"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 and Stevie Wonder weren't athletes, they could see exercising some patience clearly paid dividends for the Bruins.
Gregg Marshall (Winthrop and Wichita State) joined Lou Henson (New Mexico State and Illinois) as the only individuals to become the all-time winningest coach for two different schools. Marshall and Henson didn't exactly set the world on fire in their first couple of campaigns with Wichita and the Illini, respectively. 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 Marshall and Henson 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).|
|Gregg Marshall||Wichita State||Total of nine games below .500 overall and 12 below .500 in MVC competition in first two seasons (2007-08 and 2008-09).|
|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).|
|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).|
|Steve Pikiell||Stony Brook||Total of 47 games below .500 in first three seasons (2005-06 through 2007-08).|
|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).|
Scrutiny of Louisville's program has a shelf life lasting a mite longer than 15 seconds, leaving the white suit coach Rick Pitino occasionally dons a drunk-on-power symbol for anything but purity. There is little doubt a self-imposed one-year postseason competition ban and future scholarship/recruiting reductions (a/k/a preemptive plea bargain) implied the Cardinals face more significant sanctions on down the road. If there was any good news, at least UL's upper brass didn't don Mexican garb for the "trick-or-treat" announcements and doesn't seem to buy stock into dimwitted deflection tactics blaming book publishing company owned by Indiana's largest-ever donor with law school named after him. However, it was disappointing Pitino didn't have an opportunity to cowardly boycott or conduct a Cam Newton-like walkout, departing hand gesture or not, at any postseason press briefing this year.
Amid full-figure female fallout from fact-filled tell-all tale (Breaking Cardinal Rules), pretentious Pitino recently said: “There's only one good thing about being 63 – you don't care what people think anymore.” The reprehensible regaling all sounded vaguely familiar. After all, it seems as if thin-skinned Pompous Pilot didn't care when he was in his 50s (restaurant affair with staffer's soon-to-be spouse), 40s (quit in mid-season after lured by $50 million to try to become reincarnation of Red Auerbach rather than next Adolph Rupp), 30s (BU Revue) and 20s (Hawaii infractions)?
Essentially, a tawdry timeline stems from philosophy of do as I say; not as I do. One of Pitino's books lecturing everyone else discusses how the past can haunt you. As an assistant at Hawaii, Pitino was implicated in eight of 64 violations leading to the Rainbows' two-year probation stint in the late 1970s. Nonetheless, the narcissist didn't care upon setting foot in Kentucky years ago as his one-day contract stump speech unfolded prior to incessant recycling. Is there any Pitino-linked symbolism this year when probation-bound Hawaii earned a berth in the NCAA playoffs while UL was banished?
“I think it's a positive because I know exactly what can go on the wrong way,” Pitino smugly self-assessed about suspect hoop activities in the Paradise of the Pacific shortly before he was hired by UK in the late 1980s. “There's no one in this business with more integrity (than me). It didn't happen in Hawaii as far as I'm concerned. I didn't make any mistakes, I don't care what anybody says. I'm not going to comment on it anymore because I don't have to.”
Need more I-don't-give-a-rip integrity? The alternate-reality program wallowed in self-absorption last fall when Louisville failed to care about providing anything but a lame spin-tour remark stemming from an inquiry regarding an anecdote in the incisive book Raw Recruits written by dying-breed respected journalists Alexander Wolff and Armen Keteyian (more on media later). With apologies to “dictator” Dick Vitale's personal library, Season on the Brink (written by John Feinstein) and Raw Recruits rank 1-2 or vice versa as the all-time most compelling behind-the-scenes books on college basketball. After a big win for Pitino-coached Boston University at Rhode Island in the early 1980s, Raw Recruits alleged he rewarded the Terriers by having their bus stop at a jiggle joint on the way back to campus and hand out dollar bills to players so they might tuck them into G-strings.
Thirty years later, a ridiculous response from condescending UL about the book's sewer snippet was the famished BU brigade innocently walked in to get food, presumably thinking neon lights and all were essentials for a lively restaurant, but promptly bailed with hands covering their eyes. How many times have you heard about a booby bar being confused with fast food unless it is difficult to differentiate between excessive makeup on a Dancin' Girl and same for Ronald McDonald? Of course, there's not much happy-deal difference between unwrapped buns “having a good day” at the Golden Arches and gold jewelry near strategic arches on naked bodies. Maybe the classy New England establishment was simply a topless diner for roadie academic tutors, unbeknownst to coach, keeping GPA (Great Party Atmosphere) of squad members up by cramming for anatomy class on trek home.
Dwelling a little more on distinguishing between day-of-reckoning dignity and depravity, how low can you sink when self-proclaimed Elvis Presley (ex-UL All-American Terrence “Why Would I Pay Anybody for Anything” Williams) is a credibility reference for Hookergate scoring considering his checkered past? It may be the equivalent of Pitino vouching for former UK guard Richie "He Can Do No Wrong" Farmer when he ran afoul of the law.
Here is what genuinely "doesn't make any sense at all" for someone who is kind of a big deal. Pitino, boasting a master-puppeteer reputation, has a penchant for "can't-find-one-person" pap not knowing what the hell is going on around him even if it is a relatively minor thing such as six-year UL assistant coach Steve Masiello failing to complete requirements for a diploma during and after his ex-Knicks ball-boy playing for him at UK before immersed in an academic controversy as Manhattan's coach.
Understandably, the contrived Sgt. “I know nothing” Schultz routine regarding the "we have a different way we recruit" rot really gets old. One of Pitino's books also honed in on when it's best not to delegate. Pitino, saying he was “still trying to understand the motive,” treats his former player/assistant coach Andre McGee as if aspiring to explain a Shakespearean production ("Et tu, Brutus?"). Actually, it would be helpful to know when fall-guy target McGee was first exposed to this scurrilous stagecraft before he is thrown under the intellectually-and-morally bankrupt bus. The bluster bus is driven by Pitino, who said: "We have the most compliant coaches in the NCAA, no matter what you hear." If relevant at all, did we hear if this commendable credential predated McGee as a player and/or coach or kicked in after McGee departed for UMKC and subsequently working as a driver for car service Uber?
Do Pitino's longstanding don't-care comments credibly pass a sincere threshold to where the nation should deluge him with speedy-recovery well wishes to help mend his broken heart? As most ardent hoop observers are aware, the BU rock-star sojourn wasn't the only time he mistook a restaurant for adult entertainment. Amplifying on the toxic topic via common sense, it is inconceivable to accept no-compulsion premise there was nothing abnormal maneuvering from normal extracurricular habits to chance stop-on-a-dime meeting with extortion-bound stranger on an upscale restaurant table. Just wondering, but did the fine-diner owner leave keys thinking the hangers-on were going to sweep the floor and clean the dishes exercising 15 seconds of shame? Perhaps they were waiting on UL football coach Bobby Petrino and hoop sage Bo Ryan to compare notes about exploits on and off the court.
Seems as if there was lack of credibility everywhere one turned. In the wake of such boorish behavior, should we bother to contemplate what went on to relieve stress at higher-stakes citadels such as New York (Knicks) and college cage capital (Lexington, KY)? It almost makes a Client 9-curious individual want to enlist the services of a PI to rummage through little black book of whomever the Manhattan Madam happened to be in late 1980s before conducting survey of coeds attending UK the first half of 1990s about any love lodge or perhaps big and blue van featuring tinted windows. First step learning about "good times" equipment might be giving amnesia antidote or truth serum to gatekeeper/chauffeur. Winston Bennett, an assistant under Pitino with UK and the Boston Celtics, may also be able to offer some insight based on the former All-SEC second-team selection admitting he "slept with 90 women a month" despite stature as the ultimate NBA scrub.
What transpired at UL is precisely why a control freak orchestrated construction of a basketball dormitory (named for his brother-in-law who tragically died in 9/11 attack) to monitor his roster and keep them from becoming salacious scholars. Instead, what repeatedly resulted was a classic example of lack of institutional control. So what if Pitino wasn't the whore-dorm booking agent or could pass a lie-detector test on a well-crafted question skirting the predatory activity. Doesn't his pact with UL have provision about “diligently supervise compliance of assistant coaches and any other employees for which he is administratively responsible”?
“I'm totally saddened to the point of disbelief over the incidents,” Pitino said during one of his incredible sulks. “We've built a very strong culture here of discipline and doing the right things.” You've got to be kidding! If so, did a single disciplined student-athlete exhibit sufficient strength to do the right thing, go to him and describe detestable culture infecting Club Minardi? If not, why are his family-atmosphere players more loyal to a subordinate than head coach? Pleading with the Hoop Gods, please don't put public through the traditional "plausible-deniability" focus on disgruntled former "employees" defense.
Whether or not it was a byproduct of culture or karma, the Pitino brand also faced a brewing sex-lies-and-videotape scandal involving his son's recruits at Minnesota, which featured more suspended players than Big Ten Conference victories. Any video this year involving Gopher players, on or off hardwood, probably is filth and should be erased. Amid the disturbing credibility gap, it's probably time to shift gears and sarcastically add to the sad state of affairs with the following pointless plot lines for entertaining episodes on HBO's soon-to-be-announced Pitino Place show:
- Jilted Karen, after escaping confinement by having sex with prison security guard boasting slick black hair, undergoes race-and-name change becoming Katina and trying to extort main character Slick Rick again before going on the cover of Vanity Fair and “earning” some sort of ESPY courage award for her copious copulation commentary.
- In a what-might-have-been dream, Slick Rick learns in a confession booth about an innocent baby boy named Rowe Vee Wade if Catholic principles really meant more than abortion creating new definition for “health care” money. Rowe Vee Wade would have been a blue-chip playmaking prospect who played for half-brother and averaged more assists per game in college career than his look-alike estranged father (5.6 apg). Upon waking up from Rip Van Winkle slumber, Slick Rick decides to become a sperm donor to try to clone Mr. Nifty Jr. (donor's college nickname).
- Slick Rick groupie Vinny, moonlighting as an NCAA enforcement agent, taught boss to hold the tail during horse breeding and told tales about anything dealing with human breeding. But the aloof horse owner already was a thoroughbred Breeders' Cup Secretariat wannabee and only had eyes for what was under some of those gaudy race-track hats. Vinny, who was actually a double agent, eventually spilled his good-times guts to authorities when he was supposed to be conducting opposition research on rival Coach Pay-pal Cal including going through trash in Memphis trying to unearth any Slick Rick-like transgressions or rookie salary-cap violations he could possibly find to help prevent ninth defeat in last 10 confrontations.
- Slick Rick blames Sick “You Better Put Some Ice On It” Willie for infecting him with some unnamed pants-dropping defect in front of stranger after shaking Bubba's cigar-stained hand before introducing President Stainmaker, still basking in the glow of an Arkansas title, at a campaign rally on the eve of the 1996 election. Finishing “expensive” speech on humility to Wall Street executives and meeting filing deadline for book on success, he had to take a rain check regarding cheerleader-recruiting/saxophone-lesson trip with Shrillary's Secret Weapon and equally frail contemptible Clintonista cronies to “Orgy Island.”
- Intervention for Slick Rick unfolds to stop drinking bourbon named after him. Becoming delusional as much as Kanye is in debt, he claimed his new Kanye West/adidas shoes helped him win a dunking contest as college freshman decades ago against varsity standout Julius Erving in 1970-71 before Dr. J became a professional basketball highlight reel. Boasting super-human strength capable of reeling in mammoth marlin, Slick Rick claimed he won a home-run derby against Mike Flanagan in 1971-72 when the eventual 18-year MLB pitcher averaged 13.9 ppg for the same school's frosh squad. In a bizarre rant by Slick Rick after pain killer wore off from getting a title tattoo, the egomaniac thought he should receive Bill Cosby's Presidential Medal of Freedom if award is stripped from the widely-condemned comic. Meanwhile, Kanye ($53 million in debt) makes guest star appearance begging Taylor Swift for 53 cents for his "Famous" ideas so he can impress fashionable Kim by having more "rep" cred than 50 Cent with music endorsement by Slick Rick linked to any affiliated dorm dance.
All silly-season sarcasm aside, the bottom-line drivel is what do you expect from a program where the coach can't control himself? Louisville native Muhammad Ali issued his support while Pitino's boss had his thoughts with the Pitino family and delusional AD Tom Jurich, apparently an abortion advocate, said Pitino “has a perfect track record.” We presume Jurich's perfection testimonial isn't hampered by Parkinson's and includes Pitino settling for more than $2,500 to get rid of evidence. Maybe some of these unprincipled folks would show a shred of humanity if a female member of their immediate family was affected.
Just like the majority of scandals, follow the money trail of a plot that may have had its genesis in a Barbershop sequel of sorts. Whatever the amount spent by McGee for physical activity by saving gas money moving party venue closer to home, it's virtually impossible to believe the bank-bundled funds came entirely from his personal account. Pitino, responding as if he was kneed in the groin by some unknown assailant, had Olympian gall telling McGee “to step up” after skating around issue crying “Why?” way more than Nancy Kerrigan.
Of course, the most disgusting “why” involved fathers/guardians tagging along for a recruiting ride to LarryFlyntVille when not busy helping prospects with their studies. In employing a perverted version of father-son bonding, why was there the incentive way horsing around driving it homeboy rather than “a dolt” just having fond memory of playing horse against his boy in the family driveway. What would the party-planner incentive be if the recruit actually helped UL reach a Final Four?
Pitino, who said bump-and-grind allegations made him “sick to my stomach,” can always cure chronic tummy tumult via some dessert delicacy at his favorite upscale restaurant. Actually, frequent health references simply raise suspicion about his mid-season walking-out-through-the-door “flight” to Cleveland Clinic in 2003-04 three years after the "wounded tiger" quit the Celtics because Larry Bird, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish weren't walking back through their door.
An inalienable right exists to be stupid like Apple protecting phone of Islamic terrorist, but we saw the outline of a clever problem-solving act just last season when problem-child guard Chris Jones was dismissed. You've got the comedy-relief brains of a doorknob if you believed Louisville's shedding of a little light via a door-opening salvo explaining life-without-Jones stemmed primarily from a 9 p.m. curfew violation. It's unclear whether Pitino, exhibiting a theatrical flop reminiscent of Jones' chin-rubbing charade in a match-up with cross-state rival Kentucky, includes himself in refuting any bad acting.
Jones, described by Pitino as “type of guy who always has his hands in the cookie jar,” dropped out of school to defend himself as rigorously as the ACC's leader in steals average defended opponents. Wouldn't you like an insider to drop some knowledge regarding the rigorous classes the scholar took and stack them up against North Carolina's no-show way or the intellectually-stimulating spring-semester coursework for the one-and-done crowd? Depending upon your perspective, didn't the culture Pitino portrayed “steal” a scholarship from perhaps an authentic student-athlete? Some viewers want to be assured they can't catch a STD from TV and seek to promptly take a shower after watching UL these days.
The shameless local and national media covering UL also are to blame, but they already have a laser-like fixation on touchy-feely timing of ban rather than incalculable more vital issues such as academic integrity and power-structure lack of accountability of coaching staffs for revenue-producing sports. There should be a one-year ban on reading or watching the presstitutes because of their failure to live up to news-gathering obligations by allowing an Escort Queen to “(hard)cover” the program better than they did. How in the name of Edmund R. Murrow did Katina discern more about what was going on than Pitino, university officials and a seemingly enabling press stripped naked by her firsthand research?
Pitino claimed he hasn't read Powell's expose but said “people will do anything for money.” Does the same assessment apply to Sextino regarding his series of what now seem like tainted hypocritical volumes (Success is a Choice, How to Add Value to Every Minute of Your Life, Lead to Succeed, Rebound Rules, etc.)? Taking the power of positive thinking to an extreme, he'll have additional exposure to a couple of bullet points in his 10-step plan – thriving on pressure and learning from adversity.
Collateral damage caught in the middle of mess created by others, do you think chattel-graduate transfers Damion Lee (Drexel) and Trey Lewis (Cleveland State) were credibly “recruited” with emphasis on prospect of participating in NCAA playoffs? Lee said last summer: "If we buy into the system and what coach Pitino preaches, then we can be successful." Standing O from UL fans notwithstanding, the betrayed duo "tabled" by Preacher Pitino's program should sue the system - coaching staff and school - for fraud after enduring the pressure connected to this adversity. Mercenaries Lee and Lewis were wronged, but they triggered the wrongdoing and suffered the consequences by wrongly choosing to attend UL. If the NCAA doesn't embrace a penalty for time served upon sanctioning UL, the media will predictably preach about this time next year regarding a players' rights pity party for ensuing graduate-school transfer (Tony Hicks from Penn). Perhaps the NCAA can compromise and let UL humbly compete in the NIT, CBI, CIT or inaugural Vegas 16 after interviewing Little Richard about what transpired during his second stint on daddy's staff in 2011-12.
Meanwhile, self-described “soldier-in-this-army” Pitino asked: “If I resign, would people feel better about it?” Answer: Well, yes, if anyone credible amid the debris remains boasting a moral compass rather than emphasizing morale-building comp-a__. Sticking with military references post-infiltration of his program, it's time for court-martial and discharge; mid-season or not. Not caring what anyone says, such a departure would be a positive for going the wrong way. Securing generous dose of humility sooner rather than later, author Pitino can take an adult education refresher course ruminating on his own following words in "The One-Day Contract":
- "The egotistical coach, the arrogant athlete, they are stereotypes that too often ring true."
- "The longer I live and the more I experience, the more I believe that humility is the quality essential to sustained success, and a lack of it is the major stumbling block for those who find success for a time, then lose it."
- "There's no question when you coach at Kentucky, you fall into a trap of thinking you're much better than you really are, because of the adulation and attention. It is constant and seems to come in a never-ending supply. I did not know it in the midst of it, but that arrogance, that thinking of yourself as the best, is one of the biggest reasons successful people stumble and fail."
- "The consequences of not learning humility can be tragic. If we don't always see these consequences in our own lives, we should be able to recognize them all around us. Not learning humility is, for one, an expensive lesson."
- "Self-aggrandizement, alienation of friends, family, or teammates, a tragic tendency to overestimate one's talent that leads to overreaching, they all are traits of people who lack humility. This also is a story that is not new. The ancient Greeks had a word for this very situation: hubris."
- "The same cycle (of self-destruction) can be seen in many fields. The list of those for whom humility not only might have saved a fortune, but their future, is long and star-studded."
- "The decadent lifestyle, the entourages, the unrealistic expectation of stature and longevity - all this leads to poor choices and reckless decision making."
- "With humility, you are better able to enjoy and understand success, and you are better able to examine and handle failure."
- "Humble people always handle adversity so much better because they understand who they are. So many come to disappointing ends and wonder why it happened. Most often, it was a lack of humility, leading to arrogance, leading to the mistakes they made. They think they are more significant than they are and it makes them gamble with their lives and their professions. Then, when things go wrong, they lash out and blame others. Arrogant people spread around their failure with blame."
- "Not only is humility the key to finding lasting success, but it is the key to lasting happiness. Go back through history, literature, spiritual books, and this cycle is repeated throughout generations and cultures: arrogance, fall, acceptance, humility, healing. We're no different from people who came before us. I can't state enough how important a lesson this is to learn, and the importance of learning it before life forces you to."
Is it too much to ask, not force, schools to display some modicum of proper behavior? The naked truth is an arranged or deranged marriage might be more suitable for Pitino by heading West again and hook(er)ing on with UNLV, where he could revive the glory days of Tark the Shark in a more suitable brothel environment including parts of state where prostitution is legal. If our ciphering is correct (perhaps Syphering in this instance) in the throes of Vegas' syphilis outbreak, he could humbly heal thyself by becoming the only bench boss guiding four different schools to the Final Four before turning the Rebels' program over in nepotism fashion to his coach-in-waiting son if offspring learns how to avoid humility of losing to visiting South Dakota and South Dakota State in the same week. The (cr)apple doesn't fall far from the family tree. For $2 million a year (after $450,000 bonus at end of April), Little Richard should have at least humored us by announcing the humble Gophers joined Get-Your-Fill-In-The-Ville by accepting a 2016 postseason ban.
Kentucky faces the same dilemma after multiple undergraduate members of its regular rotation departed a Final Four team four times in a five-year span to display their wares in the NBA. Each Final Four since 1995 had at least one school promptly lose a minimum of one player early to the NBA, including all four participants in 2007 (Florida, Georgetown, Ohio State and UCLA). But what happened to those national semifinal schools such as Kentucky and defending champion Duke with multiple players declaring early for the NBA? It's no great mystery as to why the Blue Devils fell out of the national rankings for the first time in eight years after having three undergraduates picked among the top 24 NBA draft picks in 2015.
The first 15 "star light" schools with multiple defectors failed to reach an NCAA regional final the next season until Kentucky reversed the trend with a national championship in 2012 after losing Brandon Knight and DeAndre Liggins in 2011. But UK, after freshmen Julius Randle and James Young were among the top 17 NBA draft choices in 2014, couldn't duplicate that feat last year. It would have been one of the greatest achievements in college basketball history if UK returned to the 2013 Final Four after losing five undergraduates from the 38-2 NCAA titlist although two of them (Doron Lamb and Marquis Teague) have had virtually no NBA impact. The perils of losing so much young talent was reflected in the Wildcats' failure to reach the NCAA playoffs and losing in the opening round of the NIT against Robert Morris.
The only team in this category other than UK to lose fewer than seven games was Duke (29-5 in 1999-00). After the first 13 squads thus far this century suffered an average of nine defeats in the wake of multiple pro defections, Kentucky won 38 in a row last season before bowing against Wisconsin in the national semifinals, which was a significant departure from the following chronological look at how Final Four schools fared the year after having multiple players renounce their college eligibility:
|Year||Final Four Team||Multiple Undergraduates Declaring For NBA Draft||Record||Postseason Outcome Next Season|
|1995||Arkansas (2)||Scotty Thurman (undrafted), Corliss Williamson (13th pick overall)||20-13||Lost regional semifinal|
|1995||North Carolina (2)||Jerry Stackhouse (3rd), Rasheed Wallace (4th)||21-11||Lost in second round|
|1996||Mississippi State (2)||Erick Dampier (10th), Dontae' Jones (21st)||12-18||Did not qualify|
|1998||North Carolina (2)||Vince Carter (5th), Antawn Jamison (4th)||24-10||Lost in first round|
|1999||Duke (3)||William Avery (14th), Elton Brand (1st), Corey Maggette (13th)||29-5||Lost regional semifinal|
|2000||Florida (2)||Donnell Harvey (22nd), Mike Miller (5th)||24-7||Lost in second round|
|2001||Arizona (3)||Gilbert Arenas (31st), Richard Jefferson (13th), Michael Wright (39th)||24-10||Lost regional semifinal|
|2001||Michigan State (2)||Zach Randolph (19th), Jason Richardson (5th)||19-12||Lost in first round|
|2004||Connecticut (2)||Ben Gordon (3rd), Emeka Okafor (2nd)||23-8||Lost in second round|
|2005||Illinois (2)||Dee Brown (undrafted), Deron Williams (3rd)||26-7||Lost in second round|
|2005||North Carolina (4)||Raymond Felton (5th), Sean May (13th), Rashad McCants (14th), Marvin Williams (2nd)||23-8||Lost in second round|
|2007||Florida (4)||Corey Brewer (7th), Taurean Green (52nd), Al Horford (3rd), Joakim Noah (9th)||24-12||Reached NIT semifinals|
|2007||Ohio State (3)||Mike Conley Jr. (4th), Daequan Cook (21st), Greg Oden (1st)||24-13||Won NIT|
|2008||Kansas (3)||Darrell Arthur (27th), Mario Chalmers (34th), Brandon Rush (13th)||27-8||Lost regional semifinal|
|2008||UCLA (3)||Kevin Love (5th), Luc Richard Mbah a Moute (37th), Russell Westbrook (4th)||26-9||Lost in second round|
|2011||Kentucky (2)||Brandon Knight (8th), DeAndre Liggins (53rd)||38-2||Won national title|
|2012||Kentucky (5)||Anthony Davis (1st), Terrence Jones (18th), Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (2nd), Doron Lamb (42nd), Marquis Teague (29th)||21-12||Lost in NIT first round|
|2013||Michigan (2)||Trey Burke (9th), Tim Hardaway Jr. (24th)||28-9||Lost regional final|
|2014||Kentucky (2)||Julius Randle (7th), James Young (17th)||38-1||Lost in national semifinals|
|2015||Duke (3)||Tyus Jones (24th), Jahlil Okafor (3rd), Justise Winslow (10th)||TBD||TBD|
|2015||Kentucky (6)||Devin Booker (13th), Willie Cauley-Stein (6th), Andrew Harrison (44th), Dakari Johnson (48th), Trey Lyles (12th), Karl-Anthony Towns (1st)||TBD||TBD|
Duke, unranked at the start of February, fell out of the national rankings for the first time in 167 weeks, dating back to 2007. If the defending NCAA champion Blue Devils, ranked fifth in the AP preseason poll under coach Mike Krzyzewski, could be the latest touted team failing to live up to enormous preseason hype. There has been an average of one such squad end up in this dubious category each year thus far this century. Two hyped schools could fall out this campaign if Kentucky keeps losing to mediocre opponents such as Auburn, Louisiana State and Tennessee.
The previous 21 squads in this great-expectations category incurred at least double digits in defeats. Following is a chronological list of the first 25 teams included among preseason Top 5 selections since 1968-69 but finishing out of the AP's final Top 20 poll:
|Preseason Top 5 Team||Season||Preseason AP Ranking||Coach||Record||Top Players For Disappointing Squad|
|Notre Dame||1968-69||4th||Johnny Dee||20-7||Austin Carr, Bob Arnzen, Bob Whitmore, Dwight Murphy, Collis Jones and Sid Catlett|
|Purdue||1969-70||3rd||George King||18-6||Rick Mount, Larry Weatherford, George Faerber, Bob Ford, William Franklin and Tyrone Bedford|
|Southern California||1971-72||3rd||Bob Boyd||16-10||Paul Westphal, Joe Mackey, Ron Riley, Dan Anderson and Mike Westra|
|Florida State||1972-73||2nd||Hugh Durham||18-8||Reggie Royals, Lawrence McCray, Otis Cole, Benny Clyde and Otis Johnson|
|Indiana||1976-77||5th||Bob Knight||14-13||Kent Benson, Mike Woodson, Wayne Radford and Derek Holcomb|
|Kansas||1978-79||5th||Ted Owens||18-11||Darnell Valentine, Paul Mokeski, John Crawford, Wilmore Fowler and Tony Guy|
|DePaul||1984-85||3rd||Joey Meyer||19-10||Tyrone Corbin, Kenny Patterson, Dallas Comegys, Marty Embry, Tony Jackson and Kevin Holmes|
|Indiana||1984-85||4th||Bob Knight||19-14||Steve Alford, Uwe Blab, Stew Robinson, Dan Dakich, Delray Brooks and Daryl Thomas|
|Louisville||1986-87||2nd||Denny Crum||18-14||Herbert Crook, Pervis Ellison, Tony Kimbro, Mark McSwain, Keith Williams, Kenny Payne and Felton Spencer|
|Michigan State||1990-91||4th||Jud Heathcote||19-11||Steve Smith, Matt Steigenga, Mike Peplowski and Mark Montgomery|
|Clemson||1997-98||5th||Rick Barnes||18-14||Greg Buckner, Terrell McIntyre, Harold Jamison and Tony Christie|
|Auburn||1999-00||4th||Cliff Ellis||24-10||Chris Porter, Doc Robinson, Scott Pohlman, Daymeon Fishback, Mamadou N'diaye and Mack McGadney|
|UCLA||2001-02||5th||Steve Lavin||21-12||Jason Kapono, Billy Knight, Matt Barnes, Dan Gadzuric and T.J. Cummings|
|Arizona||2003-04||4th||Lute Olson||20-10||Hassan Adams, Salim Stoudamire, Channing Frye, Andre Iguodala and Mustafa Shakur|
|Michigan State||2003-04||3rd||Tom Izzo||18-12||Paul Davis, Chris Hill, Kelvin Torbert, Maurice Ager and Alan Anderson|
|Missouri||2003-04||5th||Quin Snyder||16-14||Arthur Johnson, Rickey Paulding, Linas Kleiza, Jimmy McKinney, Travon Bryant and Jason Conley|
|Georgia Tech||2004-05||3rd||Paul Hewitt||20-12||Jarrett Jack, B.J. Elder, Will Bynum, Luke Schenscher and Isma'll Muhammad|
|Michigan State||2005-06||4th||Tom Izzo||22-12||Maurice Ager, Paul Davis, Shannon Brown and Drew Neitzel|
|Louisiana State||2006-07||5th||John Brady||17-15||Glen Davis, Tasmin Mitchell, Terry Martin, Garrett Temple and Darnell Lazare|
|Texas||2009-10||3rd||Rick Barnes||24-10||Damion James, Avery Bradley, Dexter Pittman, J'Covan Brown, Gary Johnson and Dogus Balbay|
|Kansas State||2010-11||3rd||Frank Martin||23-11||Jacob Pullen, Rodney McGruder, Curtis Kelly and Jamar Samuels|
|Michigan State||2010-11||2nd||Tom Izzo||19-15||Kalin Lucas, Draymond Green, Durrell Summers, Delvon Roe and Keith Appling|
|Connecticut||2011-12||4th||Jim Calhoun||20-14||Andre Drummond, Jeremy Lamb, Ryan Boatright, Alex Oriakhi, Shabazz Napier, Roscoe Smith and Tony Olander|
|Kentucky||2012-13||3rd||John Calipari||21-12||Willie Cauley-Stein, Archie Goodwin, Ryan Harrow, Julius Mays, Nerlens Noel, Alex Poythress and Kyle Wiltjer|
|Kentucky||2013-14||1st||John Calipari||29-11||Willie Cauley-Stein, Aaron Harrison, Andrew Harrison, Dakari Johnson, Marcus Lee, Alex Poythress, Julius Randle and James Young|
"Whenever I hear anyone arguing for slavery, I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally." - Abraham Lincoln
It's not exactly a hate crime to also claim "White Players Matter." But Black History Month has arrived and accompanying it are an assortment of facts and opinions celebrating positive contributions blacks have made to the American landscape. Taking more than 100 years after emancipator Abraham Lincoln to make a nationwide transition, nowhere is that emphasis more evident than in an athletic world bereft of quotas and unconnected to alleged Oscar-snubbing. There is certainly more evidence of honor in basketball arenas than in the political arena, where a tax cheat such as Al "Not So" Sharpton is given a freeloader forum by Mess-LSD and brotherly backdoor free-pass entrance to Oval Office (perhaps for H&R Block seminars to set him free at last sans a pardon).
Letting authentic freedom ring, every sports fan acknowledges the cultural significance of Jackie Robinson. A movie ("42") debuted a couple of springs ago regarding Robinson beginning his major league baseball career, but it is easy to forget there was a time when the now 75% black National Basketball Association was 100% white. It's also easy to forget how Robinson was instrumental in college basketball's "civil rights" movement.
Before Robinson arrived on the scene in the National League, however, there was Columbia's George Gregory, who became the first African-American to gain college All-American honors in 1930-31. In an era of low scoring, he was the team's second-leading scorer with a 9.2-point average. But he was proudest of his defense, and a statistic that is no longer kept: "goals against." In 10 games, Gregory held rival centers to only eight baskets. "That's less than one goal a game," he told the New York Times. "I think they should have kept that statistical category. Nowadays, one guy scores 40 points but his man scores 45. So what good is it?
"It's funny, but even though I was the only black playing for Columbia, and there was only one other black playing in the Ivy League - Baskerville of Harvard - I really didn't encounter too much trouble from opponents. Oh, I got into a couple of fights. And one time a guy called me 'Nigger,' and a white teammate said, 'Next time, you hit him high and I'll hit him low.' And we did, and my teammate, a Polish guy named Remy Tys, said to that other player, 'That's how we take care of nigger callers.'"
But Gregory said the worst racial incident he encountered was at his own school. "After our last game in my junior year, the team voted me captain for the next season. Well, there was a hell of a battle when this came out. Columbia didn't want a black captain, or a Jewish captain, either, I learned. The dean was against it, and the athletic director was against it, and even the coach was against it.
"The coach told me, 'Get yourself together, Gregory, or I'll take your scholarship away.' They were worried that if we played a school in the South and met the other captain before the game, the guy would refuse to come out and it would embarrass the school. But the campus was split 50-50 on whether to have a black captain for its basketball team.
"The fight went on for three or four weeks. The school insisted that the team vote again. We did, and I won again. One of my teammates said, 'You forced the school to enter the 20th Century.'"
Harrison "Honey" Fitch, Connecticut's first black player, was center stage during a racial incident delaying a game at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy for several hours in late January 1934. Coast Guard officials entered a protest against Fitch, arguing that because half of the Academy's student body was from southern states, they had a tradition "that no Negro players be permitted to engage in contests at the Academy." Eventually, UConn's coach kept Fitch on the bench the entire contest and never explained why.
The first black to appear in the NBA didn't occur until a couple of decades after Gregory graduated and Fitch transferred to American International. UCLA's first basketball All-American Don Barksdale, one of the first seven African-Americans to play in the NBA, was the first black U.S. Olympic basketball player (1948) as well as the first black to play in an NBA All-Star Game (as a rookie in 1952).
Inspired by the black labor movement in the 1930s, Barksdale said, "I made up my mind that if I wanted to do something, I was going to try to do it all the way, no matter the obstacles."
As a 28-year-old rookie with the Baltimore Bullets, he was paid $20,850 (one of the NBA's top salaries) to play and host a postgame radio show, but that notoriety also put extra pressure on him. Forced to play excessive minutes during the preseason, he sustained ankle injuries that plagued him the remainder of his four-year NBA career (11 ppg and 8 rpg).
Why play so many minutes? "It's Baltimore, which is considered the South," said Barksdale, who wound up back in the Bay Area as a well-known jazz disc jockey. "So the South finally signed a black man, and he's going to play whether he could walk or crawl."
Chuck Cooper, who attended Duquesne on the GI Bill, was the first black player drafted by an NBA franchise. "I don't give a damn if he's striped or plaid or polka-dot," were the history-making words of Boston Celtics Owner Walter Brown when he selected Cooper, who averaged 6.7 points and 5.9 rebounds per game in six pro seasons. In Cooper's freshman campaign, Duquesne was awarded a forfeit after refusing to yield to Tennessee's refusal to compete against the Dukes if Cooper participated in a game just before Christmas.
In the 1955-56 season, the Hazleton (Pa.) Hawks of the Eastern League became the first professional league franchise to boast an all-black starting lineup - Jesse Arnelle, Tom Hemans, Fletcher Johnson, Floyd Lane and Sherman White. Arnelle (Penn State) and White (Long Island) were former major-college All-Americans.
As for the multi-talented Robinson, UCLA's initial all-conference basketball player in the 1940s was a forward who compiled the highest scoring average in the Pacific Coast Conference both of his seasons with the Bruins (12.3 points per league game in 1939-40 and 11.1 ppg in 1940-41) after transferring from Pasadena (Calif.) City College. Continuing his scoring exploits, the six-time National League All-Star who spurred #42 uniforms throughout MLB was the leading scorer for the Los Angeles Red Devils' barnstorming team in 1946-47.
Seven-time All-Star outfielder Larry Doby, the first black in the American League, was also a college basketball player who helped pave the way for minorities. He competed on the hardwood for Virginia Union during World War II after originally committing to LIU. The four-month lead Robinson had in integrating the majors casts a huge shadow over Doby, who was the first black to lead his league in homers (32 in 1952), first to hit a World Series homer and first to win a World Series title.
With less than 10% of current MLB rosters comprised of African-Americans, Robinson clearly had much more of a longstanding impact on basketball than baseball. All of the trailblazers didn't capitalize on a Methodist faith like Robinson, but they did boast a temperament unlike Oklahoma State's fan-pushing All-American guard Marcus Smart. In deference to "firsts" and the number 42, following is a ranking of the 42 best players to break the color barrier at the varsity level of a major university (*indicates junior college recruit):
|Rank||First Black Player||School||First Varsity Season||Summary of College Career|
|1.||Elvin Hayes||Houston||1965-66||Three-time All-American averaged 31 ppg and 17.2 rpg in three seasons. The Hall of Famer led the Cougars in scoring and rebounding each year before becoming first pick overall in 1968 NBA draft.|
|2.||Hal Greer||Marshall||1955-56||The first African-American to play intercollegiate athletics in the state of West Virginia averaged 19.4 ppg and 10.8 rpg in three seasons. Naismith Memorial Hall of Famer led the Thundering Herd in rebounding as a junior (13.8 rpg) and senior (11.7 rpg) before becoming a 10-time NBA All-Star.|
|3.||Charlie Scott||North Carolina||1967-68||Averaged 22.1 ppg and 7.1 rpg in three seasons. He was a consensus second-team All-American choice his last two years.|
|4.||Clem Haskins||Western Kentucky||1964-65||Three-time OVC Player of the Year was a consensus first-team All-American as a senior. Averaged 22.1 ppg and 10.6 rpg in three varsity seasons. First-round NBA draft pick (3rd overall) in 1967.|
|5.||K.C. Jones||San Francisco||1951-52||Shut-down defender Jones, a member of the 1955 NCAA champion featuring Bill Russell and 1956 Olympic champion, averaged 8.8 ppg in five seasons (played only one game in 1953-54 before undergoing an appendectomy).|
|6.||Walter Dukes||Seton Hall||1950-51||Averaged 19.9 ppg and 18.9 rpg in three seasons. Consensus first-team All-American as a senior when he averaged 26.1 ppg and 22.2 rpg to lead the Dukes to a 31-2 record and NIT title. Played two full seasons with the Harlem Globetrotters before signing with the New York Knicks, who picked him in 1953 NBA draft.|
|7.||Don Chaney||Houston||1965-66||Defensive whiz Chaney, an All-American as a senior, averaged 12.6 ppg in three seasons and was a member of Final Four teams in 1967 and 1968.|
|8.||John Austin||Boston College||1963-64||Two-time All-American averaged 27 ppg in his Eagles' career. Ranked among the nation's leading scorers in 1964 (8th), 1965 (7th) and 1966 (22nd). Scored 40 points in a 1965 NIT contest. He was a fourth-round choice by the Boston Celtics in 1966 NBA draft.|
|9.||Mike Maloy||Davidson||1967-68||Three-time All-American averaged 19.3 ppg and 12.4 rpg in his career. Southern Conference Player of the Year as a junior and senior. He was the leading scorer (24.6 ppg) and rebounder (14.3 rpg) for the winningest team in school history (27-3 in 1968-69). Selected by the Pittsburgh Condors in the first five rounds of 1970 ABA draft.|
|10.||Cleo Littleton||Wichita||1951-52||Averaged 19 ppg and 7.7 rpg in four seasons, leading the Shockers in scoring each year. School's career scoring leader (2,164 points) is the only four-time first-team All-Missouri Valley Conference choice. He was selected by the Fort Wayne Pistons in 1955 NBA draft.|
|11.||Wendell Hudson||Alabama||1970-71||Averaged 19.2 ppg and 12 rpg in his career, finishing as Bama's fourth-leading scorer and second-leading rebounder. The two-time All-SEC first-team selection was a Helms All-American choice as a senior in 1972-73 before being selected in the second round of NBA draft by the Chicago Bulls.|
|12.||Bob Gibson||Creighton||1954-55||Future Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher was the school's first player to average at least 20 ppg in his career (20.2). Led the Bluejays in scoring (22 ppg) and rebounding (7.6 rpg) as a junior. Gibson, who said he couldn't eat or stay with the rest of the Bluejays' team on his first trip to Tulsa, went on to play with the Harlem Globetrotters.|
|13.||Bill Garrett||Indiana||1948-49||First impact African-American player in Big Ten Conference averaged 12 ppg while leading the Hoosiers in scoring each of his three varsity seasons. Paced them in rebounding as a senior (8.5 rpg) when he was an all-league first-team selection. Selected by the Boston Celtics in second round of 1951 NBA draft. Grandson Billy Garrett Jr. became Big East Conference Rookie of the Year with DePaul in 2013-14.|
|14.||Earl Robinson||California||1955-56||Three-time All-PCC second-team selection averaged at least 10 ppg each of three varsity seasons as 6-1 guard under HOF coach Pete Newell. Robinson averaged 15.5 points in four NCAA Tournament games his last two years, leading the Bears in scoring in two of the playoff contests.|
|15.||Tom Payne||Kentucky||1970-71||Led the Wildcats in rebounding (10.1 rpg) and was their second-leading scorer (16.9 ppg) in his only varsity season before turning pro. The All-SEC first-team selection had a 39-point, 19-rebound performance against Louisiana State before leaving school early and becoming an NBA first-round draft choice by the Atlanta Hawks.|
|16.||Ron "Fritz" Williams||West Virginia||1965-66||Southern Conference player of the year as a senior led Mountaineers in scoring and assists all three varsity seasons on his way to finishing with averages of 20.1 ppg and 6 apg. Williams, a two-time all-league first-team selection, was a first-round pick in 1968 NBA draft (9th overall).|
|17.||James Cash||Texas Christian||1966-67||SWC's initial African-American player averaged 13.9 ppg and 11.6 rpg in three seasons. Two-time all-league second-team selection led the Horned Frogs in scoring (16.3 ppg) and rebounding (11.6 rpg) as a senior. Cash had six games with at least 20 rebounds.|
|18.||John Savage||North Texas||1961-62||Detroit product averaged 19.2 ppg in leading the Eagles in scoring all three of his varsity seasons with them. Three-time All-MVC selection was fifth-round choice by the Los Angeles Lakers in 1964 NBA draft.|
|19.||Willie Allen||Miami (Fla.)||1968-69||Averaged 17.2 ppg and 12.2 rpg in three seasons. Led Hurricanes in scoring (19.9 ppg) and rebounding (17.2 rpg) as senior. Fourth-round choice of the Baltimore Bullets in 1971 NBA draft played briefly for ABA's The Floridans during 1971-72 season.|
|20.||Jerry Jenkins||Mississippi State||1972-73||All-SEC selection as a junior and senior when he was the Bulldogs' leading scorer each year, averaging 19.3 ppg and 7 rpg in three seasons.|
|21.||Stew Johnson||Murray State||1963-64||Averaged 16.8 ppg and 12.9 rpg in three seasons en route to finishing his career as the school's all-time fourth-leading scorer (1,275 points) and second-leading rebounder (981). He was a third-round choice of New York Knicks in 1966 NBA draft before becoming a three-time ABA All-Star.|
|22.||Gene Knolle*||Texas Tech||1969-70||Two-time All-SWC first-team selection averaged 21.5 ppg and 8.4 rpg in two seasons before becoming a seventh-round choice by the Portland Trail Blazers in 1971 NBA draft.|
|23.||Joe Bertrand||Notre Dame||1951-52||Averaged 14.6 ppg in three seasons, including 16.5 as senior when Irish finished year ranked sixth in final AP poll. He was 10th-round choice in 1954 NBA draft by Milwaukee Hawks. Served as Chicago's city treasurer as first black elected to citywide office. His grandson with same name played hoops for Illinois.|
|24.||Hadie Redd||Arizona||1953-54||Led the Wildcats in scoring (13.2 ppg and 13.6) and rebounding (7 rpg and 9.4) in both of his varsity seasons.|
|25.||Almer Lee*||Arkansas||1969-70||He was the Hogs' leading scorer in 1969-70 (17 ppg) and 1970-71 (19.2 ppg as All-SWC second-team selection).|
|26.||John "Jackie" Moore||La Salle||1951-52||Averaged 10.3 ppg and 12.1 rpg in two seasons. Second-leading rebounder both years for the Explorers behind All-American Tom Gola. Played three seasons in the NBA as first black player for Philadelphia Warriors.|
|27.||Greg Lowery*||Texas Tech||1969-70||Averaged 19.7 ppg in his three-year career. First-team All-SWC as a sophomore and senior and second-team choice as junior en route to finishing as school's career scoring leader (1,476 points).|
|28.||Henry Harris||Auburn||1969-70||Averaged 11.8 ppg, 6.7 rpg and 2.5 apg in three-year varsity career. Standout defensive player was captain as a senior. He was an eighth-round choice by the Houston Rockets in 1972 NBA draft.|
|29.||Tommy Bowman||Baylor||1967-68||Two-time All-SWC first-team selection led the Bears in scoring (13.5 ppg) and rebounding (9.4 rpg) in his first varsity season.|
|30.||Ronnie Hogue||Georgia||1970-71||Finished three-year varsity career as the second-leading scorer in school history (17.8 ppg). Hogue was an All-SEC second-team choice with 20.5 ppg as a junior, when he set the school single-game scoring record with 46 points against LSU. He was a seventh-round choice of the Capital Bullets in 1973 NBA draft.|
|31.||Coolidge Ball||Mississippi||1971-72||Two-time All-SEC second-team selection (sophomore and junior years) averaged 14.1 ppg and 9.9 rpg in three seasons. He led the Rebels in scoring (16.8 ppg) and was second in rebounding (10.3 rpg) as a sophomore.|
|32.||Carl Head*||West Virginia||1965-66||Averaged 17.1 ppg and 7.9 rpg in two seasons. Paced the team in field-goal shooting as a junior (53.5%) and in scoring as a senior (20.5 ppg).|
|33.||Perry Wallace||Vanderbilt||1967-68||Averaged 12.9 ppg and 11.5 rpg in three varsity seasons. He was the Commodores' leading rebounder as a junior (10.2 rpg) and leading scorer as a senior (13.4 ppg). Fifth-round choice by the Philadelphia 76ers in 1970 NBA draft.|
|34.||Don Eaddy||Michigan||1951-52||The Wolverines' top scorer in Big Ten Conference competition as a sophomore (13.8 ppg) averaged 11.4 ppg in four seasons. Eaddy was an infielder who played briefly with the Chicago Cubs in 1959.|
|35.||Garfield Smith||Eastern Kentucky||1965-66||Averaged 14.5 ppg and 13.2 rpg in three seasons. He was an All-Ohio Valley Conference choice as a senior when he finished second in the nation in rebounding (19.7 rpg). Third-round choice by the Boston Celtics in 1968 NBA draft.|
|36.||Tommy Woods||East Tennessee State||1964-65||Two-time All-Ohio Valley Conference choice averaged 15.3 ppg and 16.2 rpg in three seasons. He grabbed 38 rebounds in a game against Middle Tennessee en route to finishing third in the nation in rebounding as a sophomore (19.6 rpg).|
|37.||Willie Brown||Middle Tennessee State||1966-67||All-Ohio Valley Conference choice as junior and senior averaged 20.3 ppg and 7.4 rpg in three seasons en route to finishing his career as the school's all-time scoring leader (1,524 points). He was a 10th-round choice by the Milwaukee Bucks in 1969 NBA draft.|
|38.||Julius Pegues||Pittsburgh||1955-56||Spent one year at a Detroit technical school before enrolling at Pitt. Averaged 13.6 ppg in three seasons, finishing as the school's second-leading scorer (17.6 ppg) as a senior behind All-American Don Hennon. Pegues, who scored a game-high 31 points in an 82-77 loss to Miami of Ohio as a senior in 1958 NCAA Tournament, was a fifth-round choice by the St. Louis Hawks in NBA draft.|
|39.||Sebron "Ed" Tucker*||Stanford||1950-51||Averaged 15.8 ppg in two seasons, leading the team in scoring both years. Paced the PCC in scoring as a junior (16.5 ppg) before becoming an all-league South Division first-team pick as a senior.|
|40.||Collis Temple||Louisiana State||1971-72||Averaged 10.1 ppg and 8.1 rpg in three seasons. Ranked second in the SEC in rebounding (11.1 rpg) and seventh in field-goal shooting (54.9%) as a senior. He was a sixth-round choice by the Phoenix Suns in 1974 NBA draft.|
|41.||Charlie White*||Oregon State||1964-65||Led the Beavers in rebounding (7 rpg) and was their second-leading scorer (9.6 ppg) as a junior. The next year as a first five pick on the All-Pacific-8 team, he was OSU's captain and second-leading scorer (11.7 ppg) and rebounder (6.6 rpg), pacing the team in field-goal shooting (49.4%) and free-throw shooting (81.4%).|
|42.||Ruben Triplett*||Southern Methodist||1971-72||Averaged 14.9 ppg and 9 rpg in two seasons. Named All-SWC as a junior when he led the Mustangs in scoring (18.2 ppg) and rebounding (10.8 rpg). Scored a career-high 33 points at Oklahoma City.|
42 MOST OVERLOOKED PIONEERS
|First Black Player||School||First Varsity Season||Summary of College Career|
|Al Abram||Missouri||1956-57||Averaged 11 ppg over four seasons. He led the Tigers in scoring (16.1 ppg), rebounding (8.9 rpg) and field-goal shooting (45%) in 1958-59.|
|Bunk Adams||Ohio University||1958-59||Averaged 16.4 ppg and 11.8 rpg in three seasons, including a team-high 12.8 rpg as a senior. He led the team in scoring as a sophomore (14.4 ppg) and junior (16.4) and was second as a senior (18.2) en route to finishing as OU's career leader in points (1,196). All-MAC first-team selection as a junior and senior after earning second-team status as a sophomore. Adams was the school's first NBA draft choice (16th round by Baltimore in 1965).|
|Don Barnette||Miami (Ohio)||1953-54||All-MAC first-team selection as a senior averaged 11.6 ppg and 5.2 rpg during three-year career. Played for the Harlem Globetrotters in the late 1950s and early 1960s.|
|Charlie Brown*||Texas-El Paso||1956-57||Air Force veteran, a three-time All-Border Conference choice, led the league in scoring as a sophomore (23.4 ppg). He averaged 17.5 ppg in three varsity seasons, leading the Miners in scoring each year.|
|Earl Brown||Lafayette||1971-72||Grabbed 21 rebounds in a game against Lehigh as a sophomore before averaging 11 ppg and 10.6 rpg as a junior and 13.7 ppg and 12.1 rpg as a senior. Ninth-round NBA draft choice by the New York Knicks in 1974.|
|Mario Brown*||Texas A&M||1971-72||Averaged 13 ppg and 4.3 apg in two seasons, leading the team in assists both years.|
|Harvey Carter||Bucknell||1970-71||Led the Bison in scoring and rebounding all three varsity seasons (14.1 ppg and 11.5 rpg as a sophomore, 14.8 ppg and 12.4 rpg as a junior and 14.2 ppg and 9.8 rpg as a senior).|
|Larry Chanay||Montana State||1956-57||Four-year Air Force veteran finished his four-year college career as the school's all-time leading scorer (2,034 points). He led the Bobcats in scoring all four seasons. Chanay was a 14th-round choice by the Cincinnati Royals in 1960 NBA draft.|
|John Codwell||Michigan||1951-52||The Wolverines' second-leading scorer as a junior (10.5 ppg) averaged 6.4 ppg in three seasons.|
|Vince Colbert*||East Carolina||1966-67||Averaged 14.3 ppg and 7.3 rpg in two seasons. He led ECU in rebounding as a junior (7.1 rpg).|
|Robert Cox||Loyola Marymount||1953-54||Averaged 16.9 ppg and 11.1 rpg in two seasons while leading the Lions in both categories each year.|
|John Crawford||Iowa State||1955-56||Averaged 13.4 ppg and 9.7 rpg in three seasons. He led the Cyclones in rebounding all three years and paced them in scoring as a senior (14.1 ppg).|
|L.M. Ellis||Austin Peay State||1963-64||The first OVC black player averaged 9.3 ppg and 10.5 rpg as a junior and 6.7 ppg and 6.1 rpg as a senior after transferring from Drake to his hometown school.|
|Ed Fleming||Niagara||1951-52||Averaged 15 ppg and 8.7 rpg in four seasons to finish No. 1 on the school's all-time scoring list (1,682). All-time top rebounder (975) was selected by the Rochester Royals in 1955 NBA draft.|
|Larry Fry||Mississippi State||1972-73||Averaged 13.8 ppg and 8.1 rpg in three seasons.|
|Julian Hammond*||Tulsa||1964-65||Averaged 12.2 ppg and 7.6 rpg in two seasons. Led the Golden Hurricane in scoring (16.4 ppg) and rebounding (7.6 rpg) as a senior when he was an All-MVC first-team selection and paced the nation in field-goal shooting (65.9%). He was a ninth-round choice by the Los Angeles Lakers in 1966 NBA draft.|
|Charlie Hoxie||Niagara||1951-52||Averaged 11.7 ppg and 8.4 rpg in four seasons to finish his career as the school's third-leading scorer (1,274). Second-leading rebounder (916) was selected by the Milwaukee Hawks in 1955 NBA draft before playing with the Harlem Globetrotters.|
|Eddie Jackson||Oklahoma City||1962-63||Center averaged 12.3 ppg and 10 rpg in three-year OCU career after transferring from Oklahoma. He led the Chiefs in rebounding as a sophomore and junior. Selected in the sixth round by the San Francisco Warriors in 1965 NBA draft.|
|Leroy Jackson||Santa Clara||1960-61||Averaged 10.1 ppg and 8.3 rpg in three seasons, leading the team in rebounding all three years. Named to second five on All-WCAC team as a senior when he averaged 11.9 ppg and 10.9 rpg.|
|Curt Jimerson*||Wyoming||1960-61||Forward averaged 14.6 ppg in two seasons, including a team-high 17.5 ppg as a senior when he was an All-Mountain States Conference first-team selection.|
|Junius Kellogg||Manhattan||1950-51||Averaged 12.1 ppg in three-year career, leading the Jaspers in scoring as a sophomore and junior. Former Army sergeant refused bribe and exposed a major point-shaving scandal.|
|Charlie Lipscomb||Virginia Tech||1969-70||Averaged 11.4 ppg and 9.4 rpg in three varsity seasons. He led the team in rebounding (10.4 rpg) and was its second-leading scorer (12.1 ppg) as a sophomore.|
|Jesse Marshall*||Centenary||1968-69||Led the Gents in scoring (16 ppg) and rebounding (9.6 rpg) as a senior after being their second-leading scorer (15.9 ppg) and leading rebounder (10.2 rpg) as a junior.|
|Shellie McMillon||Bradley||1955-56||Member of 1957 NIT champion averaged 14.1 ppg and 9.3 rpg in three varsity seasons, including a team-high 16.4 ppg in 1957-58. McMillon, who scored 42 points against Detroit, was an All-Missouri Valley Conference second-team choice as a senior before becoming a sixth-round NBA draft choice by the Detroit Pistons.|
|Eugene Oliver*||South Alabama||1972-73||Averaged 17.9 ppg and 5.1 rpg in two seasons, leading the team in scoring both years and setting a school single-game record with 46 points against Southern Mississippi.|
|Charley Parnell||Delaware||1966-67||First-team All-East Coast Conference choice led the Blue Hens in scoring with 18.5 ppg.|
|Garland Pinkston||George Washington||1967-68||Second-leading scorer (12.5 ppg) and rebounder (7.3 rpg) in his only varsity season for GWU.|
|Art Polk||Middle Tennessee State||1966-67||MTSU's second-leading rebounder as a junior and senior averaged 12.3 ppg and 9.2 rpg in three seasons.|
|Charley Powell||Loyola (New Orleans)||1966-67||Averaged 21.5 ppg in three-year career, finishing 13th in the nation with 26 ppg as a junior.|
|Larry Robinson*||Tennessee||1971-72||Averaged 10.9 ppg and 8.8 rpg in two seasons. Led the Volunteers in rebounding and field-goal shooting both years. He was a 16th-round choice by the Philadelphia 76ers in 1973 NBA draft.|
|Ron Satterthwaite||William & Mary||1973-74||Averaged 13.2 ppg in four seasons. He led the Tribe in scoring as a sophomore and junior, averaging 17 ppg during that span. Guard was an All-Southern Conference first-team selection as a sophomore and second-team choice as a junior.|
|Oscar Scott*||The Citadel||1971-72||Three-year Army veteran averaged 11.8 ppg and 7 rpg in two seasons. He led the Bulldogs in rebounding as a senior.|
|Dwight Smith||Western Kentucky||1964-65||Three-time All-OVC guard averaged 14.6 ppg and 10.9 rpg in his college career. Led the Hilltoppers in rebounding as a sophomore (11.3 rpg) and as a senior (11.9 rpg). Smith was a third-round choice of the Los Angeles Lakers (23rd overall).|
|Sam Smith||Louisville||1963-64||Third-round choice of the Cincinnati Royals in 1967 NBA draft averaged 9.2 ppg and team-high 11 rpg in his only varsity season with the Cardinals before transferring to Kentucky Wesleyan.|
|Sam Stith||St. Bonaventure||1957-58||Averaged 14.8 ppg and 4.1 rpg in three-year career. After All-American brother Tom Stith arrived the next season, they combined to average 52 ppg in 1959-60, an NCAA single-season record for brothers on the same team.|
|Harold Sylvester||Tulane||1968-69||Averaged 12.5 ppg and 9.1 rpg in three varsity seasons. He led the Green Wave in rebounding as a sophomore and was its second-leading rebounder and scorer as a junior and senior.|
|John Thomas||Pacific||1954-55||Averaged 15.1 ppg and 11.3 rpg in three years while leading the team in scoring and rebounding each campaign. Finished his career as the school's all-time scoring leader (1,178 points). He set UOP single-season records for points (480) and rebounds (326) in 1955-56.|
|Liscio Thomas*||Furman||1969-70||Averaged 17 ppg and 9.9 rpg in two seasons. He led the Paladins in scoring as a junior (17.7 ppg) and was the second-leading scorer and rebounder for 1971 Southern Conference champion.|
|Solly Walker||St. John's||1951-52||First African-American ever to play in game at Kentucky averaged 7.8 ppg and 6.8 rpg in three seasons. Member of 1952 NCAA runner-up and 1953 NIT runner-up. Led the team in scoring (14 ppg) and rebounding (12.2 rpg) as a senior. Selected by the New York Knicks in 1954 NBA draft.|
|John Edgar Wideman||Penn||1960-61||Two-time All-Ivy League second-team swingman led the Quakers in scoring as a junior (13.2 ppg in 1961-62) and a senior (13.8 ppg in 1962-63). The Pittsburgh native also paced them in rebounding as a junior (7.6 rpg).|
|Willie Williams*||Florida State||1968-69||Averaged 12.5 ppg and 10.3 rpg in two seasons and led the nation in field-goal shooting as a senior (63.6%).|
|Ed "Skip" Young||Florida State||1968-69||Averaged 11.7 ppg in three seasons, including 15 ppg as a sophomore, before becoming a seventh-round choice by the Boston Celtics in 1971 NBA draft.|
The most prolific outbursts came against small-college competition, but the three highest-scoring games in history by NCAA Division I players occurred in the month of February - Furman's Frank Selvy (100 points vs. Newberry SC in 1954), Villanova's Paul Arizin (85 vs. Philadelphia NAMC in 1949) and Portland State's Freeman Williams (81 vs. Rocky Mountain MT in 1978).
Louisiana State's Pete Maravich, the NCAA's career scoring leader who had the highest output in a power-conference game this month (69 at Alabama in SEC play in 1970), wasn't the only prolific point producer in the Pelican State from the guard position. In February 1972, Southwestern Louisiana junior Dwight "Bo" Lamar erupted for 51 points in each of back-to-back Southland Conference road games at Louisiana Tech and Lamar during USL's inaugural season at the major-college level before the school changed its name to Louisiana-Lafayette. For the record, Maravich twice tallied more than 50 in back-to-back SEC contests away from home (end of junior campaign and midway through senior season). This month also featured a third still-existing single-game scoring record by an individual opponent when "Bo Knows (Scoring)" Lamar exploded for 62 points at Northeast Louisiana the previous campaign en route to becoming the only player in NCAA history to lead the nation in scoring average at both the college and university divisions.
Existing single-game scoring standards for Bradley (Hersey Hawkins) and Detroit (Archie Tullos) were set in the same February assignment in 1988. As for regal rebounding records, Alabama's Jerry Harper retrieved 28 missed shots in back-to-back SEC contests two days apart in February 1956 and Wayne Embry pulled down 34 boards in back-to-back games for Miami of Ohio in the same time frame the next year. Following is a day-by-day calendar citing memorable moments in February college basketball history:
1 - Arkansas State's Don Scaife (43 points vs. Northeast Louisiana in 1975), Coppin State's Fred Warrick (40 at Howard in 1999) and Tulane's Jim Kerwin (45 vs. Southeastern Louisiana in 1961) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . North Carolina State's school-record 38-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Maryland (98-97 in 1975). . . . Rudy Tomjanovich (30 vs. Loyola of Chicago in 1969) set Michigan's single-game rebounding record.
2 - Brown's Harry Platt (48 points vs. Northeastern in 1938) and Delaware State's Tom Davis (50 vs. Brooklyn in 1989) set school single-game scoring records at the Division I level. . . . Campbell's Clarence Grier (38 vs. Radford in 1987) and Central Arkansas' Nate Bowie (39 at Nicholls State in double overtime in 2008) set school single-game scoring records against a DI opponent. . . . In 2014, Oakland's Travis Bader set an NCAA Division I record for most career three-pointers, surpassing the previous mark of 457 established by Duke All-American J.J. Redick. . . . Arizona's Bob Elliott (25 vs. Arizona State in 1974) and Long Island's Carey Scurry (26 vs. Marist in 1983) set school single-game rebounding records against a DI opponent.
3 - Buffalo's Mike Martinho (44 points vs. Rochester NY in 1998), Dayton's Donald Smith (52 at Loyola of Chicago in 1973), Grambling State's Brion Rush (53 vs. Southern in overtime in 2006), Portland State's Freeman Williams (81 vs. Rocky Mountain MT in 1978) and Wyoming's Joe Capua (51 vs. Montana in 1956) set school single-game scoring records. . . . Walt Lysaght (35 vs. North Carolina in 1953) set Richmond's single-game rebounding record.
4 - La Salle's Kareem Townes (52 points vs. Loyola of Chicago in 1995), Monmouth's Rahsaan Johnson (43 vs. St. Francis NY in 2001), Rhode Island's Tom Harrington (50 vs. Brandeis MA in 1959), South Carolina's John Roche (56 vs. Furman in 1971) and Western Michigan's Gene Ford (46 vs. Loyola of Chicago in 1969) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Dan Cramer (50 vs. Southern Mississippi in 1974) set Denver's single-game scoring record against a DI opponent. . . . Illinois' school-record 33-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Penn State (66-65 in 2006). . . . Alabama's Jerry Harper (28 vs. Georgia Tech in 1956), Fordham's Ed Conlin (36 vs. Colgate in 1953), Georgia Tech's Eric Crake (27 vs. Georgia in 1953), South Carolina's Lee Collins (33 vs. The Citadel in 1956) and Wake Forest's Dickie Hemric (36 vs. Clemson in 1955) set school single-game rebounding records against a DI opponent.
5 - Akron's Joe Jakubick (47 points vs. Murray State in 1983), East Tennessee State's Tom Chilton (52 vs. Austin Peay in 1961), Kent State's Dan Potopsky (49 vs. Western Michigan in 1955), Marquette's Mike Moran (44 vs. Creighton in 1958), Prairie View A&M's Paul Queen (46 vs. Alabama State in 1994) and Troy State's Detric Golden (45 at Jacksonville in 2000) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Yale's Brandon Sherrod extended his NCAA record of consecutive successful field-goal attempts to 30 covering five 2016 games before misfiring against Columbia. . . . Kenny Davis (25 vs. Arizona State in 1977) tied Arizona's single-game rebounding record against a DI opponent. . . . Eventual MLB Hall of Fame OF Tony Gwynn (18 vs. UNLV in 1980) set San Diego State's single-game assists record against a DI opponent.
6 - Ernie McCray (46 points vs. Los Angeles State in 1960) set Arizona's single-game scoring record. . . . Southern Mississippi's John White (41 at Virginia Tech in double overtime in 1988) and Tulane's Calvin Grosscup (41 vs. Mississippi State in 1956) set school single-game scoring records against a major-college opponent. . . . Virginia Tech sophomore guard Bimbo Coles set Metro Conference single-game record with 51 points in a 141-133 double overtime victory against visiting Southern Mississippi in 1988. . . . Bradley's school-record 46-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Drake (86-76 in 1961). . . . Belmont erased an 18-point deficit with 3:22 remaining (75-57) to defeat Campbell, 87-84, in 2009. . . . Alabama's Jerry Harper (28 vs. Vanderbilt in 1956), American University's Kermit Washington (34 vs. Georgetown in 1971), West Virginia's Jerry West (31 vs. George Washington in 1960) and Wichita State's Terry Benton (29 vs. North Texas State in 1971) set school single-game rebounding records against a DI opponent.
7 - Dartmouth's Jim Barton (48 points at Brown in overtime in 1987), Louisiana State's Pete Maravich (69 at Alabama in 1970) and South Dakota State's Nate Wolters (53 at IPFW in 2013) set school single-game scoring records. Maravich's output is also a SEC record in league competition. . . . Phil Hicks (41 at Samford in 1974) tied Tulane's single-game scoring record against a Division I opponent. . . . In 1976, Purdue (25) and Wisconsin (22) combined to convert all 47 of their free-throw attempts, an NCAA record for two teams in a single game. . . . Duquesne's Dick Ricketts (28 vs. Villanova in 1955) and Southern's Jervaughn Scales (32 vs. Grambling in 1994) set school single-game rebounding records against a DI opponent.
8 - Cincinnati's Oscar Robertson (62 points vs. North Texas State in 1960) and UNC Charlotte's George Jackson (44 at Samford in 1975) set school single-game scoring records. Robertson's output is also a Missouri Valley Conference record in league competition. . . . Buzz Wilkinson (45 vs. North Carolina in 1954) set Virginia's single-game scoring record against a major-college opponent. . . . Iowa State's Melvin Ejim (48 vs. TCU in 2014) set Big 12 Conference single-game scoring mark in league competition. . . . Kentucky established an NCAA single-game record by grabbing 108 rebounds against Mississippi in 1964. . . . Wofford set an NCAA three-point percentage record (minimum of 20 attempts) by hitting 17-of-21 shots from beyond the arc (81% against VMI in 2016). . . . Niagara's school-record 51-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Syracuse (60-55 in 1950). . . . Boston College's Terry Driscoll (31 vs. Fordham in 1969), Davidson's Fred Hetzel (27 vs. Furman in 1964), Eastern Michigan's Kareem Carpenter (27 vs. Western Michigan in 1995), Harvard's Bob Canty (31 vs. Boston College in 1955), Marquette's Pat Smith (28 vs. Loyola of Chicago in 1967), Oklahoma City's Willie Watson (32 vs. Denver in 1969) and Seattle's John Tresvant (40 vs. Montana in 1963) set school single-game rebounding records. . . . Gene Estes (24 vs. Oklahoma City in 1961) set Tulsa's single-game rebounding record against a major-college opponent. . . . Utah State All-American Wayne Estes, after scoring 48 points vs. Denver to eclipse the 2,000-point plateau, was electrocuted following a home game in 1965 when the 6-6 forward brushed against a downed high-power line upon stopping at the scene of an auto accident near campus. . . . Dayton center Chris Daniels, who finished the season as the nation's leader in field-goal shooting (68.3% in 1996), died because of a heart ailment.
9 - UALR's Carl Brown (46 points at Centenary in overtime in 1989), Butler's Darrin Fitzgerald (54 vs. Detroit in 1987), Canisius' Larry Fogle (55 vs. St. Peter's in 1974), Clemson's J.O. Erwin (58 vs. Butler Guards at Greenville in 1912), Colorado State's Bill Green (48 vs. Denver in 1963), Hofstra's Demetrius Dudley (44 vs. Central Connecticut State in 1993), Loyola of Chicago's Alfredrick Hughes (47 vs. Detroit in 1985) and Virginia Military's Jason Conley (42 at Western Carolina in overtime in 2002) set school Division I single-game scoring records. Brown's output is also an Atlantic Sun Conference record in league competition. . . . DePaul's Tom Kleinschmidt set the Great Midwest Conference single-game scoring record in league play with 37 points against UAB in 1994. . . . Charleston Southern's Tony Fairley set an NCAA single-game record with 22 assists against Armstrong State GA in 1987. . . . Dartmouth ended Penn's Ivy League-record 48-game winning streak in 1996 and Duke's school-record 46-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Maryland (98-87 in 2000). . . . Southern Mississippi's Wendell Ladner (32 vs. Pan American in 1970) and Syracuse's Frank Reddout (34 vs. Temple in 1952) set school single-game rebounding records. . . . Canisius' Larry Fogle (22 vs. St. Peter's in 1974) and Idaho's Gus Johnson (31 vs. Oregon in 1963) set school single-game rebounding records against a major-college opponent.
10 - Massachusetts' Billy Tindall (41 points vs. Vermont in 1968), Morehead State's Brett Roberts (53 vs. Middle Tennessee State in 1992), Northeast Louisiana's Calvin Natt (39 vs. Northwestern State in 1977), Ohio State's Gary Bradds (49 vs. Illinois in 1964) and Larry Lewis of Saint Francis PA (46 vs. St. Vincent PA in 1969) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Detroit's school-record 39-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Wisconsin-Green Bay (65-61 in 2002), Oral Roberts' school-record 52-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Marshall (106-103 in 1973) and Virginia Commonwealth's school-record 33-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Virginia Tech (71-63 in 1978). . . . Georgetown's Charlie Adrion (29 vs. George Washington in 1968), Houston's Elvin Hayes (37 vs. Centenary in 1968) and Rider's Jason Thompson (24 vs. Siena in 2008) set school single-game rebounding records. . . . Eventual Chicago White Sox RHP Dave DeBusschere scored a career-high 44 points for Detroit against Dayton in 1962.
11 - East Carolina's Oliver Mack (47 points vs. South Carolina-Aiken in 1978), Florida State's Ron King (46 at Georgia Southern in 1971), Hartford's Vin Baker (44 vs. Lamar in overtime in 1992), Southern California's John Block (45 vs. Washington in 1966) and Wisconsin-Green Bay's Tony Bennett (44 at Cleveland State in 1989) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Mal Graham (46 at Holy Cross in 1967) set New York University's single-game scoring record against a DI opponent. . . . Morehead State (53) and Cincinnati (35) combined for an NCAA single-game record of 88 successful free throws in 1956. . . . Indiana State set an NCAA single-game record for most three-pointers without a miss by making all 12 attempts from beyond the arc (against Southern Illinois in 2012). . . . Weber State's school-record 44-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Idaho (68-67 in 1967). . . . Andrew Nicholson (23 vs. Duquesne in 2012) tied St. Bonaventure's single-game rebounding record against a DI opponent.
12 - Marist's Izett Buchanan (51 points at Long Island University in 1994), Northern Iowa's Cam Johnson (40 at Drake in 1994) and Villanova's Paul Arizin (85 vs. Philadelphia NAMC in 1949) set school single-game scoring records. . . . Chris Rivers (40 vs. Canisius in 2001) set Fairfield's single-game scoring record against a Division I opponent. . . . Wake Forest's Len Chappell (50 vs. Virginia in 1962) set ACC single-game scoring record in league competition. . . . Gonzaga's school-record 50-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Santa Clara (84-73 in 2007). . . . Drake's Ken Harris (26 vs. Tulsa in 1977) and Navy's David Robinson (25 vs. Fairfield in 1986) set school single-game rebounding records.
13 - Boise State's Ron Austin (42 points vs. Montana in 1971), Colorado's Cliff Meely (47 vs. Oklahoma in 1971), Furman's Frank Selvy (NCAA-record 100 vs. Newberry SC in 1954), Portland's Matt Houle (43 vs. San Francisco in 1993) and San Francisco's Keith Jackson (47 at Loyola Marymount in 1988) set school single-game scoring records. . . . Alabama's Bob Andrews (46 vs. Tulane in 1965), East Carolina's Gus Hill (43 at Navy in 1988), UNC Asheville's Andrew Rousey (41 at Radford in 2014), San Jose State's Olivier Saint-Jean (37 at Air Force in 1997) and Virginia's Buzz Wilkinson (45 vs. Georgetown in 1954) set school single-game scoring records against a Division I opponent. . . . In 1985, Connecticut became the first school to be ranked No. 1 in the men's and women's national polls at the same time. . . . Syracuse's school-record 57-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Georgetown (52-50 in 1980). . . . Kentucky's Bill Spivey (34 vs. Xavier in 1951), New Mexico's Tom King (26 vs. Wyoming in 1960), Northwestern's Jim Pitts (29 vs. Indiana in 1965) and Western Michigan's Frank Ayers (25 vs. Loyola of Chicago in 1973) set school single-game rebounding records. . . . Dan Roundfield (25 vs. Bowling Green State in 1974) set Central Michigan's single-game rebounding record against a DI opponent.
14 - Auburn's John Mengelt (60 points vs. Alabama in 1970), Central Connecticut State's Kyle Vinales (42 at Wagner in 2013), Coppin State's Larry Stewart (40 vs. South Carolina State in 1991), Mount St. Mary's Sam Prescott (44 vs. Bryant in 2013), South Alabama's Eugene Oliver (46 at Southern Mississippi in 1974), Southwestern Louisiana's Bo Lamar (51 at Louisiana Tech in 1972) and Tennessee's Tony White (51 vs. Auburn in 1987) set school Division I single-game scoring records. Lamar's output also set a Southland Conference record in league competition. . . . Villanova's Larry Hennessy (45 vs. Boston College in 1953) and Virginia's Buzz Wilkinson (45 vs. Clemson in 1955) set school single-game scoring records against a DI opponent. . . . William & Mary's Bill Chambers, standing a mere 6-4, grabbed an NCAA-record 51 rebounds against Virginia on Valentine's Day in 1953. . . . Miami of Ohio's Wayne Embry (34 vs. Eastern Kentucky in 1957), Texas Tech's Jim Reed (27 vs. Texas in 1956), Wagner's Mike Aaman (23 vs. Fairleigh Dickinson in 2015) and West Virginia's Mack Isner (31 vs. Virginia Tech) set school single-game rebounding records against a major-college opponent. . . . Jacksonville junior-college recruit Artis Gilmore, the only player in major-college history to average more than 22 points and 22 rebounds per game in his career, had his only DI contest retrieving fewer than 10 missed shots (8 caroms at Loyola LA in 1970). . . . Massachusetts' school-record 33-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by George Washington (80-78 in 1995). . . . Kentucky's Adolph Rupp became the coach to compile 600 victories the fastest with a 71-52 win over Notre Dame at Chicago in 1959 (705 games in 27th season).
15 - Coastal Carolina's Tony Dunkin (43 points vs. UNC Asheville in 1993), Columbia's Leonard "Buck" Jenkins (47 at Harvard in 1991), Maryland-Baltimore County's Derell Thompson (43 at Towson State in 1992), Southwest Missouri State's Danny Moore (36 at Creighton in 1997) and Wake Forest's Charlie Davis (51 vs. American University in 1969) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Rasaun Young (39 vs. Northeastern Illinois in 1997) set Buffalo's single-game scoring record against a DI opponent. . . . Kentucky tied an NCAA record by erasing a 31-point, second-half deficit at LSU (99-95 UK victory in 1994). . . . Princeton's Bill Bradley (51 points vs. Harvard in 1964) set Ivy League scoring record in conference competition. . . . Oregon State ended UCLA's Pacific-8 Conference-record 50-game winning streak (61-57 in 1974). . . . Kentucky's Adolph Rupp became the coach to compile 400 victories the fastest with a 90-50 win over Mississippi in 1950 (477 games in 20th season). . . . Kansas' Wilt Chamberlain (36 vs. Iowa State in 1958), Oregon State's Swede Halbrook (36 vs. Idaho in 1955) and Rice's Joe Durrenberger (30 vs. Baylor in 1955) set school single-game rebounding records. . . . Paul Millsap (29 vs. San Jose State in 2006) set Louisiana Tech's single-game rebounding record against a DI opponent. . . . Eventual MLB All-Star RHP Sonny Siebert scored a career-high 31 points for Missouri against Oklahoma in 1958.
16 - Illinois' Dave Downey (53 points at Indiana in 1963), Tennessee Tech's Jimmy Hagan (48 vs. East Tennessee State in 1959) and Texas-Pan American's Marshall Rogers (58 vs. Texas Lutheran in 1976) set school single-game scoring records. . . . Wichita State ended Cincinnati's school-record 37-game winning streak (65-64 in 1963) and South Carolina's school-record 34-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Notre Dame (72-68 in 1974). . . . Cincinnati's Connie Dierking (33 vs. Loyola New Orleans in 1957), Miami of Ohio's Wayne Embry (34 vs. Kent State in 1957), NYU's Cal Ramsey (34 vs. Boston College in 1957) and Texas Christian's Goo Kennedy (28 vs. Arkansas in 1971) set school single-game rebounding records. . . . Texas-El Paso's Jim Barnes (27 vs. Hardin-Simmons in 1963) and Pittsburgh's DeJuan Blair (23 vs. Connecticut in 2009) set single-game rebounding records against major-college opponents. . . . Eventual 13-year N.L. LHP Joe Gibbon grabbed a career-high 24 rebounds for Mississippi against Georgia in 1957.
17 - George Washington's Joe Holup (49 points vs. Furman in 1956), Holy Cross' Jack Foley (56 vs. Connecticut in 1962) and Southwestern Louisiana's Bo Lamar (51 at Lamar in 1972) set school Division I single-game scoring records. Lamar's output tied his own Southland Conference record in league competition. . . . Antoine Gillespie (45 at Hawaii in 1994) set Texas-El Paso's single-game scoring record against a DI opponent. . . . Dartmouth's school-record 38-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Army (44-36 in 1940). . . . Fresno State's Larry Abney (35 vs. Southern Methodist in 2000), Loyola of Chicago's LaRue Martin (34 vs. Valparaiso in 1971) and Toledo's Ned Miklovic (27 vs. Ohio University in 1958) set school single-game rebounding records against a DI opponent. Abney's total is the highest among all schools at the DI level since 1973.
18 - Evansville's Scott Haffner (65 points vs. Dayton in 1989) and Samford's Jonathan Pixley (39 vs. Mercer in 1995) set school Division I single-game scoring records. Haffner's output is also a Horizon League record in conference competition. . . . Gonzaga's Adam Morrison (44 at Loyola Marymount in 2006) and Portland State's Freeman Williams (50 at UNLV in 1978) set school single-game scoring records against a DI opponent. . . . Gonzaga and Loyola Marymount each scored 86 points after intermission in 1989 to set an NCAA record for highest offensive output in a half by both teams (172). . . . Louisiana State's school-record 42-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Mississippi (23-22 in 1921). . . . Florida's Jim Zinn (31 vs. Mississippi in 1957), New Orleans' Ervin Johnson (27 vs. Lamar in 1993), Penn's Barton Leach (32 vs. Harvard in 1955), Southern Illinois' Joe C. Meriweather (27 vs. Indiana State in 1974) and Xavier's Bob Pelkington (31 vs. St. Francis PA in 1964) set school single-game rebounding records.
19 - Delaware's Liston Houston (52 points vs. Lebanon Valley PA in 1910), Liberty's Matt Hildebrand (41 vs. Charleston Southern in 1994), Longwood's Tristan Carey (40 vs. Liberty in 2013), Marquette's Tony Smith (44 at Wisconsin in 1990), Mississippi Valley State's Alphonso Ford (51 vs. Texas Southern in overtime in 1990), Northeastern's Reggie Lewis (41 vs. Siena in 1986), Oral Roberts' Anthony Roberts (66 vs. North Carolina A&T in 1977), Stetson's Mel Daniels (48 vs. UNC Wilmington in 1977) and Texas Tech's Dub Malaise (50 at Texas in 1966) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Bobby Mantz (44 vs. Lehigh in 1958) set Lafayette's single-game scoring record against a DI opponent. . . . Holy Cross' Rob Feaster (46 vs. Navy in overtime in 1994) set Patriot League scoring record in conference competition. . . . Creighton's Paul Silas (38 vs. Centenary in 1962), Northern Illinois' Jim Bradley (31 vs. Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1973) and Purdue's Carl McNulty (27 vs. Minnesota in 1951) set school single-game rebounding records. . . . Cedric "Cornbread" Maxwell (24 vs. Seton Hall in 1977) set Charlotte's single-game rebounding record against a DI opponent.
20 - Baylor's Vinnie Johnson (50 points vs. Texas Christian in 1979), Idaho State's Willie Humes (53 at Montana State in 1971), Illinois State's Robert "Bubbles" Hawkins (58 vs. Northern Illinois in 1974), San Diego State's Anthony Watson (54 vs. U.S. International in 1986) and South Carolina State's Jackie Robinson (40 at Morgan State in 1993) set school Division I single-game scoring records. Humes' output is also a Big Sky Conference record in league competition. . . . Delaware State's Tom Davis (47 vs. Florida A&M in 1989) set MEAC scoring record in league competition at DI level. . . . Art Stephenson (28 vs. Brown in 1968) set Rhode Island's single-game rebounding record. . . . Kansas' 28-17 victory at Drake in 1924 triggered an NCAA-record 35-game road winning streak.
21 - Boston College's John Austin (49 points vs. Georgetown in 1964), Rutgers' Eric Riggins (51 vs. Penn State in double overtime in 1987) and Virginia Tech's Allan Bristow (52 vs. George Washington in 1973) set school single-game scoring records. Riggins' output is also an Atlantic 10 Conference record in league competition. . . . Earl Boykins (45 vs. Western Michigan in 1998) set Eastern Michigan's single-game scoring record against a Division I opponent. . . . LSU's Pete Maravich (64) and Kentucky's Dan Issel (51) each scored more than 50 points in the same game in 1970. . . . UCLA's 98-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Oregon (65-45 in 1976). . . . Clemson's Tommy Smith (30 vs. Georgia in 1955) and North Carolina's Rusty Clark (30 vs. Maryland in 1968) set school single-game rebounding records.
22 - Bradley's Hersey Hawkins (63 points at Detroit in 1988), California's Ed Gray (48 at Washington State in 1997), Detroit's Archie Tullos (49 vs. Bradley in 1988), Manhattan's Bob Mealy (51 vs. CCNY in 1960), Missouri-Kansas City's Michael Watson (Summit League-record 54 at Oral Roberts in double overtime in 2003), Oklahoma State's Bob Kurland (58 vs. St. Louis in 1946) and Oregon State's Gary Payton Sr. (58 vs. Southern California in overtime in 1990) set school single-game scoring records. . . . Appalachian State's Junior Braswell (43 at Davidson in 1997), High Point's Nick Barbour (44 vs. Campbell in 2012), Long Island's Antawn Dobie (53 vs. St. Francis NY in 2003) and Mississppi State's Bailey Howell (45 vs. Louisiana State in 1958) set school single-game scoring records against a Division I opponent. Dobie's output is also a Northeast Conference record in league competition. . . . Nebraska stunned Wilt Chamberlain-led Kansas, 43-41, in 1958 to avenge a 56-point defeat four games earlier. . . . Memphis' school-record 47-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Tennessee (66-62 in 2008). . . . Massachusetts' Julius Erving (32 vs. Syracuse in 1971) and Mississippi's Ivan Richmann (25 vs. Tulane in 1958) set school single-game rebounding records. . . . Hakim Shahid (25 vs. Jacksonville in 1990) set South Florida's single-game rebounding record against a DI opponent.
23 - Boston University's Jim Hayes (47 points vs. Springfield MA in 1970), Illinois-Chicago's Cedrick Banks (39 vs. Wright State in 2005), Indiana's Jimmy Rayl (56 vs. Michigan State in 1963), Louisiana Tech's Mike McConathy (47 vs. Lamar in 1976), Miami's Rick Barry (59 vs. Rollins FL in 1965), Providence's Marshon Brooks (52 vs. Notre Dame in 2011) and Texas Southern's Harry "Machine Gun" Kelly (60 vs. Jarvis Christian TX in 1983) set school Division I single-game scoring records. Brooks' output is also a Big East Conference record in league competition. . . . Los Angeles State's Raymond Lewis set Pacific Coast Athletic Association (now Big West) single-game scoring record with 53 points vs. Long Beach State in double overtime in 1973. . . . Kentucky's Adolph Rupp became the coach to compile 700 victories the fastest with a 99-79 win over Auburn at Montgomery in 1964 (836 games in 32nd season). . . . Jimmie Baker (26 vs. San Francisco in 1973) set UNLV's single-game rebounding record before transferring to Hawaii. . . . Eventual 13-year N.L. LHP Joe Gibbon scored a career-high 46 points for Mississippi against Louisiana State in 1957.
24 - Alcorn State's DeCarlos Anderson (41 points vs. Southern in 1996), Florida A&M's Jerome James (38 at Delaware State in overtime in 1997), Houston's Elvin Hayes (62 vs. Valparaiso in 1968), Iowa's John Johnson (49 vs. Northwestern in 1970), Northwestern's Rich Falk (49 vs. Iowa in 1964), St. Bonaventure's Bob Lanier (51 vs. Seton Hall in 1969) and Utah's Billy McGill (60 at Brigham Young in 1962) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . East Tennessee State's Tom Chilton (47 vs. Western Kentucky in 1961) and Ohio University's Dave Jamerson (52 at Kent State in 1990) set school single-game scoring records against a DI opponent. . . . Washington & Lee's Jay Handlan had an NCAA-record 71 field-goal attempts vs. Furman in 1951. . . . Alabama A&M's Mickell Gladness set an NCAA single-game record with 16 blocked shots against Texas Southern in 2007. . . . Temple's school-record 33-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by West Virginia (64-61 in 1987). . . . Ed Corell (30 vs. Oregon in 1962) set Washington's single-game rebounding record.
25 - Austin Peay's Bubba Wells (43 points vs. Morehead State in 1997 quarterfinals) set Ohio Valley Conference Tournament single-game scoring record. . . . Alabama A&M's Desmond Cambridge (50 at Texas Southern in 2002), Central Florida's Jermaine Taylor (45 vs. Rice in 2009), Cleveland State's Frank Edwards (49 at Xavier in 1981), Indiana State's Larry Bird (49 vs. Wichita State in 1979), Texas' Raymond Downs (49 at Baylor in 1956) and William & Mary's Jeff Cohen (49 vs. Richmond in 1961) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Lew Alcindor (61 vs. Washington State in 1967) set UCLA and Pac-12 Conference single-game scoring record. . . . Jim Christy (44 at Maryland in 1964) set Georgetown's single-game scoring record against a DI opponent. . . . Southwestern Louisiana's Sydney Grider set the American South Conference single-game scoring record in league competition (40 vs. Louisiana Tech in 1989). . . . St. Bonaventure's 99-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Niagara (87-77 in 1961). . . . Appalachian State's Tony Searcy (23 vs. The Citadel in 1978), Memphis' Ronnie Robinson (28 vs. Tulsa in 1971) and Northern Iowa's Jason Reese (21 vs. Illinois-Chicago in 1989) set school single-game rebounding records against a DI opponent.
26 - Denver's Matt Teahan (61 points vs. Nebraska Wesleyan in 1979), Florida Atlantic's Earnest Crumbley (39 vs. Campbell in 2004), Richmond's Bob McCurdy (53 vs. Appalachian State in double overtime in 1975), San Diego's Mike Whitmarsh (37 at Loyola Marymount in 1983), Texas' Slater Martin (49 vs. Texas Christian in 1949), Western Illinois' Joe Dykstra (37 vs. Eastern Illinois in 1983) and Yale's Tony Lavelli (52 vs. Williams MA in 1949) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Kansas' Isaac "Bud" Stallworth set Big Eight Conference single-game scoring record with 50 vs. Missouri in 1972. . . . New Mexico's school-record 41-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Brigham Young (83-62 in 1998). . . . Cornell's George Farley (26 vs. Brown in 1960), Old Dominion's Clifton Jones (23 vs. UNC Wilmington in 2001), Rutgers' George "Swede" Sundstrom (30 vs. Army in 1954) and Saint Joseph's Cliff Anderson (32 vs. La Salle in 1967) set school single-game rebounding records against a DI opponent.
27 - Bowling Green's Jim Darrow (52 points vs. Marshall in 1960), George Mason's Carlos Yates (42 vs. Navy in 1985), Georgetown's Jim Barry (46 at Fairleigh Dickinson in 1965), San Diego's Marty Munn (37 vs. Loyola Marymount in 1988), Texas State's J.B. Conley (42 at Northwestern State in 2010) and Towson's Devin Boyd (46 at Maryland-Baltimore County in double overtime in 1993) set school Division I single-game scoring records. Darrow's output is also a Mid-American Conference record and Boyd's output is a Big South Conference record in league competition. . . . Houston's Robert McKiver (52 vs. Southern Mississippi in 2008) set C-USA scoring record in league competition. . . . Connecticut's Toby Kimball (34 vs. New Hampshire in 1965), Maryland's Len Elmore (26 vs. Wake Forest in 1974) and Tulsa's Michael Ruffin (24 vs. Texas Christian in 1997) set school single-game rebounding records against a DI opponent. . . . Holy Cross' school-record 47-game homecourt winning streak snapped by Connecticut (78-77 in 1954).
28 - Xavier's Byron Larkin (45 points vs. Loyola of Chicago in 1986 semifinals) set Horizon League Tournament single-game scoring record. . . . Air Force's Bob Beckel (50 vs. Arizona in 1959), Army's Kevin Houston (53 vs. Fordham in overtime of MAAC Tournament opener in 1987), Long Island's Sherman White (63 vs. John Marshall in 1950), Northern Illinois' Paul Dawkins (47 at Western Michigan in overtime in 1979) and Purdue's Rick Mount (61 vs. Iowa in 1970) set school Division I single-game scoring records. Houston's output is also a MAAC Tournament single-game record and Mount's output is a Big Ten Conference record in league competition. . . . The first basketball game telecast occurred when W2XBS carried a doubleheader from Madison Square Garden in 1940 (Pittsburgh vs. Fordham and NYU vs. Georgetown). . . . Ron Weilert (21 vs. Tulane in 1970) set Air Force single-game rebounding record against a DI opponent. . . . Eventual MLB All-Star 1B Joe Adcock contributed 15 field goals for Louisiana State in a first-round victory against Tulane in 1946 SEC Tournament.
29 - Tony Miller (54 points vs. Chicago State in 1972) set Florida's single-game scoring record. . . . Paul Marigney (40 vs. Pepperdine in 2004) tied Saint Mary's single-game scoring record against a major-college opponent. . . . Pittsburgh's school-record 40-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Syracuse (49-46 in 2004). . . . Bernie Janicki (31 vs. North Carolina in 1952) set Duke's single-game rebounding record. . . . Eventual eight-time N.L. All-Star SS Dick Groat scored a career-high 48 points for Duke against North Carolina in 1952.
After Green Bay Packers linebacker Julius Peppers replaced a Super Bowl 50 participant for the Denver Broncos, there remained only one NFL Pro Bowl (following 1985 season) when there wasn't at least one gridiron participant who previously played college basketball. Peppers, a nine-time Pro Bowler after appearing in the 2000 Final Four with North Carolina, became only the third individual to reach the Pro Bowl with three different NFL franchises, joining Erich Barnes (Purdue) and Norm Snead (Wake Forest) in this category.
An average of eight ex-college cagers annually participated the first decade of the event in the 1950s with a high of 10 following the 1959 campaign. Following is an alphabetical list of Pro Bowlers who previously played hoops at varsity level for a four-year college:
|NFL Pro Bowl Selection||Pos.||NFL Team(s)||Four-Year College(s)||Pro Bowl Year(s)|
|Ken Anderson||QB||Cincinnati Bengals||Augustana (Ill.)||1975-76-81-82|
|Doug Atkins||RDE||Chicago Bears||Tennessee||1957-58-59-60-61-62-63-65|
|Al Baker||RDE||Detroit Lions||Colorado State||1978-79-80|
|Erich Barnes||RDH||Chicago Bears/New York Giants/Cleveland Browns||Purdue||1959-61-62-63-64-68|
|Connor Barwin||OLB||Philadelphia Eagles||Cincinnati||2014|
|Sammy Baugh||QB||Washington Redskins||Texas Christian||1951|
|Bobby Bell||LLB||Kansas City Chiefs||Minnesota||1970-71-72|
|Martellus Bennett||TE||Chicago Bears||Texas A&M||2014|
|Ordell Braase||RDE||Baltimore Colts||South Dakota||1966 and 1967|
|Pete Brewster||LE||Cleveland Browns||Purdue||1955 and 1956|
|Marlin Briscoe||WR||Buffalo Bills||Nebraska-Omaha||1970|
|Jim Brown||FB||Cleveland Browns||Syracuse||1957-58-59-60-61-62-63-64-65|
|Junious "Buck" Buchanan||RDT||Kansas City Chiefs||Grambling||1970 and 1971|
|Jordan Cameron||TE||Cleveland Browns||Brigham Young/Southern California||2013|
|Harold Carmichael||WR||Philadelphia Eagles||Southern (La.)||1973-78-79-80|
|Fred Carr||RLB||Green Bay Packers||Texas Western||1970-72-75|
|John Carson||LE||Washington Redskins||Georgia||1957|
|Rick Casares||FB||Chicago Bears||Florida||1955-56-57-58-59|
|Chris Chambers||WR||Miami Dolphins||Wisconsin||2005|
|Lynn Chandnois||RH||Pittsburgh Steelers||Michigan State||1952 and 1953|
|Ben Coates||TE||New England Patriots||Livingstone (N.C.)||1994-95-98|
|George Connor||LT||Chicago Bears||Holy Cross/Notre Dame||1950-51-52-53|
|Charley Cowan||RT||Los Angeles Rams||New Mexico Highlands||1968-69-70|
|Glenn Davis||LH||Los Angeles Rams||Army||1950|
|Len Dawson||QB||Kansas City Chiefs||Purdue||1971|
|Mike Ditka||TE||Chicago Bears||Pittsburgh||1961-62-63-64-65|
|Jim Finks||QB||Pittsburgh Steelers||Tulsa||1952|
|London Fletcher||LB||Washington Redskins||St. Francis (Pa.)/John Carroll (Ohio)||2009-10-11-12|
|Antonio Gates||TE||San Diego Chargers||Kent State||2004-05-06-07-08-09-10-11|
|Tony Gonzalez||TE||Kansas City Chiefs/Atlanta Falcons||California||1999 and 2000-01-02-03-04-05-06-07-08-10-11-12-13|
|Jimmy Graham||TE||New Orleans Saints||Miami (Fla.)||2011-13-14|
|Otto Graham||QB||Cleveland Browns||Northwestern||1950-51-52-53-54|
|Cornell Green||DB||Dallas Cowboys||Utah State||1965-66-67-71-72|
|Bob Griese||QB||Miami Dolphins||Purdue||1970-71-73-74-77-78|
|Todd Heap||TE||Baltimore Ravens||Arizona State||2002 and 2003|
|Harlon Hill||LE||Chicago Bears||Florence State (Ala.)||1954-55-56|
|Elroy "Crazy Legs" Hirsch||RE||Los Angeles Rams||Michigan||1951-52-53|
|Paul Hornung||LH||Green Bay Packers||Notre Dame||1959 and 1960|
|Vincent Jackson||WR||San Diego Chargers/Tampa Bay Buccaneers||Northern Colorado||2009-11-12|
|Brad Johnson||QB||Washington Redskins||Florida State||1999, 2000 and 2002|
|Johnny Johnson||RB||Phoenix Suns||San Jose State||1990|
|Ed "Too Tall" Jones||LDE||Dallas Cowboys||Tennessee State||1981-82-83|
|Jacoby Jones||KR||Baltimore Ravens||Lane (Tenn.)||2012|
|Joe Kapp||QB||Minnesota Vikings||California||1969|
|Billy Kilmer||QB||Washington Redskins||UCLA||1972|
|Ron Kramer||TE||Green Bay Packers||Michigan||1962|
|Johnny Lattner||RH||Pittsburgh Steelers||Notre Dame||1954|
|Joe Lavender||RCB||Washington Redskins||San Diego State||1979 and 1980|
|Bobby Layne||QB||Detroit Lions/Pittsburgh Steelers||Texas||1951-52-53-56-58-59|
|Ronnie Lott||DB||San Francisco 49ers||Southern California||1981-82-83-84-86-87-88-89-90-91|
|Johnny Lujack||QB||Chicago Bears||Notre Dame||1950 and 1951|
|Lamar Lundy||LDE||Los Angeles Rams||Purdue||1959|
|John Mackey||TE||Baltimore Colts||Syracuse||1963-65-66-67-68|
|Jack "Cy" McClairen||E||Pittsburgh Steelers||Bethune-Cookman||1957|
|Donovan McNabb||QB||Philadelphia Eagles||Syracuse||2000-01-02-03-04-09|
|Elbie Nickel||RE||Pittsburgh Steelers||Cincinnati||1952-53-56|
|Terrell Owens||WR||San Francisco 49ers/Dallas Cowboys||UT-Chattanooga||2000-01-02-03-04-07|
|Julius Peppers||DE-LB||Carolina Panthers/Chicago Bears/Green Bay Packers||North Carolina||2004-05-06-08-09-10-11-12-16|
|Garet "Jerry" Reichow||WR||Minnesota Vikings||Iowa||1961|
|Andre Rison||WR||Atlanta Falcons/Kansas City Chiefs||Michigan State||1990-91-92-93-97|
|Otto Schnellbacher||RS||New York Giants||Kansas||1950 and 1951|
|Tom Scott||LDE||Philadelphia Eagles||Virginia||1957 and 1958|
|Joe Senser||TE||Minnesota Vikings||West Chester (Pa.) State||1981|
|Art Shell||LT||Oakland Raiders||Maryland-Eastern Shore||1973-74-75-76-77|
|Del Shofner||RH-SE||Los Angeles Rams/New York Giants||Baylor||1958-59-61-62-63|
|Norm Snead||QB||Washington Redskins/Philadelphia Eagles/New York Giants||Wake Forest||1962-63-65-72|
|Roger Staubach||QB||Dallas Cowboys||Navy||1971-75-76-77-78-79|
|Hugh "Bones" Taylor||LE||Washington Redskins||Tulane/Oklahoma City||1952 and 1954|
|Jason Taylor||RDE||Miami Dolphins||Akron||2000-02-04-05-06-07|
|Otis Taylor||WR||Kansas City Chiefs||Prairie View A&M||1971 and 1972|
|John Thomas||LG||San Francisco 49ers||Pacific||1966|
|Julius Thomas||TE||Denver Broncos||Portland State||2013 and 2014|
|Emlen Tunnell||DB||New York Giants||Toledo||1950-51-52-53-54-55-56-57-59|
|Brad Van Pelt||LLB||New York Giants||Michigan State||1976-77-78-79-80|
|Doak Walker||LH||Detroit Lions||Southern Methodist||1950-51-53-54-55|
|Ron Widby||P||Dallas Cowboys||Tennessee||1971|
|Norm Willey||RDE||Philadelphia Eagles||Marshall||1954 and 1955|
|Alfred Williams||RDE||Denver Broncos||Colorado||1996|
|Billy Wilson||RE||San Francisco 49ers||San Jose State||1954-55-56-57-58-59|
|Rayfield Wright||RT||Dallas Cowboys||Fort Valley State (Ga.)||1971-72-73-74-75-76|
Arizona's 49-game homecourt winning string was snapped by Oregon earlier this season. But the Wildcats were years away from approaching their all-time school standard of 81 consecutive victories at home in the late 1940s and early 1950s.
Numerous prominent programs have failed to come close to 49, let alone 81. Did you know power-conference members Arizona State, Baylor, Butler, California, Clemson, Colorado, Creighton, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Iowa, Kansas State, Louisville, Maryland, Miami FL, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Carolina, Northwestern, Oregon, Oregon State, Rutgers, Southern California, Stanford, Texas, Texas Christian, Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest and Washington State never have won as many as 30 consecutive home contests? Maryland had a chance to reach 30 by the end of this regular season before Wisconsin became the first Big Ten Conference member to prevail at UM in league competition since the Terrapins joined the loop by breaking their school-record 27-game homecourt winning streak. Oregon probably is the best bet to become the next power-league member to reach 30 straight triumphs at home.
Which opponents broke school-record home-court winning streaks of at least 30 games? Oddly, more than half of the aforementioned power-league schools are in this category, including Texas on three occasions (ended school-record HC streaks for Arkansas, Kansas and Texas A&M). This season, Old Dominion snapped Louisiana Tech's 39-game homecourt winning streak a week before the Monarchs had their 32-game string ended by UAB. Following is an alphabetical list including schools already crossing the 30-game homecourt winning streak threshold:
|School||Record Streak||Date Started||Date Ended||Opponent Ending School-Record Streak||Score|
|Austin Peay||31||1-25-75||3-5-77||Middle Tennessee State||77-65 in OVC Tournament final|
|Brigham Young||53||11-26-05||1-3-09||Wake Forest||94-87|
|College of Charleston||38||1-9-95||12-28-97||Rider||65-58|
|Coppin State||42||12-19-92||1-15-97||North Carolina A&T||76-70|
|Iowa State||39||2-16-99||1-12-02||Oklahoma State||69-66|
|Lamar||80||2-18-78||3-10-84||Louisiana Tech||68-65 in SLC Tournament|
|Long Beach State||75||11-20-68||12-4-74||San Francisco||94-84 in OT|
|Louisiana Tech||39||12-6-82||11-25-85||Stephen F. Austin||67-58|
|Louisiana Tech||39||12-7-13||1-7-16||Old Dominion||56-53|
|Loyola of Chicago||41||2-25-61||12-31-64||St. Louis||90-57|
|Middle Tennessee State||33||12-11-73||1-7-76||UT Chattanooga||83-72|
|Murray State||47||11-23-96||1-15-00||Southeast Missouri State||84-78|
|New Mexico||41||2-10-96||2-26-98||Brigham Young||83-62|
|New Mexico State||34||12-16-68||12-1-71||Angelo State TX||77-71|
|New Orleans||38||12-12-69||2-28-72||Louisiana Tech||80-73|
|North Carolina A&T||37||1985-86||11-30-88||North Carolina Central||66-54|
|North Carolina Central||38||1-8-13||12-7-15||Howard||71-69|
|North Carolina State||38||2-19-72||2-1-75||Maryland||98-97|
|North Dakota State||31||2-14-13||1-7-16||Omaha||91-82|
|Oklahoma State||49||1-9-36||12-21-40||Southern California||28-25|
|Old Dominion||32||2-27-14||1-14-16||UAB||72-71 in OT|
|Pacific||45||3-8-69||1-7-73||Long Beach State||91-85|
|Pepperdine||30||11-27-84||12-11-86||Long Beach State||86-77|
|Pittsburgh||40||1-19-02||2-29-04||Syracuse||49-46 in OT|
|Seton Hall||46||1-10-51||1-1-54||William & Mary||57-55|
|South Carolina||34||1-12-72||2-16-74||Notre Dame||72-68|
|Southern Illinois||33||1-11-04||2-1-06||Indiana State||63-54|
|Southern Methodist||44||2-??-54||3-1-58||Texas A&M||43-42|
|Stephen F. Austin||34||2-18-12||11-18-14||Northern Iowa||79-77 in OT|
|Tennessee||37||11-10-06||1-7-09||Gonzaga||89-79 in OT|
|Tennessee Tech||33||12-2-00||1-4-03||Morehead State||72-70|
|Utah State||37||11-9-07||12-5-09||Saint Mary's||68-63|
|Villanova||72||12-6-47||3-4-58||Saint Francis PA||70-64|
|Virginia Commonwealth||33||12-18-76||2-10-78||Virginia Tech||71-63|
|Virginia Military||35||2-5-76||1-17-79||Appalachian State||73-58|
|Washington||32||1-29-04||12-31-05||Arizona||96-95 in 2OT|
|Western Kentucky||67||2-5-49||1-10-55||Xavier||82-80 in OT|
|West Virginia||39||12-10-80||1-20-83||St. Bonaventure||64-63|
|Wichita State||43||11-9-13||2-13-16||Northern Iowa||53-50|
Kansas, after things panned out the second half of league competition following an overtime victory against Kentucky in a break in conference play, is one year away from matching UCLA for most consecutive regular-season conference championships. The Jayhawks, after dropping three league road contests by double digits in a five-game span, briefly were in jeopardy of seeing the end of their sterling Big 12 Conference track record of titles under coach Bill Self while surviving the loss of 15 undergraduates in the previous nine NBA drafts - 2007 (Julian Wright), 2008 (Darrell Arthur, Mario Chalmers and Brandon Rush), 2010 (Cole Aldrich and Xavier Henry), 2011 (Marcus Morris, Markieff Morris and Josh Selby), 2012 (Thomas Robinson), 2013 (Ben McLemore), 2014 (Joel Embiid and Andrew Wiggins) and 2015 (Cliff Alexander and Kelly Oubre Jr.).
UCLA's streak of 13 straight undisputed league titles from 1967 through 1979, divided among three coaches, is considered one of the foremost achievements in NCAA history. Kansas' regular-season league losses in the last 12 seasons came against Baylor (one), Iowa State (four), Kansas State (five), Missouri (four), Oklahoma (three), Oklahoma State (six), Texas (four), Texas A&M (one), Texas Christian (one), Texas Tech (three) and West Virginia (three). None of the Jayhawks' last 11 teams had a player average more than 20 points per game.
Jerry Tarkanian was coach for two of the schools boasting the longest league streaks (Long Beach State and UNLV). Following is a summary of the eight schools securing at least eight straight regular-season league titles:
UCLA (13 in Pacific-8/10; 171-15 league record from 1966-67 through 1978-79)
Kansas (12 in Big 12; 152-32 from 2004-05 through 2014-15)
|Season||League Mark||Scoring Leader||Rebounding Leader||Coach||Overall Mark|
|2004-05||12-4||Wayne Simien (20.3)||Wayne Simien (11)||Bill Self||23-7|
|2005-06||13-3||Brandon Rush (13.5)||Brandon Rush (5.9)||Bill Self||25-8|
|2006-07||14-2||Brandon Rush (13.8)||Julian Wright (7.8)||Bill Self||33-5|
|2007-08||13-3||Brandon Rush (13.3)||Darnell Jackson (6.7)||Bill Self||37-3|
|2008-09||14-2||Sherron Collins (18.9)||Cole Aldrich (11.1)||Bill Self||27-8|
|2009-10||15-1||Sherron Collins (15.5)||Cole Aldrich (9.8)||Bill Self||33-3|
|2010-11||14-2||Marcus Morris (17.2)||Markieff Morris (8.3)||Bill Self||35-3|
|2011-12||16-2||Thomas Robinson (17.7)||Thomas Robinson (11.9)||Bill Self||32-7|
|2012-13||14-4||Ben McLemore (15.9)||Jeff Withey (8.5)||Bill Self||31-6|
|2013-14||14-4||Andrew Wiggins (17.1)||Joel Embiid (8.1)||Bill Self||25-10|
|2014-15||13-5||Perry Ellis (13.8)||Perry Ellis (6.9)||Bill Self||27-9|
|2015-16||TBD||Perry Ellis (16.3)||Perry Ellis (6.1)||Bill Self||TBD|
Gonzaga (11 in West Coast; 143-15 from 2000-01 through 2010-11)
|Season||League Mark||Scoring Leader||Rebounding Leader||Coach||Overall Mark|
|2000-01||13-1||Casey Calvary (19)||Casey Calvary (6.7)||Mark Few||26-7|
|2001-02||13-1||Dan Dickau (21)||Cory Violette (8.3)||Mark Few||29-4|
|2002-03||12-2||Blake Stepp (18)||Cory Violette (8)||Mark Few||24-9|
|2003-04||14-0||Ronny Turiaf (15.5)||Cory Violette (8.2)||Mark Few||28-3|
|2004-05||12-2||Adam Morrison (19)||Ronny Turiaf (9.5)||Mark Few||26-5|
|2005-06||14-0||Adam Morrison (28.1)||J.P. Batista (9.4)||Mark Few||29-4|
|2006-07||11-3||Derek Raivio (18)||Josh Heytvelt (7.7)||Mark Few||23-11|
|2007-08||13-1||Matt Bouldin (12.6)||Josh Heytvelt (4.9)||Mark Few||25-8|
|2008-09||14-0||Josh Heytvelt (14.9)||Austin Daye (6.8)||Mark Few||28-6|
|2009-10||12-2||Matt Bouldin (15.6)||Elias Harris (7.1)||Mark Few||27-7|
|2010-11||11-3||Steven Gray (13.9)||Robert Sacre (6.3)||Mark Few||25-10|
Connecticut (10 in Yankee; 71-8 from 1950-51 through 1959-60)
|Season||League Mark||Scoring Leader||Rebounding Leader||Coach||Overall Mark|
|1950-51||6-1||Vin Yokabaskas (15.5)||William Ebel (9)||Hugh Greer||22-4|
|1951-52||6-1||Vin Yokabaskas (16.8)||Burr Carlson (14.5)||Hugh Greer||20-7|
|1952-53||5-1||Art Quimby (16.7)||Art Quimby (20.5)||Hugh Greer||17-4|
|1953-54||7-0||Art Quimby (16.3)||Art Quimby (22.6)||Hugh Greer||23-3|
|1954-55||7-0||Art Quimby (23.2)||Art Quimby (24.4)||Hugh Greer||20-5|
|1955-56||6-1||Gordon Ruddy (16.6)||unavailable||Hugh Greer||17-11|
|1956-57||8-0||Bob Osborne (15.6)||Al Cooper (11.8)||Hugh Greer||17-8|
|1957-58||10-0||Jack Rose (13)||Al Cooper (11)||Hugh Greer||17-10|
|1958-59||8-2||Jack Rose (16)||Ed Martin (12.1)||Hugh Greer||17-7|
|1959-60||8-2||John Pipczynski (15.2)||Walt Griffin (11.5)||Hugh Greer||17-9|
UNLV (10 in PCAA/Big West; 165-13 from 1982-83 through 1991-92)
|Season||League Mark||Scoring Leader||Rebounding Leader||Coach||Overall Mark|
|1982-83||15-1||Sidney Green (22.1)||Sidney Green (11.9)||Jerry Tarkanian||28-3|
|1983-84||16-2||Richie Adams (12.7)||Richie Adams (6.7)||Jerry Tarkanian||29-6|
|1984-85||17-1||Richie Adams (15.8)||Richie Adams (7.9)||Jerry Tarkanian||28-4|
|1985-86||16-2||Anthony Jones (18)||Armon Gilliam (8.5)||Jerry Tarkanian||33-5|
|1986-87||18-0||Armon Gilliam (23.2)||Armon Gilliam (9.3)||Jerry Tarkanian||37-2|
|1987-88||15-3||Gerald Paddio (19.4)||Jarvis Basnight (6.9)||Jerry Tarkanian||28-6|
|1988-89||16-2||David Butler (15.4)||Stacey Augmon (7.4)||Jerry Tarkanian||29-8|
|1989-90||16-2||Larry Johnson (20.6)||Larry Johnson (11.4)||Jerry Tarkanian||35-5|
|1990-91||18-0||Larry Johnson (22.7)||Larry Johnson (10.9)||Jerry Tarkanian||34-1|
|1991-92||18-0||J.R. Rider (20.7)||Elmore Spencer (8.1)||Jerry Tarkanian||26-2|
Idaho State (eight in Rocky Mountain; 76-4 from 1952-53 through 1959-60)
|Season||League Mark||Scoring Leader||Rebounding Leader||Coach||Overall Mark|
|1952-53||10-0||Les Roh (16.6)||unavailable||Steve Belko||18-7|
|1953-54||9-1||Les Roh (17.1)||unavailable||Steve Belko||22-5|
|1954-55||9-1||Les Roh (21.7)||unavailable||Steve Belko||18-8|
|1955-56||9-1||Les Roh (20.8)||unavailable||Steve Belko||18-8|
|1956-57||12-0||Jim Rodgers (15)||Jack Allain (12.5)||John Grayson||25-4|
|1957-58||10-0||Lloyd Harris (14.7)||LeRoy Bacher (9)||John Grayson||22-6|
|1958-59||9-1||Jim Rodgers (17.4)||Homer Watkins (11.6)||John Grayson||21-7|
|1959-60||8-0||Myrl Goodwin (16.4)||unavailable||John Evans||21-5|
Kentucky (eight in SEC; 82-3 from 1944-45 through 1951-52)
|Season||League Mark||Scoring Leader||Rebounding Leader||Coach||Overall Mark|
|1944-45||4-1||Jack Tingle (11.7)||unavailable||Adolph Rupp||22-4|
|1945-46||6-0||Jack Parkinson (11.3)||unavailable||Adolph Rupp||28-2|
|1946-47||11-0||Ralph Beard (10.9)||unavailable||Adolph Rupp||34-3|
|1947-48||9-0||Alex Groza (12.5)||unavailable||Adolph Rupp||36-3|
|1948-49||13-0||Alex Groza (20.5)||unavailable||Adolph Rupp||32-2|
|1949-50||11-2||Bill Spivey (19.3)||unavailable||Adolph Rupp||25-5|
|1950-51||14-0||Bill Spivey (19.2)||Bill Spivey (17.2)||Adolph Rupp||32-2|
|1951-52||14-0||Cliff Hagan (21.6)||Cliff Hagan (16.5)||Adolph Rupp||29-3|
Long Beach State (eight in PCAA; 75-13 from 1969-70 through 1976-77)
|Season||League Mark||Scoring Leader||Rebounding Leader||Coaches||Overall Mark|
|1969-70||10-0||George Trapp (16.3)||Sam Robinson (7.8)||Jerry Tarkanian||23-5|
|1970-71||10-0||Ed Ratleff (19.9)||George Trapp (11)||Jerry Tarkanian||24-5|
|1971-72||10-2||Ed Ratleff (21.4)||Nate Stephens (10.3)||Jerry Tarkanian||25-4|
|1972-73||10-2||Ed Ratleff (22.8)||Leonard Gray (9.3)||Jerry Tarkanian||26-3|
|1973-74||12-0||Clifton Pondexter (15.6)||Clifton Pondexter (8.6)||Lute Olson||24-2|
|1974-75||8-2||Rich Johnson (17.8)||Bob Gross (8.5)||Dwight Jones||19-7|
|1975-76||6-4||Anthony McGee (14.8)||Clarence Ruffen (7.4)||Dwight Jones||14-12|
|1976-77||9-3||Lloyd McMillian (15.8)||Lloyd McMillian (7.9)||Dwight Jones||21-8|
Since they frequently can't trust their counterparts, forbidding intra-conference player transfers is usually on the agenda for coaches and ADs. On the other hand, there is little mention of the double standard whereby coaches aren't denied a right to do the same thing. We don't recall coach Bo Ryan raising a stink about intra-conference transfers when Sharif Chambliss led Wisconsin in assists and three-pointers in nearly guiding the Badgers to the 2005 Final Four in his lone season with them after leaving Penn State. But Ryan, clearly perturbed when emerging star Jarrod Uthoff left UW and wound up at Iowa, likely would still be on the sideline gunning for another top four finish in the Big Ten Conference if Uthoff had remained in Madison. Uthoff could join John Lucas III (Baylor to Oklahoma State in Big 12) as the only players in NCAA history to become an All-American after transferring within a league.
In regard to priorities, there is virtually no word on coaches and conferences wanting the NCAA to introduce guidelines to determine a penalty to enforce if a player is caught doing drugs or committing domestic violence. Transfer power forward Charles Mitchell found it easy to remain in the ACC with Georgia Tech because Maryland chose to switch membership to the Big Ten. Elsewhere, Syracuse was still in the Big East Conference during Michael Gbinije's redshirt season in 2012-13 after departing Duke. At any rate, CollegeHoopedia.com is unaware of the following players, including Xavier coach Chris Mack, causing extensive trouble because they transferred within a league:
Transfer Player Pos. Conference Two League Members Played For Al Akins ? Pacific Coast Washington State 42-43/Washington 44 Carvell Ammons F Big Ten Northwestern 97/Illinois 99 DeMario Anderson G Northeast Central Connecticut State 04-05/Quinnipiac 07-08 Luke Axtell F-G Big 12 Texas 98/Kansas 00-01 Twany Beckham G SEC Mississippi State 09-10/Kentucky 12-13 Jason Carter F Southeastern Alabama 11/Mississippi 13 Sharif Chambliss G Big Ten Penn State 01-03/Wisconsin 05 Richard Congo F East Coast Lafayette 80/Drexel 82-84 Thomas Dodd C-F SWAC Texas Southern 95-96/Grambling 98-99 Charles Dorsey G Midwestern Collegiate Loyola of Chicago 81-82/Oral Roberts 84-85 Gary Ervin G Southeastern Mississippi State 04-05/Arkansas 07 Cedric Foster G SWAC Alcorn State 94-95/Mississippi Valley State 97-98 Lawrence Funderburke F Big Ten Indiana 90/Ohio State 92-94 Antonio Gates F Mid-American Eastern Michigan 00/Kent State 02-03 Michael Gbinije G-F Atlantic Coast Duke 12/Syracuse 14-16 John Gordon G America East Maine 96-97/Delaware 99-00 Derick Grubb C West Coast Pepperdine 03-06/Loyola Marymount 07 Jason Grunkemeyer G Mid-American Ohio University 97/Miami (OH) 99-01 Damontre Harris C Southeastern South Carolina 11-12/Florida 14 Jason Hernandez G America East New Hampshire 97/Hofstra 99-01 Derek Holcomb C Big Ten Indiana 77/Illinois 79-81 Randy Holcomb F WAC/Mountain West Fresno State 99/San Diego State 01-02 David Huertas G Southeastern Florida 05-06/Mississippi 08 Lindsey Hunter G SWAC Alcorn State 89/Jackson State 91-93 Ben Johnson G Big Ten Northwestern 00-01/Minnesota 03 Napoleon Johnson C SWAC Texas Southern 80-81/Grambling 83-84 Trey Johnson G SWAC Alcorn State 04/Jackson State 06-07 Oggie Kapetanovic C Ivy League Brown 97-98/Penn 00-01 John Lucas III G Big 12 Baylor 02-03/Oklahoma State 04 Chris Mack G Midwestern Collegiate Evansville 89-90/Xavier 93 Horace "Bones" McKinney C Southern North Carolina State 41-42/North Carolina 46 Jamar Miles F SWAC Alabama A&M 99/Prairie View 01-03 Charles Mitchell F ACC Maryland 13-14/Georgia Tech 15-16 Ross Neltner F-C Southeastern Louisiana State 04-05/Vanderbilt 07-08 Sam Okey F Big Ten Wisconsin 96-97/Iowa 99 Marvin Owens G-F Midwestern Collegiate Oklahoma City 84-85/Detroit 87-88 Jason Parker F Southeastern Kentucky 01/South Carolina 03 Charles Price F SWAC Grambling 86-87/Texas Southern 89-90 Luke Recker G-F Big Ten Indiana 98-99/Iowa 01 Earnest Ross F SEC Auburn 10-11/Missouri 13-14 Brian Schmall G Big South Augusta 89-90/Radford 92-93 Glen Selbo G Big Ten Wisconsin 44 & 47/Michigan 46 Brad Sellers F Big Ten Wisconsin 82-83/Ohio State 85-86 Marcus Stewart F Big South Coastal Carolina 98-99/Winthrop 01 Curtis Stuckey G Missouri Valley Drake 88/Bradley 90-91 Kenny Taylor G Big 12 Baylor 02-03/Texas 04 Charles Terrell G Big West San Jose State 90-91/Pacific 93-94 Jarrod Uthoff F Big Ten Wisconsin 12 (RS)/Iowa 14-16 Eloy Vargas C Southeastern Florida 09/Kentucky 11-12 Damion Walker C-F WAC Texas Christian 96-97/New Mexico 99-00 Marcus Watkins G Big 12 Texas A&M 03-04/Missouri 05-06 Malcolm White F Southeastern Mississippi 08-09/Louisiana State 11-12 Trent Whiting G Mountain West Utah 00/Brigham Young 01 LeRon Williams F Southeastern Florida 95-96/South Carolina 98-99
College basketball fans shouldn't be assessed an unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty if the NFL isn't their favorite sport, but they should rush to hold on because following is more super stuff to digest while blitzed by enough notes, quotes and anecdotes to have one seeking a sedative when assessing Super Bowl 50 in Santa Clara between the Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers.
A "Super" hoop-related nugget is Panthers offensive lineman Michael Oher, the subject of the move "The Blind Side" (starring Sandra Bullock and Tim McGraw. The film focused on fast-food millionaire Sean Tuohy Sr., who paced the SEC in assists all four basketball seasons with Mississippi from 1978-79 through 1981-82, as the white adoptive father of African-American Oher, who attended Ole Miss before earning a championship ring with the Super Bowl XLVII-winning Baltimore Ravens. Sean Jr. (known as "SJ") has been on the basketball roster of Loyola (Md.) the past three seasons.
For what it's worth hoop-wise, did you know former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue was a 6-5 forward who averaged 11.4 points and nine rebounds per game for Georgetown in three varsity seasons from 1959-60 through 1961-62? He led the Hoyas in rebounding as a sophomore (8.9 rpg) and junior (8.2 rpg) and was their second-leading rebounder as a senior captain. Well-rounded trivia buffs should also know that Tagliabue's predecessor, Pete Rozelle, was the basketball publicist for 1949 NIT champion San Francisco before orchestrating events leading to the Super Bowl becoming a national phenomenon.
The Super Bowl's link to college basketball is much more extensive than these commissioners and has had more impact than unveiling of new commercials plus halftime entertainers. Actually, there are a striking number of ex-college hoopsters who participated in the Super Bowl as players. In fact, the inaugural Super Bowl in 1967 featured several former four-year college varsity basketball players for schools currently classified at the NCAA Division I level: Bobby Bell, Reg Carolan, Len Dawson, Otis Taylor and Fuzzy Thurston.
In deference to the 50th anniversary of the Super Bowl, following are 50 questions tackling versatile players such as Bell, Carolan, Dawson, Peppers, Taylor and Thurston in this distinctive two-way athlete category that should surprise you with some of the marquee names. If you get them all correct before peeking at answers at the end of this gridiron quiz, then you boast inflated brainpower sufficiently omnipotent to know what happened to Ray Lewis' ditched cream suit in Atlanta.
1. Name the three-time Pro Bowl quarterback with the Cincinnati Bengals who appeared in Super Bowl XVI following the 1981 season after finishing his career as the fifth-leading scorer in his college's history. The high school teammate of Kentucky All-American and All-Pro Dan Issel led Augustana (Ill.) in field-goal accuracy and free-throw shooting as a freshman and sophomore.
2. Name the linebacker who was one of only two first-year players on the Miami Dolphins' undefeated team in 1972 and was still with the franchise the next season when the Dolphins repeated as Super Bowl champions for a 32-2 two-year mark, the best ever in the NFL. He played briefly for Louisville's varsity basketball squad before Cardinals football coach Lee Corso persuaded him to concentrate on the gridiron.
3. Name the nine-time All-Pro linebacker who was with the Kansas City Chiefs for their Super Bowl IV winner after becoming the first African American to play basketball for Minnesota when he appeared in three games in the 1960-61 season.
4. Name the two-time Pro Bowl defensive end who appeared in Super Bowl III with the Baltimore Colts vs. the New York Jets after becoming a first-team selection as a basketball center for South Dakota in the All-North Central Conference when he averaged 7.8 points per game in 1952-53 and 11 points in 1953-54.
5. Name the first black starting quarterback in the NFL who was later converted to wide receiver and caught two passes to help the undefeated Miami Dolphins beat Minnesota in Super Bowl VIII after averaging 9.5 ppg and 3.6 rpg in 14 basketball games for Nebraska-Omaha in 1964-65.
6. Name the four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver who caught five passes for 83 yards in Super Bowl XV for the Philadelphia Eagles after he was the top rebounder for two seasons with Southern (La.). He established an NFL record for most consecutive games with a pass reception (127).
7. Name the 1963 Pro Bowl selection who participated in Super Bowl I as a defensive end with the Kansas City Chiefs after the 6-6, 235-pounder played three varsity seasons with Idaho's basketball team, averaging four points and 4.7 rebounds per game.
8. Name the 1994 first-round draft choice who was a defensive end on the Dallas Cowboys' last Super Bowl team after playing nine games during the 1992-93 season for Arizona State's hoop squad that was decimated with injuries.
9. Name the Pro Bowl selection who appeared in Super Bowl XXXI with the New England Patriots after the 6-5, 245-pounder played basketball one season for Livingstone (N.C.). He held the NFL single-season record for most receptions by a tight end with 96 in 1994.
10. Name the four-year starter who set school career records for total offense, passing yards and rushing yards by a quarterback plus rushing touchdowns by a QB. Most Outstanding Player in the 2002 Peach Bowl as a quarterback was activated for Super Bowl XXXVII as a rookie with the Oakland Raiders before succeeding all-time great Tim Brown as a starting wide receiver. He was North Carolina's leader in assists during 2000-01 when he directed the Tar Heels to a basketball No. 1 ranking and an 18-game winning streak.
11. Name the Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs who was MVP in Super Bowl IV after playing in two basketball games as a 6-0, 180-pound guard for Purdue in the 1956-57 campaign.
12. Name the defensive left end on Miami's undefeated team in 1972 who played in four Super Bowls with the Dolphins after the 6-6, 220-pound basketball center finished his four-season career at Central College as the Pella, Iowa-based school's all-time leading scorer (15.5 ppg) and rebounder (12.4 rpg). He grabbed a school-record 29 rebounds in a game his senior season (1970-71).
13. Name the Hall of Fame tight end who played in two Super Bowls with the Dallas Cowboys, catching a TD pass to cap the scoring in Super Bowl VI, before coaching the Super Bowl-winning Chicago Bears following the 1985 season after the 6-2, 205-pound forward averaged 2.8 points and 2.6 rebounds per game in two seasons with the Pittsburgh Panthers.
14. Name the defensive back for the Baltimore Colts' Super Bowl V champion who led the NFL in kickoff return average (35.4) in 1970 after playing basketball for Maryland-Eastern Shore.
15. Name the prominent ex-NFL coach who was a defensive back for the Pittsburgh Steelers' Super Bowl XIII champion after averaging 2.6 ppg in 16 basketball contests with the Minnesota Gophers in 1973-74 under coach Bill Musselman.
16. Name the starting middle linebacker for a team in two of three Super Bowls in one stretch who started two games at point guard for St. Francis (Pa.) as a freshman in 1993-94 when he averaged three points per game. After transferring back home to Cleveland, the 5-10 dynamo collected 109 points and 52 rebounds in 27 games for John Carroll before quitting basketball midway through the 1995-96 campaign to concentrate on football.
17. Name the five-time Pro Bowl defensive back with the Dallas Cowboys who played in two Super Bowls after finishing his three-year varsity career as Utah State's all-time leading scorer and rebounder. The 6-4 forward scored 46 points in a game against New Mexico en route to leading the Aggies in scoring with 21.2 points per game in 1959-60 (34th in the nation), 20.3 in 1960-61 (57th) and 25.6 in 1961-62 (13th).
18. Name the Hall of Fame quarterback who played in three Super Bowls with the Miami Dolphins after he was a 6-1, 185-pound sophomore guard in 1964-65 when scoring 22 points in 16 games in his only varsity basketball season for Purdue.
19. Name the 12-year veteran safety who played in Super Bowl IV with the Minnesota Vikings after averaging four points and 3.5 rebounds per game in 10 contests for Wisconsin's basketball team in 1958-59.
20. Name the wide receiver who caught a 34-yard touchdown pass from Roger Staubach for the Dallas Cowboys' final touchdown in a 21-17 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl X after he averaged 12.4 points and 7.3 rebounds per game in three varsity seasons (1972-73 through 1974-75) for Austin Peay. It was the only pass reception in his NFL career. The 6-4, 215-pound forward averaged seven points and seven rebounds per game in four NCAA Tournament contests in 1973 and 1974 as a teammate of folk hero James "Fly" Williams.
21. Name the third-round draft choice of the Miami Dolphins in 1998 who backed up MVP Ray Lewis as a linebacker for the Baltimore Ravens in Super Bowl XXXV after being a member of Cincinnati's basketball team for the first month of 1997-98 campaign.
22. Name the three-time Pro Bowl defensive lineman who appeared in three Super Bowls with the Dallas Cowboys after the 6-8, 230-pound backup post player averaged 1.7 points and 2.6 rebounds for Tennessee State in his freshman and sophomore seasons (1969-70 and 1970-71).
23. Name the Baltimore Ravens wide receiver who caught a 56-yard touchdown pass from Joe Flacco and opened the second half with a 108-yard kickoff return for a TD in a 34-31 win against the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII after the Southeastern Louisiana track transfer was a part-time hoop starter for Lane (Tenn.), averaging 3.4 ppg and 3.7 rpg in 2004-05 and 2005-06.
25. Name the two-time Pro Bowl cornerback who participated in Super Bowl XVII with the Washington Redskins after the 6-4, 190-pound forward averaged 13.4 points and 6.6 rebounds per game for San Diego State in 1969-70 and 1970-71. He was the Aztecs' second-leading scorer (15.2 ppg) and rebounder (7.6 rpg) as a junior.
26. Name the 10-time Pro Bowl defensive back who competed in four Super Bowls after collecting nine assists, four points and three rebounds in six games for Southern California's basketball squad as a junior in 1979-80.
27. Name the 11-year defensive lineman who played in Super Bowl XIII for the Minnesota Vikings after averaging 12.3 ppg with Michigan Tech in 1962-63.
28. Name the Minnesota Vikings defensive back who let former Prairie View basketball player Otis Taylor (Kansas City Chiefs) elude him for a long touchdown in Super Bowl IV after being a basketball teammate of Utah State legend Wayne Estes in 1964-65.
29. Name the NFL Hall of Fame tight end who caught a 75-yard touchdown pass from Hall of Famer Johnny Unitas in Super Bowl V after collecting 28 points and 28 rebounds in six basketball games with Syracuse in 1960-61.
30. Name the defensive end who scored six touchdowns in his 14-year NFL career and tackled John Elway of the Denver Broncos for a safety in the New York Giants' Super Bowl XXI victory following the 1986 season after the 6-5, 225-pound forward-center averaged just over 10 points and 10 rebounds per game for Oregon's freshman squad in 1971-72. He played briefly for the Ducks' varsity basketball team the next season.
31. Name the tight end who played in four Super Bowls with the Buffalo Bills after he was the starting center for Jacksonville State's 1985 NCAA Division II championship team. He led the Gulf South Conference in rebounding each of his first three seasons and finished runner-up in that category as a senior.
32. Name the defensive lineman in Super Bowl XI for the Oakland Raiders who played basketball in the 1975 NAIA Tournament for Morningside (Iowa).
33. Name the quarterback who set an NFL record with 24 consecutive completions over a two-game span in 2004 before guiding the Philadelphia Eagles to Super Bowl XXXIX the next year. He collected a career-high 10 points and six rebounds and made two clinching free throws with 2.7 seconds remaining in a 77-74 victory over Georgetown in 1997 before Syracuse appeared in the NIT. He scored two points in two 1996 NCAA Tournament games for the Orangemen's national runner-up.
34. Name the tight end who played in four Super Bowls with the Buffalo Bills, catching a TD pass in Super Bowl XXVI, after the 6-8, 235-pound center for the basketball squad at Wabash (Ind.) averaged 19.2 ppg and 11.4 rpg in four varsity seasons. He set NCAA Division III field-goal shooting records for a single season (75.3% in 1981-82 as a senior) and career (72.4). He collected 45 points and 13 rebounds in the 1982 championship game, scoring a Division III Tournament record 129 points in five games and earning tourney outstanding player honors.
35. Name the Pro Bowl offensive tackle who appeared in three consecutive Super Bowls with the Miami Dolphins after leading Lamar in rebounding as a senior with 12.6 per game in 1968-69.
36. Name the valuable addition to Super Bowl XXXIX-bound Philadelphia Eagles in 2004 who had nine pass receptions for 122 yards against the New England Patriots after setting an NFL single-game record with 20 receptions for the San Francisco 49ers against the Chicago Bears in 2000. He collected 57 points and 49 rebounds in 38 games (four starts) for UT-Chattanooga's basketball squad in three seasons from 1993-94 through 1995-96.
37. Name the 14-year running back who played in five Super Bowls, catching more passes (five) than anyone in Super Bowls X and XII, after the guard-forward averaged 8.7 points and 6 rebounds per game as a senior in 1966-67 to finish his three-year Illinois varsity career with 5.2 ppg and 3.6 rpg.
38. Name the 2002 NFL defensive rookie of the year for the Carolina Panthers who appeared in Super Bowl XXXVIII the next season after being a member of North Carolina's 2000 Final Four squad. He started both NCAA Tournament games for the Tar Heels in 2001, including his first double-double (10 rebounds and career-high 21 points against Penn State).
39. Name the wide receiver who made a two-point conversion on a run for the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XIV and threw a flea flicker touchdown pass in Super Bowl XX after collecting 16 points and 11 assists in 11 games for Indiana's 1999 NCAA Tournament team, including two points in each of the Hoosiers' playoff contests (against George Washington and St. John's).
40. Name the four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver who scored the first touchdown at Super Bowl XXXI for the Green Bay Packers after he was a 6-1, 185-pound backup guard in basketball for Michigan State in two seasons (1985-86 and 1987-88).
41. Name the Hall of Fame offensive tackle who participated in two Super Bowls (XI and XV) with the Oakland Raiders after he was a two-year basketball letterman as a 6-5, 265-pound center for Maryland State College (now called Maryland-Eastern Shore).
42. Name an offensive tackle for the Super Bowl XVII champion Washington Redskins after the strike-shortened 1982 campaign who averaged 2.9 ppg and 3.7 rpg while shooting 50.5% from the floor with Columbia in 1968-69 and 1969-70.
43. Name the Hall of Fame quarterback who guided the Dallas Cowboys to four Super Bowls after averaging 9.3 points per game for the 1961-62 Navy plebe (freshman) basketball team. The 6-2, 190-pound forward scored five points in four games for the Midshipmen varsity squad the next season. He was MVP in Super Bowl VI.
44. Name the defensive back for the Baltimore Colts who appeared in two Super Bowls (III and V) after playing basketball for Maryland-Eastern Shore.
45. Name the wide receiver who played in two Super Bowls with the Kansas City Chiefs, catching 10 passes for 128 yards and a touchdown, after he was a backup small forward in the Prairie View A&M era following the school's glory years with pro basketball standout Zelmo Beaty.
46. Name the tight end with the Denver Broncos who caught four passes from Peyton Manning in Super Bowl XLVIII after being Portland State's second-leading rebounder in 2008-09 and 2009-10.
47. Name the offensive guard with the Green Bay Packers who participated in the first two Super Bowls after originally enrolling at Valparaiso on a basketball scholarship. He averaged 1.5 points per game in eight contests as a freshman with Valpo in 1951-52 before concentrating on football.
48. Name the Pro Bowl punter who appeared in two Super Bowls with the Dallas Cowboys after averaging 14.5 points and 8.3 rebounds as a sophomore, 17.3 points and eight rebounds as a junior and 22.1 points and 8.7 rebounds as a senior for Tennessee. The 6-4, 210-pound forward scored 50 points against LSU as a senior on his way to becoming SEC player of the year in 1967.
49. Name the defensive end for the Denver Broncos' back-to-back Super Bowl champions (XXXII and XXXIII) who registered one steal while playing in one minute of one Big Eight Conference basketball game for Colorado in 1989-90.
50. Name the offensive tackle who was an NFL All-Pro six straight seasons in the 1970s and played in the Super Bowl five times that decade with the Dallas Cowboys after earning All-SIAC basketball recognition for Fort Valley State (Ga.).
ANSWERS TO 50 COLLEGE BASKETBALL IMPACTING SUPER BOWL TRIVIA QUESTIONS
1. Ken Anderson; 2. Larry Ball; 3. Bobby Bell; 4. Ordell Braase; 5. Marlin Briscoe; 6. Harold Carmichael; 7. Reg Carolan; 8. Shante Carver; 9. Ben Coates; 10. Ronald Curry; 11. Len Dawson; 12. Vern Den Herder; 13. Mike Ditka; 14. Jim Duncan; 15. Tony Dungy; 16. London Fletcher; 17. Cornell Green; 18. Bob Griese; 19. Dale Hackbart; 20. Percy Howard; 21. Brad Jackson; 22. Ed "Too Tall" Jones; 23. Jacoby Jones; 24. Billy Kilmer; 25. Joe Lavender; 26. Ronnie Lott; 27. Bob Lurtsema; 28. Earsell Mackbee; 29. John Mackey; 30. George Martin; 31. Keith McKeller; 32. Herb McMath; 33. Donovan McNabb; 34. Pete Metzelaars; 35. Wayne Moore; 36. Terrell Owens; 37. Preston Pearson; 38. Julius Peppers; 39. Antwaan Randle El; 40. Andre Rison; 41. Art Shell; 42. George Starke; 43. Roger Staubach; 44. Charlie Stukes; 45. Otis Taylor; 46. Julius Thomas; 47. Fuzzy Thurston; 48. Ron Widby; 49. Alfred Williams; 50. Rayfield Wright.
"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. Kentucky came close to becoming #13 last year before bowing against Wisconsin in the national semifinals.
UK was soundly whipped by undefeated LIU in 1938-39 prior to the Wildcats going unbeaten themselves 15 years later. The average number of defeats the previous year for the first 12 unbeaten teams was five. The only time in major-college history 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. Alcindor (29 ppg), Lennie Rosenbluth (28 ppg with North Carolina in 1956-57) and Thompson (24.7 ppg) tallied the three highest-scoring averages among these undefeated squads.
Each of the dozen unbeaten major universities had at least one outing decided by fewer than eight points. 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||Date||Score||Pirates High Scorer|
|Alumni||D8||45-29||Nick Parpan 12|
|Mount St. Mary's||D18||58-32||Ed Sadowski 13|
|Tulane||D20||53-25||Bob Davies 9|
|Florida||D28||43-41||Bob Davies/Ed Sadowski 13|
|William & Mary||J6||51-35||Ed Sadowski 17|
|at Scranton||J12||48-32||Ed Sadowski 17|
|Becker||J17||69-29||Ed Sadowski 14|
|at Kutztown (Pa.)||J24||42-34||Ed Sadowski 15|
|Loyola (Md.)||F2||50-40||Ed Sadowski 13|
|at St. Peter's||F3||55-27||Bernie Coyle 13|
|at Brooklyn||F5||51-34||Bob Fischer 13|
|Rider||F9||44-32||Bob Davies/John Ruthenberg 8|
|St. Francis (Pa.)||F14||48-36||Bob Davies 17|
|St. Bonaventure||F17||46-41||Bob Davies 19|
|Kutztown (Pa.)||F21||53-33||Bob Davies 15|
|Canisius||F23||52-46||Bob Davies 17|
|Catholic (D.C.)||F26||53-27||Edward Ryan 13|
|Brooklyn||F28||43-41||Frank Delany 16|
|Scranton (Pa.)||M1||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||Date||Score||UK's High Scorer|
|Temple||D5||86-59||Cliff Hagan 51|
|at Xavier||D12||81-66||Frank Ramsey 27|
|Wake Forest||D14||101-69||Cliff Hagan 18|
|at St. Louis||D18||71-59||Frank Ramsey 21|
|Duke||D21||85-69||Cliff Hagan 27|
|La Salle||D22||73-60||Cliff Hagan 28|
|Minnesota||D28||74-59||Frank Ramsey 23|
|Xavier||J4||77-71||Cliff Hagan 20|
|Georgia Tech||J9||105-53||Cliff Hagan 34|
|DePaul||J11||81-63||Cliff Hagan/Frank Ramsey 22|
|Tulane||J16||94-43||Frank Ramsey 26|
|at Tennessee||J23||97-71||Frank Ramsey 37|
|at Vanderbilt||J30||85-63||Frank Ramsey 24|
|Georgia Tech*||F2||99-48||Cliff Hagan 23|
|Georgia||F4||106-55||Frank Ramsey 29|
|Georgia*||F6||100-68||Cliff Hagan 29|
|at Florida||F8||97-55||Cliff Hagan 22|
|Mississippi||F13||88-62||Cliff Hagan 38|
|Mississippi State||F15||81-49||Cliff Hagan 26|
|Tennessee||F18||90-63||Cliff Hagan 24|
|at DePaul||F20||76-61||Cliff Hagan 29|
|Vanderbilt||F22||100-64||Cliff Hagan 22|
|Auburn*||F27||109-79||Frank Ramsey 28|
|at Alabama||M1||68-43||Cliff Hagan 24|
|Louisiana State* (SEC Playoff)||M9||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||Date||Score||USF's High Scorer|
|Chico State (Calif.)||D2||70-39||Bill Russell 15|
|Southern California||D3||58-42||Bill Russell 24|
|San Francisco State||D6||72-47||Bill Russell 20|
|Marquette*||D16||65-58||Bill Russell 16|
|at DePaul||D17||82-59||K.C. Jones 23|
|at Wichita||D20||75-65||Bill Russell 17|
|at Loyola of New Orleans||D23||61-43||Bill Russell 20|
|La Salle*||D26||79-62||Bill Russell 26|
|Holy Cross*||D27||67-51||Bill Russell 24|
|UCLA*||D28||70-53||Bill Russell 17|
|Pepperdine||J6||62-51||Bill Russell 20|
|Santa Clara||J10||74-56||Mike Farmer 18|
|at Fresno State||J13||69-50||Bill Russell 22|
|at California||J28||33-24||K.C. Jones 15|
|San Jose State||J31||67-40||Bill Russell 21|
|Loyola of Los Angeles||F3||68-46||Carl Boldt 20|
|at Pacific||F7||77-60||Bill Russell 24|
|Fresno State||F10||79-46||Bill Russell 23|
|at San Jose State||F14||76-52||Bill Russell 21|
|at St. Mary's||F17||76-63||Bill Russell 28|
|at Santa Clara||F24||80-44||Bill Russell 29|
|Pacific||F28||87-49||Bill Russell 28|
|at Pepperdine||M2||68-40||Carl Boldt 14|
|at Loyola of Los Angeles||M3||65-48||Bill Russell 24|
|St. Mary's||M6||82-49||Bill Russell 22|
|UCLA* (NCAA Tournament)||M16||72-61||Gene Brown 23|
|Utah* (NCAA Tournament)||M17||92-77||Bill Russell 27|
|Southern Methodist* (NCAA Tournament)||M22||86-68||Mike Farmer 26|
|Iowa* (NCAA Tournament)||M23||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||Date||Score||Carolina's High Scorer|
|Furman||D4||94-66||Lennie Rosenbluth 47|
|Clemson*||D8||94-75||Pete Brennan 28|
|George Washington||D12||82-55||Lennie Rosenbluth 27|
|at South Carolina||D15||90-86||Tommy Kearns 29|
|Maryland||D17||70-61||Lennie Rosenbluth 26|
|at New York University||D20||64-59||Bob Cunningham 16|
|Dartmouth*||D21||89-61||Lennie Rosenbluth 30|
|Holy Cross*||D22||83-70||Lennie Rosenbluth 23|
|Utah*||D27||97-76||Lennie Rosenbluth 36|
|Duke*||D28||87-71||Lennie Rosenbluth 32|
|Wake Forest*||D29||63-55||Lennie Rosenbluth 18|
|at William & Mary||J8||71-61||Pete Brennan 20|
|Clemson||J11||86-54||Lennie Rosenbluth 34|
|Virginia||J12||102-90||Lennie Rosenbluth 30|
|at North Carolina State||J15||83-57||Lennie Rosenbluth 29|
|at Western Carolina||J30||77-59||Lennie Rosenbluth 26|
|at Maryland||F5||65-61 (2OT)||Lennie Rosenbluth 25|
|Duke||F9||75-73||Lennie Rosenbluth 35|
|at Virginia||F11||68-59||Lennie Rosenbluth 23|
|Wake Forest||F13||72-69||Lennie Rosenbluth 24|
|North Carolina State||F19||86-57||Lennie Rosenbluth 28|
|South Carolina||F22||75-62||Pete Brennan 26|
|at Wake Forest||F26||69-64||Lennie Rosenbluth 30|
|at Duke||M1||86-72||Lennie Rosenbluth 40|
|Clemson* (ACC Tournament)||M7||81-61||Lennie Rosenbluth 45|
|Wake Forest* (ACC Tournament)||M8||61-59||Lennie Rosenbluth 23|
|South Carolina* (ACC Tournament)||M9||95-75||Lennie Rosenbluth 38|
|Yale* (NCAA Tournament)||M12||90-74||Lennie Rosenbluth 29|
|Canisius* (NCAA Tournament)||M15||87-75||Lennie Rosenbluth 39|
|Syracuse* (NCAA Tournament)||M16||67-58||Lennie Rosenbluth 23|
|Michigan State* (NCAA Tournament)||M22||74-70 (3OT)||Lennie Rosenbluth 31|
|Kansas* (NCAA Tournament)||M23||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||Date||Score||Bruins High Scorer|
|Brigham Young||D6||113-71||Walt Hazzard 20|
|Butler||D7||80-65||Walt Hazzard 21|
|Kansas State*||D13||78-75||Gail Goodrich 21|
|Kansas*||D14||74-54||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Baylor*||D20||112-61||Walt Hazzard 23|
|Creighton*||D21||95-79||Walt Hazzard 26|
|Yale||D26||95-65||Gail Goodrich 25|
|Michigan||D27||98-80||Gail Goodrich 30|
|Illinois||D28||83-79||Gail Goodrich 21|
|at Washington State||J3||88-83||Gail Goodrich 28|
|at Washington State||J4||121-77||Gail Goodrich 21|
|Southern California||J10||79-59||Walt Hazzard 21|
|Southern California||J11||78-71||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Stanford||J17||84-71||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Stanford*||J18||80-61||Walt Hazzard 31|
|UC Santa Barbara||J31||107-76||Gail Goodrich/Walt Hazzard 21|
|UC Santa Barbara*||F1||87-59||Gail Goodrich 31|
|at California||F7||87-67||Gail Goodrich 26|
|at California||F8||58-56||Walt Hazzard 17|
|Washington||F14||73-58||Walt Hazzard 17|
|Washington||F15||88-60||Gail Goodrich 22|
|at Stanford||F22||100-88||Walt Hazzard 27|
|at Washington||F24||78-64||Keith Erickson/Walt Hazzard 21|
|Washington State||F29||93-56||Walt Hazzard 19|
|California||M2||87-57||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Southern California||M6||91-81||Gail Goodrich 23|
|Seattle* (NCAA Tournament)||M13||95-90||Walt Hazzard 26|
|San Francisco* (NCAA Tournament)||M14||76-72||Walt Hazzard 23|
|Kansas State* (NCAA Tournament)||M20||90-84||Keith Erickson 28|
|Duke* (NCAA Tournament)||M21||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||Date||Score||Bruins High Scorer|
|Southern California||D3||105-90||Lew Alcindor 56|
|Duke||D9||88-54||Lew Alcindor/Lucius Allen 19|
|Duke||D10||107-87||Lew Alcindor 38|
|Colorado State||D22||84-74||Lew Alcindor 34|
|Notre Dame||D23||96-67||Lew Alcindor 25|
|Wisconsin||D28||100-56||Lew Alcindor 24|
|Georgia Tech||D29||91-72||Lew Alcindor 18|
|Southern California||D30||107-83||Lew Alcindor 25|
|at Washington State||J7||76-67||Lew Alcindor 28|
|at Washington||J9||83-68||Lew Alcindor 28|
|California||J13||96-78||Lew Alcindor 26|
|Stanford||J14||116-78||Lew Alcindor 37|
|Portland||J20||122-57||Lew Alcindor 27|
|UC Santa Barbara||J21||119-75||Lew Alcindor 37|
|at Loyola of Chicago||J28||82-67||Lew Alcindor 35|
|Illinois*||J29||120-82||Lew Alcindor 45|
|at Southern California||F4||40-35 (OT)||Lew Alcindor 13|
|Oregon State||F10||76-44||Lew Alcindor/Lucius Allen 22|
|Oregon||F11||100-66||Lucius Allen 20|
|at Oregon||F17||34-25||Lew Alcindor 12|
|at Oregon State||F18||72-50||Lew Alcindor 28|
|Washington||F24||71-43||Lew Alcindor 37|
|Washington State||F25||100-78||Lew Alcindor 61|
|at Stanford||M3||75-47||Lew Alcindor 20|
|at California||M4||103-66||Lew Alcindor 30|
|Southern California||M11||83-55||Lew Alcindor 26|
|Wyoming* (NCAA Tournament)||M17||109-60||Lew Alcindor 29|
|Pacific* (NCAA Tournament)||M18||80-64||Lew Alcindor 38|
|Houston* (NCAA Tournament)||M24||73-58||Lynn Shackelford 22|
|Dayton* (NCAA Tournament)||M25||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||Date||Score||Bruins High Scorer|
|The Citadel||D3||105-49||Henry Bibby 26|
|Iowa||D4||106-72||Henry Bibby 32|
|Iowa State||D10||110-81||Bill Walton 24|
|Texas A&M||D11||117-53||Bill Walton 23|
|Notre Dame||D22||114-56||Henry Bibby 28|
|Texas Christian||D23||119-81||Bill Walton 31|
|Texas||D29||115-65||Bill Walton 28|
|Ohio State||D30||79-53||Bill Walton 14|
|at Oregon State||J7||78-72||Henry Bibby 17|
|at Oregon||J8||93-68||Bill Walton 30|
|Stanford||J14||118-79||Bill Walton 32|
|California||J15||82-43||Bill Walton 20|
|Santa Clara||J21||92-57||Keith Wilkes 16|
|Denver||J22||108-61||Henry Bibby/Larry Farmer 19|
|at Loyola of Chicago||J28||92-64||Henry Bibby/Bill Walton 18|
|at Notre Dame||J29||57-32||Henry Bibby 15|
|Southern California||F5||81-56||Bill Walton 22|
|Washington State||F11||89-58||Bill Walton 25|
|Washington||F12||109-70||Bill Walton 27|
|at Washington||F19||100-83||Bill Walton 31|
|at Washington State||F21||85-55||Larry Hollyfield/Keith Wilkes 16|
|Oregon||F25||92-70||Bill Walton 37|
|Oregon State||F26||92-72||Bill Walton 26|
|at California||M3||91-71||Bill Walton 24|
|at Stanford||M4||102-73||Greg Lee 16|
|at Southern California||M10||79-66||Bill Walton 20|
|Weber State* (NCAA Tournament)||M16||90-58||Henry Bibby 16|
|Long Beach State* (NCAA Tournament)||M18||73-57||Henry Bibby 23|
|Louisville* (NCAA Tournament)||M23||96-77||Bill Walton 23|
|Florida State* (NCAA Tournament)||M25||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||Date||Score||Bruins High Scorer|
|Wisconsin||N25||94-53||Bill Walton 26|
|Bradley||D1||73-38||Bill Walton 16|
|Pacific||D2||81-48||Keith Wilkes 18|
|UC Santa Barbara||D16||98-67||Bill Walton 30|
|Pittsburgh||D22||89-73||Keith Wilkes 20|
|Notre Dame||D23||82-56||Keith Wilkes 18|
|Drake*||D29||85-72||Bill Walton 29|
|Illinois*||D30||71-64||Bill Walton 22|
|Oregon||J5||64-38||Larry Farmer/Keith Wilkes 14|
|Oregon State||J6||87-61||Keith Wilkes 19|
|at Stanford||J12||82-67||Larry Farmer/Larry Hollyfield/Bill Walton 18|
|at California||J13||69-50||Larry Farmer/Keith Wilkes 18|
|San Francisco||J19||92-64||Bill Walton 22|
|Providence||J20||101-77||Larry Farmer 21|
|at Loyola of Chicago||J25||87-73||Bill Walton 32|
|at Notre Dame||J27||82-63||Keith Wilkes 20|
|at Southern California||F3||79-56||Bill Walton 20|
|at Washington State||F10||88-50||Bill Walton 17|
|at Washington||F12||76-67||Bill Walton 29|
|Washington||F16||93-62||Bill Walton 26|
|Washington State||F17||96-64||Bill Walton 29|
|at Oregon||F22||72-61||Keith Wilkes 18|
|at Oregon State||F24||73-67||Bill Walton 21|
|California||M2||90-65||Bill Walton/Keith Wilkes 15|
|Stanford||M3||51-45||Bill Walton 23|
|Southern California||M10||76-56||Bill Walton/Keith Wilkes 17|
|Arizona State (NCAA Tournament)||M15||98-81||Bill Walton 28|
|San Francisco (NCAA Tournament)||M17||54-39||Larry Farmer 13|
|Indiana* (NCAA Tournament)||M24||70-59||Tommy Curtis 22|
|Memphis State* (NCAA Tournament)||M26||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||Date||Score||Wolfpack High Scorer|
|Appalachian State||N27||130-53||David Thompson 33|
|Atlantic Christian||D1||110-40||David Thompson 32|
|Georgia Southern||D4||144-100||David Thompson 40|
|South Florida||D8||125-88||David Thompson 30|
|Wake Forest*||D15||88-83||David Thompson 29|
|North Carolina*||D16||68-61||David Thompson 19|
|Davidson*||D19||103-90||Joe Cafferky 25|
|at Georgia||D23||97-83||David Thompson 26|
|at Virginia||J6||68-61||Monte Towe 17|
|Duke||J10||94-87||Monte Towe/Tom Burleson 20|
|Lehigh||J12||115-53||Tom Burleson 30|
|at Maryland||J14||87-85||David Thompson 37|
|at Clemson||J20||86-76||David Thompson 24|
|at Furman||J27||98-73||David Thompson 27|
|Maryland||J31||89-78||David Thompson 24|
|Virginia||F3||64-59||David Thompson 18|
|North Carolina||F5||76-73||David Thompson 22|
|Clemson*||F9||68-61||David Thompson 30|
|Georgia Tech*||F10||118-94||David Thompson 36|
|East Carolina||F13||105-70||David Thompson 33|
|at Wake Forest||F17||81-59||David Thompson 21|
|at Duke||F21||74-50||David Thompson 31|
|UNC Charlotte||F24||100-64||Tom Burleson 26|
|at North Carolina||F27||82-78||David Thompson 18|
|Wake Forest||M3||100-77||Tom Burleson 27|
|Virginia* (ACC Tournament)||M9||63-51||Tom Burleson/David Thompson 14|
|Maryland* (ACC Tournament)||M10||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||Date||Score||IU's High Scorer|
|UCLA*||N29||84-64||Scott May 33|
|Florida State*||D8||83-59||Scott May 24|
|Notre Dame||D11||63-60||Scott May 25|
|Kentucky*||D15||77-68 (OT)||Kent Benson/Scott May 27|
|Georgia||D19||93-56||Scott May 18|
|Virginia Tech||D20||101-74||Scott May 27|
|Columbia*||D26||106-63||Kent Benson 15|
|Manhattan*||D27||97-61||Scott May 32|
|at St. John's||D28||76-69||Scott May 29|
|at Ohio State||J3||66-64||Scott May 24|
|Northwestern||J5||78-61||Kent Benson 22|
|at Michigan||J10||80-74||Kent Benson 33|
|at Michigan State||J12||69-57||Kent Benson 23|
|at Illinois||J17||83-55||Scott May 27|
|Purdue||J19||71-67||Scott May 32|
|at Minnesota||J24||85-76||Tom Abernethy 22|
|at Iowa||J26||88-73||Scott May 32|
|Wisconsin||J31||114-61||Scott May 30|
|Michigan||F7||72-67 (OT)||Scott May 27|
|Michigan State||F9||85-70||Kent Benson 38|
|Illinois||F14||58-48||Kent Benson 17|
|at Purdue||F16||74-71||Scott May 26|
|Minnesota||F21||76-64||Tom Abernethy 22|
|Iowa||F23||101-81||Quinn Buckner 24|
|at Wisconsin||F26||96-67||Scott May 41|
|at Northwestern||M1||76-63||Scott May 24|
|Ohio State||M6||96-67||Kent Benson/Scott May 21|
|St. John's* (NCAA Tournament)||M13||90-70||Scott May 33|
|Alabama* (NCAA Tournament)||M18||74-69||Scott May 25|
|Marquette* (NCAA Tournament)||M20||65-56||Kent Benson 18|
|UCLA* (NCAA Tournament)||M27||65-51||Kent Benson 16|
|Michigan* (NCAA Tournament)||M29||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.
No NCAA Division I men's team has compiled an undefeated record since Indiana in 1975-76. SMU was the last remaining unbeaten team this season until the Mustangs bowed at Temple, 89-80, in their 19th contest of the campaign.
SMU, spearheaded by Illinois State transfer Nic Moore, is on NCAA probation and thus ineligible to compete in postseason play. But the historical odds were against the Mustangs winning the NCAA title, anyway, because only three final undefeated teams in the previous 36 years - (Duke '92, UConn '99 and Florida '06) - went on to capture the national crown.
Prior to shackled SMU, Clemson (winner of its first 17 outings in 2006-07), was the only school in this last-of-the-unbeaten category to fail to participate in the NCAA playoffs. The Tigers finished runner-up in the NIT.
Four years ago, Murray State became the 10th of these 38 last-remaining-standing teams to suffer their first defeat at home. Following in reverse order are vital facts on final unbeaten teams since the Hoosiers a half-century ago:
|Season||Last Unbeaten (Wins)||First Defeat||Date||Score||Final Record/Postseason|
|2015-16||Southern Methodist (18)||at Temple||1-24-16||89-80||To be determined/Probation|
|2014-15||Kentucky (38)*||vs. Wisconsin||4-4-15||71-64||38-1/NCAA Final Four|
|2013-14||Wichita State (35)*||vs. Kentucky||3-23-14||78-76||35-1/Second Round|
|2012-13||Michigan (16)||at Ohio State||1-13-13||56-53||31-8/NCAA Runner-up|
|2011-12||Murray State (23)*||Tennessee State||2-9-12||72-68||31-2/Second Round|
|2010-11||Ohio State (24)||at Wisconsin||2-12-11||71-67||34-3/Regional Semifinal|
|2009-10||Kentucky (19)||at South Carolina||1-26-10||68-62||35-3/Regional Final|
|2008-09||Wake Forest (16)||Virginia Tech||1-21-09||78-71||24-7/First Round|
|2007-08||Memphis (26)||Tennessee||2-23-08||66-62||38-2/National Runner-up|
|2006-07||Clemson (17)*||at Maryland||1-13-07||92-87||25-11/NIT Runner-up|
|2005-06||Florida (17)*||at Tennessee||1-21-06||80-76||33-6/NCAA Champion|
|2004-05||Illinois (29)*||at Ohio State||3-6-05||65-64||37-2/NCAA Runner-up|
|2003-04||Saint Joseph's (27)*||vs. Xavier||3-11-04||87-67||30-2/Regional Final|
|2002-03||Duke (12)||at Maryland||1-18-03||87-72||26-7/Regional Semifinal|
|2001-02||Duke (12)||at Florida State||1-6-02||77-76||31-4/Regional Semifinal|
|2000-01||Stanford (20)||UCLA||2-3-01||79-73||31-3/Regional Final|
|1999-00||Syracuse (19)||Seton Hall||2-7-00||69-67||26-6/Regional Semifinal|
|1998-99||Connecticut (19)||Syracuse||2-1-99||59-42||34-2/NCAA Champion|
|1997-98||Utah (18)||at New Mexico||2-1-98||77-74||30-4/NCAA Runner-up|
|1996-97||Kansas (22)||at Missouri (2OT)||2-4-97||96-94||34-2/Regional Semifinal|
|1995-96||Massachusetts (26)*||George Washington||2-24-96||86-76||35-2/NCAA Final Four|
|1994-95||Connecticut (15)||at Kansas||1-28-95||88-59||28-5/Regional Final|
|1993-94||UCLA (14)||at California||1-30-94||85-70||21-7/First Round|
|1992-93||Virginia (11)||at North Carolina||1-20-93||80-58||21-10/Regional Semifinal|
|1991-92||Duke (17)||at North Carolina||2-5-92||75-73||34-2/NCAA Champion|
|1991-92||Oklahoma State (20)||at Nebraska||2-5-92||85-69||28-8/Regional Semifinal|
|1990-91||UNLV (34)||vs. Duke||3-30-91||79-77||34-1/NCAA Final Four|
|1989-90||Georgetown (14)||at Connecticut||1-20-90||70-65||24-7/Second Round|
|1988-89||Illinois (17)||at Minnesota||1-26-89||69-62||31-5/NCAA Final Four|
|1987-88||Brigham Young (17)*||at UAB||2-6-88||102-83||26-6/Sweet 16|
|1986-87||DePaul (16)||at Georgetown||1-25-87||74-71||28-3/Regional Semifinal|
|1985-86||Memphis State (20)||at Virginia Tech||2-1-86||76-72||28-6/Second Round|
|1984-85||Georgetown (18)||St. John's||1-26-85||66-65||35-3/NCAA Runner-up|
|1983-84||North Carolina (21)||vs. Arkansas||2-12-84||65-64||28-3/Regional Semifinal|
|1982-83||UNLV (24)||at Cal State Fullerton||2-24-83||86-78||28-3/Second Round|
|1981-82||Missouri (19)||Nebraska||2-6-82||67-51||27-4/Regional Semifinal|
|1980-81||Oregon State (26)*||Arizona State||3-7-81||87-67||26-2/Second Round|
|1979-80||DePaul (26)*||at Notre Dame (2OT)||2-27-80||76-74||26-2/Second Round|
|1978-79||Indiana State (33)*||vs. Michigan State||3-26-79||75-64||33-1/NCAA Runner-up|
|1977-78||Kentucky (14)||at Alabama||1-23-78||78-62||30-2/NCAA Champion|
|1976-77||San Francisco (29)||at Notre Dame||3-5-77||93-82||29-2/First Round|
"Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Extensive coaching turnover and league realigning has left Duke's Mike Krzyzewski as the only active coach to be in the same alliance more than the last 25 years. Coach K moved atop the dean-of-coaches list two seasons ago after Syracuse and Jim Boeheim switched to join Krzyzewski in the Atlantic Coast Conference after 34 years in the Big East.
As league play shifts into high gear, following are the longest-tenured active coaches in their present Division I conference (including 2015-16 campaign):
NOTE: Alexander's first 16 seasons in MEAC were with South Carolina State, Dambrot's first two seasons in MAC were with Central Michigan and Hinson's first nine seasons in MVC were with Missouri State.
Stony Brook's Jameel Warney joining an exclusive list of individuals earning league player of the year acclaim three times in an NCAA Division I conference. But Warney, who averaged 16.9 points and 10.2 rebounds per game while dominating the America East Conference the last three seasons, replaced a legend for dubious distinction among this gifted group.
Virginia center Ralph Sampson had posted the lowest scoring average (17.6 ppg from 1980-81 through 1982-83) among the 29 players during spans in the previous 50-plus years when they captured three or four MVP awards in a DI conference. Sampson's average was 26.6 ppg lower than LSU guard Pete Maravich's NCAA-record mark (44.2 from 1967-68 through 1969-70).
No player from a power conference has achieved the feat since Kansas' Danny Manning in the Big Eight from 1985-86 through 1987-88. Next season, Lehigh's Tim Kempton from the Patriot League could join the following chronological list of standouts who became player of the year in a DI league three or four seasons since the early 1960s:
|Player||Pos.||School||Conference (MVP Seasons)||League MVP Summary|
|Jerry Lucas||C||Ohio State||Big Ten (1960 through 1962)||Averaged 24.3 ppg and 17.2 rpg while shooting 62.4% from the floor over three-year span.|
|Fred Hetzel||F-C||Davidson||Southern (1963 through 1965)||Averaged 25.7 ppg and 13.8 rpg while shooting 55.4% from the floor over three-year span.|
|Clem Haskins||G-F||Western Kentucky||Ohio Valley (1965 through 1967)||Averaged 22.1 ppg and 10.6 rpg over three-year span.|
|Pete Maravich||G||Louisiana State||Southeastern (1968 through 1970)||Averaged 44.2 ppg, 6.4 rpg and 5.1 apg over three-year span.|
|Gene Phillips||F||Southern Methodist||Southwest (1969 through 1971)||Averaged 26.1 ppg and 7.5 rpg while shooting 81.7% from the free-throw line over three-year span.|
|David Thompson||F||North Carolina State||Atlantic Coast (1973 through 1975)||Averaged 26.8 ppg and 8.1 rpg while shooting 55.3% from the floor over three-year span.|
|Bernard King||F||Tennessee||Southeastern (1975 through 1977)||Averaged 25.8 ppg and 13.2 rpg while shooting 59% from the floor over three-year span.|
|Bill Cartwright||C||San Francisco||West Coast (1977 through 1979)||Averaged 21.5 ppg and 11.5 rpg while shooting 60.4% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|Michael Brooks||F||La Salle||East Coast (1978 through 1980)||Averaged 24.1 ppg and 12.5 rpg while shooting 55.4% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|Harry Kelly||F||Texas Southern||Southwestern Athletic (1980 through 1983)||Averaged 27.9 ppg and 9.9 rpg over four-year span.|
|Ralph Sampson||C||Virginia||Atlantic Coast (1981 through 1983)||Averaged 17.6 ppg, 11.5 rpg and 3.1 bpg while shooting 57.5% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|Joe Binion||F||North Carolina A&T||Mid-Eastern Athletic (1982 through 1984)||Averaged 19.8 ppg and 10.8 rpg while shooting 50.9% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|Willie Jackson||F||Centenary||Trans America Athletic (1982 through 1984)||Averaged 23.9 ppg and 9.2 rpg over three-year MVP span.|
|Alfredrick Hughes||F||Loyola (Ill.)||Midwestern Collegiate (1983 through 1985)||Averaged 26.5 ppg and 8.8 rpg over three-year MVP span.|
|Chris Mullin||G-F||St. John's||Big East (1983 through 1985)||Averaged 20.4 ppg and 4.3 rpg while shooting 55.4% from the floor and 86.5% from the free-throw line over three-year MVP span.|
|Wayman Tisdale||C||Oklahoma||Big Eight (1983 through 1985)||Averaged 25.6 ppg and 10.1 rpg while shooting 57.8% from the floor over three-year span.|
|Larry Krystkowiak||F||Montana||Big Sky (1984 through 1986)||Averaged 20.4 ppg and 10.7 rpg while shooting 57.1% from the floor and 80.1% from the free-throw line over three-year MVP span.|
|Reggie Lewis||F||Northeastern||ECAC North Atlantic (1985 through 1987)||Averaged 23.7 ppg and 8.5 rpg over three-year MVP span.|
|David Robinson||C||Navy||Colonial Athletic (1985 through 1987)||Averaged 24.8 ppg, 12.2 rpg and 4.8 bpg while shooting 61.2% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|Danny Manning||F||Kansas||Big Eight (1986 through 1988)||Averaged 21.7 ppg and 8.2 rpg while shooting 59.9% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|Lionel Simmons||F||La Salle||Metro Atlantic Athletic (1988 through 1990)||Averaged 26 ppg and 11.3 rpg over three-year MVP span.|
|Clarence Weatherspoon||F||Southern Mississippi||Metro (1990 through 1992)||Averaged 19.3 ppg and 10.3 rpg while shooting 58.4% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|Tony Dunkin||F||Coastal Carolina||Big South (1990 through 1993)||Averaged 20.7 ppg and 7 rpg while shooting 52.2% from the floor and 41.2% from beyond the three-point arc over four-year span.|
|Gary Trent||F||Ohio University||Mid-American (1993 through 1995)||Averaged 22.7 ppg and 11.3 rpg while shooting 57.3% from the floor over three-year span.|
|Keith Van Horn||F||Utah||Western Athletic (1995 through 1997)||Averaged 21.5 ppg and 8.9 rpg while shooting 52.4% from the floor and 87% from the free-throw line over three-year MVP span.|
|George Evans||F||George Mason||Colonial Athletic (1999 through 2001)||Averaged 17.9 ppg and 8.3 rpg while shooting 58.4% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|David West||F-C||Xavier||Atlantic 10 (2001 through 2003)||Averaged 18.8 ppg and 10.8 rpg while shooting 53.1% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|Taylor Coppenrath||F||Vermont||America East (2003 through 2005)||Averaged 23.1 ppg and 7.5 rpg over three-year MVP span.|
|Nick Fazekas||F||Nevada||Western Athletic (2005 through 2007)||Averaged 21 ppg and 10.3 rpg while shooting 53.2% from the floor and 82.3% from the free-throw line over three-year MVP span.|
|Caleb Green||F||Oral Roberts||Mid-Continent (2005 through 2007)||Averaged 20.2 ppg and 9.1 rpg while shooting 52.6% from the floor over three-year MVP span.|
|Jameel Warney||F-C||Stony Brook||America East (2014 through 2016)||Averaged 16.9 ppg and 10.2 rpg over three-year MVP span.|
It didn't seem right to honor Coach K about this time last season without at least acknowledging Winning Harry. We're talking about Harry Statham of Lebanon, Ill.-based McKendree College. On February 6, he passed Tennessee's Pat Summitt (1,098 triumphs) as the all-time winningest coach in college history (men's or women's) at the four-year college level. Statham, who passed North Carolina's Dean Smith during the 2004-05 season, has coached more college basketball games than anyone from planet Earth since supplanting Jim Phelan (Mount St. Mary's). Going beyond 1,000 NAIA victories in 2009-10, Statham (pronounced Stay-them) compiled only one losing campaign (18-19 in 1983-84) in his first 46 seasons as a head coach until incurring sub-.500 marks each of the previous three years following McKendree moving up to the NCAA DII level. It also didn't seem right he had a five-game losing streak when Duke's Mike Krzyzewski registered career win No. 1,000.
"No, I never dreamed about (so many triumphs). I never dreamed about 100 wins," said Statham, boasting an average annual record of 22-9. "It's a good job and a good opportunity and I love what I do. I just try to do things right and everything will take care of itself."
It was not as if there was instant success for Statham, who didn't reach the NAIA Tournament until his 22nd campaign. After his first three seasons with McKendree, Statham conducted a tryout including the author of this missive for a spot on his roster. Statham never would have reached 100 victories three years later if he didn't look elsewhere and attract better players over the decades en route to assembling the following record-breaking resume:
Season Record NAIA Tourney 1966-67 13-10 DNP 1967-68 20-7 DNP 1968-69 21-6 DNP 1969-70 19-6 DNP 1970-71 15-12 DNP 1971-72 21-7 DNP 1972-73 23-6 DNP 1973-74 24-8 DNP 1974-75 17-9 DNP 1975-76 17-9 DNP 1976-77 21-5 DNP 1977-78 15-11 DNP 1978-79 20-11 DNP 1979-80 22-9 DNP 1980-81 27-7 DNP 1981-82 18-12 DNP 1982-83 20-9 DNP 1983-84 18-19 DNP 1984-85 22-11 DNP 1985-86 22-14 DNP 1986-87 30-5 DNP 1987-88 35-1 1-1 record 1988-89 17-15 DNP 1989-90 20-14 DNP 1990-91 23-9 DNP 1991-92 31-6 0-1 record 1992-93 27-9 0-1 record 1993-94 26-8 DNP 1994-95 27-6 DNP 1995-96 25-9 1-1 record 1996-97 28-9 2-1 record 1997-98 26-8 DNP 1998-99 21-11 DNP 1999-00 25-8 0-1 record 2000-01 27-9 0-1 record 2001-02 30-5 1-1 record 2002-03 34-4 3-1 record 2003-04 24-10 0-1 record 2004-05 25-8 DNP 2005-06 19-14 DNP 2006-07 22-12 1-1 record 2007-08 27-7 1-1 record 2008-09 30-6 2-1 record 2009-10 27-7 0-1 record 2010-11 21-13 1-1 record 2011-12 18-12 DNP 2012-13 7-21 moved up to NCAA DII 2013-14 9-17 moved up to NCAA DII 2014-15 11-15 moved up to NCAA DII 2015-16 11-10* moved up to NCAA DII 50 years 1,099-476 13-15 record
*Record when passing Pat Summitt.
Rutgers, loser in 32 consecutive contests against Big Ten Conference opponents until defeating Minnesota in regular-season finale, might need to visit school archives and bring ulcer-causing Dick Vitale back as a recruiter. The Scarlet Knights, losing by a staggering 50 points at home against Purdue, couldn't do any worse upon falling on hard times as the nation's only NCAA Division I school failing to have an all-conference choice in the previous nine seasons. Vitale helped lure coach Eddie Jordan to Piscataway before the Scarlet Knights reached the 1976 Final Four. Jordan was an All-Atlantic 10 Conference second-team choice as a senior in 1976-77 before leaving college without a diploma.
Rutgers, failing to secure an all-league choice since Quincy Douby in 2005-06, has been blanked in three different alliances during the dry spell. The Knights' arrival gave the Big Ten Conference additional Nebraska/Northwestern/Penn State mediocrity - a famine-relief trio combining for three NCAA playoff victories in the previous 60 years (all by Nittany Lions), making their hoop fans believe in the power of positive drinkin'.
Five struggling schools - Louisiana-Monroe (Sun Belt), Pepperdine (WCC), Sacramento State (Big Sky), Southern Illinois (Missouri Valley) and Texas Tech (Big 12) - left this dubious category in 2013-14. Rutgers, eliminated by Louisville by 61 points in the AAC Tournament two seasons ago, is joined by DePaul and Samford on the following list of schools enduring honor droughts having no all-league picks at least the previous seven seasons:
"It is not enough that we do our best; sometimes we must do what is required." - Winston Churchill
The NCAA Tournament speaks to your sports soul, leaving you yearning for more. This year marks the 78th NCAA championship spectacle. Perhaps the most amazing stretch in NCAA playoff history was an eight-year span from 1982 through 1989 when seven finals were decided by an average of two points. All of those close title contests, surely measuring up to Churchill's "best" quote, must be included in any celebratory ranking of the most stimulating games in tourney history.
Since some of the most entertaining games are somewhat overshadowed because they came in earlier rounds, it's difficult to decide what were the premier outings in playoff history. There is inspiration everywhere one turns - so many entertaining contests to choose from with so many divergent opinions on a seemingly endless list of stellar candidates.
Nothing provokes disagreements among ardent hoop fans more than healthy what's-the-best-in-history dialogue. In deference to the 78th playoff, following is a ranking of the top 78 games one remembers the most. You wouldn't wonder what all the fuss is about if you had the good fortune to witness firsthand or learn from ardent fans about much of the following drama:
1. 1992 East Regional Final (Duke 104, Kentucky 103 in OT)
Duke's Christian Laettner hit a decisive last-second shot near the head of the key against UK in overtime after receiving a long in-bounds pass from Grant Hill in the East Regional final. The game is acknowledged as one of the most suspenseful in NCAA history.
2. 1985 Championship Game (Villanova 66, Georgetown 64)
Villanova became the worst seed (#8 in the Southeast Regional) to win a national championship by shooting a championship game-record 78.6% from the floor against the nation's top-ranked team. The Hoyas, powered by national player of the year Patrick Ewing, had defeated the Wildcats twice by a total of nine points in Big East Conference competition.
3. 1983 Championship Game (North Carolina State 54, Houston 52)
Sophomore forward Lorenzo Charles scored only four points, but two of them came when he converted guard Dereck Whittenburg's off-line desperation shot from well beyond the top of the free-throw circle into a decisive dunk as North Carolina State upset heavily-favored Houston. The Cougars, featuring Clyde Drexler and Akeem Olajuwon, entered the final with a 26-game winning streak.
4. 1982 Championship Game (North Carolina 63, Georgetown 62)
North Carolina freshman guard Michael Jordan swished a 16-foot jumper from the left side with 16 seconds remaining to provide the title contest's final points before Georgetown guard Fred Brown's errant pass directly to Tar Heels forward James Worthy prevented the Hoyas from attempting a potential game-winning shot in the closing seconds. Also memorable was was a stream of intimidating goal-tending calls early in the contest against Hoyas freshman center Patrick Ewing.
5. 1987 Championship Game (Indiana 74, Syracuse 73)
Junior college recruit Keith Smart, a guard who was Indiana's fifth-leading scorer for the season, tallied 12 of the Hoosiers' last 15 points, including a 15-foot jumper from the left baseline with five seconds remaining.
6. 1957 Championship Game (North Carolina 54, Kansas 53 in 3OT)
Carolina center Joe Quigg sank two free throws with six seconds remaining in third overtime to tie score and provide decisive point against the Wilt Chamberlain-led Jayhawks. Although Lennie Rosenbluth was the unbeaten Tar Heels' leading scorer in 27 of their 32 contests, they won the NCAA final despite him fouling out with 1:45 remaining in regulation.
7. 1966 Championship Game (Texas Western 72, Kentucky 65)
Texas Western (28-1), featuring an all-black starting lineup with three players 6-1 or shorter in the NCAA final, stunned top-ranked and all-white Kentucky (27-2), putting the finishing touches on dismantling the prejudiced myth that black athletes couldn't play disciplined basketball. Junior college transfer Bobby Joe Hill, one of the tiny trio, converted steals into layups on consecutive trips down the floor by flustered UK guards to give the Miners a lead they never relinquished.
8. 1975 Mideast Regional Final (Kentucky 92, Indiana 90)
Indiana, undefeated entering the tourney (29-0), lost against Kentucky despite center Kent Benson's 33 points and tourney-high 23 rebounds. The Wildcats (26-5) prevailed despite 6-of-19 field-goal shooting by leading scorer Kevin Grevey. UK guards Jimmy Dan Conner and Mike Flynn combined to outscore IU counterparts Quinn Buckner and Bobby Wilkerson, 39-22.
9. 1991 National Semifinals (Duke 79, UNLV 77)
Duke's shocking win over defending champion UNLV (34-1) was the Rebels' lone defeat. Christian Laettner scored 28 points for the Blue Devils (32-7).
10. 1989 Championship Game (Michigan 80, Seton Hall 79 in OT)
Former street urchin Rumeal Robinson sank two pressure free throws against Seton Hall (31-7) with three seconds remaining in overtime to give the win to Michigan (30-7), which was guided by interim coach Steve Fisher.
11. 1957 National Semifinals (North Carolina 74, Michigan State 70 in 3OT)
The lead changed hands 31 times and the score was tied on 21 occasions. The Spartans' Jack Quiggle made a last-second, half-court shot at the end of regulation but it was disallowed. The end-of-game rule at the time was that the ball had to reach the apex of its arc before the buzzer. The officials ruled that the ball was still ascending. Teammate Johnny Green missed a free throw with 11 seconds remaining in the first overtime that would have sealed the verdict. Carolina's Pete Brennan grabbed Green's miss. Rather than tossing the ball out to a guard as Brennan normally would do, he dribbled down-court and hit a game-tying jumper just to the right of the foul line at the buzzer.
12. 1994 Championship Game (Arkansas 76, Duke 72)
The pressure was intense on Arkansas' Scotty Thurman with the shot clock winding down and score tied with 40 seconds remaining when he lofted a three-point attempt over Duke defender Antonio Lang that hit nothing but net.
13. 1974 National Semifinals (North Carolina State 80, UCLA 77 in 2OT)
The final in N.C. State's home state at Greensboro was anti-climatic after the Wolfpack avenged an 18-point loss against UCLA earlier in the season on a neutral court by ending the Bruins' 38-game playoff winning streak. N.C. State erased an 11-point deficit midway through the second half and a seven-point deficit in the second extra session behind David Thompson's 28 points and 10 rebounds to halt UCLA's string of seven consecutive NCAA championships.
14. 1990 East Regional Final (Duke 79, Connecticut 78 in OT)
Two days after UConn escaped Clemson on a controversial last-second shot, Duke turned the tables on the Huskies when Christian Laettner inbounded the ball with 2.6 seconds remaining, received a return pass and sank a leaning jumper from the left side at the buzzer.
15. 1981 Mideast Regional Second Round (St. Joseph's 49, DePaul 48)
St. Joseph's gained its only lead in the second half when inexcusably unguarded Hawks player John Smith sank a layup with three seconds left after DePaul's most accurate foul shooter, Skip Dillard, the guy they called "Money" because when he shot 'em, they were as good as in the bank, missed the front end of a one-and-one with 12 seconds remaining. The top-ranked Blue Demons did not score a point or take a shot in the final 6 1/2 minutes. A stunned Mark Aguirre, the national player of the year, didn't even throw the ball inbounds and finished the game with one rebound, one assist, no blocked shots, no steals and the only single-digit scoring output of his DePaul career (eight points).
16. 1981 Midwest Regional Second Round (Arkansas 74, Louisville 73)
Defending champion Louisville lost when Arkansas' U.S. Reed received an in-bounds pass with five seconds remaining, criss-cross dribbled up the sideline and heaved a mid-court shot from right side that went through the net at the buzzer.
17. 1993 Championship Game (North Carolina 77, Michigan 71)
George Lynch, North Carolina's top rebounder and second-leading scorer, made four big plays in the closing moments of title game. With Michigan leading, 67-66, he and Eric Montross blocked away a driving layup by Jimmy King. That led to a fast-break basket by Derrick Phelps and put the Tar Heels ahead to stay with just over three minutes remaining. After a missed UM shot, Lynch hit a turnaround jumper from the middle of the lane with 2:28 remaining to increase Carolina's lead to 70-67. On an inbounds play after UNC regained possession, Lynch lofted a perfect pass to Montross for a dunk. The Wolverines rallied to trim the deficit to 73-71 before Lynch and Phelps trapped Chris Webber along the right sideline with only 11 seconds remaining and Michigan's consensus first-team All-American called a fateful timeout his team did not have, a "whopper" of a mistake long before his Burger King commercial.
18. 1973 Championship Game (UCLA 87, Memphis State 61)
UCLA's Bill Walton, aided by Greg Lee's 14 assists, erupted for a title game-record 44 points. Walton, the only player to have as many as 20 field goals in an NCAA final, hit all but one of 22 shots from the floor.
19. 1958 East Regional First Round (Manhattan 89, West Virginia 84)
West Virginia, ranked No. 1 in the country at the end of the regular season, was upset at New York when Jack Powers, who went on to become executive director of the NIT, collected 29 points and 15 rebounds for Manhattan (16-10). Jerry West scored just 10 points in his first NCAA Tournament game for the Mountaineers, who finished the season with the best winning percentage in school history (26-2, .929).
20. 1983 Mideast Regional final (Louisville 80, Kentucky 68 in OT)
The first meeting between in-state rivals Kentucky and Louisville in more than 24 years was memorable as the Cardinals outscored the Wildcats in overtime, 18-6, to reach the Final Four.
21. 1963 Championship Game (Loyola of Chicago 60, Cincinnati 58 in OT)
Forward Vic Rouse leaped high to redirect center Les Hunter's shot from the free-throw line into the basket to climax the Ramblers' first year in the playoffs. Loyola, using its starting lineup the entire final, overcame 27.4% field-goal shooting by committing just three turnovers. The Ramblers trailed the defending NCAA champion by 15 points in the second half before knotting the score at 54-54 when Jerry Harkness hit a 12-foot jumper with four seconds remaining in regulation.
22. 1988 Championship Game (Kansas 83, Oklahoma 79)
The two Big Eight Conference members were deadlocked, 50-50, at intermission in the highest-scoring first half in title game history. The Jayhawks' Danny Manning poured in 31 points.
23. 1979 Championship Game (Michigan State 75, Indiana State 64)
Undefeated Indiana State lost against Michigan State when the Sycamores' Larry Bird, who hit 53.2% of his field-goal attempts on the season, made just one-third of his shots from the floor (7 of 21) as a sore thumb limited his shooting effectiveness. Magic Johnson scored a game-high 24 points for the Spartans. The ballyhooed matchup between icons Bird and Magic failed to live up to billing but aroused fans and generated the largest-ever TV share for an NCAA final.
24. 1989 East Regional First Round (Georgetown 50, Princeton 49)
No. 16 seed Princeton pushed No. 1 seed Georgetown to the limit in the East Regional before the patient and precise Tigers bowed when a last-second shot was blocked by All-American center Alonzo Mourning.
25. 1996 Southeast Regional First Round (Princeton 43, UCLA 41)
Princeton coach Pete Carril bowed out in style with a decisive perfectly executed back-door layup reminiscent of how many games were played several decades ago. It was UCLA's lowest-scoring output in 99 playoff outings, and the lowest score for a Bruins team in a regulation game in more than 55 years.
26. 1977 Championship Game (Marquette 67, North Carolina 59)
Tears of joy flowed for coach Al McGuire when Marquette won the championship in his farewell. McGuire, leaving the bench before the game was even over with tears running down his cheeks, pulled away from a hug by long-time assistant Hank Raymonds and made his way to the silence of the locker room. "I want to be alone," McGuire said. "I'm not afraid to cry. All I could think about at the end was - why me? After all the jocks and socks. All the odors in the locker room. All the fights in the gyms. Just the wildness of it all. And to have it end like this ..."
27. 1971 Mideast Regional Semifinals (Western Kentucky 107, Kentucky 83)
WKU, long regarded as poor country cousins by Kentucky, whipped the Wildcats in their first-ever meeting when All-American Jim McDaniels poured in 35 points for the Hilltoppers.
28. 1975 National Semifinals (UCLA 75, Louisville 74 in OT)
Three Louisville regulars shooting better than 50% from the floor for the season (swingman Junior Bridgeman, center Ricky Gallon and guard Phillip Bond) combined to hit 25% (6 of 24) in a loss against UCLA. Adding insult to injury for the Cardinals was reserve guard Terry Howard missing the front end of a one-and-one free-throw opportunity in the closing seconds of overtime after he converted all 28 of his previous foul shots that season.
29. 1997 Championship Game (Arizona 84, Kentucky 79 in OT)
Arizona, the only team to win an NCAA crown after finishing as low as fifth place in its league, capitalized on a 34-9 edge in free throws made to upend favored Kentucky although Zona did not make a field goal in the extra session.
30. 1995 West Regional Second Round (UCLA 75, Missouri 74)
Playmaker Tyus Edney played the role of Wizard of Westwood II with a series of breathtaking drives and baskets in UCLA's first five playoff games, including a length-of-the-court game-winner against Mizzou.
31. 1990 East Regional Semifinals (Connecticut 71, Clemson 70)
It was difficult for Clemson fans to fathom how UConn's Tate George had sufficient time with one second on the clock to receive a full-court pass, come down, square up and get off a game-winning jumper from the right baseline.
32. 1990 West Regional Second Round (Loyola Marymount 149, Michigan 115)
The record for most three-point field goals in a playoff game was set by Loyola Marymount senior guard Jeff Fryer with 11. Fryer (41) and Bo Kimble (37) became the only set of teammates to score more than 35 points in the same tourney game when they combined for 78 vs. Michigan in the highest-scoring game in NCAA playoff history.
33. 1981 East Regional Semifinals (Brigham Young 51, Notre Dame 50)
BYU's Danny Ainge went coast-to-coast driving through the heart of No. 2 seed Notre Dame's defense for a layup at the buzzer to give the Cougars the victory.
34. 1983 West Regional First Round (N.C. State 69, Pepperdine 67 in 2OT)
NCAA champion-to-be North Carolina State (26-10) defeated Pepperdine (20-9) in two extra sessions after trailing by six points with 24 seconds remaining in regulation.
35. 1978 Championship Game (Kentucky 94, Duke 88)
Jack Givens sank 18 of 27 field-goal attempts against upstart Duke's zone defense and scored Kentucky's last 16 points of the first half en route to a 41-point performance.
36. 2001 National Semifinals (Duke 95, Maryland 84)
The Blue Devils (35-4) overcame a 22-point deficit against the Terrapins (25-11), the biggest comeback in Final Four history. Mike Dunleavy Jr. hit three consecutive three-pointers in a 45-second span of the second half after Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski told his squad to quit calling plays and just go out and play the game.
37. 2003 West Regional Second Round (Arizona 96, Gonzaga 95 in 2OT)
Gonzaga's Tony Skinner and Blake Stepp tied for game-high scoring honors with 25 points but each of them missed an open shot in the last four seconds of the second overtime for the Zags (24-9) against No. 1 seed Arizona (28-4). Wildcats standout guard Jason Gardner contributed a pair of three-pointers after missing 17 consecutive shots from beyond the arc in his previous three outings.
38. 1970 Mideast Regional First Round (Notre Dame 112, Ohio University 82)
Guard Austin Carr became the only player to score more than 60 points in a single playoff game. Carr tallied 35 of Notre Dame's 54 first-half points en route to a school-record 61 against OU.
39. 1952 East Regional Final (St. John's 64, Kentucky 57)
St. John's (25-6), sparked by center Bob Zawoluk's 32 points, avenged a 41-point rout at UK (29-3) earlier in the season (81-40) by ending the 23-game winning streak of the nation's No. 1 team.
40. 1969 National Semifinals (UCLA 85, Drake 82)
Guard John Vallely, averaging a modest 10.2 points per game entering the Final Four, erupted for 29 points and the Bruins (29-1) needed all of them. They had a nine-point lead with 70 seconds remaining dwindle to one before defeating Drake (26-5) after the Bulldogs missed a go-ahead basket in the waning moments. UCLA star center Lew Alcindor grabbed 21 rebounds.
41. 1945 National Semifinals (New York University 70, Ohio State 65 in OT)
NYU (14-7), featuring just one senior on its roster, erased a 10-point deficit in the final two minutes of regulation against Ohio State (15-5).
42. 1968 Midwest Regional First Round (Houston 94, Loyola of Chicago 76)
UH's Elvin Hayes became the only player in tournament history to collect more than 40 points and 25 rebounds in the same game when he garnered 49 points and 27 rebounds. Hayes led the tournament in scoring and rebounding by wide margins for the fourth-place Cougars (31-2), but he wasn't named to the all-tournament team.
43. 1998 Midwest Regional First Round (Valparaiso 70, Mississippi 69)
Valpo's Jamie Sykes, an outfield prospect late for spring training with the Arizona Diamondbacks, inbounded from the opposite baseline with 2.5 seconds remaining. He hurled a baseball pass that Bill Jenkins leaped to catch. Jenkins delivered a touch pass to guard Bryce Drew on the right wing, and the son of coach Homer Drew drilled a game-winning three-pointer for the Crusaders (23-10).
44. 1970 Mideast Regional Final (Jacksonville 106, Kentucky 100)
JU's Artis Gilmore collected 24 points and 20 rebounds to help eliminate the nation's top-ranked team. Teammate Rex Morgan contributed 28 points while outshining UK's backcourt.
45. 1951 East Regional First Round (Illinois 79, Columbia 71)
Columbia, undefeated entering the tourney (21-0), blew a seven-point, halftime lead and lost to eventual national third-place finisher Illinois (22-5). The Lions' John Azary was outscored by the Illini's Don Sunderlage (25-13) in a battle of All-American candidates.
46. 1965 National Third-Place Game (Princeton 118, Wichita 82)
Princeton's Bill Bradley set the mark for most points in a single Final Four game with a school-record 58. He scored 39 of them in the second half of the consolation contest.
47. 1971 Mideast Regional Semifinals (Ohio State 60, Marquette 59)
Marquette, undefeated entering the tourney (26-0), lost against Ohio State (20-6) after the Warriors' playmaker, unanimous first-team All-America Dean "The Dream" Meminger, fouled out with five minutes remaining. Teammate Allie McGuire, the coach's son, committed a costly turnover in the closing seconds before Buckeyes guard Allan Hornyak converted a pair of crucial free throws to end Marquette's 39-game winning streak.
48. 2005 Midwest Regional Final (Illinois 90, Arizona 89 in OT)
Illini (37-2) overcame a 14-point deficit with just over three minutes remaining in regulation and nine-point deficit in the last 1 1/2 minutes before defeating Arizona (30-7) in an extra session.
49. 1999 West Regional First Round (Weber State 76, North Carolina 74)
No. 3 seed North Carolina (24-10) lost its playoff opener for the first time in 19 years when the Tar Heels succumbed against No. 14 Weber State (25-8). Junior college transfer Harold Arceneaux contributed five three-pointers en route to 36 points for the Wildcats. His output matched the highest ever in the playoffs against Carolina.
50. 1965 Championship Game (UCLA 91, Michigan 80)
UCLA's Gail Goodrich became the only guard to score more than 35 points in an NCAA final, erupting for 42 points on 12 of 22 field-goal shooting and 18 of 20 free-throw shooting. His free throws made and attempted remain championship game records.
51. 1976 West Regional Semifinals (Arizona 114, UNLV 109 in OT)
Each team had four players score at least 18 points as UNLV (29-2), ranked third by AP and fourth by UPI entering the tourney, was eliminated by Arizona (24-9) when Jim Rappis had more assists (12) than the Rebels' entire team.
52. 1981 West Regional Second Round (Kansas State 50, Oregon State 48)
K-State (24-9) upset second-ranked Oregon State (26-2) on Rolando Blackman's 17-foot buzzer beater from the right baseline.
53. 1959 Mideast Regional Semifinals (Louisville 76, Kentucky 61)
Second-ranked Kentucky (24-3) hit less than one-third of its field-goal attempts in blowing a 15-point lead against intra-state rival Louisville (19-12).
54. 1976 Championship Game (Indiana 86, Michigan 68)
Trailing Michigan (25-7) by six points at intermission and playing without Bobby Wilkerson after the starting guard sustained a concussion early in the game, the Hoosiers shot 60% from the floor in the second half to come from behind and earn recognition as the nation's last undefeated team. Scott May, Kent Benson and Quinn Buckner collaborated for 36 of IU's first 38 second-half points.
55. 2005 West Regional Final (Louisville 93, West Virginia 85)
West Virginia set a regional final record with 18 three-pointers but still lost against Louisville.
56. 1977 West Regional Semifinals (Idaho State 76, UCLA 75)
The visiting Bruins, ranked fourth by UPI entering the tourney, finished with a 24-5 record when guards Roy Hamilton and Brad Holland combined to hit just 8 of 24 field-goal attempts. Idaho State (25-5), prevailing despite shooting a modest 40.6% from the floor, received 27 points and 12 rebounds from center Steve Hayes.
57. 1981 Midwest Regional Second Round (Kansas 88, Arizona State 71)
Third-ranked Arizona State (24-4), featuring four upperclassmen who combined for a total of more than 35 seasons in the NBA (guards Fat Lever and Byron Scott, center Alton Lister and forward Sam Williams), was clobbered by Kansas (24-8) when Tony Guy poured in 36 points for the Jayhawks. The Sun Devils fell behind by 16 points at intermission.
58. 1979 Midwest Regional Final (Indiana State 73, Arkansas 71)
Larry Bird-led Indiana State became the only school to reach the Final Four in its one and only NCAA Tournament appearance in the 20th Century when the Sycamores' Bob Heaton shifted the ball from his normal right hand to his left for a short shot that bounced twice on the rim before going down.
59. 1971 West Regional Final (UCLA 57, Long Beach State 55)
The closest result for UCLA (29-1) during the Bruins' 38-game playoff winning streak from 1967 through 1973 came when they had to erase an 11-point deficit despite 29% field-goal shooting to edge Jerry Tarkanian-coached Long Beach State (24-5).
60. 1977 National Semifinals (North Carolina 84, UNLV 83)
Mike O'Koren became the first freshman to score more than 30 points in a national semifinal or championship game when the UNC forward tallied 31. O'Koren and his teammates enjoyed a 28-5 edge over the Rebels in free-throw attempts.
61. 1978 Midwest Regional Semifinals (DePaul 90, Louisville 89)
DePaul center Dave Corzine tallied 46 points in double overtime game to become the only individual to score at least 45 in the NCAA playoffs and never be an NCAA first- or second-team consensus All-American or Final Four Most Outstanding Player.
62. 1959 Championship Game (California 71, West Virginia 70)
Two-time first-team All-American swingman Jerry West of West Virginia (29-5) was denied an NCAA championship ring when California (25-4) junior center Darrall Imhoff, West's teammate with the Los Angeles Lakers for four seasons in the mid-1960s, tipped in a basket with 17 seconds remaining.
63. 2006 East Regional Final (George Mason 86, Connecticut 84)
The #11 seed Patriots (27-8) advanced to the national semifinals with overtime win against UConn (30-4), which was their third victim featuring a coach who previously won an NCAA title.
64. 1979 East Regional Second Round (Penn 72, North Carolina 71)
No. 1 seed Carolina (23-6) lost its opener in the Tar Heels' home state (Raleigh, N.C.) when Penn's Tony Price poured in a game-high 25 points for the Quakers (25-7).
65. 1984 East Regional Semifinals (Indiana 72, North Carolina 68)
Many observers predicted Georgetown would meet the top-ranked Tar Heels in the national final, but they were upset by IU when national player of the year Michael Jordan was limited to 13 points, one rebound and one assist.
66. 1993 West Regional First Round (Santa Clara 64, Arizona 61)
In terms of point spreads, No. 2 seed Arizona's defeat against 20-point underdog Santa Clara (19-12), a No. 15 seed, was the biggest upset in NCAA playoff history. The Wildcats (24-4), ranked fifth by AP entering the tournament, lost although they scored 25 consecutive points in a 10-minute span bridging the first and second halves.
67. 2004 St. Louis Regional Second Round (UAB 76, Kentucky 75)
UAB (22-10), after outlasting Washington (102-100) in first round, used its frenetic pressure defense to frustrate No. 1 seed Kentucky (27-5).
68. 1956 East Regional Semifinals (Temple 65, Connecticut 59)
Guard Hal Lear manufactured 61.5% of Temple's offense by scoring 40 points. The most rebounds ever in a playoff game were grabbed by teammate Fred Cohen, who retrieved a school-record 34 missed shots.
69. 2005 Second Round (West Virginia 111, Wake Forest 105 in 2OT)
Mike Gansey scored 19 of his 29 points after the end of regulation when West Virginia (24-11) outlasted #2 seed Wake Forest (27-6) in double overtime.
70. 1975 Championship Game (UCLA 92, Kentucky 85)
Coach John Wooden's farewell resulted in his 10th NCAA title for the Bruins.
71. 1981 Midwest Regional Semifinals (Wichita State 66, Kansas 65)
Mike Jones hit two long-range baskets in the last 50 seconds for Wichita State (26-7) in the first duel between the intrastate rivals in 36 years.
72. 1980 Midwest Regional Second Round (Missouri 87, Notre Dame 84 in OT)
Mizzou (25-6) backup swingman Mark Dressler, entering the NCAA playoffs with an eight-point scoring average, erupted for 32 points on 13 of 16 field-goal shooting against the 22-6 Irish (ranked No. 9 by AP).
73. 1989 Southeast Regional First Round (South Alabama 86, Alabama 84)
In an exciting intrastate battle, South Alabama (23-9) erased a 16-point halftime deficit. Jeff Hodge and Gabe Estaba combined for 55 points to lead USA against 'Bama (23-8).
74. 1980 Mideast Regional First Round (Virginia Tech 89, Western Kentucky 85 in OT)
Virginia Tech, sparked by Dale Solomon's 10-of-13 field-goal shooting, became the only school to erase a halftime deficit of at least 18 points to win a playoff game in the 20th Century. The Hokies, Metro Conference runner-up to eventual NCAA champion Louisville, trailed WKU at intermission, 48-30, in a duel between two 21-8 teams.
75. 2008 Midwest Regional Second Round (Davidson 74, Georgetown 70)
Stephen Curry, a son of former NBA standout Dell Curry, poured in 25 of his 30 points in the second half as Davidson (29-7) erased a double-digit deficit to upset the Hoyas (28-6).
76. 1978 West Regional First Round (Cal State Fullerton 90, New Mexico 85)
Cal State Fullerton (23-9) had four players score from 18 to 23 points and made 62.1% of its field-goal attempts to erase a six-point, halftime deficit and upend fourth-ranked New Mexico. Future Lakers standout Michael Cooper had an off-game for the Lobos (24-4), sinking just six of 15 field-goal attempts.
77. 1986 Midwest Regional First Round (UALR 90, Notre Dame 83)
UALR, a 17 1/2-point underdog, shocked No. 3 seed Notre Dame by shooting 62.3% from the floor. Pete Meyers scored 29 points in 29 minutes for the Trojans.
78. 1984 East Regional First Round (Virginia Commonwealth 70, Northeastern 69)
Jim Calhoun-coached Northeastern hit 75% of its field-goal attempts (33 of 44), including 15-of-17 by freshman Reggie Lewis, but still bowed to VCU.
"It is not the critic who counts, not the one who points out how the strong man stumbled or how the doer of deeds might have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred with sweat and dust and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause; who, if he wins, knows the triumphs of high achievement; and who, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt
For those who eat, sleep and breathe the NCAA Tournament although it came after Teddy Roosevelt's presidency, the sensory overload of the playoffs is a banquet and every year is a feast. Nourishing your appetite for assessing postseason play, the following questions linger before the 78th event commences this year: Who were the most pristine postseason players in the nation's premier multiple-week sports spectacle? Who always seemed hot and who was not? Who was a stud instead of a dud?
It's a cop-out to simply accept the instant visibility of one-name icons such as Magic, Bird and Michael and cite them among the greatest players in tourney history. The prolific pro careers of Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan, a trio combining to win nine consecutive NBA Most Valuable Player awards from 1983-84 through 1991-92 (three apiece), somewhat distorts their impact in college postseason play. Notwithstanding the TV appeal of the Bird/Magic championship game match-up in 1979 and Jordan's game-winning basket as a freshman in the 1982 national final against Georgetown, a closer examination of the facts than what was exhibited in 75th-anniversary polls two years ago by ESPN, Sports Illustrated and Sporting News shows that other collegians were more efficient more often in the NCAA Tournament. Consider the following tourney trauma for Johnson (ESPN 5/SN 7/SI 8), Bird (SI 5/ESPN 15/SN 24) and Jordan (SN 32/ESPN 57/SI 70) before accepting as gospel they were among the premier performers in NCAA playoff play:
Johnson shot a meager 27.8% from the floor (10 of 36) in three 1978 tourney games as a freshman for Michigan State before leading the Spartans to the NCAA title the next year. He had more turnovers (six) than assists (five) in the over-hyped 1979 final, a mediocre contest paling in comparison to the last eight finals of the 1980s when seven of them were decided by an average of two points. Johnson outscored and outrebounded teammate Greg Kelser in just one of eight playoff games they played together. Kelser simply contributed more than Magic to the Spartans' cause in NCAA competition.
Bird boosted Indiana State to the 1979 final in his lone NCAA tourney, but put the 'oops' in hoops by committing a Final Four-record 17 turnovers. He hit just 7 of 21 field-goal attempts and had three times as many turnovers (six) as assists (two) against Michigan State in the championship game, which was essentially the equivalent of a boring Super Bowl failing to live up to hype.
Jordan's NBA playoff scoring average with the Chicago Bulls more than doubled the NCAA Tournament scoring average he compiled for North Carolina. Jordan averaged 16.5 points per NCAA playoff game with the Tar Heels, scoring 20 or more in just two of 10 postseason games from 1982 through 1984. His Airness scored fewer than 18 points in two of the four playoff contests he led Carolina in scoring. Most people don't remember his inauspicious playoff debut when he collected six points, one rebound, no assists and no steals in 37 minutes of a 52-50 opening-round victory against James Madison in the East Regional. And Jordan's final NCAA Tournament appearance before he left school early for the NBA was nothing to write home about, either. The college player of the year was restricted to six points in the first 35 minutes of his collegiate swan song in the East Regional semifinals against Indiana, finishing with 13 points, one rebound, one assist and one steal in 26 foul-plagued minutes when the top-ranked Tar Heels were eliminated (72-68).
Generally, sizzling scorers have learned it's not a day at the beach in postseason play. For instance, former NBA sensation Clyde Drexler averaged more than 17 points per game each of his last 13 NBA seasons, but he scored more than 17 points in just one of 11 NCAA Tournament games for the University of Houston from 1981 through 1983. Premier playmaker Steve Nash managed only one field goal in three of five playoff contests in the mid-1990s, shooting a paltry 29.2% from the floor. Two-time NBA slam-dunk champion Jason Richardson (5th pick overall in 2001) was grounded by the NCAA playoffs, going scoreless in three consecutive contests as a Michigan State freshman in 2000. All-Americans Thomas Robinson (Kansas) and Tyler Zeller (North Carolina) each went scoreless in two NCAA playoff games. Eventual All-Americans Marcus Denmon (Missouri), Danny Ferry (Duke), Ben Gordon (Connecticut), Marcus Morris (Kansas) and Terrence Williams (Louisville) also went scoreless in a tourney game. Ferry scored fewer than 10 points in six straight tourney tilts before averaging 20 ppg in his last 11 playoff outings and Syracuse All-American Kris Joseph never scored more than 12 points in 11 NCAA playoff contests from 2009 through 2012.
Duke's Christian Laettner, the all-time playoff scoring leader with 407 points from 1989 through 1992, tallied fewer than 15 points in six of his first seven tournament games. Just four of the top 20 in career scoring in the NCAA playoffs accumulated more than 10 points in every tourney game they participated - UCLA's Lew Alcindor (1967-68-69), Princeton's Bill Bradley (1963-64-65), Arizona's Sean Elliott (1986-87-88-89) and Cincinnati's Oscar Robertson (1958-59-60).
Is an Amber Alert necessary for Len Chappell, Adrian Dantley, Tom Gola, Alex Groza, David "Big Daddy" Lattin, Jim McDaniels, Jeff Mullins, Cazzie Russell, Dennis Scott, Rony Seikaly, etc., etc., etc.? How could anyone forget the footprint (size-22) Bob Lanier left on postseason play? The NCAA, exhibiting all the expertise of voters claiming they can't provide identification, unveiled a stunning error-prone list several years ago of foremost NCAA Tournament players over the first 75 years. Were relatives of guards Shelvin Mack and Keith Smart on the nominating panel for such amateurish choices? Do backcourters B.J. Armstrong, Terry Dehere, Allen Iverson, Wally Jones, Brevin Knight, Bo Lamar, Mark Macon, Lawrence Moten, Anthony Peeler and Mitch Richmond mean anything to the misinformed? The NCAA, apparently incapable of discerning what comprises a "moment" rather than numerous playoff-pressure games or putting too much stock in input from self-serving media, probably needs to go back to focusing on vital task of shedding Indian nicknames from as many schools as possible.
In his State of the Union address, basketball buff POTUS probably should have focused on mental inequality in hoopdom rather than income inequality in his "I-have-a-phone-and-pen" kingdom. An NCAA probe similar to IRS targeting needs to be conducted stemming from the most glaring omission among impact players failing to be acknowledged. Incredibly, the shunned included Bob Pettit, who averaged 30.5 points in six outings with LSU in 1953 and 1954. Pettit is perhaps the most consistent big scorer in NCAA playoff annals with a single-digit differential between his high game (36 points) and low contest (27).
The Chris Webber Award for playoff competition brain lock goes to SN for fanciful assertion citing Tom Thacker, a nice versatile player for Cincinnati teams participating in three consecutive NCAA championship contests, as #15 on its all-time list. Thacker committed a toxic total of 13 turnovers (with only four assists) in two Final Four games in 1963 after scoring only two points in 1962 national semifinals and shooting a paltry 8-of-28 from the floor at 1961 Final Four. UCLA by itself has had at least 15 more influential tourney players than Thacker, who was unranked by ESPN and SI. The only logical answer for this absurdity is a Cincinnati connection of some sort among the voting delegation or the fishy selection is a byproduct for why SN's print edition went belly up.
Michigan State All-American Draymond Green posted back-to-back triple doubles in 2011 and 2012 but still doesn't rank among the all-time best 78 players in tourney history as the event enters its 78th year. If some of these historical facts aroused your curiosity, here is additional tournament insight that should fuel debates concerning who should be on college basketball's Mount Rushmore after excelling the most as NCAA playoff performers (minimum of six tourney games):
1. Lew Alcindor, C, UCLA
The only individual selected the Final Four's Most Outstanding Player three times averaged 25.7 points and 18.8 rebounds and shot 64.1% from the floor in six Final Four games from 1967 through 1969. Alcindor, who later changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, is the only player to couple three unanimous first-team All-American seasons with three NCAA titles. Of the 10 different individuals to average more than 23 points per game for a national champion a total of 12 times, Alcindor achieved the feat all three of his seasons with the Bruins. He is also the only player to hit better than 70% of his field-goal attempts in two NCAA title games. UCLA '67, the first varsity season for Alcindor, set the record for largest average margin of victory for a champion when the Bruins started a dazzling streak of 10 consecutive Final Four appearances. They won their 12 NCAA playoff games with Alcindor manning the middle by an average margin of 21.5 points. The three Alcindor-led UCLA teams rank among the seven NCAA champions with average margins of victory in a tournament of more than 19 points per game. He led the Bruins in scoring in 10 of 12 playoff contests. It's no wonder a perceptive scribe wrote that the acronym NCAA took on a new meaning during the Alcindor Era - "No Chance Against Alcindor."
2. Bill Walton, C, UCLA
Averaged 28.8 points and 17.8 rebounds per game at the Final Four in 1972 and 1973. His championship game-record 44 points against Memphis State in 1973 when he hit 21-of-22 field-goal attempts will probably never be duplicated. On the other hand, he had one playoff game of fewer than 10 points each of the three seasons he was national player of the year.
3. Jerry West, G-F, West Virginia
He is the only player to score at least 25 points in eight consecutive tournament games (all of which he led in scoring). West is also the only player to rank among the top five in scoring average in both the NCAA Tournament (30.6 points per game) and NBA playoffs (29.1 ppg). He was denied a championship ring with West Virginia in his only Final Four appearance in 1959 when Cal center Darral Imhoff, a player who would become an Olympic and NBA teammate, tipped in a decisive basket in the closing seconds.
4. Elvin Hayes, F, Houston
He is the only player to lead a tournament in scoring by more than 60 points. Lew Alcindor and his UCLA teammates helped hold Hayes to 10 points in 1968 national semifinals, but the Big E finished with 167 points in five games with Houston that year in finishing with the highest-ever scoring average for a Final Four player (36.8 ppg). Alcindor was runner-up with 103 points in four contests. Hayes became the only player in tournament history to collect more than 40 points and 25 rebounds in the same game when he amassed 49 points and 27 rebounds in a 94-76 decision over Loyola of Chicago in first round of 1968 Midwest Regional. He holds the records for most rebounds in a playoff series (97 in five games as a senior in 1968) and career (222 in 13 games). Hayes had five games with at least 24 rebounds, including the first three playoff games in 1968, before being held to five in a 101-69 national semifinal loss against UCLA. He also holds the record for most playoff field goals in a career with 152.
5. Gail Goodrich, G, UCLA
Despite standing at least three inches shorter than both standout opponents, the 6-1 lefthander outscored consensus second-team All-American Jeff Mullins of Duke, 27-22, in 1964 final and unanimous first-team All-American Cazzie Russell of Michigan, 42-28, in 1965 final. Goodrich, the only guard to score more than 35 points in an NCAA final, averaged 35 points per game for UCLA in 1965 tourney. He was also the Bruins' leading scorer the previous year (21.5-point average as a junior) when he became the shortest undergraduate to average more than 20 points per game for an NCAA titlist. Goodrich and Walt Hazzard (18.6 ppg) represent the only backcourt duo to be the top two scorers on the season for an NCAA championship team. Of the eight times a school successfully defended its major college championship, Goodrich is the only guard to be the team's leading scorer in back-to-back years. The Bruins won 58 of 60 games in those two championship seasons although they didn't have a regular taller than 6-7.
6. Bill Bradley, F, Princeton
The former U.S. Senator (D-N.J.) and 2000 presidential candidate holds the record for most points in a single Final Four game (58 against Wichita State in 1965 national third-place game). He scored 39 points in the second half of the consolation game. The Rhodes Scholar was the only player to have a double-digit season scoring average (30.5 points per game) for Princeton's Final Four team. Bradley also holds the career playoff record for highest free-throw percentage (minimum of 50 attempts). He was 89 of 96 from the foul line (90.6%) from 1963 through 1965. In five of his nine playoff games, Bradley made at least 10 free throws while missing no more than one attempt from the charity stripe. He made 16 of 16 free throws against St. Joseph's in first round of 1963 East Regional and 13 of 13 foul shots against Providence in 1965 East Regional final to become the only player to twice convert more than 12 free throws without a miss in playoff games. He was the game-high scorer in eight of nine tourney contests.
7. Bill Russell, C, San Francisco
Grabbed an incredible 50 rebounds for USF at 1956 Final Four (23 against SMU in semifinals and 27 against Iowa in championship game). No other player has retrieved more than 41 missed shots in two Final Four games or more than 21 in the final. Averaged 23.2 points in winning all nine NCAA tourney contests.
8. Oscar Robertson, G-F, Cincinnati
Averaged at least 29 points and 10 rebounds per game each of his three years in the tourney with the Bearcats. The Big O isn't picked higher because California restricted him to a total of 37 points in two Final Four games (1959 and 1960). He hit just nine of 32 from the floor against the Bears. Robertson, the nation's leading scorer all three of his varsity seasons with averages of more than 32 points per game, is the only team-leading scorer to twice go more than 10 points below his season scoring average when his school lost in the national semifinals or final. He is the only Final Four participant to twice register a season scoring average in excess of 30 ppg (32.6 in 1958-59 and 33.7 in 1959-60).
9. Sean Elliott, F, Arizona
Of the more than 60 different players to score at least 2,500 points and/or rank among the top 25 in career scoring average, Elliott is the only one to have a winning NCAA playoff record in his career plus post higher scoring, rebounding and field-goal shooting playoff averages than he compiled in the regular season. Elliott scored at least 17 points in all 10 of his NCAA playoff games with the Wildcats from 1986 through 1989.
10. Christian Laettner, F, Duke
Only player to start in four Final Fours became the tourney's all-time leading scorer (407 points) in helping the Blue Devils compile a 21-2 playoff mark in his career. Laettner's highest-scoring game was 31 against Kentucky in a 104-103 victory in 1992 East Regional final. Laettner capped a flawless offensive performance, hitting all 10 of his field-goal attempts and all 10 of his free throws against the Wildcats, by scoring Duke's last eight points in overtime, including a stunning 18-foot turnaround jumper at the buzzer after catching a pass from the baseline on the opposite end of the court. He also hit what probably was an even more difficult off-balance, last-second shot to give Duke a 79-78 win against Connecticut in 1990 East Regional final. Tallied fewer than 15 points in six of his first seven playoff contests.
11. Bob Pettit, F-C, Louisiana State
Of the more than 40 different players to score more than 225 points in the NCAA playoffs and/or average over 25 points per tournament game (minimum of six games), he is the only one to score more than 22 points in every postseason contest (six games with LSU in 1953 and 1954). He was perhaps the most consistent big scorer in NCAA Tournament history with a single-digit differential between his high game (36 points) and his low game (27). Pettit wasn't named to the 1953 All-Tournament team despite leading the Tigers to the Final Four and averaging 30.5 points per game in four NCAA playoff contests. He averaged the same number of points in two tourney games the next year.
12. Bobby Hurley, G, Duke
The 6-0 guard was selected Most Outstanding Player at the 1992 Final Four. He was the shortest player to earn the award since 5-11 Hal Lear helped Temple to a national third-place finish in 1956. The only Final Four Most Outstanding Player shorter than Hurley from a championship team was 5-11 Kenny Sailors of Wyoming in 1943. Hurley shot a mediocre 41% from the floor in his college career, but he was the Blue Devils' linchpin with his playmaking and intangible contributions. He holds the career record for most playoff assists (145) and three-pointers (42) although his bid to become the first player to start four consecutive NCAA finals was thwarted when California upset Duke in the second round of 1993 Midwest Regional despite Hurley's career-high 32 points. After averaging just 5.4 points per game in his first eight NCAA Tournament contests, he averaged 22.8 in his last five playoff outings.
13. Steve Alford, G, Indiana
Averaged 21.3 points in 10 NCAA Tournament games in 1984, 1986 and 1987 (8-2 record). He led the Hoosiers in scoring in seven of the contests.
14. Larry Johnson, F, UNLV
Juco jewel averaged 20.2 points and 11.5 rebounds in 11 games in 1990 and 1991 (10-1 record).
15. Miles Simon, G, Arizona
Averaged 18.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 4.3 assists in 14 games from 1995 through 1998 (11-3 record). He was game-high scorer in his last three playoff contests.
16. Patrick Ewing, C, Georgetown
The Hoyas compiled a glittering 15-3 playoff record from 1982 through 1985 during his four-year reign of terror although he never scored as many as 25 points in a tournament game.
17. David "Big Daddy" Lattin, C, Texas Western
Averaged 19.4 ppg and 10.6 rpg in eight games in 1966 and 1967 (7-1 record). He averaged 21 points and 13 rebounds in first three games of 1966 playoffs, powering champion-to-be Miners to Final Four. Playoff scoring average was five points higher than his regular-season mark.
18. Clyde Lovellette, C, Kansas
The only individual to lead the nation in scoring average in the same season he played for a team reaching the NCAA Tournament championship game. Averaging 35.3 points per game in the 1952 tourney, he was the first player to score more than 30 points in a Final Four contest and the only player to crack the 30-point plateau in the national semifinals and final in the same season.
19. Dennis Scott, G-F, Georgia Tech
Averaged 25.9 ppg and 5.9 rpg in eight playoff games from 1988 through 1990 (5-3 record). He was game-high scorer in four of five contests in 1990 when the Yellow Jackets reached the Final Four.
20. David Thompson, F, North Carolina State
The last player to score the most points in a single game of a tournament and play for a championship team (40 against Providence in 1974 East Regional semifinals). He is the only undergraduate non-center to average more than 23 ppg for a national champion.
21. Austin Carr, G, Notre Dame
After scoring only six points in his first tournament game as a sophomore (re-injured against Miami of Ohio in 1969), Carr averaged 47.2 points in his last six playoff contests to finish with a tourney record 41.3-point mark. However, the Irish won only two of the seven games.
22. David Robinson, C, Navy
Averaged 28.6 points and 12.3 rebounds in seven games from 1985 through 1987 (4-3 record). He was game-high scorer in four playoff contests, including a school-record 50 points against Michigan in his final appearance.
23. Bob Kurland, C, Oklahoma A&M
Only player to score more than half of a championship team's points in a single NCAA Tournament (total of 72 accounted for 51.8% of the Aggies' output in three playoff games in 1946).
24. Jerry Lucas, C, Ohio State
Two-time NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player averaged 22.8 ppg and 12 rpg at the Final Four in 1960 and 1961. But he was limited to nine points in both of his tourney openers when earning national player of the year awards in 1961 and 1962.
25. Sean May, F-C, North Carolina
Final Four Most Outstanding Player for 2005 champion averaged 19.9 points and 9.9 rebounds in eight NCAA Tournament games in 2004 and 2005 (7-1 record).
26. Alex Groza, C, Kentucky
Two-time Final Four Most Outstanding Player is only individual appearing at a minimum of two Final Fours (1948 and 1949) and be the game-high scorer in every Final Four contest he participated.
27. Len Chappell, F-C, Wake Forest
Averaged 27.6 ppg and 17.1 rpg in eight games in 1961 and 1962 (6-2 record). He was the Demon Deacons' leading scorer in all eight contests.
28. Bob Lanier, C, St. Bonaventure
Averaged 25.2 points and 14.2 rebounds in six games in 1968 and 1970 (4-2 record; missed 1970 Final Four after tearing a knee ligament in East Regional final).
29. Corliss Williamson, F, Arkansas
Two-time All-NCAA Tournament selection averaged 20.2 points and 7.4 rebounds while shooting 59.4% from the floor in 15 games from 1993 through 1995 (13-2 record).
30. Al Wood, F, North Carolina
Averaged 20.1 points and 8.3 rebounds in eight games from 1978 through 1981 (4-4 record). He was the Tar Heels' leading scorer in six of those playoff contests.
31. Tim Duncan, C, Wake Forest
Averaged 17.6 points, 15 rebounds and 4.5 blocked shots in 11 games from 1994 through 1997 (7-4 record).
32. Glen Rice, F, Michigan
Averaged 23.7 points and 6.3 rebounds in 13 games from 1986 through 1989 (10-3 record). As a senior, he was the Wolverines' leading scorer in all six contests during their championship run when setting a single-tourney record with 184 points.
33. Danny Manning, F, Kansas
The only player to score more than 62% of his team's points in an NCAA Tournament game (42 in the Jayhawks' 67-63 victory against Southwest Missouri State in second round of 1987 Southeast Regional). He was the game-high scorer in all six of their contests en route to the 1988 national title as a senior. Averaged 20.5 points and 7.3 rebounds in 16 playoff games (13-3 record).
34. Bob Houbregs, F-C, Washington
Averaged 27.4 ppg in seven games in 1951 and 1953 (5-2 record). He averaged nearly nine more points per contest in postseason play than during the regular season.
35. Tom Gola, F, La Salle
The only individual to earn NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player and NIT Most Valuable Player awards in his career. He averaged 22 ppg in 10 NCAA playoff games in 1954 and 1955 (9-1 record).
36. Rumeal Robinson, G, Michigan
Averaged 17.5 points and 8.5 assists in 11 games from 1988 through 1990 (9-2 record).
37. Lawrence Moten, G, Syracuse
Averaged 23.3 points and 4.7 rebounds in seven games in 1992, 1994 and 1995 (4-3 record).
38. Ray Allen, G, Connecticut
Averaged 19.5 points and 7 rebounds in 10 playoff games from 1994 through 1996 (7-3 record).
39. Isiah Thomas, G, Indiana
Averaged 19.7 points and 7.9 assists in seven games in 1980 and 1981 (6-1 record).
40. Greg "Bo" Kimble, F-G, Loyola Marymount
Averaged 29.1 points, 8.1 rebounds and 2.3 steals in seven games from 1988 through 1990 (4-3 record). Scored at least 37 points for LMU in three of his last four playoff outings.
41. Randy Foye, G, Villanova
Averaged 22.1 points and 6.4 rebounds in seven games in 2005 and 2006 (5-2 record). He scored at least 24 points in four contests en route to posting 7.5 ppg more in tourney competition than regular-season play.
42. B.J. Armstrong, G, Iowa
Averaged 19.8 points and 4.9 assists in nine games from 1987 through 1989 (6-3 record; did not play in 1986 playoffs). He averaged seven more points per contest in postseason than during the regular season.
43. Jim McDaniels, C, Western Kentucky
Averaged 29.3 points and 12.2 rebounds in six games in 1970 and 1971 (4-2 record). He was WKU's leading scorer in five of the six playoff contests.
44. Brevin Knight, G, Stanford
Averaged 20 points, 4.6 rebounds and 6.6 assists in seven games from 1995 through 1997 (4-3 record).
45. Rony Seikaly, C, Syracuse
Averaged 18.8 ppg, 8.7 rpg and 2.8 bpg in 12 games from 1985 through 1988 (8-4 record). He averaged nearly seven more points per contest in postseason play than during the regular season.
46. Jeff Mullins, F, Duke
Averaged 25 ppg and 7.9 rpg in the playoffs for two Final Four teams in 1963 and 1964 (6-2 record). He scored more than 20 points in seven of eight tourney contests.
47. Mark Macon, G, Temple
Averaged 23.3 points and 5.1 rebounds in nine games in 1988, 1990 and 1991 (6-3 record.)
48. Mike Maloy, C, Davidson
Averaged 22.3 ppg and 12.4 rpg in seven games from 1968 through 1970 (4-3 record).
49. Adrian Dantley, F, Notre Dame
Averaged 25.4 points and 8.3 rebounds in eight games from 1974 through 1976 (4-4 record). Averaged 29.8 points in his last six playoff contests.
50. Dan Issel, C, Kentucky
Averaged 29.3 ppg and 11.3 rpg in splitting six contests from 1968 through 1970. He had at least 36 points in half of the tourney games.
51. Allen Iverson, G, Georgetown
Averaged 23.9 points and 4 rebounds in seven games in 1995 and 1996 (5-2 record). He was the Hoyas' leading scorer in all seven contests.
52. Ollie Johnson, C, San Francisco
Averaged 25.8 points and 16.2 rebounds in six games from 1963 through 1965 (3-3 record). Averaged six points per game higher in playoffs than regular season.
53. Paul Hogue, C, Cincinnati
Averaged 19 points and 16 rebounds in six Final Four games from 1960 through 1962. Posted higher averages (18.4 ppg and 13.3 rpg) in 12 NCAA Tournament contests (11-1 record) than his respective career marks.
54. Jameer Nelson, G, St. Joseph's
Averaged 22.4 points, 6 rebounds, 5.4 assists and 2.3 steals in seven games in 2001, 2003 and 2004 (4-3 record). He scored at least 24 points in four of his last five playoff contests.
55. Richard Hamilton, G-F, Connecticut
Averaged 23.4 points and 4.7 rebounds in 10 games in 1998 and 1999 (9-1 record). He led UConn in scoring in nine of the 10 contests.
56. Chuck Person, F, Auburn
Averaged 20.3 points and 9 rebounds in eight games from 1984 through 1986 (5-3 record). Scored at least 20 points in six of his last seven playoff contests.
57. Don Schlundt, C, Indiana
Averaged 27 points in six games in 1953 and 1954 (5-1 record). He was the Hoosiers' leading scorer in five of the playoff contests.
58. Cazzie Russell, G, Michigan
Averaged at least 24 ppg each of his three years in the tourney (5-3 record). Leading scorer for third-place team in 1964 NCAA playoffs and 1965 national runner-up.
59. Jamal Mashburn, F, Kentucky
Averaged 21.4 points and 8 rebounds in nine games in 1992 and 1993 (7-2 record). He was the Wildcats' leading scorer in five consecutive playoff contests.
60. Les Hunter, C, Loyola of Chicago
Averaged 18.9 points and 13.3 rebounds in eight games in 1963 and 1964 (7-1 record).
61. Henry Finkel, C, Dayton
Averaged 27.8 points and 13.8 rebounds in six games in 1965 and 1966 (3-3 record). He was game-high scorer in five of the six contests.
62. Johnny Green, F-C, Michigan State
Averaged 16.2 points and 19.7 rebounds in six games in 1957 and 1959 (3-3 record). He was the leading rebounder in all four contests as a sophomore in 1957 when the Spartans reached the Final Four.
63. Anthony Peeler, G, Missouri
Averaged 24.3 points, 3.3 rebounds and 6.3 assists in six games in 1989, 1990 and 1992 (3-3 record). His scoring average was almost eight points higher in the postseason than regular season.
64. Dwight "Bo" Lamar, G, Southwestern Louisiana
Averaged 29.2 points in six Division I Tournament games in 1972 and 1973 (3-3 record). Supplied game-high point total in all six contests, including 35 plus a tourney-high 11 assists in a 112-101 victory against Marshall as the Ragin' Cajuns scored the most points in tourney history for a school in its playoff debut.
65. Greg Kelser, F, Michigan State
Leading scorer and rebounder as a senior for 1979 NCAA titlist averaged 24 ppg and 11.3 rpg in eight playoff contests (7-1 record). His scoring average was almost seven points higher in the postseason than regular season. Celebrated teammate Magic Johnson outscored and outrebounded Kelser only once in their eight postseason outings together.
66. Barry Kramer, F, New York University
Averaged 25.2 points and 9.3 rebounds in six games in 1962 and 1963 (3-3 record).
67. Nick Collison, F, Kansas
Leading scorer and rebounder as senior for 2003 NCAA Tournament runner-up (30-8 record) and second-leading scorer and rebounder for 2002 Final Four team (33-4). Averaged 16.7 points and 11.3 rebounds in 16 games (12-4 record).
68. Juan Dixon, G, Maryland
After struggling as a redshirt freshman, Dixon averaged 21.2 points in his last 13 games from 2000 through 2002. The Terrapins won 10 of the last 11 of those playoff contests when he was the leading scorer for back-to-back Final Four teams.
69. Mitch Richmond, G-F, Kansas State
J.C. recruit averaged 23.3 points, 9.2 rebounds and 4.8 assists in six games in 1987 and 1988 (4-2 record).
70. George Thompson, F, Marquette
Averaged 23.2 points and 5.7 rebounds in six games in 1968 and 1969 (4-2 record). He was the Warriors' leading scorer in five of the six playoff contests.
71. John Wallace, F, Syracuse
Averaged 20.3 points and 8.8 rebounds in 11 games from 1994 through 1996 (8-3 record). Leading scorer and rebounder for Syracuse's national runner-up as a senior was the top point producer for the Orangemen in his last eight playoff contests.
72. Jimmy Collins, G, New Mexico State
Averaged 19.9 points and 3.8 rebounds in 11 games from 1968 through 1970 (7-4 record). He at least shared the Aggies' team-high scoring output in all 11 contests.
73. Tony Price, F, Penn
Averaged 21.9 ppg and 9 rpg in eight games in 1978 and 1979 (5-3 record). He was the Quakers' leading scorer in all six contests when they finished fourth in the nation in 1979. Price's playoff scoring average was 6.5 points higher than his regular-season mark.
74. Wally Jones, G, Villanova
Two-time All-East Regional selection averaged 22.5 ppg and 5.5 rpg in six games in 1962 and 1964 (4-2 record). He scored a game-high 25 points as a sophomore in a regional final loss against Wake Forest and a game-high 34 points as a senior in a 74-62 victory over Bill Bradley-led Princeton in a third-place contest. It was the only time in Bradley's nine playoff games that he wasn't the leading scorer. Jones outscored All-American Len Chappell in the Wake Forest contest.
75. Mel Counts, C, Oregon State
Averaged 23.2 points and 14.1 rebounds in nine games from 1962 through 1964 (5-4 record), averaging 25 points and 15 rebounds in two West Regional finals.
76. Terry Dehere, G, Seton Hall
Averaged 23.2 points in nine games from 1991 through 1993 (6-3 record). He paced the Pirates in scoring in all nine outings.
77. Kenny Anderson, G, Georgia Tech
The only freshman to score more than 20 points in four playoff games averaged 27 ppg in his first four outings. Averaged 25.7 points and 5 assists in seven NCAA tourney games in 1990 and 1991 (5-2 record).
78. Acie Earl, C, Iowa
Averaged 19.3 points, 8.5 rebounds and 3.7 blocked shots in six games from 1991 through 1993 (3-3 record). Eight of his rejections came against NCAA champion-to-be Duke in 1992. He averaged more than four ppg in the playoffs than the regular season.
If a sensation such as Stephen Curry doesn't do it, then can anyone just do it? Curry (25.3 ppg for Davidson from 2006-07 through 2008-09) fell just shy of supplanting Fred Hetzel (25.7) as the Wildcats' leader in career scoring average. Hetzel also holds the school mark in rebounding average. What players for other major colleges are atop both of these career average lists?
All-time greats Rick Barry (Miami FL), Larry Bird (Indiana State), Wilt Chamberlain (Kansas), Julius Erving (Massachusetts), Elvin Hayes (Houston), Bob Lanier (St. Bonaventure), Oscar Robertson (Cincinnati) and Bill Russell (San Francisco) aren't the only players to excel in scoring and rebounding at the collegiate level. When Neal Walk, Florida's leader in both categories, passed away last fall, CollegeHoopedia.com began assembling the following list of individuals holding both the career scoring and rebounding average standards for their schools while classified as major colleges at least 30 years (minimum of two seasons):
NOTE: Fogle, Hagan and Walk are among the 10 first-time All-Americans who posted a scoring average at least 15 ppg higher than they did the previous season.
"Stepping onto a brand new path is difficult, but not more difficult than remaining in a situation which is not nurturing." - Maya Angelou
Whether schools are simply filling out a roster with a backup or chasing a pot of gold at the end of a Larry Bird rainbow, they seem to be looking around every corner and under every rock for a transfer. Bird left a potential powerhouse at Indiana but never played for the Hoosiers before becoming national player of the year with Indiana State. The majority of All-American transfers depart from universities that currently are power-league members.
How many All-Americans actually played varsity basketball for two different four-year schools? The average is about one every two years. Duke and Kansas, two of the five schools with the most All-Americans in history, had their first transfer in that category three seasons ago - Duke guard Seth Curry (Liberty) and KU center Jeff Withey (Arizona). If voters are paying attention and not buffoons-at-large, guard Nic Moore (Illinois State to Southern Methodist) is a shoo-in for A-A status this season although the Mustangs are ineligible to appear in postseason competition.
Mississippi State lost a transfer All-American several seasons ago when Ben Hansbrough departed for Notre Dame but the Bulldogs had their own player in this category earlier this century after Lawrence Roberts left Baylor. In an era when transfers have almost become an obsession for various reasons, there was a modest uptick in the ratio with seven All-Americans in this category in a six-year span from 2000 through 2005 before Louisville's Luke Hancock (George Mason) became Final Four Most Outstanding Player two years ago. SMU's Moore should join Iowa's Jarrod Uthoff (from Wisconsin) and Gonzaga's Kyle Wiltjer (Kentucky) on the following alphabetical list of All-Americans who began their collegiate career at another four-year school:
*Attended junior college between four-year school stints.
NOTE: Burgess was an Air Force veteran.
By any measure, it's more difficult for smaller athletes to score big in the Land of the Giants. The only NCAA Division I players shorter than 6-0 to score more than 2,500 career points are 5-10 Calvin Murphy (2,548 for Niagara from 1967-68 through 1969-70) and 5-10 Keydren Clark (3,058 for Saint Peter's from 2002-03 through 2005-06).
Shortening the subject matter even more, Winthrop junior playmaker Keon Johnson (5-7) averaged just over 20 points per game in three non-league road games against power conference members (North Carolina State, Georgia and Alabama). He was averaging a comparable figure overall this year after contributing 10 three-point field goals against Charleston Southern and 32 points against Radford. If Johnson maintains his Big South Conference scoring pace, he'll join the following short list of major-college players shorter than 5-8 who averaged in excess of 20 ppg in a single season:
|Diminutive Player||Ht.||DI School||Avg.||Season|
|David Holston||5-7||Chicago State||25.9||2008-09|
|Earl Boykins||5-6||Eastern Michigan||25.7||1997-98|
|David Holston||5-7||Chicago State||23.1||2007-08|
|Dick Hickox||5-6||Miami (Fla.)||22.1||1959-60|
|Marques Green||5-7||St. Bonaventure||21.3||2002-03|
|Billy Pappas||5-6||New Hampshire||21.0||1953-54|
|Shawnta Rogers||5-4||George Washington||20.7||1998-99|
|Keith "Mister" Jennings||5-7||East Tennessee State||20.1||1990-91|
"Some kids need those two years to prepare them to come to a four-year school. We should not look down on those kids." - Western Kentucky/Minnesota coach Clem Haskins, an All-American for WKU
It wasn't long ago when only a splinter group of maverick coaches were sufficiently bold to liberally dot their rosters with junior college players stereotyped as discipline problems, academic risks or simply unsuitable to go directly from high school to major college programs. "Jucoland" was labeled by misguided observers as little more than basketball rehabilitation where free-lance players enjoyed free rein to make Great Plains arenas their own personal H-O-R-S-E stables.
But a glance at NBA rosters over the years and the backgrounds of many of the nation's prominent Division I coaches suggests there probably never should have been a stigma attached to the J.C. ranks. Observers seldom hear college or NBA commentators credit a J.C. beginning, but many premier NBA players competed for a two-year school at some point in their college careers - Tiny Archibald, Mookie Blaylock, Ron Boone, Ron Brewer, Fred Brown, Jimmy Butler, Mack Calvin, Sam Cassell, Michael Cooper, Mel Daniels, Steve Francis, Artis Gilmore, Harvey Grant, Spencer Haywood, Lionel Hollins, Avery Johnson, Dennis Johnson, Gus Johnson, Larry Johnson, Vinnie Johnson, Freddie Lewis, Jim Loscutoff, Shawn Marion, Bob McAdoo, Nate McMillan, Ricky Pierce, Mitch Richmond, Dennis Rodman, Latrell Sprewell, John Starks, Jamaal Tinsley, Nick Van Exel, Ben Wallace and Gerald Wilkins.
Denny Crum, Lute Olson, Nolan Richardson and Jerry Tarkanian are former juco coaches who eventually guided teams to NCAA Tournament titles. More than 90 individuals have been named MVP/Player of the Year in an NCAA Division I conference. Ole Miss' Stephan Moody (Kilgore TX), scoring more than 20 points in 12 consecutive contests for the Rebels, and Oregon State's Gary Payton II (Salt Lake UT) could join the following list of such honorees from a power league:
|Player of Year||Pos.||School||Power League||Season(s)||Junior College(s)|
|Tony Allen||G||Oklahoma State||Big 12||2003-04||Butler County (KS) & Wabash Valley (IL)|
|Walter Berry||F-C||St. John's||Big East||1985-86||San Jacinto (TX)|
|Lester Conner||G||Oregon State||Pacific-10||1981-82||Los Medanos (CA) & Chabot (CA)|
|Jae Crowder||F||Marquette||Big East||2011-12||South Georgia Tech & Howard County (TX)|
|Ed Gray||G||California||Pacific-10||1996-97||Southern Idaho|
|Bobby Jackson||G||Minnesota||Big Ten||1996-97||Western Nebraska|
|Cliff Meely||F-C||Colorado||Big Eight||1970-71||Northeastern (CO)|
|Chris Porter||F||Auburn||Southeastern||1998-99||Chipola (FL)|
|Willie Smith||G||Missouri||Big Eight||1975-76||Seminole (OK)|
|Marcus Thornton||G||Louisiana State||Southeastern||2008-09||Kilgore (TX)|
|Jamaal Tinsley||G||Iowa State||Big 12||2000-01||Mount San Jacinto (CA)|
|Sam Williams||F||Iowa||Big Ten||1967-68||Burlington (IA)|
Fool me once, shame on thee! Fool me twice, shame on me! Questions will linger if hit-and-run coach Frank Haith remains unscathed at Tulsa after Missouri, his previous outpost, announced self-imposed sanctions stemming from improprieties during his stint with the Tigers. Leaving the scene of the crimes, Haith bolted Mizzou following the 2013-14 campaign in an unusual move at the time from a power conference member to a mid-major school. Dodging bullets like Shrillary in Bosnia, it turns out Haith packed his suitcase four days after the school received a notice of inquiry from the NCAA.
But Haith fooled folks before. Stripping away the veneer, it was difficult for the average Missouri fan to invest much time exhibiting an abundance of faith in Haith when he was hired as coach to replace Arkansas-bound Mike Anderson. Mizzou followers were dismayed after coach Matt Painter didn't leave his alma mater (Purdue) to accept the job and Haith's good-guy reputation was tainted by strip-club partying with a Ponzi schemer booster at Miami (FL), where he never had a winning ACC record in seven seasons with the Hurricanes (43-69 overall league mark).
But Haith's timing seemed impeccable at the time as he quickly turned a faith-building corner by impressing brothers Flip and Matt Pressey to stay with the Tigers rather than tagging along with Anderson, the college roommate (at Tulsa) of their NBA father (All-American Paul Pressey). Haith rewarded the gifted guards with significantly more court time and the Presseys responded accordingly.
Haith, giving his seven-man rotation an average of more than 25% additional playing time than they had their last year under Anderson, laid the groundwork to win one of the national coach of the year awards. The potent Pressey pair enjoyed almost 50% more minutes between them than they did in 2010-11. But it turns out, there were other "gifts" behind the scenes at moribund Mizzou. No wonder the rudderless institution couldn't handle self-absorbed football players boycotting in support of hunger-striking eight-year professional student from wealthy family.
Upon earning national acclaim, Haith joined the following list of five coaches who did so in their debut season for a school after serving in a similar capacity the previous year with another DI institution: Eddie Hickey (Marquette '59/after leaving St. Louis), Tom Davis (Iowa '87/Stanford), Eddie Sutton (Kentucky '86/Arkansas), Kelvin Sampson (Oklahoma '95/Washington State) and Matt Doherty (North Carolina '01/Notre Dame).
Anderson was national COY three years before Haith. But what type of hangers-on do their programs attract? A supporter who flew with the Mizzou squad on multiple road trips and received complementary tickets from players was arrested by FBI agents on drug-related charges at the team's hotel in Omaha before the distracted Tigers were upset by Norfolk State in the opening round of the 2012 NCAA playoffs. Was that debacle their version of self-imposed vacating participation?
At what cost did Mizzou enjoy some brief success under a mix of Coach Cal/Tark the Shark/Jimmy V but without the accompanying sustained winning? Haith abandoned the program, leaving the tattered Tigers in their worst shape in 50 years. Show-Me State fans may need to be shown a Louisville-recruit good time by a Ponzi schemer to temporarily get their minds off the excessive debris. Stripping things down to get to the naked truth, let Haith's role-dancing around the issue begin. He should realize that, if karma intervenes, time heals all wounds and wounds all heels.
A significant number of schools turn sheepish at the mention of recent NCAA Tournament success. Among Division I institutions making at least 10 NCAA playoff appearances, eight former Final Four participants - Holy Cross, Houston, New Mexico State, Oregon State, Princeton, San Francisco, Southern Methodist and Texas-El Paso - combined to go winless in the previous 17 years.
DePaul, Oregon State and San Francisco each have won more than 20 NCAA tourney games but collaborated for only one win in the previous 26 years (DePaul over Dayton in double overtime in 2004). Wayne Tinkle-coached Oregon State is showing signs this season that the Beavers' playoff drought could be reaching an end unless a tripping-a-referee brain-fart by Jarmal Reid, a player recruited by previous mentor Craig Robinson, costs them an at-large invitation. With B.B. King "The Thrill is Gone" lyrics in the background, Clemson and Iowa could be joining OSU in leaving the following alphabetical list of schools with at least 10 NCAA playoff appearances for which Sweet 16 is a distant memory:
School (Playoff Appearances) Recent NCAA Tournament Travails Boston College (18) winless previous eight years with only one appearance Charlotte (11) no appearance previous 10 years; winless previous 14 years Clemson (11) one victory previous 18 years DePaul (22) appeared once previous 15 years; one victory previous 26 years George Washington (11) one victory previous 21 years Georgia (12) one victory previous 19 years Holy Cross (12) winless since 1953 Houston (19) winless previous 31 years Idaho State (11) winless previous 38 years Iowa (24) two victories previous 16 years Minnesota (12) one victory previous 18 years New Mexico State (20) winless previous 22 years Old Dominion (11) one victory previous 20 years Oregon State (16) winless previous 33 years Penn (23) one victory previous 35 years Pepperdine (13) one victory previous 33 years Princeton (24) winless previous 17 years San Francisco (16) appeared once previous 33 years Santa Clara (11) no appearance previous 19 years Seattle (11) winless since 1964 Southern Methodist (11) winless previous 27 years Texas-El Paso (17) winless previous 23 years Utah State (20) one victory previous 45 years Weber State (14) winless previous 16 years Wyoming (15) one victory previous 28 years