigns under coach Jud Heathcote, the Spartans averaged almost 22 wins annually the next four seasons from 1988-89 through 1991-92.
North Carolina (class of '69)
Recruiting Class: Jim Bostick (transfer/Auburn), Joe Brown, Bill Bunting, Rusty Clark, Dick Grubar, Gerald Tuttle.
Achievements: In three years of varsity competition (45-6 record against ACC foes and 81-15 overall), this group coached by Dean Smith became the first to finish No. 1 in the regular season, win the ACC Tournament and advance to the Final Four each year.
Ohio State (class of '81)
Recruiting Class: Marquis Miller, Kenny Page (transfer/New Mexico), Todd Penn, Carter Scott, Jim Smith, Herb Williams. Achievements: Eldon Miller, Fred Taylor's coaching successor, returned the Buckeyes to national postseason competition with three four-year starters (Scott, Smith and Williams). Page, after starting most of his freshman season with OSU, twice ranked among the nation's top 11 scorers with the Lobos.
Southern California (class of '89)
Recruiting Class: Jeff Connelly (transfer/Santa Clara), Hank Gathers (transfer/Loyola Marymount), Bo Kimble (transfer/Loyola Marymount), Tom Lewis (transfer/Pepperdine).
Achievements: The nucleus of USC's class, recruited by Stan Morrison, left to become stars in the West Coast Conference after a modest freshman season (11-17) when George Raveling arrived as coach.
Southern Mississippi (class of '88)
Recruiting Class: Casey Fisher, Derrick Hamilton, Randolph Keys, John White.
Achievements: Keys, Fisher, Hamilton and White all finished their careers with more than 1,300 points. The Golden Eagles, overshadowed in the Metro Conference by Louisville, won the 1987 NIT under coach M.K. Turk when each of the quartet scored in double digits.
UNLV (class of '77)
Recruiting Class: Lewis Brown, Glen Gondrezick, Eddie Owens, Jackie Robinson.
Achievements: Core of freshmen, supplemented by JC signee Ricky Sobers first two seasons, wound up in 1977 Final Four under coach Jerry Tarkanian.
Utah (class of '81)
Recruiting Class: Karl Bankowski, Tom Chambers, Scott Martin, Danny Vranes.
Achievements: Formidable frontcourt featuring Bankowski/Chambers/Vranes helped enable Martin to pace the Utes in assists three successive seasons under coach Jerry Pimm.
Wake Forest (class of '82)
Recruiting Class: Mike Helms, Jim Johnstone, Guy Morgan, Alvis Rogers (RS in 1982).
Achievements: All four players finished their careers with more than 1,100 points under coach Carl Tacy. Morgan, Rogers and Johnstone each grabbed more than 550 rebounds. The Demon Deacons posted back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time in school history (22-7 in 1980-81 and 21-9 in 1981-82 when they finished both years in third place in the ACC).
Any player worth his sneakers seeks to compete against quality, not inferior, opponents with something such as bragging rights at stake rather than devouring cupcakes. LSU refrains from opposing Tulane in recent years but one of the greatest freshman debuts in college annals took place when Tigers forward Rudy Macklin grabbed a school-record 32 rebounds against the Green Wave to open the 1976-77 campaign. How many comparable splendid performances never had a chance to unfold on the court? Meanwhile, how many power-player schools torture us with age-old, one-sided arguments flapping their self-serving jaws as much as aging witch-hunt Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.-D) via aiding-and-abetting-the-enemy public report about the CIA?
Isn't this supposed to be the era for putting an end to bullying unless you boast the guts of Hollywood hacks from Sony Pictures pulling the plug on movie when intimidated by Commie-hacking North Korea? The hoop haughtiness of power schools denying fans stimulating non-league games isn't a new phenomenon. For instance, LSU avoided potentially attractive in-state assignments for decades by never opposing McNeese State's Joe Dumars, Tulane's Jerald Honeycutt, New Orleans' Ervin Johnson, Louisiana Tech's Karl Malone, Northeast Louisiana's Calvin Natt, Centenary's Robert Parish and Southwestern Louisiana's Kevin Brooks, Bo Lamar and Andrew Toney. Similarly, North Carolina shunned Davidson first- and second-team All-Americans Stephen Curry, Mike Maloy and Dick Snyder during the regular season. The Tar Heels did defeat Davidson in exciting back-to-back East Regional finals by a total of six points in 1968 and 1969 when Maloy averaged 21.5 ppg and 13 rpg.
Don't we deserve to see national players of the year such as Indiana State's Larry Bird (never opposed Indiana), Princeton's Bill Bradley (Seton Hall), La Salle's Tom Gola (Villanova), Cincinnati's Kenyon Martin (Ohio State), Cincinnati's Oscar Robertson (Ohio State), Navy's David Robinson (Georgetown and Maryland), Xavier's David West (Ohio State) and Bradley's Hersey Hawkins (Illinois) strut their stuff in regular-season contests against nearby prominent programs? The Terrapins only met "The Admiral" upon being forced to compete in the second round of 1985 Southeast Regional when Robinson contributed game-high figures in scoring, rebounding and blocks. Unbelievably, more than 30 All-Americans from Ohio colleges in the last 60 years never had an opportunity to oppose Ohio State during the regular season (including small-school sensation Bevo Francis of Rio Grande).
Elsewhere, a few national postseason contests created confrontations between in-state rivals that should have occurred in regular-season competition. But the premier mid-major player being shunned this campaign by nearby opponents probably is Georgia State's R.G. Hunter, who won't be allowed to compete against Georgia and Georgia Tech. The following mid-major/non-power league All-Americans specifically and fans generally were shortchanged during the regular season by smug in-state schools since the accepted modern era of basketball commenced in the early 1950s:
"Bullying builds character like nuclear waste creates superheroes. It's a rare occurrence and often does much more damage than endowment." - Zack W. Van
When big bullies are struck, they usually take their ball and go home. Why do so few power conference members play at in-state mid-major schools or even oppose them on a neutral court during the regular season? Why can't more big-name universities resemble Villanova with its longstanding tradition of competing in the Philly Big 5 honing the Wildcats' competitive edge for conference competition? How lame would the non-league slates be if not for ACC/Big Ten and Big 12/SEC made-for-ESPN extravaganzas?
In-state games against natural rivals, wherever they're played, are more revealing than most of the incessant mismatches in pre-conference competition. For instance, we've already got a clear picture that Virginia will be a power in the ACC again this season after the Cavaliers exhibited enough moxie to compete at VCU and win handily. Want to bet whether Boston College will be significantly improved from a year ago after the Eagles displayed sufficient basketballs despite a defeat against Massachusetts?
Elsewhere, power league members probably not bound for deep runs in postseason play, if advancing that far at all, after falling short at home or with home-state advantage against out-of-state low-majors include Arizona State (Lehigh), Auburn (Coastal Carolina), DePaul (Lehigh), Florida State (Northeastern), Georgia Tech (USC Upstate), Indiana (Eastern Washington), Kansas State (Texas Southern), Marquette (Nebraska-Omaha), Memphis (Stephen F. Austin), Miami FL (Eastern Kentucky and Green Bay), Michigan (NJIT), Michigan State (Texas Southern), Ole Miss (Charleston Southern), Mississippi State (Arkansas State and USC Upstate), Nebraska (Incarnate Word), North Carolina State (Wofford), Northwestern (Central Michigan), Purdue (North Florida and Gardner-Webb), Rutgers (Saint Francis PA), South Carolina (Akron), USC (Portland State and Army), Virginia Tech (Appalachian State), Wake Forest (Iona and Delaware State), Washington (Stony Brook) and Washington State (Idaho). What would the margin of defeat have been if the big boys had the intestinal fortitude to meet these mid-level opponents on the road?
Non-league schedules would be significantly more entertaining if skittish power league members weren't so condescending and be willing to oppose competent in-state low-majors such as Connecticut although the Huskies succumbed against visiting Yale. Ditto California (Cal State-Bakersfield), Clemson (Winthrop), Michigan (Eastern Michigan), Missouri (UMKC), Providence (Brown), Rutgers (Saint Peter's) and Virginia Tech (Radford) in their home-court setbacks. Instead of meeting natural rival Davids on the road to brace for conference play, they frequently tuck tail and run after checking out the following results thus far this century. The scores are sobering reminders for Goliaths venturing away from Philistine the reasons why haughty "big boys" frequently strive to only stay home and pick on out-of-state patsies to pad their records:
Gonzaga 81, Washington State 66
Northern Iowa 56, Iowa 44
UC Santa Barbara 72, California 65
George Washington 77, Maryland 75
Gonzaga 90, Washington State 74
Harvard 73, Boston College 58
Illinois State 69, DePaul 64
Long Beach State 72, Southern California 71
Southern Methodist 55, Texas A&M 52 (at Corpus Christi)
Southern Methodist 69, Texas Christian 61
Virginia Commonwealth 82, Virginia Tech 52
Brown 69, Providence 68
Butler 88, Indiana 86 (OT)
Coastal Carolina 69, Clemson 46
Florida Gulf Coast 63, Miami (Fla.) 51
Green Bay 49, Marquette 47
La Salle 82, Penn State 57
La Salle 77, Villanova 74 (OT)
Middle Tennessee 56, Vanderbilt 52
Old Dominion 63, Virginia 61
Cal Poly 42, Southern California 36
Colorado State 65, Colorado 64
Creighton 76, Nebraska 66
Drake 74, Iowa State 65
Holy Cross 86, Boston College 64
Northern Iowa 80, Iowa 60
Saint Joseph's 65, Penn State 47
Saint Joseph's 74, Villanova 58
Southern Mississippi 86, Mississippi 82
Temple 78, Villanova 67
Xavier 76, Cincinnati 53
Central Florida 57, Florida 54
Central Florida 84, Miami (Fla.) 78
Central Florida 65, South Florida 59
Florida Atlantic 50, South Florida 42
Fordham 84, St. John's 81
Furman 91, South Carolina 75
Kennesaw State 80, Georgia Tech 63
Marshall 75, West Virginia 71
UNC Wilmington 81, Wake Forest 69
North Texas 92, Texas Tech 83 (OT)
Northern Iowa 60, Iowa State 54
Princeton 78, Rutgers 73 (OT)
Colorado State 77, Colorado 62
Creighton 67, Nebraska 61
Green Bay 88, Wisconsin 84 (OT)
Long Beach State 79, UCLA 68
Northern Iowa 67, Iowa 50
Portland State 88, Oregon 81
Rhode Island 86, Providence 82
Temple 45, Penn State 42
Temple 75, Villanova 65
Tulsa 86, Oklahoma State 65
Wofford 68, South Carolina 61
Xavier 83, Cincinnati 79 (2OT)
College of Charleston 82, South Carolina 80 (OT)
Davidson 72, North Carolina State 67
Drake 60, Iowa 43
Lamar 85, Texas Tech 79
Southern Mississippi 78, Mississippi 59
Texas-El Paso 96, Texas Tech 78
Western Kentucky 68, Louisville 54
Charlotte 63, Wake Forest 59
Creighton 74, Nebraska 62
Drake 79, Iowa State 44
East Carolina 75, North Carolina State 69
Old Dominion 72, Virginia Tech 69
Rhode Island 77, Providence 60
Richmond 52, Virginia Tech 49
Saint Joseph's 79, Penn State 67
Sam Houston State 56, Texas Tech 54
Tulane 68, Louisiana State 63
Xavier 64, Cincinnati 59
Bradley 78, DePaul 58
Butler 60, Indiana 55
Butler 71, Notre Dame 69
Drake 75, Iowa 59
Gonzaga 97, Washington 77
Indiana State 89, Purdue 70
Northern Iowa 70, Iowa State 57
Ohio University 79, Cincinnati 66
UC Davis 64, Stanford 58
Colorado State 83, Colorado 82
Creighton 70, Nebraska 44
Evansville 75, Purdue 69
George Washington 78, Maryland 70
Gonzaga 67, Washington State 53
Indiana State 72, Indiana 67
Marshall 58, West Virginia 52
Northern Iowa 67, Iowa 63 (OT)
Old Dominion 58, Virginia Tech 55
Portland 80, Oregon 72
Rhode Island 77, Providence 69
Xavier 73, Cincinnati 71 (OT)
Bradley 63, DePaul 53
George Washington 101, Maryland 92
Gonzaga 99, Washington 87
Marshall 59, West Virginia 55
Northern Iowa 99, Iowa State 82
Santa Clara 86, Stanford 76
Temple 53, Villanova 52
Virginia Military 72, Virginia Tech 68
Creighton 61, Nebraska 54
Gonzaga 95, Washington State 58
Illinois-Chicago 90, Northwestern 71
Northern Iowa 77, Iowa 66
North Texas 73, Baylor 69
Rhode Island 89, Providence 79
Temple 67, Penn State 56
Xavier 71, Cincinnati 69
Dayton 75, Cincinnati 69
Florida Atlantic 74, Miami (Fla.) 73
Gonzaga 95, Washington 89 (OT)
Holy Cross 71, Boston College 70
Penn 62, Penn State 37
Penn 72, Villanova 58
Saint Joseph's 92, Villanova 75
William & Mary 60, Virginia Tech 52
Butler 66, Indiana 64
Creighton 76, Nebraska 70
Drake 72, Iowa State 58
Fresno State 65, Southern California 58
Georgia State 83, Georgia 78
Gonzaga 67, Washington State 44
Marshall 81, West Virginia 79 (OT)
Northern Iowa 78, Iowa 76
Old Dominion 55, Virginia Tech 46
Penn 75, Villanova 74
Pepperdine 78, Southern California 77
Portland 79, Oregon 78
Rice 75, Baylor 60
Temple 75, Penn State 63
Temple 63, Villanova 57
Texas-Pan American 72, Baylor 66
UC Irvine 56, California 52
Duquesne 71, Pittsburgh 70
Fordham 68, St. John's 67
Gonzaga 86, Washington 74
Indiana State 59, Indiana 58
Oakland 97, Michigan 90
Wichita State 76, Kansas State 66
Colorado State 79, Colorado 57
Creighton 89, Nebraska 72
Drake 48, Iowa State 44
George Washington 74, Maryland 69
Gonzaga 76, Washington 66
Gonzaga 73, Washington State 63
Long Beach State 76, Southern California 66
North Texas 91, Texas A&M 88
Saint Louis 75, Missouri 72
Temple 69, Villanova 66
Xavier 66, Cincinnati 64
"We could never learn to be brave and patient if there were only joy in the world." - Helen Keller
Did you know coaching legend John Wooden won a grand total of one NCAA playoff game in his first 13 seasons with UCLA before capturing 10 national titles in 12 years from 1964 through 1975? Although Helen Keller wasn't an athlete, she could even see that exercising some patience clearly paid dividends for the Bruins.
A significant number of pensive pilots are on the precipice of hearing rumblings about them receiving walking papers from struggling schools. Prior to dishing out a pink slip, the institutions need to reflect a moment on the following alphabetical list of individuals such as Dan Monson (moved atop Long Beach State's career list earlier this season) who didn't get off to roaring starts with major colleges but withstood the test of time and became their all-time winningest coach:
|All-Time Winningest Coach||School||Summary of Shaky Start at College|
|Dana Altman||Creighton||Failed to post winning season record until fourth year (1997-98).|
|Randy Bennett||Saint Mary's||Total of 11 games below .500 through first two seasons (2001-02 and 2002-03).|
|Bill Bibb||Mercer||Total of 16 games below .500 in first three seasons (1974-75 through 1976-77).|
|George Blaney||Holy Cross||Total of 18 games below .500 in first two seasons (1972-73 and 1973-74).|
|Buster Brannon||Texas Christian||Total of 14 games below .500 in first two seasons (1948-49 and 1949-50).|
|Tom Brennan||Vermont||Total of 54 games below .500 overall and 36 below in ECAC North Atlantic Conference competition in first three seasons (1986-87 through 1988-89).|
|Dale Brown||Louisiana State||Overall losing record through first five seasons (1972-73 through 1976-77).|
|Jim Calhoun||Connecticut||Total of 24 games below .500 in Big East competition in first three seasons (1986-87 through 1988-89).|
|Bobby Cremins||Georgia Tech||Total of 16 games below .500 in ACC competition in first three seasons (1981-82 through 1983-84).|
|Billy Donovan||Florida||Failed to post winning season record until third year (1998-99).|
|Pat Douglass||UC Irvine||Total of 23 games below .500 in first two seasons (1997-98 and 1998-99).|
|Homer Drew||Valparaiso||Total of 67 games below .500 in first five seasons (1988-89 through 1992-93).|
|Scott Drew||Baylor||Total of 40 games below .500 in Big 12 Conference competition in first four seasons (2003-04 through 2006-07).|
|Fran Dunphy||Penn||Failed to post winning season record until third year (1991-92).|
|Cliff Ellis||Clemson||Total of 12 games below .500 in ACC competition through first two seasons (1984-85 and 1985-86).|
|Murray Greason||Wake Forest||Total of 11 games below .500 in first three seasons (1933-34 through 1935-36).|
|Doc Hayes||Southern Methodist||Four losing records in first six seasons (1947-48 through 1952-53.|
|Lou Henson||Illinois||Overall losing record through first three seasons (1975-76 through 1977-78).|
|Terry Holland||Virginia||Breakeven record overall and 16 games below .500 in ACC competition through first three seasons (1974-75 through 1976-77).|
|George Ireland||Loyola Chicago||Overall losing record through first six seasons (1951-52 through 1956-57).|
|Doggie Julian||Dartmouth||Total of 30 games below .500 through first three seasons (1950-51 through 1952-53).|
|Mike Krzyzewski||Duke||Overall losing record through first three seasons (1980-81 through 1982-83).|
|Guy Lewis||Houston||Total of 14 games below .500 overall and in MVC competition through first four seasons (1956-57 through 1959-60).|
|Eddie McCarter||Texas-Arlington||Six losing records in first seven seasons (1992-93 through 1998-99).|
|Al McGuire||Marquette||Total of eight games below .500 in first two seasons (1964-65 and 1965-66).|
|Frank McGuire||South Carolina||Total of 13 games below .500 in first two seasons (1964-65 and 1965-66).|
|Bob McKillop||Davidson||Failed to post winning season record until fifth year (1993-94).|
|Eldon Miller||Northern Iowa||Total of 10 games below .500 through first two seasons (1986-87 and 1987-88).|
|Ralph Miller||Wichita||Total of three games below .500 in first two seasons (1951-52 and 1952-53).|
|Dan Monson||Long Beach State||Total of 18 games below .500 overall and losing record in Big West Conference competition in first three seasons (2007-08 through 2009-10).|
|Danny Nee||Nebraska||Total of 20 games below .500 in Big Eight Conference competition in first four seasons (1986-87 through 1989-90).|
|Fran O'Hanlon||Lafayette||Total of 19 games below .500 in first two seasons (1995-96 and 1996-97).|
|Johnny Orr||Iowa State||Failed to post winning season record until fourth year (1983-84).|
|Nolan Richardson||Arkansas||Total of eight games below .500 in SWC competition in first two seasons (1985-86 and 1986-87).|
|Jack Rohan||Columbia||Failed to post winning season record until fifth year (1965-66).|
|Al Skinner||Boston College||Failed to post winning season record until fourth year (2000-01).|
|Dean Smith||North Carolina||Only one winning season record (1962-63) in first three years.|
|Jim Snyder||Ohio University||Total of eight games below .500 in first five seasons (1949-50 through 1953-54).|
|Kevin Stallings||Vanderbilt||Total of 24 games below .500 in SEC competition through first seven seasons (1999-00 through 2005-06).|
|Rick Stansbury||Mississippi State||Total of eight games below .500 in SEC competition through first three seasons (1998-99 through 2000-01).|
|Norm Stewart||Missouri||Losing record in Big Eight Conference competition in first three seasons (1967-68 through 1969-70).|
|Scott Sutton||Oral Roberts||Total of 10 games below .500 in first three seasons (1999-2000 through 2001-02).|
|Blaine Taylor||Old Dominion||Total of six games below .500 in first two seasons (2001-02 and 2002-03).|
|Bob Thomason||Pacific||Total of 16 games below .500 in first four seasons (1988-89 through 1991-92).|
|John Thompson Jr.||Georgetown||Total of three games below .500 in first two seasons (1972-73 and 1973-74).|
|M.K. Turk||Southern Mississippi||Total of five games below .500 in first three seasons (1976-77 through 1978-79).|
|Riley Wallace||Hawaii||Total of 10 games below .500 in WAC competition in first six seasons (1987-88 through 1992-93).|
|Gary Williams||Maryland||Total of 24 games below .500 in ACC competition in first four seasons (1989-90 through 1992-93).|
|Jim Williams||Colorado State||Total of 12 games below .500 in first five seasons (1954-55 through 1958-59).|
|Charlie Woollum||Bucknell||Total of eight games below .500 in first three seasons (1975-76 through 1977-78).|
Dayshon "Scoochie" Smith, Dayton's leader in assists this season, and Kevin "Yogi" Ferrell, Indiana's dynamic playmaker, are the latest players with the most entertaining nicknames. Bo and Mo, Buck and Duck, Bud and Butch, Dutch and Skip plus Red and Whitey are too commonplace. But Ferrell and Smith join the following long list of collegians over the years with distinctive monikers:
- Forest (Frosty) Able, Western Kentucky
- Greg (Cadillac) Anderson, Houston
- Nate (Tiny) Archibald, Texas-El Paso
- Paul (Curly) Armstrong, Indiana
- Raymond (Peanut) Arrington, Radford
- William (Bird) Averitt, Pepperdine
- Norwood (Pee Wee) Barber, Florida State
- Jim (Bad News) Barnes, Texas Western
- Amadou (Coco) Barry, Maine
- Segado (Cookie) Belcher, Nebraska
- Ralph (Stork) Bishop, Washington
- Roderick (Moo Moo) Blakney, South Carolina State
- Daron (Mookie) Blaylock, Oklahoma
- Tyrone (Muggsy) Bogues, Wake Forest
- Jermaine (Itchy) Bolden, Morgan State
- Roylin (Boot) Bond, Pepperdine
- Fred (Buzz) Borries, Navy
- Russell (Boo) Bowers, American
- Charles (Tub) Bradley, Wyoming
- Frank (Flash) Brian, Louisiana State
- Fred (Downtown) Brown, Iowa
- Murray (Mule) Brown, Florida State
- Luther (Ticky) Burden, Utah
- Michael (Spiderman) Burns, UNLV
- George (Chink) Busch, Creighton
- (Pogo) Joe Caldwell, Arizona State
- David (Corky) Calhoun, Penn
- Bruce (Soup) Campbell, Providence
- John (Moose) Campbell, Clemson
- Demond (Tweety) Carter, Baylor
- Sam (The Bam) Clancy, Pittsburgh
- Orrin (Tuffy) Clark, New Hampshire
- Craig (Speedy) Claxton, Hofstra
- Nathaniel (Sweetwater) Clifton, Xavier (La.)
- Vernell (Bimbo) Coles, Virginia Tech
- Derwin (Tank) Collins, New Orleans
- John (Chubby) Cox, Villanova/San Francisco
- Earl (The Twirl) Cureton, Robert Morris/Detroit
- Adrian (Ace) Custis, Virginia Tech
- Edwin (Greedy) Daniels, UNLV/Mississippi State
- E.B. (Ox) Darby, Texas A&M
- Anthony (Amp) Davis, George Mason
- Arthur (Yah) Davis, St. Joseph's
- McKinley (Deacon) Davis, Iowa
- Ronald (Boo) Davis, Milwaukee
- Lewis (Pick) Dehner, Illinois
- Paul (Shorty) des Jardien, University of Chicago
- Alfred (Dusty) DeStefano, St. John's
- Walter (Corky) Devlin, George Washington
- John (Hook) Dillon, North Carolina
- Julius (Daddy) Dolnics, Texas Christian
- Clyde (The Glide) Drexler, Houston
- Dwight (Dike) Eddleman, Illinois
- A.R. (Monk) Edwards, Kansas State
- LeRoy (Cowboy) Edwards, Kentucky
- Theodore (Blue) Edwards, East Carolina
- Eyo (Bubbles) Effiong, Winthrop
- Emil (Box) Englebretson, Creighton
- Julius (Dr. J) Erving, Massachusetts
- J.P. (Bubber) Farish, Auburn
- Kevin (Yogi) Ferrell, Indiana
- James (Bruiser) Flint, St. Joseph's
- Kevin (Ice) Florent, Southern
- Eric (Sleepy) Floyd, Georgetown
- Jackie (The Shot) Foley, Holy Cross
- Clarence (Bevo) Francis, Rio Grande (Ohio)
- Arnold (Clyde) Gaines, Wisconsin
- Lauren (Laddie) Gale, Oregon
- Harry (The Horse) Gallatin, Northeast Missouri
- Erin (Helicopter) Galloway, Hawaii
- George (Iceman) Gervin, Long Beach State/Eastern Michigan
- Carlos (Bunny) Gibson, Marshall
- Ward (Hoot) Gibson, Creighton
- Amory (Slats) Gill, Oregon State
- Jack (Goose) Givens, Kentucky
- Bonnie (Country) Graham, Mississippi
- Paul (Snoopy) Graham, Ohio University
- Mike (Fly) Gray, Nevada-Reno
- Ken (Tree) Green, Nevada-Reno
- Kenneth (Apple) Green, Pan American
- Harold (Happy) Hairston, New York University
- Charles (Chick) Halbert, West Texas
- Wade (Swede) Halbrook, Oregon State
- Bill (Biff) Hall, Montana
- Earl (Bus) Hall, Virginia Tech
- Richard (Rip) Hamilton, Connecticut
- Anfernee (Penny) Hardaway, Memphis State
- Herbert (Hawkeye) Hargett, Mississippi State
- Greg (Boo) Harvey, St. John's
- Clem (The Gem) Haskins, Western Kentucky
- John (Hondo) Havlicek, Ohio State
- E.A. (Shag) Hawkins, Auburn
- Robert (Bubbles) Hawkins, Illinois State
- Clarence (Kleggie) Hermsen, Minnesota
- Eric (The Helicopter) Hicks, Cincinnati
- Jermaine (Squirt) Hicks, Weber State/Chicago State
- John (Babe) Higgins, Stanford
- Clinton (Bread Truck) Hinton, UNC Charlotte/Oral Roberts
- John (Doc) Holliday, Montana
- James (Lindy) Hood, Alabama
- Tecumseh (Tee) Hooper, The Citadel
- Alfredo (Tito) Horford, Miami (Fla.)
- Greg (Stretch) Howard, New Mexico
- (Hot) Rod Hundley, West Virginia
- Anthony (Jo Jo) Hunter, Maryland/Colorado
- Jimmy (Snap) Hunter, Memphis
- Allen (The Answer) Iverson, Georgetown
- Hernell (Jeep) Jackson, Texas-El Paso
- Frank (Spoon) James, UNLV
- Arthur (Brownie) Jaquay, Creighton
- Antonio (Scoop) Jardine, Syracuse
- Keith (Mister) Jennings, East Tennessee State
- Eugene (Pooh) Jeter, Portland
- Carldell (Squeaky) Johnson, UAB
- Dana (Binky) Johnson, Canisius
- Earvin (Magic) Johnson, Michigan State
- Gary (Cat) Johnson, Oral Roberts
- Gus (Honeycomb) Johnson, Idaho
- Kevin (Butter) Johnson, Charlotte
- Lynbert (Cheese) Johnson, Wichita State
- William (Elmo) Johnson, Southern Methodist
- Albert (Slab) Jones, New Mexico State
- Byron (Snake) Jones, San Francisco
- Gerald (Wimpy) Jones, Arizona State
- Lamont (Momo) Jones, Arizona/Iona
- Ronald (Popeye) Jones, Murray State
- Steve (Snapper) Jones, Oregon
- Wallace (Wah Wah) Jones, Kentucky
- Wilbert (Wibs) Kautz, Loyola of Chicago
- Robert (Jeep) Kelley, UNLV/Hawaii
- Harry (Machine Gun) Kelly, Texas Southern
- Bill (Pickles) Kennedy, Temple
- Eugene (Goo) Kennedy, Texas Christian
- Bob (Trigger) Kenney, Kansas
- Bruce (Sky) King, Pan American
- Raymond (Circus) King, San Diego State/California
- William (Dolly) King, Long Island
- Danrad (Chicken) Knowles, Houston
- Donald (Pinky) Knowles, Creighton
- Ed (Moose) Krause, Notre Dame
- Cletus (Goob) Kuehler, West Texas State
- David (Big Daddy) Lattin, Texas-El Paso
- Albert (Cappy) Lavin, San Francisco
- Hal (King) Lear, Temple
- Arnold (Butz) Lehrman, Minnesota
- Bob (Slick) Leonard, Indiana
- Andrew (Fuzzy) Levane, St. John's
- Lafayette (Fat) Lever, Arizona State
- Eugene (Junie) Lewis, Pittsburgh/South Alabama
- Brant (Pinky) Lipscomb, Vanderbilt
- Lewis (Magic) Lloyd, Drake
- (Jungle) Jim Loscutoff, Oregon
- John (Dub) Malaise, Texas Tech
- Karl (The Mailman) Malone, Louisiana Tech
- (Pistol) Pete Maravich, Louisiana State
- Floyd (Biggy) Marshall, Tennessee
- Slater (Dugie) Martin, Texas
- Cedric (Cornbread) Maxwell, UNC Charlotte
- Ayome (Paco) May, Kansas State
- E. (Branch) McCracken, Indiana
- Marvin (Moon) McCrary, Missouri
- Angus (Monk) McDonald, North Carolina
- Ken (Mouse) McFadden, Cleveland State
- Cornelius (Scooter) McFadgon, Memphis/Tennessee
- Billy (The Hill) McGill, Utah
- Horace (Bones) McKinney, North Carolina State/North Carolina
- Eric (Cricket) McLaughlin, Akron
- Don (Monk) Meineke, Dayton
- Dean (The Dream) Meminger, Marquette
- Francis (Ick) Miller, Creighton
- Ryan (Archie) Miller, North Carolina State
- Roland (The Cat) Minson, Brigham Young
- Earl (The Pearl) Monroe, Winston-Salem State
- Ed (Britches) Montgomery, Tennessee
- Bryan (Dinty) Moore, Stanford
- Harry (Moo) Moore, West Virginia
- Jonathan (Stitch) Moore, Furman
- Javone (Bam) Moore, Canisius
- Tony (Zippy) Morocco, Georgia
- Christopher (Kit) Mueller, Princeton
- Charles (Stretch) Murphy, Purdue
- Charlie (Feed) Murphy, Loyola of Chicago
- Charles (Cotton) Nash, Kentucky
- Sherman (Nemo) Nearman, North Carolina
- Bill (Fig) Newton, Louisiana State
- Bob (Bevo) Nordmann, St. Louis
- Ken (Snake) Norman, Illinois
- Martyn (Moochie) Norris, Auburn
- Ralph (Buckshot) O'Brien, Butler
- Garland (Mule) O'Shields, Tennessee
- Bill (Fumbo) Ouseley, William & Mary
- Carlton (Silk) Owens, Rhode Island
- Horace (Pappy) Owens, Rhode Island
- Togo Palazzi, Holy Cross
- William (Smush) Parker, Fordham
- Choppy Patterson, Clemson
- Herschel (Bones) Pedersen, Brigham Young
- James (Scoonie) Penn, Boston College
- Ray (Cookie) Pericola, South Carolina
- Edward (Pancakes) Perry, Middle Tennessee State
- Ron (Spider) Perry, Virginia Tech
- Philip (Pap) Peyton, Texas
- John (Squint) Phares, West Virginia
- Milton (Milky) Phelps, San Diego State
- Paul (The Truth) Pierce, Kansas
- Clarke (Pinky) Pittenger, Toledo
- DeWayne (Pooh) Powell, Tennessee-Martin
- Phil (Flip) Pressey, Missouri
- George (Tic) Price, Virginia Tech/Virginia Commonwealth
- Carl (Dusty) Pullian, UT-Chattanooga
- Cal (The Hawk) Ramsey, New York University
- Earl (Shadow) Ray, Wyoming
- Bryant (Big Country) Reeves, Oklahoma State
- Richie (The Cat) Regan, Seton Hall
- Jesse (Cab) Renick, Oklahoma A&M
- Angelo (Rock) Reynolds, Penn
- Billy (The Kid) Reynolds, Northwestern State
- Jerry (Ice) Reynolds, Louisiana State
- Rudolph (Zip) Rhodes, Montana
- Cornelius (Poonie) Richardson, Jacksonville State
- Jerome (Pooh) Richardson, UCLA
- Glenn (Doc) Rivers, Marquette
- Oscar (Big O) Robertson, Cincinnati
- Glenn (Big Dog) Robinson Jr., Purdue
- Leonard (Truck) Robinson, Tennessee State
- Wayne (Tree) Rollins, Clemson
- Elwood (Woody) Romney, Brigham Young
- Alfred (Big 'Un) Rose, Texas
- Alvin (Fats) Roth, City College of New York
- Michael (Campy) Russell, Michigan
- Kent (Rip) Ryan, Utah State
- Forest (Aggie) Sale, Kentucky
- Sebastian (Subby) Salerno, Creighton
- Albert (Apple) Sanders, Louisiana State
- Tom (Satch) Sanders, New York University
- Frank (Pep) Saul, Seton Hall
- Philip (Flip) Saunders, Minnesota
- John (Bubber) Seward, Duke
- Northern (Doc) Shavers, Jackson State
- Nevil (The Shadow) Shed, Texas-El Paso
- Emilio (Zeke) Sinicola, Niagara
- Adrian (Odie) Smith, Kentucky
- Robert (Bingo) Smith, Tulsa
- Jermaine (Sunshine) Smith, UNLV
- (Sudden) Sam Smith, UNLV
- Vernon (Catfish) Smith, Georgia
- William (Beaver) Smith, St. John's
- John (Squeaky) Spanbauer, Niagara
- Dave (Ditto) Sparks, George Washington
- Marion (Odie) Spears, Western Kentucky
- Forrest (Frosty) Sprowl, Purdue
- Dave (The Rave) Stallworth, Wichita
- Bob (Sweeper) Stephens, Drexel
- George (Swede) Sundstrom, Rutgers
- Harley (Skeeter) Swift, East Tennessee State
- Anthony (Ace) Tanner, Davidson
- Clarence (Babe) Taylor, Vanderbilt
- Claude (Sleepy) Taylor, Middle Tennessee State
- Hugh (Bones) Taylor, Tulane
- Roland (Fatty) Taylor, La Salle
- Irv (Swede) Terjesen, New York University
- Albert (Bobo) Thomas, Centenary
- Howard (Trey) Thompkins, Georgia
- Blackstone (Blackie) Thompson, Alabama
- John (Cat) Thompson, Montana State
- Marvis (Bootsy) Thornton, St. John's
- Nate (The Great) Thurmond, Bowling Green
- Gene (Bumper) Tormohlen, Tennessee
- Carlyle (Blackie) Towery, Western Kentucky
- Victor (Slick) Townsend, Oregon
- Robert (Tractor) Traylor, Michigan
- Ernest (Kiki) Vandeweghe, UCLA
- Charles (Chico) Vaughn, Southern Illinois
- Mathias (Mutt) Volz, Nebraska
- Malcolm (Sparky) Wade, Louisiana State
- Chet (The Jet) Walker, Bradley
- Vincent (Spotlight) Walker, Western Carolina
- Adrian (Spike) Walters, St. Francis (Pa.)
- Ray (Shag) Warren, Texas Christian
- Dwayne (Pearl) Washington, Syracuse
- Anthony (Spud) Webb, North Carolina State
- Marvin (Human Eraser) Webster, Morgan State
- Charles (Bubba) Wells, Austin Peay
- Gawen (Bonzi) Wells, Ball State
- Byron (Whizzer) White, Colorado
- Joseph (Jo Jo) White, Kansas
- Milton (Bus) Whitehead, Nebraska
- Charles (Hawkeye) Whitney, North Carolina State
- Leland (Pookey) Wigington, Seton Hall
- Richard (Buzz) Wilkinson, Virginia
- Anthony (Scoop) Williams, Toledo
- James (Bug) Williams, Syracuse
- James (Fly) Williams, Austin Peay State
- John (Hot Rod) Williams, Tulane
- Ron (Fritz) Williams, West Virginia
- Sylvester (Sly) Williams, Rhode Island
- Alvin (Pooh) Williamson, Tulsa
- Jim (Jiggy) Williamson, Rhode Island
- (Super) John Williamson, New Mexico State
- Thomas (Bubba) Wilson, Western Carolina
- Urgel (Slim) Wintermute, Oregon
- David (Poncho) Wright, Louisville
- Gerry (Sir Jamalot) Wright, Southern California/Iowa
- Joseph (Joby) Wright, Indiana
- Desmond (Boogie) Yates, Middle Tennessee State
- Paul (Hooks) Yesawich, Niagara
- Max (Slats) Zaslofsky, University of Chicago/St. John's
- Bob (Zeke) Zawoluk, St. John's
According to Wikipedia, V was an American science fiction TV series running two seasons on ABC, chronicling the arrival on Earth of a technologically advanced alien species ostensibly coming in peace, but actually boasting sinister motives. According to CollegeHoopedia.com, ABC also has an annual V rerun on vaunted ESPN. The intent isn't vile but, if an observer values the whole truth, there is vast soapboxing fiction involved amid the "V" all day every day as the vindicated big man on ESPN's Jesus-free campus.
Veering off-course with velocity promoting gabby "V" - not baby "J" - as the reason for the season, the Nationwide Leader's culture violates the time-honored vow of telling the entire story in a veracious way. It's vexing as ESPN's parade of glorification pitchmen, including staffers and it-takes-a-village coaches, incessantly laud former commentator Jim Valvano by chapter and verse. A "Jimmy V Week" culminates with an early-season classic to enhance cancer research fundraising for a foundation named after an individual who joins John Calipari (UMass/Memphis) and Jerry Tarkanian (Long Beach State/UNLV) as the only repeat-offender coaches shackled with having multiple schools under their watch forced to vacate NCAA playoff participation. Too bad 100% of the donated plaudits don't go straight through a truth detector such as the New York Times, which detailed how ESPN received more than $250 million in state tax breaks and credits thus far this century.
Anyone with a visible pulse supports the vision of finding a cure for the vulnerable afflicted by cancer, but a classic lack-of-proper-perspective stemming from the cult-of-personality dynamic is ESPN's vivid hero worship of the vibrant Valvano. He wasn't a bloodthirsty vampire villain but there are a variety of vigorous reasons for not carrying ESPN's water supporting his canonization in the wake of vanquishing Houston to vault to the 1983 NCAA playoff title. How was his deceit that much different from another cancer celebrity such as Lance Armstrong? After Valvano ran afoul of NCAA investigators at Iona, a private attorney retained by North Carolina State volunteered he was convinced that the institution could successfully sue him for failing to ensure the academic progress of his NCSU players. The biggest scholastic question in the ACC is which school - NCSU vs. UNC - wins the battle for most egregious academic scandal in the last three decades.
At the very least, virile Valvano should have verified that standout guard Sidney Lowe took a remedial tax preparation course to help him steer clear of vice squad by vandalizing the state; especially if Lowe, twice voted All-ACC and a first-teamer with teammate Thurl Bailey in 1983, was going to become one of his head coaching successors with the Wolfpack. Additional suspect characters aligning with Valvano at NCSU included Kenny Drummond, Russell Pierre, Dinky Proctor, Charles Shackleford, Craig Tyson and Chris Washburn (of 470 SAT fame in a league where athletes previously had to reach 800 to be eligible). Did Jimmy V brag that stereo-stealer Washburn was going to "make our program"? Did V mean break rather than make? Awash in intellect, Shackleford, who admitted accepting $65,000 cash from outside influences during his final two years enrolled in college, is perhaps best known for the following quote: "Left hand, right hand, it doesn't matter. I'm amphibious."
At the same time of holiday season King Herod-like ESPN vetoed a "venal" hospital ad last year celebrating Jesus before relenting, it seemingly will "never give up" a vintage and valiant voyage portraying V as the most virtuous coach in history. The sanitized version is in the network's veins akin to trying to duplicate anchorman Ron Burgundy's humor in promotional ads. Voicing opposition to this mythical narrative leaves a cynic open to vilification as being venomous. Still, the network's doctored depiction of V is as honest as POTUS and his vultures telling citizens with a "period" about retaining their current physician (ESPN previously aired ObamaCare ad passing its rigid standards); authentic as the sign language interpreter at a Nelson Mandela memorial; genuinely patriotic as lip-syncing Beyonce; real as Ray "Dancin' On Their Graves" Lewis lecturing us about NFL violence and ball-deflation ethics, or as valid as fake girlfriend of former Notre Dame All-American linebacker Manti Te'o.
Irish idealist Dick Vitale spearheads promoting the V Foundation, which has raised an impressive $130 million-plus, and his visceral reaction probably is that any dissent makes Valvano the victim of a vicious vendetta. Anything but vapid, there is no doubt vivacious Vitale means well and has his heart in the proper place serving as Valvano's valet. But as verbose Vitale is wont to do, he has a tendency to vehemently go overboard with his voluminous embellishment. Preying on emotions, a majority of the media smugly fall in line seemingly signing off on one of those phantom NCSU readmission agreements after flunking out where they make a commitment "pledging to work hard (at maintaining image) and keep a positive mental attitude."
In an affront to valuable numbers that never lie, there are times when ESPN sycophants operate in a vacuum shamelessly enhancing Valvano's credentials as a "survive-and-advance" tactician, perpetuating a falsehood he was a late-game strategical genius. You can't take a vacation from the veracity of cold hard facts having Valvano rank in the lower third of DI coaches among those with at least 150 close contests (decided by fewer than six points). Capitalizing on six opponents combining to shoot an anemic 56.8% from the free-throw line, the law of averages was with NCSU in 1983 when it became the only school to have as many as four NCAA playoff games decided by one or two points en route to a title. The Wolfpack trailed in the final minute of seven of its last nine triumphs.
People in power need to be held accountable. "I can't breathe" holding opinion because there is no reason to be vague and treat big boys with velvet gloves. ESPN could virtually avoid any vanishing credibility in this instance by incorporating deceased Rick Majerus in the foundation equation. After all, the 24-year veteran college head coach was also a vocal ESPN analyst. Unless it detracts from the storyline, call it the V & M Foundation and add heart disease to the venture's research grants. Didn't Majerus exhibit as much, if not more, valor? Perhaps trend-setting broadcaster Stuart Scott should be the focal point.
A tearjerker ESPY speech notwithstanding, it's a cancer of priorities and ESPN simply sullies its reputation with insufferable verbal voodoo vouching Valvano was something he wasn't beyond a good coach who never had a season with fewer than four defeats in conference competition. Amid narcissism and extensive self-promotion, an "inspirational" story reeks of overkill because vermin among a complicit sports media are predictably unprincipled and offer the maximum tear-inducement reminiscent of a fairytale sans conveying the entire picture. Forget the vulgar academic progress of Valvano's players at N.C. State (735 average SAT score and excessive number of positive drug tests during the 1980s). No Extra Sensitive Pious Network should be an outside-the-lines enabler seemingly unaccountable while selling only a partial story. They have an obligation to visit the whole story; not vacillate and be on verge of failing their constituency in regard to vainly providing a viable role model.
As for venerable Majerus, there won't be a vicarious movie or "30 for 30" special made about his self-effacing humor, eating habits and fact none of his NCAA playoff teams with three different schools ever had to vacate NCAA play. In a stark scholastic contrast, his 1998 Utah squad provided the vanguard of Final Four achievements - only team ever to feature three Academic All-Americans among its versatile regulars. For the record, Majerus ranked among the top third of coaches in games decided by fewer than six points. But he simply doesn't fit into a contrived storyline. It would be a surprise if Utah players under Majerus took an "Understanding Music" class during Christmas vacation to help stay eligible like NCSU scholars did under Valvano.
ESPN's abundant coverage seemed to revel in cancer frontman Lance Armstrong's arrogant stumblin' and bumblin' "one big lie" rather than taking his bike-ride fall in a valley as time for self-reflection. The view from this vantage point is that defend-the-brand revisionist history is a misguided echo chamber. Amid the distortion, a final verdict persists about a greater-good higher calling. As many folks as possible should make a vintage donation to the V Foundation. Just envision V as Victory (over cancer) or as Vitale (for his long-term heavy lifting in the project).
It won't be long before name-dropping ESPN, via Out House correspondent Andy Katz apparently getting as much beer-summit face time with trustworthy POTUS as ex-HHS Secretary Kathleen "Get-In-Line" Sebelius, goes viral giving a prominent "Audacity-of-Hype" venue for Oval Office NCAA bracket selections. But the West Wing(ing) verve must absorb so much dignified time for the selfie-taking hoopster-in-chief that a Sgt. Schultz "I-know-nothing" routine emerges while chronically pleading ignorance about various less vital matters such as the Benghazi terrorist attack, IRS targeting of conservatives, Fast and Furious gun-running, healthcare exchange ineptitude, NSA spying on allies, North Korea's cyber "vandalism," Justice Department snooping on national media, etc., and then failing to attend a church service at Christmas. Meanwhile, a void in thought-police treatment makes more faith-influenced individuals nearly vomit when the network's "inn" didn't have room for the authentic Messiah's message vying for a little air time more important to many Americans than giving free political points.
Was it any surprise then that sister network A&E was equally intolerant of deeply-held religious beliefs when "be(ing) original" by suspending/marginalizing the brassy "Duck Dynasty" patriarch a year ago for his version of "Vagina Monologues"? Are you buyin' what ESPN's flock of quacks are sellin' verbatim - accepting the laughing/thinking/crying hook, line and sinker? Very odd this vociferous emphasis on V. Upon "ducking" and turning the other cheek again, it's time to say an old-fashioned: "Merry CHRISTmas, ESPN!" If this vernacular is objectionable to sensibilities of the politically-correct elite, then avoid a GQ bearded set-up with a patronizing "Happy Holidays!"
Did You Know?: Marquee mentors John Beilein (Canisius), Vic Bubas (Duke), Denny Crum (Louisville), Bob Knight (Army), Guy Lewis (Houston), Ralph Miller (Wichita), Digger Phelps (Notre Dame) and Jerry Tarkanian (UNLV) lost their head coaching debuts with these schools between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Prominent players don't establish most of the school standards against lesser lights in non-conference competition. For instance, Utah's Billy McGill and Illinois' Skip Thoren set school single-game rebounding records in the early 1960s when each of them retrieved 24 missed shots against UCLA before the Bruins began their run of NCAA titles under legendary coach John Wooden.
Granted, fewer contests are played around Christmas but there clearly is a significant decrease in superior performances during that span. Holiday festivities can go awry between Christmas and New Year's Eve. Just ask top-ranked Virginia, which lost at tiny Chaminade in 1982, and NCAA champion-to-be Michigan, which bowed to Alaska-Anchorage on a neutral court in 1988. Following is a day-by-day calendar citing memorable moments in December college basketball history:
1 - Eastern Kentucky's Jack Adams (49 points vs. Union in 1955), Louisville's Wes Unseld (45 vs. Georgetown College KY in 1967) and NYU's Jim Signorile (50 vs. Herbert Lehman NY in 1969) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Ronnie Shavlik (55 points vs. William & Mary in 1954 set North Carolina State's single-game scoring record against a major-college opponent. . . . Vic Bubas made his Duke head coaching debut in 1959 with a 59-49 loss against Georgia Tech before guiding the Blue Devils to three Final Fours in a four-year span in the mid-1960s. . . . Pete Carril made his Princeton debut in 1967 with a 62-59 win against Army en route to becoming the Tigers' all-time winningest coach and capturing the Ivy League's only NIT championship (1975). . . . Denny Crum made his Louisville head coaching debut in 1971 with a 70-69 defeat at Florida before amassing a school-record 675 victories. . . . Eddie Sutton made his Creighton head coaching debut in 1969 with an 84-62 decision over Wisconsin-Oshkosh en route to 802 victories with five schools. . . . Jerry Tarkanian made his UNLV head coaching debut in 1973 with an 82-76 defeat against Texas Tech before notching a school-record 509 victories with the Rebels. . . . Ralph Miller made his Wichita head coaching debut in 1951 with a 62-55 defeat at Colorado before registering 657 victories with three schools. . . . Guy Lewis made his Houston head coaching debut in 1956 with a 97-78 defeat at Kansas State before compiling a school-record 592 victories. . . . Al McGuire made his Marquette debut in 1964 with a 69-49 triumph over St. Thomas MN en route to becoming the Warriors' all-time winningest coach. . . . Bob Knight made his Indiana debut in 1971 with an 84-77 triumph over Ball State en route to becoming the Hoosiers' all-time winningest coach. . . . Digger Phelps made his Notre Dame debut in 1971 with a 101-83 defeat against Michigan before compiling a school-record 393 victories. . . . Frank McGuire made his South Carolina debut in 1964 with a 76-59 triumph against Erskine SC en route to a school-record 283 victories. . . . John Beilein made his Canisius coaching debut in 1992 with a 110-62 defeat at Duke before going on to win more than 20 games in a single season with four different DI schools. . . . Bob Nichols made his Toledo coaching debut in 1965 with a 108-77 triumph against Baldwin-Wallace OH en route to a school-record 375 victories. . . . Lynn Howden (24 vs. Florida State in 1970) set Texas' single-game rebounding record against a major-college opponent.
2 - Eventual NCAA all-time scoring leader Pete Maravich collected 48 points and career-high 16 rebounds in his LSU varsity debut (97-81 win against Tampa in 1967). . . . Northern Arizona's Cory Schwab (43 points at Cal Poly in overtime in 2000), Southwest Missouri State's Ben Kandlbinder (36 vs. Stephen F. Austin State in 1995) and Wisconsin's Christian Steinmetz (50 at Sparta's Company C in 1904) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Dean Smith made his North Carolina head coaching debut in 1961 with an 80-46 decision over Virginia en route to a school-record 879 victories. . . . Norm Stewart made his Missouri head coaching debut in 1967 with a 74-58 success at Arkansas en route to a school-record 634 victories with the Tigers. . . . Don Haskins made his Texas Western head coaching debut in 1961 with a 66-59 triumph at Iowa State en route to a school-record 719 victories. . . . Terry Holland made his Virginia coaching debut in 1974 with a 77-69 victory against Washington & Lee VA en route to a school-record 326 victories. . . . Phil Martelli made his Saint Joseph's debut in 1995 with a 64-56 success at Delaware en route to becoming the Hawks' all-time winningest coach and national COY in 2004.
3 - Kansas' Wilt Chamberlain (52 points vs. Northwestern in 1956) and Wisconsin-Milwaukee's Von McDade (50 at Illinois in double overtime in 1990) set school single-game scoring records. Chamberlain also grabbed 31 rebounds in his varsity debut and Lew Alcindor collected 56 points and 21 rebounds vs. Southern California in his varsity debut with UCLA in 1966. . . . John Wooden made his UCLA head coaching debut in 1948 with a 43-37 decision over UC Santa Barbara en route to a school-record 620 victories with the Bruins. . . . Lefty Driesell made his Davidson head coaching debut in 1960 with a 65-59 decision over Wake Forest en route to 786 victories with four schools. . . . Everett Case made his North Carolina State debut in 1946 with a 63-28 decision over the Cherry Point Marines en route to a school-record 377 victories with the Wolfpack. . . . Arizona State's Mark Landsberger (27 vs. San Diego State in 1976), Jacksonville's Artis Gilmore (34 vs. St. Peter's in 1970) and UMKC's Tony Berg (23 vs. Baylor in 1996) set school single-game rebounding records.
4 - Mississippi State's Bailey Howell (47 points vs. Union TN in 1958) and Northwestern State's Billy Reynolds (42 at Lamar in 1976) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Brown's Ed Tooley shot an NCAA-record 36 free throws in a single game in 1954. . . . Long Beach State's school-record 75-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by San Francisco (94-84 in overtime in 1974). . . . Lou Carnesecca made his St. John's coaching debut in 1965 with a 64-62 triumph at Georgetown in overtime en route to a school-record 526 victories. . . . Bob Knight made his Army head coaching debut in 1965 with a 70-49 setback at Princeton before becoming Indiana's all-time winningest coach and compiling 899 victories. . . . UCLA's season-opening defeat by 27 points (110-83 at Illinois in 1964) was worst-ever for a team going on to capture an NCAA championship. . . . Marv Branstrom (28 vs. Arizona State in 1958) set San Jose State's single-game rebounding record.
5 - North Carolina State's David Thompson (57 points vs. Buffalo State in 1974), Rider's Ron Simpson (48 at St. Francis NY in double overtime in 1987) and Washington State's Brian Quinnett (45 vs. Loyola Marymount in 1986 Amana Hawkeye Classic at Iowa City) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Charlotte's school-record 60-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Appalachian State (71-64 in 1977). . . . Dale Brown made his LSU head coaching debut in 1972 with a 94-81 triumph against Memphis State en route to a school-record 448 victories. . . . Harry Combes made his Illinois coaching debut in 1947 with a 67-27 success against Coe College IA before directing the Illini to three Final Fours in a four-year span from 1949 through 1952. . . . Shelby Metcalf made his Texas A&M head coaching debut in 1963 with a 61-58 triumph against Houston en route to a school-record 438 victories. . . . Gene Estes (24 vs. Texas Western in 1960) set Tulsa's single-game rebounding record against a major-college opponent.
6 - American's Russell "Boo" Bowers (45 points at Harvard in 1980), Old Dominion's Alex Loughton (45 vs. Charlotte in double overtime in 2003), Rice's Doug McKendrick (47 vs. Georgia Tech in 1965) and Texas-San Antonio's Roderic Hall (52 vs. Maine in consolation game of 1997 Southwest Missouri Tournament at Springfield, Mo.) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Kent State's Doug Grayson set an NCAA single-game record by hitting 16 consecutive field-goal attempts vs. North Carolina in 1967. . . . Indiana's school-record 35-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Kentucky (66-51 in 1976). . . . Bob Presley (27 vs. St. Mary's in 1967) set California's single-game rebounding record.
7 - Niagara's Calvin Murphy (68 points vs. Syracuse in 1968) and St. Mary's Jim Moore (43 vs. Sacramento State in 1964) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Forest Arnold (46 points vs. Hardin-Simmons in 1955) set Memphis State's single-game scoring record against a major-college opponent. . . . Cincinnati's school-record 86-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Kansas (51-47 in 1963), Jacksonville's school-record 35-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Florida State (90-83 in 1971) and Tulsa's school-record 36-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Oklahoma State (93-75 in 1982). . . . Benny Becton (29 vs. Maine in 1962) set Vermont's single-game rebounding record.
8 - Davidson's Fred Hetzel (53 points vs. Furman in 1964), Morgan State's James McCoy (38 vs. Georgia State in semifinals of 1989 Godfather's Pizza Classic at Chattanooga, Tenn.), Rutgers' Bob Lloyd (51 at Delaware in 1965) and Wright State's Bill Edwards (45 vs. Morehead State in 1992) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Arizona's school-record 81-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Kansas State (76-57 in 1951) and Missouri's school-record 34-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Arkansas (95-82 in 1990). . . . Colgate's Jack Nichols (26 vs. Cornell in 1956) and Missouri State's Lee Campbell (20 vs. Southern Utah State in 1989) set school single-game rebounding records against DI opponents.
9 - Tony Bolds (41 points vs. Alcorn State in opening round of 1983 Great Busch Shootout at Southern Illinois) set Mercer's Division I single-game scoring record. . . . Utah's school-record 54-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Weber State (79-77 in 2000). . . . Butler's Jeff Blue (23 vs. Michigan in 1961), College of Charleston's Thaddeous Delaney (21 vs. Charleston Southern in 1995), Dayton's Garry Roggenburk (32 vs. Miami Ohio in 1959), Iowa State's Bill Cain (26 vs. Minnesota in 1969), Lafayette's Ron Moyer (33 vs. Gettysburg PA in 1970) and Towson's Junior Hairston (21 vs. Niagara in 2007) set school single-game rebounding records against Division I opponents.
10 - Duke's Danny Ferry (58 points at Miami FL in 1988) and Long Beach State's Ed Ratleff (45 vs. St. Mary's in 1970) set school single-game scoring records. . . . Troy State (28 of 74) and George Mason (16 of 34) combined to set NCAA single-game three-point field-goal records in 1994 for shots made and attempted beyond the arc with Troy State's figures establishing marks for one team. . . . Tulane's school-record 42-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Arkansas (42-41 in 1949). . . . Bucknell's Hal Danzig (29 vs. Lehigh in 1958), Kentucky's Bob Burrow (34 vs. Temple in 1955) and Louisville's Charlie Tyra (38 vs. Canisius in 1955) set school single-game rebounding records.
11 - North Carolina A&T's Joe Binion (41 points vs. Livingstone NC in final of 1982 Miller Aggie Classic) and Virginia's Barry Parkhill (51 vs. Baldwin-Wallace OH in 1971) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Louisville's Clifford Rozier set an NCAA single-game record by hitting all 15 of his field-goal attempts against Eastern Kentucky in 1993. . . . Ohio State's school-record 50-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Davidson (95-73 in 1963). . . . Marvin Barnes (28 vs. Fairfield in 1972) set Providence's single-game rebounding record against a DI opponent.
12 - Alabama's Mike Nordholz (50 points vs. Southern Mississippi at 1966 Birmingham Classic), North Dakota State's Ben Woodside (60 vs. Stephen F. Austin in 2008), Radford's Doug Day (43 at Central Connecticut State in 1990), Southern's Tim Roberts (56 vs. Faith Baptist LA in 1994) and Texas Christian's Lee Nailon (53 vs. Mississippi Valley State in first round of 1997 TCU Tournament) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Oklahoma's Mookie Blaylock set an NCAA single-game record with 13 steals vs. Centenary in 1987. . . . Henry "Hank" Iba made his Oklahoma A&M head coaching debut in 1934 with a 24-17 decision over Wichita en route to a school-record 655 victories with the Cowboys. . . . Kent State's Leroy Thompson (31 vs. Case Western OH in 1948) and Weber State's Willie Sojourner (25 vs. West Texas State in 1969) set school single-game rebounding records.
13 - Evansville's inaugural year at the NCAA Division I level ended in tragedy in 1977 when coach Bobby Watson and 13 members of his Purple Aces squad perished in a plane crash shortly after taking off en route to their fifth game of the season. . . . St. Peter's Rich Rinaldi (54 points vs. St. Francis NY in 1971), Southern Mississippi's Jerome Arnold (41 vs. Missouri-Kansas City in 1978), Toledo's Clarke "Pinky" Pittenger (49 at Bluffton OH in 1918) and Tulsa's Willie Biles (48 vs. St. Cloud State MN in 1973) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Phog Allen made his Kansas head coaching debut in 1907 with a 66-22 decision over Ottawa KS en route to a school-record 590 victories with the Jayhawks. . . . Bradley's Barney Cable (28 vs. Canisius in 1955), Eastern Kentucky's Garfield Smith (33 vs. Marshall in 1967) and UALR's Rashad Jones-Jennings (30 vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff in 2005) set school single-game rebounding records against a DI opponent.
14 - Marshall's Keith Veney set an NCAA single-game record for three-pointers (making 15 of 25 shots from beyond the arc vs. Morehead State in 1996).
15 - UC Irvine's Kevin Magee (46 points vs. Loyola Marymount in 1981) and Providence's Marvin Barnes (52 vs. Austin Peay in 1973) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Tennessee topped Temple, 11-6, in 1973 in the lowest-scoring game since 1938. . . . La Salle's Michael Brooks set the East Coast Conference single-game scoring record with 51 points at Brigham Young in 1979. . . . Jack Friel made his Washington State debut in 1928 with a 62-18 decision over Lewis-Clark State ID en route to becoming the Cougars' all-time winningest coach. . . . Cal State Fullerton's Kerry Davis (27 vs. Central Michigan in 1975), Colgate's Dick Osborn (26 vs. Yale in 1951), Texas A&M's Vernon Smith and Rynn Wright (21 vs. UNLV in 1978) and Utah State's Wayne Estes (28 vs. Regis CO in 1962) set school single-game rebounding records against DI opponents.
16 - Cal State Fullerton's Bobby Brown (47 points vs. Bethune-Cookman in 2006), Creighton's Bob Portman (51 vs. Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1967), Murray State's Marcus Brown (45 vs. Washington MO in 1995) and North Carolina's Bob Lewis (49 vs. Florida State in 1965) set school single-game scoring records. . . . In 2000, Illinois guard Cory Bradford set an NCAA record by hitting a three-point field goal in his 74th of 88 consecutive games. . . . St. Joseph's school-record 34-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Fairfield (82-68 in 1966) and Texas-El Paso's school-record 31-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Indiana (69-66 in 1989). . . . Florida State's Dave Cowens (31 vs. LSU in 1967), Mercer's Scott Farley (22 vs. Alabama in 1995), SMU's Ira Terrell (26 vs. New Mexico State in 1975) and UTEP's Jim Barnes (27 vs. Centenary in 1963) set school single-game rebounding records against a major-college opponent.
17 - Furman senior swingman Darrell Floyd set a Southern Conference single-game record with 62 points vs. The Citadel in 1955. . . . Oklahoma's Mookie Blaylock tied his NCAA single-game record with 13 steals vs. Loyola Marymount in 1988. . . . Cincinnati's LaZelle Durden set the Great Midwest Conference single-game scoring record with 45 points at Wyoming in 1994. . . . Illinois ended visiting San Francisco's school-record 60-game winning streak (62-33 in 1957). . . . Denver's Dick Brott (29 vs. Southern California in 1956) and Furman's Bob Thomas (35 vs. The Citadel in 1955) set school single-game rebounding records against a major-college opponent.
18 - Warren Isaac (50 points vs. Bates ME in 1964) set Iona's Division I single-game scoring record. . . . Penn's school-record 34-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Temple (57-52 in 1971). . . . Adolph Rupp made his Kentucky head coaching debut in 1930 with a 67-19 decision over Georgetown College KY en route to a school-record 876 victories. . . . Hec Edmundson made his Washington debut in 1920 with a 30-14 decision over Varsity/Alumni en route to becoming the Huskies' all-time winningest coach. . . . Alabama's Harry Hammonds (28 vs. Massachusetts in 1966), Brigham Young's Scott Warner (27 vs. Texas Tech in 1969), Cleveland State's Dave Kyle (24 vs. Ohio University in 1976) and Hofstra's John Irving (28 vs. Long Island in 1975) set school single-game rebounding records against a major-college opponent.
19 - Iowa State's Lafester Rhodes (54 points vs. Iowa in overtime in 1987), Norfolk State's Tony Murphy (43 vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at UNLV in 2006) and UNC Asheville's Ricky Chatman (41 vs. James Madison in overtime in 1987) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Kevin Thomas (46 vs. Tennessee in 1955 Carousel Invitational at Charlotte) set Boston University's single-game scoring record against a DI opponent. . . . Auburn's Rex Frederick (27 vs. SMU in 1957), Lehigh's Greg Falkenbach (25 vs. Drexel in 1970) and New Mexico State's Sam Lacey (27 vs. Hardin-Simmons TX in 1969) set school single-game rebounding records against a major-college opponent.
20 - Fresno State's Charles Bailey (45 points at North Texas State in double overtime in 1973), Georgia's Ronnie Hogue (46 vs. Louisiana State in 1971) and Maryland's Ernest Graham (44 vs. North Carolina State in 1978) set school single-game scoring records. . . . John Connors (23 vs. Iona in 1956) set St. Bonaventure's single-game rebounding record against a major-college opponent.
21 - Idaho's Orlando Lightfoot (50 points at Gonzaga in 1993), Ohio's Dave Jamerson (60 vs. Charleston WV in 1989), Pacific's Bill Stricker (44 vs. Portland in 1968) and Pittsburgh's Don Hennon (45 vs. Duke in double overtime in 1957) set school single-game scoring records. . . . Visiting Cincinnati outlasted Bradley in seven overtimes in 1981 in the longest game in NCAA history. . . . Texas Christian hit an NCAA-record 56 free throws in 70 attempts in 1999 against Eastern Michigan. . . . West Virginia ended North Carolina's school-record 37-game winning streak (75-64 in 1957 at Kentucky), Houston's school-record 59-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Illinois (97-84 in 1968) and Oklahoma State's school-record 49-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Southern California (28-25 in 1940).
22 - Centenary's Robert Parish (50 points at Lamar in 1972), Central Michigan's Tommie Johnson (53 at Wright State in 1987), Georgia Tech's Kenny Anderson (50 vs. Loyola Marymount in 1990), Jackson State's Trey Johnson (49 at Texas-El Paso in 2006) and San Jose State's Adrian Oliver (42 vs. Puget Sound WA in 2010) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Nick Galis (48 vs. Santa Clara in 1978 Cable Car Classic at San Francisco) set Seton Hall's single-game scoring record against a Division I opponent. . . . Louisiana State All-American Pete Maravich set an NCAA single-game record for most successful free throws by converting 30 foul shots at Oregon State in 1969. . . . Oklahoma's school-record 51-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Duke (90-85 in 1990). . . . Rich Kelley (27 vs. Kentucky in 1973) set Stanford's single-game rebounding record. . . . Oklahoma set an NCAA record for most consecutive points against a DI opponent with a first-half 39-point run against Weber State in 2014.
23 - Scott Fisher (39 points at Montana State in 1985) set UC Santa Barbara's school single-game scoring record. . . . Bob Portman (46 vs. Weber State in 1968) set Creighton's single-game scoring record against a major-college opponent. . . . Top-ranked Virginia and national player of the year Ralph Sampson lost in Hawaii at tiny NAIA school (Chaminade) in 1982 in perhaps the biggest upset in college basketball history.
27 - Gene Harris (46 points vs. Holy Cross in 1961 Quaker City Classic at Philadelphia) set Penn State's single-game scoring record.
28 - IPFW's Terry Collins (36 points at UC Irvine in 2002), Oklahoma's Wayman Tisdale (61 vs. Texas-San Antonio in All-College Tournament at Oklahoma City in 1983) and Texas A&M's Bennie Lenox (53 vs. Wyoming in 1963 All-College Tournament at Oklahoma City) set school single-game scoring records. . . . NCAA champion-to-be Michigan lost on a neutral court at Salt Lake City to non-Division I opponent Alaska-Anchorage in 1988. . . . Providence's school-record 55-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by St. John's (91-79 in 1974). . . . Detroit's Bill Ebben (38 vs. Brigham Young in 1955), Gonzaga's Paul Cathey (28 vs. UNLV in 1977), Illinois' Skip Thoren (24 vs. UCLA in 1963), Michigan State's Horace Walker (29 vs. Butler in 1959), Niagara's Alex Ellis (31 vs. Villanova in 1956), UAB's Cameron Moore (24 vs. George Washington in 2011) and Washington State's Jim McKean (27 vs. West Virginia in 1966) set school single-game rebounding records against a major-college opponent.
29 - Ron Carter (42 points vs. Long Beach State in 1977 at Toledo) set Virginia Military's single-game scoring record against a Division I opponent. . . . Chattanooga's Vincent Robinson (20 vs. Tennessee State in 1989), Colorado's Burdette Haldorson (31 vs. Oklahoma in 1952), Louisiana-Monroe's Calvin Natt (31 vs. Georgia Southern in 1976), Ohio State's Frank Howard (32 vs. Brigham Young in 1956), San Diego State's Michael Cage (26 vs. La Salle in 1980), Texas A&M's Steve Niles (21 vs. Furman in 1969) and Utah's Billy McGill (24 vs. UCLA in 1961) set school single-game rebounding records against a major-college opponent.
30 - Austin Peay's James "Fly" Williams (51 points vs. Georgia Southern in final of 1972 Claxton Fruitcake Classic), Florida International's Carlos Arroyo (39 at North Texas in overtime in 2000), Fordham's Charlie Yelverton (46 vs. Rochester NY in 1970), Hawaii's Trevor Ruffin (42 vs. Louisville in 1993), Penn's Ernie Beck (47 vs. Duke in 1952 Dixie Classic at Raleigh, N.C.), St. Joseph's Tony Costner (47 vs. Alaska-Anchorage in 1983 Cable Car Classic at San Francisco) and Utah State's Wayne Estes (52 vs. Boston College in overtime at 1964 Rainbow Classic in Hawaii) set school single-game scoring records. . . . Duke overcame a 29-point halftime deficit to defeat Tulane in consolation game of 1950 Dixie Classic at Raleigh. . . . Stanford ended Long Island's school-record 43-game winning streak (45-31 in 1936). . . . Hawaii's Bob Nash (30 vs. Arizona State in 1971), Idaho State's Ed Wilson (26 vs. Arkansas in 1967), La Salle's Tom Gola (31 vs. Brigham Young in 1953), Michigan State's Johnny Green (29 vs. Washington in 1957), St. John's LeRoy Ellis Sr. (30 vs. NYU in 1961), South Alabama's Leon Williams (28 vs. Texas-Arlington in 1972) and Western Kentucky's Tom Marshall (29 vs. Louisville in 1953) set school single-game rebounding records against a major-college opponent.
31 - Loyola of Chicago's school-record 41-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by St. Louis (90-57 in 1964).
A total of 49 NCAA Division I schools have lost to DII Alaska-Anchorage after the Seawolves defeated Rice this season, 65-54. Over the years, Alaska-Anchorage upended the following current/future members from the six power conferences - Auburn, California, Houston, Miami, Michigan, Missouri, Notre Dame, Penn State, SMU, Tennessee, Texas, TCU, Texas Tech, Wake Forest and Washington.
Michigan's 1989 NCAA Tournament champion lost on a neutral court (Utah) to Anchorage, 70-66, during the Wolverines' pre-Big Ten Conference competition slate. The Seawolves dropped six of their last 12 games that season against Chaminade, Metro State (twice), Eastern Montana, Puget Sound and Alaska-Fairbanks to finish with a 21-9 record before Michigan earned an NCAA crown maneuvering through the DI playoffs under interim coach Steve Fisher.
UAA defeated at least one major university 10 consecutive campaigns from 1985-86 through 1994-95. If sizing up small-school successes over the big boys is a hot-button topic in your college hoops analysis, CollegeHoopedia.com has assembled "one-of-a-kind" details on the striking number of "David vs. Goliath" small-college victories over major universities.
The road back to national prominence appears longer than anyone affiliated with Wake Forest probably presumed. A 72-65 defeat at home against Delaware State is not what Demon Deacons fans had in mind when former Kansas All-American Danny Manning was hired as coach. The Hornets subsequently lost non-league road games by 50 points (Iona) and 39 points (Rhode Island).
Wake's embarrassing setback, leaving a historically black mark, represented the second year in a row for an ACC member to succumb at home against a HBCU (Historically Black College or University) from the MEAC. But even bigger surprises in this category in pre-conference competition were Michigan State and Kansas State bowing at home against Texas Southern. Following are HBCU road victories on a power league member's homecourt or neutral court during regular-season play the previous 10 campaigns:
|Season||HBCU Winner on Road||Power League Member Loser||Competence of Power League School Incurring Defeat|
|2004-05||South Carolina State 60||Miami (Fla.) 50||Hurricanes won at NCAA playoff-bound Florida.|
|2004-05*||South Carolina State 63||Penn State 43||Nittany Lions lost by three points against 20-game winner Ohio State in Big Ten Tournament.|
|2005-06||Bethune-Cookman 75||South Florida 68||Bulls beat NCAA playoff-bound Georgetown in regular-season finale.|
|2006-07||Jackson State 71||Rutgers 70||Scarlet Knights twice defeated Cincinnati.|
|2007-08||Tennessee State 60||Illinois 58||Illini beat Oklahoma State and Missouri in nonconference competition before bowing to TSU.|
|2008-09||Morgan State 79||DePaul 75||Blue Demons defeated Cincinnati (18-14) in Big East Tournament.|
|2008-09||Morgan State 66||Maryland 65||Terrapins participated in NCAA Tournament.|
|2009-10||Morgan State 97||Arkansas 94||Razorbacks prevailed at Ole Miss, a 24-game winner.|
|2010-11||Texas Southern 66||Oregon State 60||Beavers beat 30-game winner Arizona.|
|2011-12||Tennessee State 64||South Carolina 63||Gamecocks upended Clemson, Alabama and Georgia.|
|2012-13||Alabama A&M 59||Mississippi State 57||Bulldogs beat Marshall Henderson-led Ole Miss and twice defeated Frank Martin-coached South Carolina.|
|2012-13||Southern (La.) 53||Texas A&M 51||Aggies won at Kentucky in inaugural SEC season and also beat NCAA playoff-bound Mizzou.|
|2013-14||Coppin State 78||Oregon State 73||Beavers bow to second HBCU school under coach Craig Robinson in last four seasons before winning at Maryland.|
|2013-14||North Carolina Central 82||North Carolina State 72||Wolfpack suffered first-ever defeat against a MEAC member.|
|2013-14||Texas Southern 90||Temple 89||Owls defeated UAB on neutral court by 21 points before the Blazers beat North Carolina, which whipped three PS Top 5 teams (Louisville, Michigan State and Kentucky).|
*Neutral court (Milwaukee).
A Thanksgiving holiday week absolutely should include the time-honored tradition of a smorgasbord mulling over a mixture of heartfelt Thank Yous while chewing on tasteless Turkeys. The list of candidates in college basketball is extensive stemming from issues and individuals your most grateful for and those of dubious distinction. Following is a healthy serving of food-for-thought Thanksgiving tributes and tongue-lashings for hoop observers to gobble-gobble up:
Cheers to vanishing breed Caucasian mid-major players (guards from BYU, Gonzaga and Wichita State) who have realistic shots at earning All-American acclaim this season if A-A voters are paying attention.
Cheers to this season's crop of entertaining freshmen although they pale in comparison to the depth exhibited by gifted group in 1979-80.
Cheers to ex-college hoopsters Antonio Gates and Jimmy Graham, who dominate as NFL tight ends even after fellow G-Man Tony Gonzalez retired, and set the stage at that rugged position for fellow ex-hoopsters Jordan Cameron and Julius Thomas.
Cheers to Canada, which should provide a north-of-the-border All-American for the fourth consecutive campaign.
Cheers to the Big East Conference, which appears to be undergoing a prompt renaissance after losing prominent members to supposedly superior leagues.
Cheers to "old-school" seniors for not abandoning college hoops early and giving the sport at least some modicum of veteran leadership.
Cheers to the Ivy League and Patriot League, which seem like the last bastions replete with textbook student-athletes. Five Ivy League institutions - Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard and Yale - can still hold their heads high despite each of them posting all-time losing records. The Ivy League deserves extra kudos for not conducting the money-grubbing gimmick otherwise known as a postseason conference tournament.
Cheers to pristine playmakers who show again and again that "pass" is not a dirty four-letter word amid the obsession with individualistic one-on-one moves by self-absorbed one-and-done scholars.
Cheers to model coaches who have their egos in check and carry their personal profiles in school media guides after, not before, the player bios.
Cheers to upstanding schools having their academic priorities in order although it is getting increasingly difficult not to accept the stereotype that universities need to be one-dimensional sports factories to assemble successful NCAA Division I basketball programs.
Cheers to entertaining little big men (players 5-10 or shorter) who inspire us with their self-confidence and mental toughness in the Land of the Giants.
Cheers to women's hoops, which has improved immeasurably while the men's game has suffered somewhat from inattention to fundamentals such as competent free-throw shooting. The team-oriented women look for passing angles to teammates "flashing" into the lane while far too many one-dimensional men seek camera angles to trigger a "flashdance" routine. Some of the self-centered men haven't quite comprehended it isn't platform diving or figure skating they're participating in and you don't secure extra points for degree of difficulty.
Cheers to junior college players and foreigners who overcome perceptions in some misguided quarters that they are the rogues of recruiting.
Cheers to the numerous promising first-year coaches assuming control of programs this season. They need to remember the fortitude exhibited by many of the biggest names in coaching who rebounded from embarrassing defeats in their first season as a head coach. An active luminary who lost multiple games to non-Division I colleges in his initial campaign before ascending to stardom as the all-time winningest coach is Duke's Mike Krzyzewski (lost to SUNY-Buffalo, Scranton and King's College in 1975-76 while coaching Army).
Jeers to Division I schools in a chaotic restructuring of conferences forsaking tradition although the quest for mega-leagues could be delusional because they're vying for television revenue that might not exist as network sports divisions operate at ample deficits.
Jeers to the striking number of power conference members who've provided a long list of players on their rosters participating in an authentic "War on Women."
Jeers to recruiting services incapable of discerning that Creighton's Doug McDermott, last year's unanimous national player of the year, should have been a Top 100 recruit coming out of high school in 2010. Ditto to announcers who infect the sport by spreading this virus without ever seeing any of the players enough to properly evaluate them.
Jeers to marquee coaches who've served up assistants as sacrificial lambs when the heat of an investigation of their program intensifies.
Jeers to anyone who incessantly castigates the majority of undergraduates declaring early for the NBA draft. Before accepting the party line that many of the players are making monumental mistakes by forgoing their remaining college eligibility, remember that more than half of the NBA's All-Pro selections in the last several decades left college early or never attended a university.
Jeers to any school for not promptly granting a recruit seeking to enroll elsewhere a release from its letter-of-intent when he wants to attend another institution for legitimate reasons.
Jeers to "Me Generation" showmen who've failed to comprehend that their respective teams don't benefit on the court from a trash-talking Harlem Globetrotter routine.
Jeers to self-absorbed players who spend more time getting tattoos and practicing macho dunks than team beneficial free throws. It all hinges on dedication. There is a reason they're supposed to be "free" throws instead of Shaq-like "foul" shots.
Jeers to high-profile coaches who take off for greener pastures despite having multiple years remaining on their contract or don sweaters and workout gear with a logo of a sneaker manufacturer instead of their school during TV games and interviews. Where is their allegiance?
Jeers to network analysts when they serve as apologists for the coaching community. When their familiar refrain echoes throughout hoopdom, they become nothing more than the big mouths that bore.
Jeers to marquee schools forsaking entertaining non-conference games with natural rivals while scheduling a half-dozen or more meaningless "rout-a-matics" at home.
Jeers to several colleges that hired tainted coaches, showing winning is still more important than dignity at some schools of lower learning. They know who they are!
Jeers to defrauding coaches who manipulate junior colleges and high schools into giving phony grades to regal recruits even before encouraging them to take lame courses in college to keep the team GPA out of danger zone. Ditto coaches who steer prize high school prospects to third parties toying with standardized test results.
Jeers to "fatherly-advice" coaches who don't mandate that any player with pro potential take multiple financial literacy courses. Did they notice in recent years that products from Alabama, Georgia Tech, Georgetown, Kentucky and Syracuse filed for bankruptcy after combining for more than half a billion dollars in salaries over their NBA careers? What contrived classes such as Afro Studies at North Carolina are taken in college anyway if a staggering 60% of NBA players file for bankruptcy five years after retirement?
Jeers to overzealous fans who seek to flog freshmen for not living up to their high school press clippings right away. The impatient onlookers need to get a grip on themselves.
Jeers to the excessive number of small schools thinking they can compete at the Division I level. There are far too many examples of dreamy-eyed small schools that believe competing with the big boys will get them national recognition, make big bucks from the NCAA Tournament and put the institutions on the map. They don't know how unrealistic that goal is until most of the hyphenated and directional schools barnstorm the country during their non-conference schedules in college basketball versions of Bataan Death Marches.
Jeers to ESPN for rejecting a charity hospital ad promoting Jesus while giving forums to individuals who either lie to NCAA investigators as a head coach, lose new coaching job due to drunkenness, become a recruiting guru for the network after shady dealings at the highest level, practice reprehensible race-baiting with the intellectually-bankrupt "Uncle Tom" bomb (Jalen Rose) or spew spin like lunatic liberal propagandist LZ Granderson.
"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind (about your size) don't matter, and those who matter don't mind." - Dr. Seuss
The good doctor knows big things can come in small packages. What San Diego's Christopher Anderson (5-7) and Richmond's Kendall Anthony (5-7) may lack in height, they compensate for with heart. Brimming with self-confidence and mental toughness, the premium point guard defy odds by excelling in a big man's game. Anderson was the Toreros' leader in assists and steals and runner-up in scoring each of his first three seasons. Anthony is the Spiders' second-leading scorer over the last four campaigns.
The nation's premier little big men are the principal reason why their clubs are credible and capable of keeping up with more highly-regarded teams in their respective conferences. If Anderson and Anthony continue their Grade A performances, they could rank among the following alphabetical list of top players in NCAA history shorter than 5-8:
|Mighty Mite||School||Ht.||Short Summary of College Career|
|Vin Albanese||Syracuse||5-7||Averaged 4.6 ppg for the Orangemen in 1955-56 and 1956-57.|
|Ken Alessi||West Virginia||5-7||The Mountaineers' second-leading scorer in 1950-51 (10.1 ppg) behind All-American Mark Workman.|
|Martin Badoian||Brown||5-7||Three-year letterman was captain as a senior in 1951-52 when he averaged 13.9 ppg.|
|Mike Belich||Pittsburgh||5-7||Led the Panthers in scoring as a senior in 1950-51 with 15.9 ppg.|
|Eric Bell||Stephen F. Austin||5-6||Ranked 30th in the nation in assists with 5.7 per game as a sophomore in 2007-08.|
|Arnold Bernard||Southwest Missouri State||5-5||J.C. transfer was an All-Mid-Continent Conference second-team selection in 1989-90. The next season, earned the same status in the Missouri Valley when he led the league in assists (7.6 apg) and steals (2.4 spg).|
|Tyrone Bogues||Wake Forest||5-3||All-ACC first-team selection as a senior averaged 8.3 ppg, 6.6 apg and 2.3 spg from 1983-84 through 1986-87.|
|Jermaine Bolden||Morgan State||5-7||Led MEAC in assists with 4.9 per game in 2008-09.|
|Jimmy Boothe||Xavier||5-7||Led the Musketeers' 1956 NIT team in scoring with 16.5 ppg.|
|Earl Boykins||Eastern Michigan||5-6||Two-time All-MAC first-team selection finished second in the nation in scoring in 1997-98 with 25.7 ppg, including 45 points vs. Western Michigan (tying school single-game record against a Division I opponent). MVP in the league's postseason tournament as a senior.|
|DeAndre Bray||Jacksonville State||5-6||Posted an OVC-leading 5.2 apg as a sophomore in 2006-07 and ranked 11th in the nation as a junior (6.4 apg). Assists average fell off to 4.9 per game as a senior.|
|Greg Brown||New Mexico||5-7||WAC Player of the Year as a senior in 1993-94 when he averaged 19.3 ppg and 4.4 apg.|
|Alex Bynum||Brown||5-7||Averaged 8.3 ppg with the Bears from 1980-81 through 1983-84.|
|Alton Byrd||Columbia||5-7||Three-time All-Ivy League first-team selection averaged 8.1 apg as a sophomore in 1976-77 en route to becoming the Lions' all-time leader in assists. Led the conference in assists as a sophomore and senior.|
|Joe Campbell||Purdue||5-7||Eventual PGA golfer averaged 7.7 ppg in three seasons of varsity basketball. He was the Boilermakers' third-leading scorer (11.9 ppg) and leading free-throw shooter (73.6%) as a senior in 1956-57.|
|Pete Carril||Lafayette||5-6||The 1952 graduate averaged 11.5 ppg in his career with the Leopards before becoming Princeton's all-time winningest coach.|
|Taurence Chisholm||Delaware||5-6||Blue Hens all-time leader in assists with 877 ranked among the top 12 in the nation all four years, including a runner-up finish as a sophomore. All-ECC second-team selection as a senior in 1987-88.|
|Jackie Crawford||Southwest Missouri State||5-7||J.C. transfer was an All-Missouri Valley Conference first-team selection and MVC Tournament MVP in 1991-92 (12 ppg, 4.5 apg, 83.5 FT%).|
|Jordon Crawford||Bowling Green||5-6||Shortest player among NCAA's top 150 scorers as a senior in 2012-13 when he averaged 15 ppg. Led Falcons in assists his last three seasons.|
|Johnny Dee||Notre Dame||5-7||Second-leading scorer (12.6 ppg) for the 15-5 Irish in 1944-45 before UND went 17-4 the next year when he averaged 5.8 ppg.|
|Jeremiah Dominguez||Portland State||5-6||Big Sky Conference MVP in 2007-08 and league tournament MVP the next season. Leading scorer for PSU's all-time two winningest DI teams those years.|
|Gene Duffy||Notre Dame||5-7||Averaged 6.6 ppg for the Irish's 1958 Mideast Regional runner-up. Contributed 6.8 ppg as team captain the next season.|
|Andy Dulik||Navy||5-7||Averaged 10.3 ppg from 1954-55 through 1956-57, finishing among the Midshipmen's top three scorers as a sophomore and junior.|
|Haywood Eaddy||Loyola Marymount||5-5||J.C. transfer led the WCC in steals (2.1 spg) in 1997-98 and in free-throw shooting (89.8%) and assists (5.6 apg) in 1998-99.|
|Don Ferguson||Iowa State||5-7||Averaged 5.1 ppg in 1948-49 and 8.9 ppg in 1949-50 with the Cyclones.|
|Chico Fletcher||Arkansas State||5-6||Three-time all-league selection led Sun Belt Conference in assists four consecutive seasons from 1996-97 through 1999-2000.|
|Robert Flynn||Dayton||5-7||Member of 1951 NIT runner-up averaged a career-high 7.8 ppg as a sophomore in 1948-49.|
|Louis Ford||Howard||5-6||Contributed 14 assists and 10 steals in a game against Maryland-Eastern Shore when he averaged a team-high 14.1 ppg in an abbreviated junior campaign in 2004-05 before averaging 9.2 ppg and team-high 4.8 apg as a senior. Led the MEAC in assists as a sophomore (5 apg) and in steals as a senior (2.6 spg).|
|Tony Freeman||Indiana/Illinois-Chicago||5-7||Honorable mention All-Mid-Continent Conference in 1988-89 after playing for the Hoosiers in 1986-87.|
|Maurice "Kojak" Fuller||Southern (La.)||5-7||Averaged 10.5 ppg and 3.7 apg as a sophomore in 1995-96 with the Jaquars.|
|Jack Goldsmith||Long Island||5-7||Led the Blackbirds in scoring in 1945-46 when they posted their 13th of 18 consecutive winning records through 1950-51.|
|Tyquawn Goode||Fairfield||5-5||Averaged 5.5 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 3.7 apg and 1.5 spg from 2001-02 through 2004-05. MAAC Defensive Player of the Year as a junior led the Stags in assists all four seasons.|
|Marques Green||St. Bonaventure||5-7||Averaged 15.5 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 5.9 apg and 2.9 spg while shooting 83.5% from the free-throw line from 2000-01 through 2003-04. He finished seventh in school all-time scoring when his career ended while ranking first in assists and steals. All-Atlantic 10 Conference first-team selection as a junior when he led league in scoring (21.3 ppg), assists (8 apg), steals (2.6 spg) and free-throw shooting (87.9%) before earning second-team acclaim as a senior. He paced the A10 in steals his last three seasons.|
|George Harrington||Harvard||5-7||All-Ivy League second-team selection as a senior in 1958-59 when he averaged a team-high 14.6 ppg after averaging 11.4 ppg the previous two seasons.|
|Jason Harrison||Mississippi||5-5||Started every game as a senior for the Rebels' 2002 NCAA playoff team after serving as their "sixth-man" most of his first three seasons. Finished his career third on Ole Miss' all-time list for three-pointers (163), third in assists (427), third in steals (172) and fifth in free-throw shooting (82%).|
|Dick Hickox||Miami (Fla.)||5-6||Averaged 19.4 ppg from 1958-59 through 1960-61, leading the Hurricanes in scoring all three seasons.|
|Jermaine "Squirt" Hicks||Weber State/Chicago State||5-6||Co-Newcomer of the Year in Mid-Continent Conference in 1997-98. Scored 40 points at Fresno State the next season when he was an all-league second-team selection.|
|David Holston||Chicago State||5-7||Scored school DI record 43 points against St. Bonaventure in 2006-07 season opener. Mid-Continent Conference second-team selection as a freshman in 2005-06 (13.4 ppg, 2.8 apg, 85.7 FT%). Ranked 10th in the nation in scoring as a junior in 2007-08 (23.1 ppg) when pacing country in three-point field goals per game (4.6). Became school's all-time leading Division I scorer in 2008-09 when averaging 25.9 ppg (4th in nation).|
|Shawn Hood||Cleveland State||5-7||Leader in assists and steals in 1983-84 and 1984-85 for the Vikings.|
|Rod Hutchings||Northern Arizona||5-7||Shot 93.3% from the free-throw line as a senior in 2000-01 to finish his four-year career at 84%. Also contributed 285 assists for the Lumberjacks.|
|Keith "Mister" Jennings||East Tennessee State||5-7||All-American and Southern Conference Player of the Year as a senior. Two-time Southern Conference Tournament MVP averaged 15.7 ppg and 7.7 apg while shooting 86.1% from the free-throw line from 1987-88 through 1990-91. Paced the league twice in free-throw shooting, three times in steals and all four seasons in assists.|
|Aaron Johnson||UAB||5-7||Averaged 5.2 ppg and team-high 4.1 apg as a freshman in 2007-08. Named an All-Conference USA third-team selection as junior in 2009-10 before becoming league MVP as a senior when he led nation with 7.7 apg.|
|Omar Johnson||Texas-San Antonio||5-7||Averaged 12.6 ppg, 4.2 apg and 1.9 spg with the Roadrunners in 2008-09 and 11.3 ppg, 2.2 rpg and 3.4 apg in 2009-10.|
|Casey Jones||Northeast Louisiana||5-7||Led the Indians in assists as a senior in 1990-91 with 5.8 per game, finishing his career with 3.8 apg.|
|Charles Katsiaficas||New Hampshire||5-7||Averaged 7.8 ppg in 1947-48 and 12.1 ppg in 1948-49 with the Wildcats.|
|Darryl "Pee Wee" Lenard||Georgia/St. Louis||5-7||Led the Midwestern City Conference in steals with 1.8 per game in 1983-84.|
|Drew Lavender||Oklahoma/Xavier||5-6||Paced the Sooners' 2004 NIT team in assists and steals before finishing team runner-up in same two categories for their 2005 NCAA playoff squad. After transferring, he led Atlantic 10 Conference in assists with 4.8 per game in 2006-07.|
|Sherry Marshall||Columbia||5-7||All-Ivy League first-team selection as a sophomore in 1947-48 when he averaged 8.2 ppg and shot 75.9% from the free-throw line. All-conference second-team pick as a freshman, junior and senior.|
|Kellen McCoy||Weber State||5-6||J.C. transfer was named Big Sky Conference Player of the Year in 2008-09 (team highs of 14.1 ppg and 1.3 spg) after averaging 8.8 ppg and 2.9 rpg the previous year.|
|Shandue McNeil||St. Bonaventure||5-7||Averaged 9.2 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 5.4 apg and 2.5 spg from 1993-94 through 1996-97. Led Atlantic 10 Conference in assists and steals as a sophomore (all-league second-team choice) and in assists as a senior.|
|Bob Michel||New Hampshire||5-6||Averaged 9.1 ppg from 1953-54 through 1955-56 with the Wildcats.|
|Wendell "Cookie" Miller||Nebraska||5-7||Averaged 6.1 ppg plus team highs of 3.6 apg and 1.9 spg with the Huskers as a freshman in 2007-08 before posting similar figures the next season as a sophomore.|
|Mark Morse||Tulsa||5-7||All-Missouri Valley Conference first-team selection in 1991-92 (14.9 ppg, 5.1 apg, 2.2 spg) and 1992-93 (17.4 ppg, 4.6 apg, 2.2 spg). J.C. recruit earned award as MVC Newcomer of the Year.|
|Johnny Nunziato||Boston University||5-5||Led the Terriers in scoring with 15.4 ppg as a senior in 1953-54 after averaging 6.6 ppg the previous season.|
|Billy Pappas||New Hampshire||5-6||Two-time All-Yankee Conference first-team selection averaged 18.9 ppg from 1952-53 through 1954-55 with the Wildcats.|
|Ronell Peters||Texas-Arlington||5-6||UTA's all-time leader in assists led the SLC in that category in 1983-84 (7 apg). He also paced the SLC in steals in 1983-84 (2 spg) and 1985-86 (2.4 spg).|
|Otto Petty||Florida State||5-7||The Seminoles' all-time leader in assists with 602 averaged 6.4 ppg for FSU's 1972 NCAA Tournament runner-up. Contributed 7.6 ppg in 1970-71 and 8.2 ppg in 1972-73.|
|Bernie Pina||Rhode Island||5-6||Letterman from 1951-52 through 1953-54 averaged a career-high 8.5 ppg as a senior for the Rams.|
|Tajuan Porter||Oregon||5-6||Career averages of 14.3 ppg, 2.3 rpg and 2.1 apg while shooting 87% from the free-throw line and 38.5% from beyond the arc with the Ducks from 2006-07 through 2009-10. Averaged 31 points in his first three games as a freshman, including 38 with 10 three-pointers against Portland State. Pacific-10 Conference Tournament MVP in 2007.|
|Calvin Rayford||Kansas||5-7||Wisconsin native averaged 2.3 apg from 1992-93 through 1995-96. Member of KU's 1993 Final Four squad.|
|Jim "Miggs" Reilly||Georgetown||5-7||Starter for 1943 NCAA Tournament runner-up.|
|Shawnta Rogers||George Washington||5-4||Leading scorer for Atlantic 10 Conference Western Division champion in 1998-99 (20.7 ppg) when he was named the league's MVP while also topping the A10 in assists (6.8 apg) and steals (3.6 spg). Three-time all-league selection twice paced the conference in free-throw shooting.|
|Chuck Rolles||Cornell||5-6||Two-time All-Ivy League first-team selection averaged 23 ppg as a senior in 1955-56 after averaging 16 ppg as a junior.|
|Jim Ross||Washington State||5-7||Averaged 9.2 ppg and 2.8 rpg from 1956-57 through 1958-59. Led the Cougars in free-throw percentage as a junior.|
|Gene Sosnick||Pacific||5-6||All-California Basketball Association first-team selection as a senior in 1952-53 when he averaged 17.6 ppg for the Tigers.|
|Javan Steadham||Delaware State||5-7||Averaged 8.1 ppg, 2.8 rpg and 2.1 apg as a sophomore in 1995-96 after contributing 4 ppg as a freshman. Averaged 9.7 ppg and team-high 4.8 apg in 1996-97 with the Hornets.|
|Frank Sylvester||Bradley||5-4||Averaged 5.9 ppg from 1968-69 through 1970-71. Led the Braves in assists as a junior and senior.|
|Raymond Taylor||Florida Atlantic/Florida International||5-6||Averaged 11.7 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 4.8 apg and 1.4 for FAU from 2009-10 through 2011-12 before transferring to FIU, where he played briefly in 2013-14.|
|Jim Thacker||Idaho||5-7||Two-time All-Big Sky Conference selection averaged team-high 16.7 ppg in 1967-68 and 14.6 ppg and 5.3 rpg in 1968-69](seasons/1968-69) with the Vandals.|
|Joe Tocci||Penn State||5-7||Averaged 7.5 ppg as Nittany Lions senior co-captain in 1949-50 after contributing 6.3 ppg the previous season.|
|Monte Towe||North Carolina State||5-7||All-ACC first-team selection as a junior averaged 11.1 ppg and 4.1 apg from 1972-73 through 1974-75.|
|Benny Valentine||Eastern Washington||5-7||All-Big Sky Conference second-team selection as a junior in 2008-09 (team highs of 15.1 ppg, 3.1 apg, 1.5 spg and 55 three-pointers). Contributed 8.2 ppg and 2.7 apg the next season.|
|Spud Webb||North Carolina State||5-7||J.C. transfer averaged 10.4 ppg and 5.7 apg with the Wolfpack in 1983-84 and 1984-85. Led the ACC in assists as a junior (6 apg).|
|Leland "Pookey" Wigington||Seton Hall||5-4||Member of the Pirates' 1989 NCAA Tournament runner-up.|
|Willie Worsley||Texas Western||5-6||Averaged 8 ppg as a sophomore for the Miners' 1966 NCAA Tournament champion. Contributed 12.2 ppg in 1966-67 before sharing backcourt with Tiny Archibald and scoring 14.4 ppg in 1967-68.|
|Rudy Zannini||San Francisco||5-7||Member of regular rotation for 1955 NCAA Tournament champion.|
For those observers who revel in recruiting rhetoric and reviews, the world stopped revolving a couple of years ago when the Harrison twins (Aaron and Andrew) announced their intention to attend Kentucky. There were all sorts of Harrison Hysteria questions regarding how the guards would impact the Wildcats and their orgasmic supporters. After struggling during the regular season in 2013-14, they helped UK advance to the NCAA Tournament championship game. In the short term, Big Blue Nation expects to return to the Final Four. Combining to average just over 18 points per game in non-conference competition, the biggest long-term question is how will the Harrisons rank among the most touted twins in college basketball history; especially with platooning reducing impact for an extended period.
Sharing headlines with another premium freshman class, the Harrisons may not crack the Top 10 of the most influential sets of twins at the same school - 1. Van Arsdale (Indiana); 2. O'Brien (Seattle); 3. Lopez (Stanford); 4. Morris (Kansas); 5. Collins (Stanford); 6. Graham (UCF/Oklahoma State); 7. Hughes (Wisconsin); 8. Holmes (VMI); 9. Hayes (Western Carolina/Georgia); 10. Williams (VMI); 11. Kerr (Colorado State); 12. Stanley (Texas A&M); 13. Nelson (Duquesne).
A new set of twins to watch in the future if they develop are Caleb and Cody Martin with North Carolina State. Following is a chronological look at them plus many of the nation's most outstanding sets of twins who played together at least one season on the same team:
- George and Francis Coakley were members of Clemson's 1939 Southern Conference Tournament championship team. It is the Tigers' only league tourney title.
- Clifford and Beauford Minx combined for 10.9 ppg for Missouri's 1944 NCAA Tournament team.
- Forwards John and Rupe Ricksen combined to average 9.7 ppg for California in 1950-51, 15.9 ppg in 1951-52 and 18.4 ppg in 1952-53. The Bears won at least 16 games each of their seasons together. They were co-captains as seniors when Cal captured the PCC South Division title and John earned first-team all-conference status.
- Bantam-sized Johnny and Eddie O'Brien were the top two scorers for Seattle (26-3 record) when it reached the 1953 NCAA Tournament in the Chieftains' first season at the major-college level. They also were infielders for the Pittsburgh Pirates the same year. Johnny O'Brien, a 5-8 unanimous first-team All-American who played center on offense, is the only player to score more than 40 points in his first NCAA Tournament game (42 in an 88-77 victory against Idaho State). Eddie contributed 21 in the same playoff contest.
- Bob (8.6 ppg in 63 games) and Bill (7.5 ppg in 40 games) Gaines played together for Furman from 1954-55 through 1956-57. Each of them averaged 10.3 ppg as a senior.
- Don and Pat Stanley combined for 17.3 ppg and 10.2 rpg in 1959-60 and 24.8 ppg and 11.7 rpg in 1960-61 for Texas A&M. They earlier played at Kilgore when it won a national J.C. title.
- Don and Doug Clemetson combined for 9.5 ppg with Stanford in 1960-61 and 11 ppg in 1961-62. The 16-6 Cardinal finished AAWU runner-up to UCLA, which wound up at the 1962 Final Four.
- Tom and Dick Van Arsdale ranked sixth and seventh on Indiana's list of all-time leading scorers when they graduated in 1965. They were among the nation's top 60 point producers as juniors in 1963-64 and combined for 76 points in a 108-102 neutral court victory against Notre Dame. The Hoosiers went 19-5 their senior campaign. They each played 12 seasons in the NBA, where they both scored more than 14,200 points.
- Lloyd and Floyd Kerr were swingmen who combined to average 25.3 ppg and 10.7 rpg for Colorado State from 1966-67 through 1968-69. Brothers Kerr each scored more than 10 points in all three NCAA playoff games when the Rams reached the Midwest Regional final their senior season (17-7 record) before becoming NBA third-round draft choices.
- Barry and Garry Nelson combined for 21.7 ppg and 16.9 rpg for Duquesne teams compiling a 59-16 record from 1968-69 through 1970-71. Garry led the team in field-goal percentage all three seasons and in rebounding as a sophomore and junior.
- In 1974, seniors Kim and Kerry Hughes carried Wisconsin to its only winning record in Big Ten Conference competition (8-6; 16-8 overall) in a 34-year span from 1963 through 1996. Kim was the Badgers' top rebounder as a sophomore. The 6-11 identical twins combined for 27 ppg and 22 rpg in their junior season and 26 ppg and 20.3 rpg in their final year. Kerry had 21 points and Kim contributed 20 in a home game versus Northwestern their senior year.
- Billy and Bobby Martin excelled for UNC-Wilmington in 1976-77 and 1977-78 after transferring from junior college. Bobby and Billy still rank among the school's all-time leaders in assists.
- Harvey and Horace Grant combined for 16.4 ppg and 11.1 rpg as sophomores for Clemson's 16-13 NIT team in 1984-85. Harvey transferred after the season to a junior college before enrolling at Oklahoma. Each of them had long NBA careers.
- Wichita State's Dwayne and Dwight Praylow combined for 16.3 ppg in 1987-88 (20-10 record) and 20.1 ppg and 8.8 rpg in 1988-89 (19-11 record).
- Victor and Vincent Lee played for Northeast Louisiana from 1986-87 through 1988-89. Their best season was 1988-89 when they were juniors (9.1 ppg and 4.7 rpg).
- Terry and Perry Dozier combined for 9.1 ppg and 3.5 rpg with South Carolina from 1986-87 through 1988-89.
- Damon and Ramon Williams combined for 28.9 ppg in their four-year VMI careers from 1986-87 through 1989-90. They were All-Southern Conference Tournament first-team selections as sophomores in 1988. Ramon was an all-league first-team pick as a junior and Damon achieved the feat as a senior. They rank among the school's all-time top scorers.
- Carl and Charles Thomas were among the top 40 scorers in Eastern Michigan history when they finished their careers following the 1990-91 campaign. They combined to average 16.9 ppg and 7.2 rpg in college before making brief stints in the NBA.
- Sean and Shawn Wightman played together with Western Michigan for three years (1990-91 through 1992-93) after transferring from Illinois State. They combined for 17.9 ppg as juniors. Sean was the nation's top three-point marksman as a junior and led the Mid-American Conference in free-throw shooting as a senior.
- Joe and Jon Ross played together with Notre Dame from 1990-91 through 1993-94. They combined for more than eight rebounds per game their last two seasons.
- Sammie and Simeon Haley combined for 12.5 ppg and 8.8 rpg with Missouri's NCAA Tournament team in 1994-95 (20-9 record) and 14.6 ppg and 9.2 rpg for an NIT team in 1995-96 (18-15 record) after transferring from junior college.
- Jim and David Jackson combined for 7.7 ppg and 3.6 rpg with Virginia Tech's NCAA Tournament team in 1995-96 (23-6 record) and 13.4 ppg and 4.8 rpg in 1996-97 (15-16).
- Bill and Bob Jenkins combined for 14.9 ppg and 12.5 rpg with Valparaiso's NCAA playoff Sweet 16 team in 1997-98 (23-10 record).
- Stanford's Jarron and Jason Collins combined for 19.3 ppg and 12.6 rpg in 1999-2000 before powering the Cardinal to a 31-3 record in 2000-01 with 27.3 ppg and 14.5 rpg.
- Jarvis and Jonas Hayes combined for 25.1 ppg as freshmen with Western Carolina in 1999-2000. They transferred to Georgia after Jarvis led the Southern Conference in scoring with 17.1 ppg. With the Bulldogs, the twins teamed for 25.8 ppg and 10.3 rpg in 2001-02 and 25 ppg and 8.8 rpg in 2002-03.
- Joey and Stevie Graham combined for 25.3 ppg and 9.5 rpg as sophomores with Central Florida in 2001-02 before transferring to Oklahoma State. They collaborated for 15.2 ppg and 6.6 rpg in 2003-04 and 24.2 ppg and 9.4 rpg in 2004-05 for two OSU NCAA playoff teams.
- Errick and Derrick Craven combined for 17.6 ppg and 7.5 rpg with Southern California in 2002-03, 17.2 ppg and 5.2 rpg in 2003-04 and 10.4 ppg and 4.5 rpg in 2004-05.
- Lodrick and Rodrick Stewart combined for 13 ppg and 4.8 rpg with Southern California in 2003-04 before Rodrick transferred to Kansas.
- Yale swingmen Caleb and Nick Holmes combined for 12.3 ppg, 5.5 rpg and 3.2 apg from 2004-05 through 2007-08.
- Travis and Chavis Holmes combined for 18.7 ppg with VMI in 2005-06, 34.2 ppg in 2006-07 and 34 ppg in 2007-08. They colloborated for 57 points in a 156-95 victory against Virginia Intermont in 2006-07 when they each ranked among the nation's top five in steals (placed 1-2 in the Big South Conference). Finished 1-2 nationally in thefts their senior season.
- Centers Brook and Robin Lopez combined for 20.2 ppg, 11.5 rpg and 4.1 bpg with Stanford as freshmen in 2006-07 and 29.4 ppg, 13.8 rpg and 4.4 bpg as sophomores in 2007-08 before they both left school early and became NBA first-round draft choices.
- La Salle's Jerrell and Terrell Williams combined for 12.3 ppg and 8.5 rpg from 2007-08 to 2009-10.
- Charles and Philip Tabet combined for 7.2 ppg and 3 rpg with South Alabama in 2008-09 before falling off to 2.8 ppg with 4.5 rpg in 2009-10.
- Philadelphia natives Markieff and Marcus Morris combined for 12 ppg and 9.2 rpg with Kansas in 2008-09, 19.5 ppg and 11.4 rpg in 2009-10 and 30.8 ppg and 15.9 rpg as All-Big 12 Conference selections in 2010-11 before they both left school early and became NBA first-round draft choices. Marcus was KU's leading scorer (17.2) and Markieff its leading rebounder (8.3) for the Jayhawks' 2011 Big 12 champion.
- David and Travis Wear combined for 6.5 ppg and 3.8 rpg as freshmen for North Carolina in 2009-10 before transferring to UCLA, where they collaborated for 18 ppg and 10.2 rpg in 2012-13 and 13.8 ppg and 7 rpg in 2013-14.
- Charlie (freshman RS in 2009-10) and Colin Reddick combined for 7.7 ppg and 6.1 rpg with Furman in 2010-11, 14.8 ppg and 8.1 rpg in 2011-12 and 22.1 ppg and 11.5 rpg in 2012-13.
Despite distractions from off-the-court conflict, the most illuminating item about Jim Boeheim ranking among the nation's all-time winningest coaches is that the bespectacled "Baron of Upstate New York" has a stunning streak of nothing but winning records in 39 seasons with Syracuse. His worst worksheet was 16-13 in 1981-82 when the NIT-bound Orange dropped four of its last five outings.
Rupp never had a losing record in 41 campaigns but did post one breakeven mark with UK (13-13 in 1966-67). When assessing this topic, keep in mind the following mentors among the all-time biggest winners each had multiple non-winning seasons: Phog Allen (four non-winning records), Jim Calhoun (six), Lefty Driesell (four), Lou Henson (eight), Hank Iba (eight), Bob Knight (two), Mike Krzyzewski (four), Lute Olson (three), Dean Smith (two) and Eddie Sutton (two).
Boeheim boasts the best record among active coaches in close contests, winning more than 60% of games decided by fewer than six points. He is atop the list of five major-college coaches in history with winning marks every year in college careers spanning more than 20 years.
Coach Seasons Closest to Non-Winning Record Jim Boeheim 39 16-13 (Syracuse in 1981-82) *Jerry Tarkanian 31 16-12 (UNLV in 1980-81) and 19-15 (Fresno State in 2001-02) John Wooden 29 14-12 (UCLA in 1959-60) Lou Carnesecca 24 17-12 (St. John's in 1987-88) Peck Hickman 23 13-12 (Louisville in 1957-58)
*Tarkanian also compiled seven more winning records in as many seasons for two community colleges in California, where he won five consecutive state championships after notching a 14-13 mark in 1961-62 at Riverside City College to begin his coaching odyssey.
Canada's recent basketball bounty has gone from Syracuse's Kris Joseph (Quebec) to Gonzaga's Kelly Olynyk (British Columbia) to three All-Americans last season in Iowa State's Melvin Ejim (Toronto), Michigan's Nik Stauskas (Ontario) and Kansas' Andrew Wiggins (Ontario). The next Canadian likely to earn All-American status and show the nation is more than a hockey hotbed probably is Gonzaga guard Kevin Pangos (Ontario).
Foreigners have been much more than bit players in a modern-day immigrant version of "Coming to America." Following is an alphabetical list of hoop princes of sorts as the first 21 All-Americans who spent most or all of their formative years in a country outside mainland U.S.:
|Foreigner||Pos.||College||Native Country||Year(s) All-American||NBA Draft Status|
|Andrew Bogut*||C||Utah||Australia||2005||1st pick overall by Milwaukee|
|Kresimir Cosic||C||Brigham Young||Yugoslavia||1972 and 1973||66th by L.A. Lakers|
|Tim Duncan*||C||Wake Forest||Virgin Islands||1995 through 1997||1st by San Antonio|
|Melvin Ejim||F||Iowa State||Toronto, Ontario||2014||undrafted|
|Patrick Ewing*||C||Georgetown||Jamaica||1982 through 1985||1st by New York|
|Adonal Foyle||C||Colgate||West Indies||1997||8th by Golden State|
|Al Horford||F-C||Florida||Dominican Republic||2007||3rd by Atlanta|
|Kris Joseph||F||Syracuse||Quebec||2012||51st by Boston|
|Dikembe Mutombo||C||Georgetown||Zaire||1991||4th by Denver|
|Eduardo Najera||F||Oklahoma||Mexico||2000||38th by Houston|
|Hakeem Olajuwon||C||Houston||Nigeria||1983 and 1984||1st by Houston|
|Kelly Olynyk||C||Gonzaga||British Columbia||2013||13th by Dallas|
|Juan "Pepe" Sanchez||G||Temple||Argentina||2000||undrafted|
|Detlef Schrempf||F||Washington||Germany||1985||8th by Dallas|
|Rony Seikaly||C||Syracuse||Greece||1988||9th by Miami|
|Doron Sheffer||G||Connecticut||Israel||1996||36th by L.A. Clippers|
|Nik Stauskas||G||Michigan||Ontario||2014||8th by Sacramento|
|Hasheem Thabeet||C||Connecticut||Tanzania||2009||2nd by Memphis|
|Mychal Thompson||F-C||Minnesota||Bahamas||1977 and 1978||1st by Portland|
|Greivis Vasquez||G||Maryland||Venezuela||2010||28th by Memphis|
|Andrew Wiggins||G-F||Kansas||Ontario||2014||1st by Cleveland|
*Named National Player of the Year.
"You don't choose your family. They are God's gift to you, as you are to them." - Desmond Tutu
At first glance to God-fearing fans, it appeared as if Grant's Army was retreating after Jerian Grant exited Notre Dame midway through last season because of academic shortcomings. But Jerian's departure was somewhat offset in the giving Grant household by the emergence of brother Jerami as Syracuse's leading rebounder. Combined with older brother Jerai, the leading rebounder for Clemson's 2011 NCAA playoff team, and father Harvey, an All-American for Oklahoma's 1988 NCAA Tournament runner-up, the "College Grants" rank among the top five hoop families in NCAA annals regarding a legacy list; especially since Jerian, the ACC's leading scorer in non-league competition this season, followed through on his promise to return to the Irish and if youngest son Jaelin is comparable to his brothers when he leaves high school in the near future.
Elsewhere, it seems somewhat ridiculous for a power conference school such as Indiana to offer a scholarship to an eighth-grader (Eron Gordon) several years ago. But that is before examining his family tree. His father, Eric Sr., averaged 14.1 points per game with Liberty from 1981-82 through 1983-84, leading the Flames in scoring as a senior with 18.1 ppg before the school moved up to the NCAA Division I level later in the decade. Oldest brother Eric Jr. led the Big Ten Conference in scoring as a freshman All-American in his lone season with IU in 2007-08 before moving on to the NBA. Older brother Evan was named to the Big South Conference All-Freshman team with Liberty in 2009-10 before becoming an all-league second-team selection as a sophomore prior to transferring to Arizona State and moving on again to Eric Jr.'s old stomping grounds with the Hoosiers. If Eron lives up to billing, the Gordons could become one of the most influential families in college basketball history.
Hoopdom's "Focus on the Family" will also concentrate on the Plumlees if youngest brother Marshall Plumlee finally overcomes his foot problems and improves as much as Duke siblings Mason and Miles. They could combine with their father, former Tennessee Tech frontcourter Perky, to comprise one of the all-time premier family units. Mason became the Blue Devils' go-to plumb line to keep them on the straight and narrow two seasons ago after forgoing leaving school early for the NBA.
Until we have a final reading on the Gordons and Plumlees, following are a dynamic dozen nuclear-power families. The "HoopDaddys" comprised of college players who had at least three sons also go on to compete in a significant way at a similar level include:
BARRY BARRY GOOD
1. Barry - Father Rick Barry, a first-team All-American as a senior when he led the nation in scoring, averaged 29.8 ppg and 16.5 rpg for Miami (FL) from 1962-63 through 1964-65. Son Scooter averaged 3.3 ppg for Kansas' 1988 NCAA titlist before leading the Jayhawks with 5.7 apg the next season. Son Jon, a junior college transfer, averaged 14.4 ppg, 3.6 rpg and 4.5 apg for Pacific and Georgia Tech in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Son Brent averaged 12.1 ppg, 3.7 rpg and 3.3 apg for Oregon State from 1991-92 through 1994-95. Son Drew, an All-ACC second-team selection as a senior, averaged 10.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg and 6.2 apg for Georgia Tech from 1992-93 through 1995-96, leading the ACC in assists each of his last three seasons. Son Canyon averaged 9.4 ppg and 2.7 rpg in the College of Charleston's debut season in the CAA as a redshirt freshman before being sidelined with a finger injury. As a sophomore, he was the Cougars' leading scorer midway through the 2014-15 campaign. Jon, an All-ACC third-team selection as a junior in 1991-92, and Brent, an All-Pacific-10 Conference choice as a senior, were late bloomers who went on to have productive NBA careers. Rick, Jon and Brent were NBA first-round draft choices while Drew was a second-round pick. Bruce Hale, Rick's father-in-law and a Santa Clara alumnus, coached him at Miami (FL) after playing five years in the NBA.
WALTON MOUNTAIN GANG
2. Walton - Father Bill Walton, a three-time national player of the year, averaged 20.3 ppg and 15.7 rpg for UCLA from 1971-72 through 1973-74. Son Adam lettered with LSU before incurring a rest-of-season suspension in Dale Brown's final year as coach in 1996-97 and subsequently transferring to a small college in California. Son Nate was an All-Ivy League first-team selection for Princeton as a senior in 2000-01, becoming the fourth player in school history with two seasons of at least 100 assists. Son Luke, a two-time All-Pacific-10 Conference choice, averaged 9.1 ppg, 5.1 rpg and 4.5 apg for Arizona from 1999-2000 through 2002-03. Son Chris finished among the top 15 in the Mountain West Conference in assists and rebounding as a junior in 2003-04 for San Diego State, finishing his four-year career with averages of 5.1 ppg and 3.4 rpg.
PRICE IS RIGHT CONTROL
3. Price - Father Dennis Price, an All-Big Eight Conference second-team selection as a junior, averaged 10.9 ppg for Oklahoma from 1957-58 through 1959-60. Son Mark, a three-time All-ACC first-team selection and All-American, averaged 17.4 ppg and 4 apg for Georgia Tech from 1982-83 through 1985-86. Son Matt scored 23 points in 18 games as a freshman for Appalachian State in 1984-85. Son Brent, an All-Big Eight Conference first-team selection as a senior, averaged 18 ppg and 5.8 apg for Oklahoma in 1990-91 and 1991-92 after transferring from South Carolina, where he averaged 12.6 ppg and 3.5 apg in 1987-88 and 1988-89.
GRANT'S ARMY MARCHES ON
4. Grant - Father Harvey Grant was an All-American in 1988 as the leading rebounder and second-leading scorer for Oklahoma's NCAA Tournament runner-up. Eldest son Jerai was the leading rebounder for Clemson's 2011 NCAA playoff squad. Son Jerian was Notre Dame's leader in scoring average each of the last three campaigns. Son Jerami was the leading rebounder for Syracuse's inaugural ACC club in 2013-14 before leaving school after sophomore season and becoming a second-round pick in the NBA draft by the Philadelphia 76ers.
JACOBSENS TESTAMENT TO GREAT BLESSINGS
5. Jacobsen - Father Von Jacobsen, who led San Diego State in scoring as a sophomore and junior, averaged 15.4 ppg and 4.9 rpg from 1968-69 through 1970-71. Son Adam averaged 12.6 ppg, 2.9 rpg and 3.6 apg as a three-time All-Big West Conference second-team selection with Pacific from 1993-94 through 1997-98. Son Brock averaged 8.4 ppg, 3 rpg and 2.8 apg for San Diego from 1995-96 through 1998-99. Son Casey, an All-American for Stanford as a junior before declaring early for the NBA draft, averaged 18.1 ppg and 3.8 rpg from 1999-00 through 2001-02. The trio of brothers combined for 625 three-pointers.
HIGH ON HAARLOW
6. Haarlow - Father Bill Haarlow Jr., a three-time All-Western Conference selection for the University of Chicago from 1933-34 through 1935-36, was the league's third-leading scorer as a sophomore (9.9 ppg), leading scorer as a junior (13) and second-leading scorer as a senior (12.6). He had three sons play for Princeton in the 1960s - A. William III averaged 10.8 ppg and 5 rpg in 1962-63, Bob averaged 8.5 ppg and 4.4 rpg from 1963-64 through 1965-66 (second-leading scorer for the Tigers' 1965 Final Four team as a teammate of All-American Bill Bradley) and John averaged 12.6 ppg and 7.3 rpg from 1965-66 through 1967-68 (All-Ivy League second-team selection as a junior). With Bill Jr. cited on CollegeHoopedia.com's comprehensive list of all-time All-Americans, the Haarlows might have been the initial most impactful family on the sport.
7. Paterno - Father Bill Paterno averaged 3.4 ppg with St. Francis (N.Y.) in 1948-49 and 1949-50 after scoring 18 points in nine games in 1947-48. Son Billy averaged 9.8 ppg and 4.7 rpg for Notre Dame from 1973-74 through 1976-77 under coach Digger Phelps, finishing team runner-up in scoring to All-American Adrian Dantley as a sophomore with 13.3 ppg. Son Mike averaged 3.1 ppg for Monmouth in 1987-88. Son Joe averaged 14.6 ppg and 5.1 rpg with Fordham from 1985-86 through 1988-89, leading the Rams in scoring in three seasons and finishing his career as their all-time second-leading scorer. Son Steve averaged 10.8 ppg and 3.6 rpg with Marist from 1987-88 through 1990-91, leading the Red Foxes in scoring as a junior before finishing runner-up as a senior.
TOASTING THE RAIVIOS
8. Raivio - Father Rick Raivio, a three-time All-WCAC selection who led Portland in field-goal shooting all four seasons, finished as the Pilots' all-time leading rebounder (910/9.4 rpg) while averaging 17.2 ppg before becoming a fifth-round draft choice by the Los Angeles Lakers. Son Derek, the WCC co-player of the year as a Gonzaga senior (18 ppg and nation-leading 96.1 FT%), averaged 11.5 ppg and 2.8 apg while shooting 41.6% from beyond the arc from 2003-04 through 2006-07 with Gonzaga en route to becoming the #2 all-time free-throw shooter in DI history (92.7%). Son Nik, a J.C. recruit, was an All-WCC selection as a junior with Portland in 2008-09 when he averaged 16 ppg and 6.5 rpg before heading overseas to play professionally after finishing his Pilots' career with 14.3 ppg and 5.3 rpg. Son Matt averaged 9.4 ppg, 2.8 rpg and 2.8 apg for Simon Fraser (Vancouver) in 2011-12 and 2012-13 after transferring from Santa Rosa (CA) JC.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN HIGH
9. Pollard - Father Pearl Pollard (6-9), a second-team All-Skyline Conference choice as a senior, averaged 10.5 ppg and 7.9 rpg for Utah from 1956-57 through 1958-59 with three national postseason tournament teams, leading the Utes in scoring and rebounding as a senior. Son Carl, 7-2, played briefly for BYU as a freshman in 1983-84 before redshirting in 1984-85, going on a two-year Mormon mission and transferring with a brother to Southern California, where he didn't play prior to competing with Southern Utah in 1989-90 and averaging 1.5 ppg and 2.9 rpg. Son Alan, 6-9, averaged 5.6 ppg and 5.3 rpg while splitting four seasons between Brigham Young and USC from 1984-85 through 1988-89, leading BYU in rebounding as a freshman. Son Mark, 6-11, played briefly for San Diego State in 1990-91 before also leaving at the same time with a brother. Son Neal, 7-0, redshirted at San Diego State in 1988-89 before going on a Mormon mission to New England, playing three games with the Aztecs in 1991-92 and transferring to Utah State, where he didn't play. Son Scot, 6-11, averaged 9.4 ppg, 6.6 rpg and 1.7 bpg for four Kansas teams reaching NCAA playoff regional semifinals from 1993-94 through 1996-97 before becoming an NBA first-round draft choice.
CAN'T FOIL THE DOYLES
10. Doyle - Father Dan Doyle averaged 13.7 ppg and 12.2 rpg for Belmont Abbey (N.C.) in his four-year career. He was selected by the Detroit Pistons in 5th round of 1961 NBA draft (44th pick overall) after pacing Al McGuire-coached teams in scoring average his final three seasons and rebounding as a junior and senior. Son Danny averaged 7.4 ppg and 2.1 rpg with Iona from 1989-90 through 1993-94, leading the Gaels in assists and steals as a senior. Son Joe led then-DII Sacred Heart in scoring, assists and steals as a senior in 1996-97. Son Tim played sparingly for St. John's in 2002-03 before transferring to Northwestern, where he averaged 8.1 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 3.7 apg and 1.3 spg from 2004-05 through 2006-07, leading the Wildcats in assists his last two seasons and in steals as a senior.
PLUMB LINE PLUMS
11. Plumlee - Father Millard (nicknamed "Perky") was a 6-8 backup frontcourter who averaged 3.6 ppg and 3 rpg while shooting 58% from the floor for Tennessee Tech from 1980-81 through 1982-83. Sons Miles (4.8 ppg and 4.8 rpg from 2008-09 through 2011-12), Mason (two-time All-ACC selection; 9.8 ppg, 7.7 rpg and 1.4 bpg from 2009-10 through 2012-13) and Marshall (1.2 ppg and 1.8 rpg from 2011-12 to 2014-15) all attended Duke.
HUGGY BEARS ALL
12. Huggins - Father Charlie Huggins was an All-WVIAC first-team selection for Alderson-Broaddus (W. Va.) in 1957-58 after transferring from West Virginia. Son Bob averaged 8.4 ppg and 2.8 rpg while shooting 45.9% from the floor and 79.4% from the free-throw line with West Virginia in the mid-1970s after transferring from Ohio University. Son Harry was a two-year letterman for Texas Lutheran in the late 1970s after transferring from Rice. Son Larry averaged 5.6 ppg, 2 rpg and 2.1 apg while shooting 46.3% from the floor and 79.3% from the free-throw line as a captain for Ohio State in the early 1980s.
Christensen - Father Harold, a member of Brigham Young's 1951 NIT championship team, averaged 7.8 ppg and 4.4 rpg. He was chosen by the Minneapolis Lakers in 1953 NBA draft before having three sons play for the Cougars - Craig averaged 5.1 ppg in half a season in 1981-82, Kurt averaged 4.5 ppg in 1992-93 and 1993-94, and Todd averaged 5.8 ppg in 1995-96, 1998-99 and 1999-00.
Fife - Father Dan Fife, a 10th-round draft choice by the Milwaukee Bucks before pitching briefly for the Minnesota Twins, averaged 12.6 ppg and 4.9 rpg for Michigan from 1968-69 through 1970-71. Son Dugan, overlooked during the Fab Five era, averaged 4.6 ppg and 2 rpg for Michigan from 1992-93 through 1995-96. Son Jeremy led Grand Valley State (MI) in assists in 1996-97 and 1997-98. Son Dane averaged 5.6 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 2.3 apg and 1.4 spg while shooting 38.2% from three-point range for Indiana from 1998-99 through 2001-02 before becoming a DI head coach with IUPU-Fort Wayne.
McGee - Father Anthony McGee led Long Beach State in scoring in 1975-76 with 14.8 ppg before contributing 4.5 ppg for the 49ers' NCAA playoff team the next season. Son Tony averaged 4 ppg for Eastern Washington in 1997-98 and 1998-99. Son Antoine averaged 1.4 ppg and 1.7 apg with Colorado from 2002-03 through 2005-06. Son Andre averaged 5.2 ppg and 1.8 apg while shooting 36.5% from beyond the arc with Louisville from 2005-06 through 2008-09, leading the Cardinals in three-point field-goal shooting as a junior (39.4%).
Woolridge - Father Orlando averaged 10.6 ppg and 5 rpg with Notre Dame from 1977-78 through 1980-81. Son Zach played sparingly for Princeton from 2005-06 through 2007-08 (23 points in 14 games). Son Renaldo averaged 3.2 ppg and 2.3 rpg for Tennessee from 2008-09 through 2011-12 before transferring to USC (20 points in 20 games in 2012-13). Son Royce played sparingly for Kansas in 2010-11 (nine points in 16 games) before transferring to Washington State (9.2 ppg in 2012-13 and 2013-14) and Grand Canyon (12.9 ppg in 2014-15). Orlando and Renaldo played in games where their teams defeated the nation's #1-ranked club.
Here is a hoop tidbit if you need to win a bar bet: Centre College in Danville, Ky., boasts a distinction that could probably render Dickie V speechless. Centre clobbered both Kentucky (87-17 in 1909-10) and Louisville (61-7 in 1919-20) by more than 50 points, handing each perennial power its most-lopsided defeat in history. Additional major universities succumbing by staggering record-setting margins in the Dinosaur Age against obscure opponents include Bradley (bowed to Millikin), Cincinnati (Circleville), Connecticut (Wesleyan), Duke (Washington & Lee), Massachusetts (Williams), North Carolina (Lynchburg YMCA Elks), Oklahoma State (Southwestern KS), Rhode Island (Amherst), USC (L.A. Athletic Club) and Wichita State (Ottawa).
Returning from the time tunnel, Saint Joseph's, trailing 48-10 at halftime, suffered its most-lopsided loss in school annals early this season when the Hawks were humbled at Gonzaga, 94-42. Their previous worst setback was 123-79 under legendary coach Jack Ramsay against Cincinnati in 1959-60 and they had been one of five DI schools reaching the NCAA playoff national semifinals at some point in their careers to win at least 20 games in a major-college season when suffering their most-lopsided setback. After the St. Joe's blowout under all-time winningest coach Phil Martelli, the "Final Four" left standing in this category are Indiana (1993-94), St. John's (1951-52), Texas-El Paso (2000-01) and UCLA (1996-97). Kentucky was the opponent when Florida, Georgia, St. John's, Temple, Tennessee, Tennessee-Martin, Tulsa and Vanderbilt were saddled with their worst reversals.
Meanwhile, Kansas' anemic 12-point second half resulted in a 72-40 rout by Kentucky. However, it didn't come close to the all-time worst loss for the Jayhawks. Dr. James Naismith founded the game of basketball but he apparently didn't boast any "inside" information gaining a competitive edge. In fact, Naismith is the only one of KU's first nine full-season head coaches to compile a career losing record (55-60 in nine campaigns from 1898-99 through 1906-07). One of the defeats was by an all-time high 40 points against Nebraska.
Naismith is among the following coaches, including a striking number of luminaries (such as Harold Anderson, Gene Bartow, Ben Carnevale, Gale Catlett, Chick Davies, Bill Foster, Marv Harshman, Doggie Julian, Bob Knight, Guy Lewis, Rick Majerus, Frank McGuire, Shelby Metcalf, Lute Olson, Johnny Orr, Vadal Peterson, Digger Phelps, Honey Russell, Norm Stewart and Dick Vitale) incurring the most-lopsided loss in history for a Division I university (info unavailable for some DI schools listed alphabetically below):
|Losing DI School||Season||Record||Coach||Victorious Opponent||Score||Margin|
|Air Force||1965-66||14-12||Bob Spear||Utah||108-57||51|
|Alabama State||1996-97||8-21||Rob Spivery||Minnesota||114-34||80|
|Appalachian State||1972-73||6-20||Press Maravich||North Carolina State||130-53||77|
|Arizona State||1955-56||10-16||Bill Kajikawa||Texas Tech||113-63||50|
|Arkansas||1973-74||10-16||Lanny Van Eman||Mississippi||117-66||51|
|Austin Peay||1981-82||6-20||Ron Bargatze||Clemson||102-53||49|
|Ball State||1946-47||9-8||Pete Phillips||Notre Dame||80-31||49|
|Ball State||1987-88||14-14||Rick Majerus||Purdue||96-47||49|
|Boston College||1955-56||6-18||Don Martin||Marshall||130-69||61|
|Bowling Green||1954-55||6-16||Harold Anderson||Dayton||109-38||71|
|Brigham Young||1996-97||1-25||Roger Reid||Washington||95-44||51|
|UC Irvine||1975-76||14-12||Tim Tift||UNLV||129-57||72|
|UC Santa Barbara||1966-67||10-16||Ralph Barkey||UCLA||119-75||44|
|UC Santa Barbara||1976-77||8-18||Ralph Barkey||UNLV||113-69||44|
|Cal State Fullerton||1964-65||1-25||Alex Omalev||U.S. International||91-32||59|
|Campbell||1997-98||10-17||Billy Lee||Florida International||96-43||53|
|Central Connecticut||1995-96||13-15||Mark Adams||Connecticut||116-46||70|
|Central Florida||1988-89||7-20||Phil Carter||Florida State||133-79||54|
|Central Michigan||1911-12||2-5||Harry Helmer||Michigan State||72-10||62|
|Cincinnati||1901-02||5-4||Henry S. Pratt||Circleville||84-13||71|
|Colorado||1951-52||8-16||Bebe Lee||Kansas State||92-40||52|
|Detroit||1962-63||14-12||Bob Calihan||Western Michigan||110-67||43|
|Detroit||1973-74||17-9||Dick Vitale||Southern Illinois||95-52||43|
|Duke||1912-13||11-8||J.E. Brinn||Washington & Lee||90-15||75|
|East Carolina||1963-64||9-15||Wendell Carr||Davidson||105-45||60|
|East Tennessee State||1996-97||7-20||Ed DeChellis||Davidson||97-47||50|
|East Tennessee State||2007-08||19-13||Murry Bartow||Syracuse||125-75||50|
|Eastern Illinois||2001-02||15-16||Rick Samuels||Oklahoma||109-50||59|
|Eastern Michigan||1957-58||1-20||James Skala||Southern Illinois||128-60||68|
|Fairfield||1949-50||5-16||Bob Noonan||Holy Cross||89-43||46|
|Florida A&M||1992-93||10-18||Willie Booker||Oklahoma||146-65||81|
|Florida Atlantic||2000-01||7-24||Sidney Green||Florida||100-42||58|
|Florida International||1989-90||7-21||Rich Walker||Ball State||105-50||55|
|Florida State||1957-58||9-16||J.K. Kennedy||West Virginia||103-51||52|
|George Mason||1970-71||9-17||John Linn||Randolph-Macon||118-36||82|
|George Washington||1961-62||9-15||Bill Reinhart||West Virginia||120-68||52|
|Georgia State||1994-95||11-17||Carter Wilson||Memphis State||124-52||72|
|Georgia Tech||1908-09||1-6||John Heisman||Georgia||78-9||69|
|Grambling State||1999-00||1-30||Larry Wright||Louisiana State||112-37||75|
|Holy Cross||1901-02||4-5||Fred Powers||Dartmouth||78-27||51|
|Idaho State||1992-93||10-18||Herb Williams||Oklahoma||112-59||53|
|Illinois State||1958-59||24-4||James Collie||Tennessee State||131-74||57|
|Indiana State||1910-11||2-8||John P. Kimmel||Purdue||112-6||106|
|Iowa State||1989-90||10-18||Johnny Orr||Indiana||115-66||49|
|Jacksonville||1988-89||14-16||Rich Haddad||South Alabama||105-59||46|
|James Madison||1977-78||18-8||Lou Campanelli||Utah State||102-66||36|
|Kansas||1899-00||3-4||Dr. James Naismith||Nebraska||48-8||40|
|Kansas State||1945-46||4-20||Fritz Knorr||Marshall||88-42||46|
|Kentucky||1909-10||4-8||R.E. Spahr/E.R. Sweetland||Centre||87-17||70|
|Lamar||1963-64||19-6||Jack Martin||St. Louis||113-63||50|
|La Salle||1945-46||9-14||Joe Meehan||CCNY||94-52||42|
|Long Beach State||1990-91||11-17||Seth Greenberg||UNLV||114-63||51|
|Long Island||1998-99||10-17||Ray Martin||Florida||119-61||58|
|Louisiana Tech||1974-75||12-13||Emmett Hendricks||Tulane||88-40||48|
|Loyola of Chicago||1916-17||1-3||unavailable||Whiting Owls||91-21||70|
|Loyola Marymount||1990-91||16-15||Jay Hillock||Oklahoma||172-112||60|
|Manhattan||1985-86||2-26||Thomas Sullivan||North Carolina||129-45||84|
|Marshall||1913-14||2-6||Boyd Chambers||Cincinnati Church of Christ||68-10||58|
|Maryland||1943-44||4-14||H. Burton Shipley||Army||85-22||63|
|Memphis||1927-28||10-11||Zach Curlin||Elks Club||79-30||49|
|Miami (Ohio)||1948-49||8-13||Blue Foster||Cincinnati||94-36||58|
|Michigan||1999-00||15-14||Brian Ellerbe||Michigan State||114-63||51|
|Michigan State||1974-75||17-9||Gus Ganakas||Indiana||107-55||52|
|Middle Tennessee State||1954-55||11-16||Charles Greer||Morehead State||123-68||55|
|Milwaukee||1962-63||4-17||Russ Rebholz||Loyola of Chicago||107-47||60|
|Mississippi||1913-14||8-7||B.Y. Walton||Mississippi State||84-18||66|
|Mississippi State||1992-93||13-16||Richard Williams||Arkansas||115-58||57|
|Missouri||1997-98||17-15||Norm Stewart||Kansas State||111-56||55|
|Missouri State||1980-81||9-21||Bob Cleeland||Puget Sound||103-50||53|
|Morehead State||1992-93||6-21||Dick Fick||Michigan State||121-53||68|
|Murray State||1960-61||13-10||Cal Luther||St. Bonaventure||92-39||53|
|New Mexico||1954-55||7-17||Woody Clements||UCLA||106-41||65|
|New Orleans||2013-14||11-15||Mark Slessinger||Michigan State||101-48||53|
|Nicholls State||2002-03||3-25||Ricky Blanton||Texas Tech||107-35||72|
|North Carolina||1914-15||6-10||Charles Doak||Lynchburg YMCA Elks||63-20||43|
|UNC Asheville||1997-98||19-9||Eddie Biedenbach||Maryland||110-52||58|
|North Carolina A&T||1976-77||3-24||Warren Reynolds||North Carolina State||107-46||61|
|North Carolina State||1920-21||6-14||Richard Crozier||North Carolina||62-10||52|
|UNC Wilmington||1996-97||16-14||Jerry Wainwright||Villanova||87-38||49|
|North Texas||1998-99||4-22||Vic Trilli||Maryland||132-57||75|
|Northern Arizona||1991-92||7-20||Harold Merritt||Louisiana State||159-86||73|
|Northern Illinois||1966-67||8-12||Tom Jorgensen||Bradley||117-66||51|
|Northern Iowa||1906-07||5-4||R.F. Seymour||Iowa||73-16||57|
|Northwestern State||2000-01||19-13||Mike McConathy||Arkansas||115-47||68|
|Notre Dame||1971-72||6-20||Digger Phelps||Indiana||94-29||65|
|Ohio State||1955-56||16-6||Floyd Stahl||Illinois||111-64||47|
|Oklahoma State||1919-20||1-12||James Pixlee||Southwestern KS||53-9||44|
|Oral Roberts||1992-93||5-22||Ken Trickey||Kansas||140-72||68|
|Oregon State||1996-97||7-20||Eddie Payne||Arizona||99-48||51|
|Oregon State||2009-10||14-18||Craig Robinson||Seattle||99-48||51|
|Penn State||1985-86||12-17||Bruce Parkhill||Navy||103-50||53|
|Portland State||1964-65||8-18||Sharkey Nelson||Montana State||97-43||54|
|Prairie View||1995-96||4-23||Elwood Plummer||Tulsa||141-50||91|
|Providence||1954-55||9-12||Vin Cuddy||Holy Cross||101-47||54|
|Rhode Island||1916-17||2-6||Jim Baldwin||Amherst||65-5||60|
|Rice||1971-72||6-20||Don Knodel||North Carolina||127-69||58|
|Robert Morris||1996-97||4-23||Jim Boone||Arizona||118-54||64|
|St. Francis (N.Y.)||1993-94||1-26||Ron Ganulin||Providence||108-48||60|
|St. John's||1951-52||25-6||Frank McGuire||Kentucky||81-40||41|
|Saint Joseph's||2014-15||TBD||Phil Martelli||Gonzaga||94-42||52|
|Saint Louis||1945-46||13-11||John Flanigan||Oklahoma A&M||86-33||53|
|Saint Mary's||2000-01||2-27||Dave Bollwinkel||Arizona||101-41||60|
|Saint Peter's||1941-42||5-11||Morgan Sweetman||St. Francis (N.Y.)||85-29||56|
|Sam Houston State||1991-92||2-25||Jerry Hopkins||Lamar||126-57||69|
|San Diego State||1998-99||4-22||Fred Trenkle||Utah||86-38||48|
|San Jose State||1970-71||2-24||Danny Glines||New Mexico State||114-55||59|
|Santa Clara||2001-02||13-15||Dick Davey||Ohio State||88-41||47|
|Seton Hall||1957-58||7-19||Honey Russell||Cincinnati||118-54||64|
|South Alabama||1994-95||9-18||Ronnie Arrow||Southern Utah||140-72||68|
|South Carolina||1929-30||6-10||A.W. Norman||Furman||70-11||59|
|South Florida||1987-88||6-22||Bobby Paschal||Syracuse||111-65||46|
|Southeastern Louisiana||1998-99||6-20||John Lyles||Auburn||114-60||54|
|Southern California||1913-14||5-7||unavailable||L.A. Athletic Club||77-14||63|
|Southern Illinois||1980-81||7-20||Joe Gottfried||West Texas State||97-57||40|
|Southern Methodist||1980-81||7-20||Dave Bliss||Arkansas||92-50||42|
|Southern Mississippi||2001-02||10-17||James Green||Cincinnati||89-37||52|
|Southern Utah||1988-89||10-18||Neil Roberts||Oklahoma||132-64||68|
|Tennessee Tech||1962-63||16-8||John Oldham||Loyola of Chicago||111-42||69|
|Texas A&M||1971-72||16-10||Shelby Metcalf||UCLA||117-53||64|
|Texas-Arlington||1993-94||7-22||Eddie McCarter||Iowa State||119-55||64|
|Texas Christian||1977-78||4-22||Tim Somerville||Clemson||125-62||63|
|Texas-El Paso||2000-01||23-9||Jason Rabedeaux||Fresno State||108-56||52|
|Texas-San Antonio||1996-97||9-17||Tim Carter||Texas Tech||99-51||48|
|Texas Southern||1993-94||19-11||Robert Moreland||Arkansas||129-63||66|
|Texas Tech||2007-08||16-15||Pat Knight||Kansas||109-51||58|
|Toledo||1932-33||3-13||Dave Connelly||Ohio State||64-10||54|
|U.S. International||1989-90||12-16||Gary Zarecky||Oklahoma||173-101||72|
|Utah||1934-35||10-9||Vadal Peterson||Denver AC||60-16||44|
|Utah State||1909-10||3-7||Clayton Teetzel||Utah||69-15||54|
|Utah State||1925-26||13-5||Lowell Romney||Southern California||82-28||54|
|Virginia Commonwealth||1976-77||13-13||Dana Kirk||Auburn||109-59||50|
|Virginia Tech||1952-53||4-19||Red Laird||Marshall||113-57||56|
|Wake Forest||1913-14||10-7||J.R. Crozier||Virginia||80-16||64|
|Washington State||1964-65||9-17||Marv Harshman||UCLA||93-41||52|
|Washington State||2004-05||12-16||Dick Bennett||Oklahoma State||81-29||52|
|Weber State||1988-89||17-11||Denny Huston||Akron||92-50||42|
|West Virginia||1978-79||16-12||Gale Catlett||Louisville||106-60||46|
|Western Carolina||1998-99||8-21||Phil Hopkins||Maryland||113-46||67|
|Western Kentucky||1990-91||14-14||Ralph Willard||Georgia||124-65||59|
|Western Michigan||1988-89||12-16||Vern Payne||Michigan||107-60||47|
|Wichita State||1912-13||1-11||E.V. Long||Ottawa||80-8||72|
|William & Mary||1918-19||3-6||V.M. Geddy||Roanoke||87-6||81|
|Wright State||1976-77||11-16||Marcus Jackson||Cincinnati||120-52||68|
|Youngstown State||1941-42||9-12||Dom Rosselli||Toledo||88-32||56|
Has there ever been a coach in an elite "Power 6" league with a consistent track record for dramatic player development anywhere close to duplicating Wisconsin's Bo Ryan? A UW player became an All-Big Ten Conference selection each of the previous five campaigns and seven of last eight after previously averaging fewer than three points per game as a freshman. This year, point guard Traevon Jackson (1.1 in 2011-12) could join the following chronological list of Badgers becoming an all-league choice under Ryan after averaging fewer than 3 ppg as a freshman (all but one of them fewer than 2 ppg):
G Kammron Taylor (1.2 ppg in 2003-04 to 13.3 ppg in 2006-07)
G Michael Flowers (1.2 ppg in 2004-05 to 9.6 ppg in 2007-08)
G Trevon Hughes (1.4 ppg in 2006-07 to 15.3 ppg in 2009-10)
F Jon Leuer (2.9 ppg in 2007-08 to 18.3 ppg in 2010-11)
G Jordan Taylor (1.6 ppg in 2008-09 to 18.1 ppg in 2010-11 and 14.8 ppg in 2011-12)
C Jared Berggren (1.1 ppg in 2009-10 to 11 ppg in 2012-13)
C Frank Kaminsky (1.8 ppg in 2011-12 to 14.1 ppg in 2013-14)
"Saving" his program time and time again by turning scars into stars, it is no wonder Wisconsin won 50 consecutive contests under "General" Ryan in one stretch when the Badgers were ahead or tied with five minutes remaining in regulation. They never finished lower than fourth place in the Big Ten standings in his first 13 years at their helm. Kaminsky scored a school-record 43 points early in the 2013-14 campaign en route to pacing the team in scoring average. It is time to right "Ryan's Wrong." There is no satisfactory explanation why Ryan never has been named national coach of the year.
Regal recruit Jahlil Okafor, designated preseason national player of the year in some quarters, hit 9 of 10 field-goal attempts for Duke as the Blue Devils hosed the Presbyterian Blue Hose, 113-44, in their season opener. But Okafor (19 points/6 rebounds) still needs to compete against quality competition for observers to try to gauge his potential. Will Okafor's first-season impact be more like Anthony Davis, the national player of the year two seasons ago when he sparked Kentucky to an NCAA title, or Andre Drummond, who averaged a modest 10 ppg and 7.6 rpg for Connecticut as the disappointing Huskies finished out of the 2011-12 final Top 25 polls?
Actually, textbook centers are becoming a rare breed. Time will tell if Davis or Okafor eventually deserve to be included among the premier pivotmen in college basketball history. By almost any measure, centers in the last 40 years don't seem to be anywhere close to duplicating feats that luminaries Lew Alcindor, Artis Gilmore, Bob Lanier, Jerry Lucas, Bill Russell and Bill Walton achieved in their initial varsity campaigns.
Similar to Navy's David Robinson in 1983-84, Drummond was scoreless in his season debut three years ago against Columbia. In a forgettable debut, Wake Forest's Tim Duncan was also scoreless in a season-opening loss to NCAA Division II Alaska-Anchorage in 1993-94 before rebounding with a 12-point, 12-rebound performance in his next outing against Hawaii.
Alcindor (77: 56 points/21 rebounds) and Chamberlain (83: 52 points/31 rebounds) each totaled more points and rebounds in their college game debut than Drummond, Duncan, Patrick Ewing, Nerlens Noel, Hakeem Olajuwon, Shaquille O'Neal, Robinson and Ralph Sampson amassed collectively. Following is a look at how many of the premier centers in history fared in their varsity debut against a major college and a summary of their first season of NCAA Division I competition:
|Celebrated Center||School||First Varsity Season||Debut Game||PPG||RPG||W-L Mark|
|Nerlens Noel||Kentucky||2012-13||4 points/9 rebounds||10.5||9.5||21-12|
|Anthony Davis||Kentucky||2011-12||23 points/10 rebounds||14.2||10.4||38-2|
|Greg Oden||Ohio State||2006-07||14 points/10 rebounds||15.7||9.6||35-4|
|Tim Duncan||Wake Forest||1993-94||12 points/12 rebounds||9.8||9.6||21-12|
|Shaquille O'Neal||Louisiana State||1989-90||10 points/5 rebounds||13.9||12.0||23-9|
|Alonzo Mourning||Georgetown||1988-89||10 points/10 rebounds||13.1||7.3||29-5|
|David Robinson||Navy||1983-84||scoreless/1 rebound||7.6||4.0||24-8|
|Hakeem Olajuwon||Houston||1981-82||2 points/0 rebounds||8.3||6.5||25-8|
|Patrick Ewing||Georgetown||1981-82||7 points/4 rebounds||12.7||8.5||30-7|
|Ralph Sampson||Virginia||1979-80||4 points/6 rebounds||14.9||11.2||24-10|
|*Bill Walton||UCLA||1971-72||19 points/14 rebounds||21.1||15.5||29-1|
|**Artis Gilmore||Jacksonville||1969-70||35 points/18 rebounds||26.5||22.2||17-7|
|*Bob Lanier||St. Bonaventure||1967-68||23 points/17 rebounds||26.2||15.6||23-2|
|*Lew Alcindor||UCLA||1966-67||56 points/21 rebounds||29.0||15.5||30-0|
|*Jerry Lucas||Ohio State||1959-60||16 points/28 rebounds||26.3||16.3||25-3|
|*Wilt Chamberlain||Kansas||1956-57||52 points/31 rebounds||29.6||18.9||24-3|
|*Bill Russell||San Francisco||1953-54||16 points/17 rebounds||19.9||19.2||14-7|
**Junior classification after attending junior college.