A total of 49 NCAA Division I schools have lost to DII Alaska-Anchorage after the Seawolves defeated Rice this season, 65-54. Over the years, Alaska-Anchorage upended the following current/future members from the six power conferences - Auburn, California, Houston, Miami, Michigan, Missouri, Notre Dame, Penn State, SMU, Tennessee, Texas, TCU, Texas Tech, Wake Forest and Washington.
Michigan's 1989 NCAA Tournament champion lost on a neutral court (Utah) to Anchorage, 70-66, during the Wolverines' pre-Big Ten Conference competition slate. The Seawolves dropped six of their last 12 games that season against Chaminade, Metro State (twice), Eastern Montana, Puget Sound and Alaska-Fairbanks to finish with a 21-9 record before Michigan earned an NCAA crown maneuvering through the DI playoffs under interim coach Steve Fisher.
UAA defeated at least one major university 10 consecutive campaigns from 1985-86 through 1994-95. If sizing up small-school successes over the big boys is a hot-button topic in your college hoops analysis, CollegeHoopedia.com has assembled "one-of-a-kind" details on the striking number of "David vs. Goliath" small-college victories over major universities.
The road back to national prominence appears longer than anyone affiliated with Wake Forest probably presumed. A 72-65 defeat at home against Delaware State is not what Demon Deacons fans had in mind when former Kansas All-American Danny Manning was hired as coach. The Hornets subsequently lost non-league road games by 50 points (Iona) and 39 points (Rhode Island).
Wake's embarrassing setback, leaving a historically black mark, represented the second year in a row for an ACC member to succumb at home against a HBCU (Historically Black College or University) from the MEAC. But even bigger surprises in this category in pre-conference competition were Michigan State and Kansas State bowing at home against Texas Southern. Following are HBCU road victories on a power league member's homecourt or neutral court during regular-season play the previous 10 campaigns:
|Season||HBCU Winner on Road||Power League Member Loser||Competence of Power League School Incurring Defeat|
|2004-05||South Carolina State 60||Miami (Fla.) 50||Hurricanes won at NCAA playoff-bound Florida.|
|2004-05*||South Carolina State 63||Penn State 43||Nittany Lions lost by three points against 20-game winner Ohio State in Big Ten Tournament.|
|2005-06||Bethune-Cookman 75||South Florida 68||Bulls beat NCAA playoff-bound Georgetown in regular-season finale.|
|2006-07||Jackson State 71||Rutgers 70||Scarlet Knights twice defeated Cincinnati.|
|2007-08||Tennessee State 60||Illinois 58||Illini beat Oklahoma State and Missouri in nonconference competition before bowing to TSU.|
|2008-09||Morgan State 79||DePaul 75||Blue Demons defeated Cincinnati (18-14) in Big East Tournament.|
|2008-09||Morgan State 66||Maryland 65||Terrapins participated in NCAA Tournament.|
|2009-10||Morgan State 97||Arkansas 94||Razorbacks prevailed at Ole Miss, a 24-game winner.|
|2010-11||Texas Southern 66||Oregon State 60||Beavers beat 30-game winner Arizona.|
|2011-12||Tennessee State 64||South Carolina 63||Gamecocks upended Clemson, Alabama and Georgia.|
|2012-13||Alabama A&M 59||Mississippi State 57||Bulldogs beat Marshall Henderson-led Ole Miss and twice defeated Frank Martin-coached South Carolina.|
|2012-13||Southern (La.) 53||Texas A&M 51||Aggies won at Kentucky in inaugural SEC season and also beat NCAA playoff-bound Mizzou.|
|2013-14||Coppin State 78||Oregon State 73||Beavers bow to second HBCU school under coach Craig Robinson in last four seasons before winning at Maryland.|
|2013-14||North Carolina Central 82||North Carolina State 72||Wolfpack suffered first-ever defeat against a MEAC member.|
|2013-14||Texas Southern 90||Temple 89||Owls defeated UAB on neutral court by 21 points before the Blazers beat North Carolina, which whipped three PS Top 5 teams (Louisville, Michigan State and Kentucky).|
*Neutral court (Milwaukee).
A Thanksgiving holiday week absolutely should include the time-honored tradition of a smorgasbord mulling over a mixture of heartfelt Thank Yous while chewing on tasteless Turkeys. The list of candidates in college basketball is extensive stemming from issues and individuals your most grateful for and those of dubious distinction. Following is a healthy serving of food-for-thought Thanksgiving tributes and tongue-lashings for hoop observers to gobble-gobble up:
Cheers to vanishing breed Caucasian mid-major players (guards from BYU, Gonzaga and Wichita State) who have realistic shots at earning All-American acclaim this season if A-A voters are paying attention.
Cheers to this season's crop of entertaining freshmen although they pale in comparison to the depth exhibited by gifted group in 1979-80.
Cheers to ex-college hoopsters Antonio Gates and Jimmy Graham, who dominate as NFL tight ends even after fellow G-Man Tony Gonzalez retired, and set the stage at that rugged position for fellow ex-hoopsters Jordan Cameron and Julius Thomas.
Cheers to Canada, which should provide a north-of-the-border All-American for the fourth consecutive campaign.
Cheers to the Big East Conference, which appears to be undergoing a prompt renaissance after losing prominent members to supposedly superior leagues.
Cheers to "old-school" seniors for not abandoning college hoops early and giving the sport at least some modicum of veteran leadership.
Cheers to the Ivy League and Patriot League, which seem like the last bastions replete with textbook student-athletes. Five Ivy League institutions - Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard and Yale - can still hold their heads high despite each of them posting all-time losing records. The Ivy League deserves extra kudos for not conducting the money-grubbing gimmick otherwise known as a postseason conference tournament.
Cheers to pristine playmakers who show again and again that "pass" is not a dirty four-letter word amid the obsession with individualistic one-on-one moves by self-absorbed one-and-done scholars.
Cheers to model coaches who have their egos in check and carry their personal profiles in school media guides after, not before, the player bios.
Cheers to upstanding schools having their academic priorities in order although it is getting increasingly difficult not to accept the stereotype that universities need to be one-dimensional sports factories to assemble successful NCAA Division I basketball programs.
Cheers to entertaining little big men (players 5-10 or shorter) who inspire us with their self-confidence and mental toughness in the Land of the Giants.
Cheers to women's hoops, which has improved immeasurably while the men's game has suffered somewhat from inattention to fundamentals such as competent free-throw shooting. The team-oriented women look for passing angles to teammates "flashing" into the lane while far too many one-dimensional men seek camera angles to trigger a "flashdance" routine. Some of the self-centered men haven't quite comprehended it isn't platform diving or figure skating they're participating in and you don't secure extra points for degree of difficulty.
Cheers to junior college players and foreigners who overcome perceptions in some misguided quarters that they are the rogues of recruiting.
Cheers to the numerous promising first-year coaches assuming control of programs this season. They need to remember the fortitude exhibited by many of the biggest names in coaching who rebounded from embarrassing defeats in their first season as a head coach. An active luminary who lost multiple games to non-Division I colleges in his initial campaign before ascending to stardom as the all-time winningest coach is Duke's Mike Krzyzewski (lost to SUNY-Buffalo, Scranton and King's College in 1975-76 while coaching Army).
Jeers to Division I schools in a chaotic restructuring of conferences forsaking tradition although the quest for mega-leagues could be delusional because they're vying for television revenue that might not exist as network sports divisions operate at ample deficits.
Jeers to the striking number of power conference members who've provided a long list of players on their rosters participating in an authentic "War on Women."
Jeers to recruiting services incapable of discerning that Creighton's Doug McDermott, last year's unanimous national player of the year, should have been a Top 100 recruit coming out of high school in 2010. Ditto to announcers who infect the sport by spreading this virus without ever seeing any of the players enough to properly evaluate them.
Jeers to marquee coaches who've served up assistants as sacrificial lambs when the heat of an investigation of their program intensifies.
Jeers to anyone who incessantly castigates the majority of undergraduates declaring early for the NBA draft. Before accepting the party line that many of the players are making monumental mistakes by forgoing their remaining college eligibility, remember that more than half of the NBA's All-Pro selections in the last several decades left college early or never attended a university.
Jeers to any school for not promptly granting a recruit seeking to enroll elsewhere a release from its letter-of-intent when he wants to attend another institution for legitimate reasons.
Jeers to "Me Generation" showmen who've failed to comprehend that their respective teams don't benefit on the court from a trash-talking Harlem Globetrotter routine.
Jeers to self-absorbed players who spend more time getting tattoos and practicing macho dunks than team beneficial free throws. It all hinges on dedication. There is a reason they're supposed to be "free" throws instead of Shaq-like "foul" shots.
Jeers to high-profile coaches who take off for greener pastures despite having multiple years remaining on their contract or don sweaters and workout gear with a logo of a sneaker manufacturer instead of their school during TV games and interviews. Where is their allegiance?
Jeers to network analysts when they serve as apologists for the coaching community. When their familiar refrain echoes throughout hoopdom, they become nothing more than the big mouths that bore.
Jeers to marquee schools forsaking entertaining non-conference games with natural rivals while scheduling a half-dozen or more meaningless "rout-a-matics" at home.
Jeers to several colleges that hired tainted coaches, showing winning is still more important than dignity at some schools of lower learning. They know who they are!
Jeers to defrauding coaches who manipulate junior colleges and high schools into giving phony grades to regal recruits even before encouraging them to take lame courses in college to keep the team GPA out of danger zone. Ditto coaches who steer prize high school prospects to third parties toying with standardized test results.
Jeers to "fatherly-advice" coaches who don't mandate that any player with pro potential take multiple financial literacy courses. Did they notice in recent years that products from Alabama, Georgia Tech, Georgetown, Kentucky and Syracuse filed for bankruptcy after combining for more than half a billion dollars in salaries over their NBA careers? What contrived classes such as Afro Studies at North Carolina are taken in college anyway if a staggering 60% of NBA players file for bankruptcy five years after retirement?
Jeers to overzealous fans who seek to flog freshmen for not living up to their high school press clippings right away. The impatient onlookers need to get a grip on themselves.
Jeers to the excessive number of small schools thinking they can compete at the Division I level. There are far too many examples of dreamy-eyed small schools that believe competing with the big boys will get them national recognition, make big bucks from the NCAA Tournament and put the institutions on the map. They don't know how unrealistic that goal is until most of the hyphenated and directional schools barnstorm the country during their non-conference schedules in college basketball versions of Bataan Death Marches.
Jeers to ESPN for rejecting a charity hospital ad promoting Jesus while giving forums to individuals who either lie to NCAA investigators as a head coach, lose new coaching job due to drunkenness, become a recruiting guru for the network after shady dealings at the highest level, practice reprehensible race-baiting with the intellectually-bankrupt "Uncle Tom" bomb (Jalen Rose) or spew spin like lunatic liberal propagandist LZ Granderson.
"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind (about your size) don't matter, and those who matter don't mind." - Dr. Seuss
The good doctor knows big things can come in small packages. What San Diego's Christopher Anderson (5-7) and Richmond's Kendall Anthony (5-7) may lack in height, they compensate for with heart. Brimming with self-confidence and mental toughness, the premium point guard defy odds by excelling in a big man's game. Anderson was the Toreros' leader in assists and steals and runner-up in scoring each of his first three seasons. Anthony is the Spiders' second-leading scorer over the last four campaigns.
The nation's premier little big men are the principal reason why their clubs are credible and capable of keeping up with more highly-regarded teams in their respective conferences. If Anderson and Anthony continue their Grade A performances, they could rank among the following alphabetical list of top players in NCAA history shorter than 5-8:
|Mighty Mite||School||Ht.||Short Summary of College Career|
|Vin Albanese||Syracuse||5-7||Averaged 4.6 ppg for the Orangemen in 1955-56 and 1956-57.|
|Ken Alessi||West Virginia||5-7||The Mountaineers' second-leading scorer in 1950-51 (10.1 ppg) behind All-American Mark Workman.|
|Martin Badoian||Brown||5-7||Three-year letterman was captain as a senior in 1951-52 when he averaged 13.9 ppg.|
|Mike Belich||Pittsburgh||5-7||Led the Panthers in scoring as a senior in 1950-51 with 15.9 ppg.|
|Eric Bell||Stephen F. Austin||5-6||Ranked 30th in the nation in assists with 5.7 per game as a sophomore in 2007-08.|
|Arnold Bernard||Southwest Missouri State||5-5||J.C. transfer was an All-Mid-Continent Conference second-team selection in 1989-90. The next season, earned the same status in the Missouri Valley when he led the league in assists (7.6 apg) and steals (2.4 spg).|
|Tyrone Bogues||Wake Forest||5-3||All-ACC first-team selection as a senior averaged 8.3 ppg, 6.6 apg and 2.3 spg from 1983-84 through 1986-87.|
|Jermaine Bolden||Morgan State||5-7||Led MEAC in assists with 4.9 per game in 2008-09.|
|Jimmy Boothe||Xavier||5-7||Led the Musketeers' 1956 NIT team in scoring with 16.5 ppg.|
|Earl Boykins||Eastern Michigan||5-6||Two-time All-MAC first-team selection finished second in the nation in scoring in 1997-98 with 25.7 ppg, including 45 points vs. Western Michigan (tying school single-game record against a Division I opponent). MVP in the league's postseason tournament as a senior.|
|DeAndre Bray||Jacksonville State||5-6||Posted an OVC-leading 5.2 apg as a sophomore in 2006-07 and ranked 11th in the nation as a junior (6.4 apg). Assists average fell off to 4.9 per game as a senior.|
|Greg Brown||New Mexico||5-7||WAC Player of the Year as a senior in 1993-94 when he averaged 19.3 ppg and 4.4 apg.|
|Alex Bynum||Brown||5-7||Averaged 8.3 ppg with the Bears from 1980-81 through 1983-84.|
|Alton Byrd||Columbia||5-7||Three-time All-Ivy League first-team selection averaged 8.1 apg as a sophomore in 1976-77 en route to becoming the Lions' all-time leader in assists. Led the conference in assists as a sophomore and senior.|
|Joe Campbell||Purdue||5-7||Eventual PGA golfer averaged 7.7 ppg in three seasons of varsity basketball. He was the Boilermakers' third-leading scorer (11.9 ppg) and leading free-throw shooter (73.6%) as a senior in 1956-57.|
|Pete Carril||Lafayette||5-6||The 1952 graduate averaged 11.5 ppg in his career with the Leopards before becoming Princeton's all-time winningest coach.|
|Taurence Chisholm||Delaware||5-6||Blue Hens all-time leader in assists with 877 ranked among the top 12 in the nation all four years, including a runner-up finish as a sophomore. All-ECC second-team selection as a senior in 1987-88.|
|Jackie Crawford||Southwest Missouri State||5-7||J.C. transfer was an All-Missouri Valley Conference first-team selection and MVC Tournament MVP in 1991-92 (12 ppg, 4.5 apg, 83.5 FT%).|
|Jordon Crawford||Bowling Green||5-6||Shortest player among NCAA's top 150 scorers as a senior in 2012-13 when he averaged 15 ppg. Led Falcons in assists his last three seasons.|
|Johnny Dee||Notre Dame||5-7||Second-leading scorer (12.6 ppg) for the 15-5 Irish in 1944-45 before UND went 17-4 the next year when he averaged 5.8 ppg.|
|Jeremiah Dominguez||Portland State||5-6||Big Sky Conference MVP in 2007-08 and league tournament MVP the next season. Leading scorer for PSU's all-time two winningest DI teams those years.|
|Gene Duffy||Notre Dame||5-7||Averaged 6.6 ppg for the Irish's 1958 Mideast Regional runner-up. Contributed 6.8 ppg as team captain the next season.|
|Andy Dulik||Navy||5-7||Averaged 10.3 ppg from 1954-55 through 1956-57, finishing among the Midshipmen's top three scorers as a sophomore and junior.|
|Haywood Eaddy||Loyola Marymount||5-5||J.C. transfer led the WCC in steals (2.1 spg) in 1997-98 and in free-throw shooting (89.8%) and assists (5.6 apg) in 1998-99.|
|Don Ferguson||Iowa State||5-7||Averaged 5.1 ppg in 1948-49 and 8.9 ppg in 1949-50 with the Cyclones.|
|Chico Fletcher||Arkansas State||5-6||Three-time all-league selection led Sun Belt Conference in assists four consecutive seasons from 1996-97 through 1999-2000.|
|Robert Flynn||Dayton||5-7||Member of 1951 NIT runner-up averaged a career-high 7.8 ppg as a sophomore in 1948-49.|
|Louis Ford||Howard||5-6||Contributed 14 assists and 10 steals in a game against Maryland-Eastern Shore when he averaged a team-high 14.1 ppg in an abbreviated junior campaign in 2004-05 before averaging 9.2 ppg and team-high 4.8 apg as a senior. Led the MEAC in assists as a sophomore (5 apg) and in steals as a senior (2.6 spg).|
|Tony Freeman||Indiana/Illinois-Chicago||5-7||Honorable mention All-Mid-Continent Conference in 1988-89 after playing for the Hoosiers in 1986-87.|
|Maurice "Kojak" Fuller||Southern (La.)||5-7||Averaged 10.5 ppg and 3.7 apg as a sophomore in 1995-96 with the Jaquars.|
|Jack Goldsmith||Long Island||5-7||Led the Blackbirds in scoring in 1945-46 when they posted their 13th of 18 consecutive winning records through 1950-51.|
|Tyquawn Goode||Fairfield||5-5||Averaged 5.5 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 3.7 apg and 1.5 spg from 2001-02 through 2004-05. MAAC Defensive Player of the Year as a junior led the Stags in assists all four seasons.|
|Marques Green||St. Bonaventure||5-7||Averaged 15.5 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 5.9 apg and 2.9 spg while shooting 83.5% from the free-throw line from 2000-01 through 2003-04. He finished seventh in school all-time scoring when his career ended while ranking first in assists and steals. All-Atlantic 10 Conference first-team selection as a junior when he led league in scoring (21.3 ppg), assists (8 apg), steals (2.6 spg) and free-throw shooting (87.9%) before earning second-team acclaim as a senior. He paced the A10 in steals his last three seasons.|
|George Harrington||Harvard||5-7||All-Ivy League second-team selection as a senior in 1958-59 when he averaged a team-high 14.6 ppg after averaging 11.4 ppg the previous two seasons.|
|Jason Harrison||Mississippi||5-5||Started every game as a senior for the Rebels' 2002 NCAA playoff team after serving as their "sixth-man" most of his first three seasons. Finished his career third on Ole Miss' all-time list for three-pointers (163), third in assists (427), third in steals (172) and fifth in free-throw shooting (82%).|
|Dick Hickox||Miami (Fla.)||5-6||Averaged 19.4 ppg from 1958-59 through 1960-61, leading the Hurricanes in scoring all three seasons.|
|Jermaine "Squirt" Hicks||Weber State/Chicago State||5-6||Co-Newcomer of the Year in Mid-Continent Conference in 1997-98. Scored 40 points at Fresno State the next season when he was an all-league second-team selection.|
|David Holston||Chicago State||5-7||Scored school DI record 43 points against St. Bonaventure in 2006-07 season opener. Mid-Continent Conference second-team selection as a freshman in 2005-06 (13.4 ppg, 2.8 apg, 85.7 FT%). Ranked 10th in the nation in scoring as a junior in 2007-08 (23.1 ppg) when pacing country in three-point field goals per game (4.6). Became school's all-time leading Division I scorer in 2008-09 when averaging 25.9 ppg (4th in nation).|
|Shawn Hood||Cleveland State||5-7||Leader in assists and steals in 1983-84 and 1984-85 for the Vikings.|
|Rod Hutchings||Northern Arizona||5-7||Shot 93.3% from the free-throw line as a senior in 2000-01 to finish his four-year career at 84%. Also contributed 285 assists for the Lumberjacks.|
|Keith "Mister" Jennings||East Tennessee State||5-7||All-American and Southern Conference Player of the Year as a senior. Two-time Southern Conference Tournament MVP averaged 15.7 ppg and 7.7 apg while shooting 86.1% from the free-throw line from 1987-88 through 1990-91. Paced the league twice in free-throw shooting, three times in steals and all four seasons in assists.|
|Aaron Johnson||UAB||5-7||Averaged 5.2 ppg and team-high 4.1 apg as a freshman in 2007-08. Named an All-Conference USA third-team selection as junior in 2009-10 before becoming league MVP as a senior when he led nation with 7.7 apg.|
|Omar Johnson||Texas-San Antonio||5-7||Averaged 12.6 ppg, 4.2 apg and 1.9 spg with the Roadrunners in 2008-09 and 11.3 ppg, 2.2 rpg and 3.4 apg in 2009-10.|
|Casey Jones||Northeast Louisiana||5-7||Led the Indians in assists as a senior in 1990-91 with 5.8 per game, finishing his career with 3.8 apg.|
|Charles Katsiaficas||New Hampshire||5-7||Averaged 7.8 ppg in 1947-48 and 12.1 ppg in 1948-49 with the Wildcats.|
|Darryl "Pee Wee" Lenard||Georgia/St. Louis||5-7||Led the Midwestern City Conference in steals with 1.8 per game in 1983-84.|
|Drew Lavender||Oklahoma/Xavier||5-6||Paced the Sooners' 2004 NIT team in assists and steals before finishing team runner-up in same two categories for their 2005 NCAA playoff squad. After transferring, he led Atlantic 10 Conference in assists with 4.8 per game in 2006-07.|
|Sherry Marshall||Columbia||5-7||All-Ivy League first-team selection as a sophomore in 1947-48 when he averaged 8.2 ppg and shot 75.9% from the free-throw line. All-conference second-team pick as a freshman, junior and senior.|
|Kellen McCoy||Weber State||5-6||J.C. transfer was named Big Sky Conference Player of the Year in 2008-09 (team highs of 14.1 ppg and 1.3 spg) after averaging 8.8 ppg and 2.9 rpg the previous year.|
|Shandue McNeil||St. Bonaventure||5-7||Averaged 9.2 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 5.4 apg and 2.5 spg from 1993-94 through 1996-97. Led Atlantic 10 Conference in assists and steals as a sophomore (all-league second-team choice) and in assists as a senior.|
|Bob Michel||New Hampshire||5-6||Averaged 9.1 ppg from 1953-54 through 1955-56 with the Wildcats.|
|Wendell "Cookie" Miller||Nebraska||5-7||Averaged 6.1 ppg plus team highs of 3.6 apg and 1.9 spg with the Huskers as a freshman in 2007-08 before posting similar figures the next season as a sophomore.|
|Mark Morse||Tulsa||5-7||All-Missouri Valley Conference first-team selection in 1991-92 (14.9 ppg, 5.1 apg, 2.2 spg) and 1992-93 (17.4 ppg, 4.6 apg, 2.2 spg). J.C. recruit earned award as MVC Newcomer of the Year.|
|Johnny Nunziato||Boston University||5-5||Led the Terriers in scoring with 15.4 ppg as a senior in 1953-54 after averaging 6.6 ppg the previous season.|
|Billy Pappas||New Hampshire||5-6||Two-time All-Yankee Conference first-team selection averaged 18.9 ppg from 1952-53 through 1954-55 with the Wildcats.|
|Ronell Peters||Texas-Arlington||5-6||UTA's all-time leader in assists led the SLC in that category in 1983-84 (7 apg). He also paced the SLC in steals in 1983-84 (2 spg) and 1985-86 (2.4 spg).|
|Otto Petty||Florida State||5-7||The Seminoles' all-time leader in assists with 602 averaged 6.4 ppg for FSU's 1972 NCAA Tournament runner-up. Contributed 7.6 ppg in 1970-71 and 8.2 ppg in 1972-73.|
|Bernie Pina||Rhode Island||5-6||Letterman from 1951-52 through 1953-54 averaged a career-high 8.5 ppg as a senior for the Rams.|
|Tajuan Porter||Oregon||5-6||Career averages of 14.3 ppg, 2.3 rpg and 2.1 apg while shooting 87% from the free-throw line and 38.5% from beyond the arc with the Ducks from 2006-07 through 2009-10. Averaged 31 points in his first three games as a freshman, including 38 with 10 three-pointers against Portland State. Pacific-10 Conference Tournament MVP in 2007.|
|Calvin Rayford||Kansas||5-7||Wisconsin native averaged 2.3 apg from 1992-93 through 1995-96. Member of KU's 1993 Final Four squad.|
|Jim "Miggs" Reilly||Georgetown||5-7||Starter for 1943 NCAA Tournament runner-up.|
|Shawnta Rogers||George Washington||5-4||Leading scorer for Atlantic 10 Conference Western Division champion in 1998-99 (20.7 ppg) when he was named the league's MVP while also topping the A10 in assists (6.8 apg) and steals (3.6 spg). Three-time all-league selection twice paced the conference in free-throw shooting.|
|Chuck Rolles||Cornell||5-6||Two-time All-Ivy League first-team selection averaged 23 ppg as a senior in 1955-56 after averaging 16 ppg as a junior.|
|Jim Ross||Washington State||5-7||Averaged 9.2 ppg and 2.8 rpg from 1956-57 through 1958-59. Led the Cougars in free-throw percentage as a junior.|
|Gene Sosnick||Pacific||5-6||All-California Basketball Association first-team selection as a senior in 1952-53 when he averaged 17.6 ppg for the Tigers.|
|Javan Steadham||Delaware State||5-7||Averaged 8.1 ppg, 2.8 rpg and 2.1 apg as a sophomore in 1995-96 after contributing 4 ppg as a freshman. Averaged 9.7 ppg and team-high 4.8 apg in 1996-97 with the Hornets.|
|Frank Sylvester||Bradley||5-4||Averaged 5.9 ppg from 1968-69 through 1970-71. Led the Braves in assists as a junior and senior.|
|Raymond Taylor||Florida Atlantic/Florida International||5-6||Averaged 11.7 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 4.8 apg and 1.4 for FAU from 2009-10 through 2011-12 before transferring to FIU, where he played briefly in 2013-14.|
|Jim Thacker||Idaho||5-7||Two-time All-Big Sky Conference selection averaged team-high 16.7 ppg in 1967-68 and 14.6 ppg and 5.3 rpg in 1968-69](seasons/1968-69) with the Vandals.|
|Joe Tocci||Penn State||5-7||Averaged 7.5 ppg as Nittany Lions senior co-captain in 1949-50 after contributing 6.3 ppg the previous season.|
|Monte Towe||North Carolina State||5-7||All-ACC first-team selection as a junior averaged 11.1 ppg and 4.1 apg from 1972-73 through 1974-75.|
|Benny Valentine||Eastern Washington||5-7||All-Big Sky Conference second-team selection as a junior in 2008-09 (team highs of 15.1 ppg, 3.1 apg, 1.5 spg and 55 three-pointers). Contributed 8.2 ppg and 2.7 apg the next season.|
|Spud Webb||North Carolina State||5-7||J.C. transfer averaged 10.4 ppg and 5.7 apg with the Wolfpack in 1983-84 and 1984-85. Led the ACC in assists as a junior (6 apg).|
|Leland "Pookey" Wigington||Seton Hall||5-4||Member of the Pirates' 1989 NCAA Tournament runner-up.|
|Willie Worsley||Texas Western||5-6||Averaged 8 ppg as a sophomore for the Miners' 1966 NCAA Tournament champion. Contributed 12.2 ppg in 1966-67 before sharing backcourt with Tiny Archibald and scoring 14.4 ppg in 1967-68.|
|Rudy Zannini||San Francisco||5-7||Member of regular rotation for 1955 NCAA Tournament champion.|
For those observers who revel in recruiting rhetoric and reviews, the world stopped revolving a couple of years ago when the Harrison twins (Aaron and Andrew) announced their intention to attend Kentucky. There were all sorts of Harrison Hysteria questions regarding how the guards would impact the Wildcats and their orgasmic supporters. After struggling during the regular season in 2013-14, they helped UK advance to the NCAA Tournament championship game. In the short term, Big Blue Nation expects to return to the Final Four. Combining to average just over 18 points per game in non-conference competition, the biggest long-term question is how will the Harrisons rank among the most touted twins in college basketball history; especially with platooning reducing impact for an extended period.
Sharing headlines with another premium freshman class, the Harrisons may not crack the Top 10 of the most influential sets of twins at the same school - 1. Van Arsdale (Indiana); 2. O'Brien (Seattle); 3. Lopez (Stanford); 4. Morris (Kansas); 5. Collins (Stanford); 6. Graham (UCF/Oklahoma State); 7. Hughes (Wisconsin); 8. Holmes (VMI); 9. Hayes (Western Carolina/Georgia); 10. Williams (VMI); 11. Kerr (Colorado State); 12. Stanley (Texas A&M); 13. Nelson (Duquesne).
A new set of twins to watch in the future if they develop are Caleb and Cody Martin with North Carolina State. Following is a chronological look at them plus many of the nation's most outstanding sets of twins who played together at least one season on the same team:
- George and Francis Coakley were members of Clemson's 1939 Southern Conference Tournament championship team. It is the Tigers' only league tourney title.
- Clifford and Beauford Minx combined for 10.9 ppg for Missouri's 1944 NCAA Tournament team.
- Forwards John and Rupe Ricksen combined to average 9.7 ppg for California in 1950-51, 15.9 ppg in 1951-52 and 18.4 ppg in 1952-53. The Bears won at least 16 games each of their seasons together. They were co-captains as seniors when Cal captured the PCC South Division title and John earned first-team all-conference status.
- Bantam-sized Johnny and Eddie O'Brien were the top two scorers for Seattle (26-3 record) when it reached the 1953 NCAA Tournament in the Chieftains' first season at the major-college level. They also were infielders for the Pittsburgh Pirates the same year. Johnny O'Brien, a 5-8 unanimous first-team All-American who played center on offense, is the only player to score more than 40 points in his first NCAA Tournament game (42 in an 88-77 victory against Idaho State). Eddie contributed 21 in the same playoff contest.
- Bob (8.6 ppg in 63 games) and Bill (7.5 ppg in 40 games) Gaines played together for Furman from 1954-55 through 1956-57. Each of them averaged 10.3 ppg as a senior.
- Don and Pat Stanley combined for 17.3 ppg and 10.2 rpg in 1959-60 and 24.8 ppg and 11.7 rpg in 1960-61 for Texas A&M. They earlier played at Kilgore when it won a national J.C. title.
- Don and Doug Clemetson combined for 9.5 ppg with Stanford in 1960-61 and 11 ppg in 1961-62. The 16-6 Cardinal finished AAWU runner-up to UCLA, which wound up at the 1962 Final Four.
- Tom and Dick Van Arsdale ranked sixth and seventh on Indiana's list of all-time leading scorers when they graduated in 1965. They were among the nation's top 60 point producers as juniors in 1963-64 and combined for 76 points in a 108-102 neutral court victory against Notre Dame. The Hoosiers went 19-5 their senior campaign. They each played 12 seasons in the NBA, where they both scored more than 14,200 points.
- Lloyd and Floyd Kerr were swingmen who combined to average 25.3 ppg and 10.7 rpg for Colorado State from 1966-67 through 1968-69. Brothers Kerr each scored more than 10 points in all three NCAA playoff games when the Rams reached the Midwest Regional final their senior season (17-7 record) before becoming NBA third-round draft choices.
- Barry and Garry Nelson combined for 21.7 ppg and 16.9 rpg for Duquesne teams compiling a 59-16 record from 1968-69 through 1970-71. Garry led the team in field-goal percentage all three seasons and in rebounding as a sophomore and junior.
- In 1974, seniors Kim and Kerry Hughes carried Wisconsin to its only winning record in Big Ten Conference competition (8-6; 16-8 overall) in a 34-year span from 1963 through 1996. Kim was the Badgers' top rebounder as a sophomore. The 6-11 identical twins combined for 27 ppg and 22 rpg in their junior season and 26 ppg and 20.3 rpg in their final year. Kerry had 21 points and Kim contributed 20 in a home game versus Northwestern their senior year.
- Billy and Bobby Martin excelled for UNC-Wilmington in 1976-77 and 1977-78 after transferring from junior college. Bobby and Billy still rank among the school's all-time leaders in assists.
- Harvey and Horace Grant combined for 16.4 ppg and 11.1 rpg as sophomores for Clemson's 16-13 NIT team in 1984-85. Harvey transferred after the season to a junior college before enrolling at Oklahoma. Each of them had long NBA careers.
- Wichita State's Dwayne and Dwight Praylow combined for 16.3 ppg in 1987-88 (20-10 record) and 20.1 ppg and 8.8 rpg in 1988-89 (19-11 record).
- Victor and Vincent Lee played for Northeast Louisiana from 1986-87 through 1988-89. Their best season was 1988-89 when they were juniors (9.1 ppg and 4.7 rpg).
- Terry and Perry Dozier combined for 9.1 ppg and 3.5 rpg with South Carolina from 1986-87 through 1988-89.
- Damon and Ramon Williams combined for 28.9 ppg in their four-year VMI careers from 1986-87 through 1989-90. They were All-Southern Conference Tournament first-team selections as sophomores in 1988. Ramon was an all-league first-team pick as a junior and Damon achieved the feat as a senior. They rank among the school's all-time top scorers.
- Carl and Charles Thomas were among the top 40 scorers in Eastern Michigan history when they finished their careers following the 1990-91 campaign. They combined to average 16.9 ppg and 7.2 rpg in college before making brief stints in the NBA.
- Sean and Shawn Wightman played together with Western Michigan for three years (1990-91 through 1992-93) after transferring from Illinois State. They combined for 17.9 ppg as juniors. Sean was the nation's top three-point marksman as a junior and led the Mid-American Conference in free-throw shooting as a senior.
- Joe and Jon Ross played together with Notre Dame from 1990-91 through 1993-94. They combined for more than eight rebounds per game their last two seasons.
- Sammie and Simeon Haley combined for 12.5 ppg and 8.8 rpg with Missouri's NCAA Tournament team in 1994-95 (20-9 record) and 14.6 ppg and 9.2 rpg for an NIT team in 1995-96 (18-15 record) after transferring from junior college.
- Jim and David Jackson combined for 7.7 ppg and 3.6 rpg with Virginia Tech's NCAA Tournament team in 1995-96 (23-6 record) and 13.4 ppg and 4.8 rpg in 1996-97 (15-16).
- Bill and Bob Jenkins combined for 14.9 ppg and 12.5 rpg with Valparaiso's NCAA playoff Sweet 16 team in 1997-98 (23-10 record).
- Stanford's Jarron and Jason Collins combined for 19.3 ppg and 12.6 rpg in 1999-2000 before powering the Cardinal to a 31-3 record in 2000-01 with 27.3 ppg and 14.5 rpg.
- Jarvis and Jonas Hayes combined for 25.1 ppg as freshmen with Western Carolina in 1999-2000. They transferred to Georgia after Jarvis led the Southern Conference in scoring with 17.1 ppg. With the Bulldogs, the twins teamed for 25.8 ppg and 10.3 rpg in 2001-02 and 25 ppg and 8.8 rpg in 2002-03.
- Joey and Stevie Graham combined for 25.3 ppg and 9.5 rpg as sophomores with Central Florida in 2001-02 before transferring to Oklahoma State. They collaborated for 15.2 ppg and 6.6 rpg in 2003-04 and 24.2 ppg and 9.4 rpg in 2004-05 for two OSU NCAA playoff teams.
- Errick and Derrick Craven combined for 17.6 ppg and 7.5 rpg with Southern California in 2002-03, 17.2 ppg and 5.2 rpg in 2003-04 and 10.4 ppg and 4.5 rpg in 2004-05.
- Lodrick and Rodrick Stewart combined for 13 ppg and 4.8 rpg with Southern California in 2003-04 before Rodrick transferred to Kansas.
- Yale swingmen Caleb and Nick Holmes combined for 12.3 ppg, 5.5 rpg and 3.2 apg from 2004-05 through 2007-08.
- Travis and Chavis Holmes combined for 18.7 ppg with VMI in 2005-06, 34.2 ppg in 2006-07 and 34 ppg in 2007-08. They colloborated for 57 points in a 156-95 victory against Virginia Intermont in 2006-07 when they each ranked among the nation's top five in steals (placed 1-2 in the Big South Conference). Finished 1-2 nationally in thefts their senior season.
- Centers Brook and Robin Lopez combined for 20.2 ppg, 11.5 rpg and 4.1 bpg with Stanford as freshmen in 2006-07 and 29.4 ppg, 13.8 rpg and 4.4 bpg as sophomores in 2007-08 before they both left school early and became NBA first-round draft choices.
- La Salle's Jerrell and Terrell Williams combined for 12.3 ppg and 8.5 rpg from 2007-08 to 2009-10.
- Charles and Philip Tabet combined for 7.2 ppg and 3 rpg with South Alabama in 2008-09 before falling off to 2.8 ppg with 4.5 rpg in 2009-10.
- Philadelphia natives Markieff and Marcus Morris combined for 12 ppg and 9.2 rpg with Kansas in 2008-09, 19.5 ppg and 11.4 rpg in 2009-10 and 30.8 ppg and 15.9 rpg as All-Big 12 Conference selections in 2010-11 before they both left school early and became NBA first-round draft choices. Marcus was KU's leading scorer (17.2) and Markieff its leading rebounder (8.3) for the Jayhawks' 2011 Big 12 champion.
- David and Travis Wear combined for 6.5 ppg and 3.8 rpg as freshmen for North Carolina in 2009-10 before transferring to UCLA, where they collaborated for 18 ppg and 10.2 rpg in 2012-13 and 13.8 ppg and 7 rpg in 2013-14.
- Charlie (freshman RS in 2009-10) and Colin Reddick combined for 7.7 ppg and 6.1 rpg with Furman in 2010-11, 14.8 ppg and 8.1 rpg in 2011-12 and 22.1 ppg and 11.5 rpg in 2012-13.
Despite distractions from off-the-court conflict, the most illuminating item about Jim Boeheim ranking among the nation's all-time winningest coaches is that the bespectacled "Baron of Upstate New York" has a stunning streak of nothing but winning records in 39 seasons with Syracuse. His worst worksheet was 16-13 in 1981-82 when the NIT-bound Orange dropped four of its last five outings.
Rupp never had a losing record in 41 campaigns but did post one breakeven mark with UK (13-13 in 1966-67). When assessing this topic, keep in mind the following mentors among the all-time biggest winners each had multiple non-winning seasons: Phog Allen (four non-winning records), Jim Calhoun (six), Lefty Driesell (four), Lou Henson (eight), Hank Iba (eight), Bob Knight (two), Mike Krzyzewski (four), Lute Olson (three), Dean Smith (two) and Eddie Sutton (two).
Boeheim boasts the best record among active coaches in close contests, winning more than 60% of games decided by fewer than six points. He is atop the list of five major-college coaches in history with winning marks every year in college careers spanning more than 20 years.
Coach Seasons Closest to Non-Winning Record Jim Boeheim 39 16-13 (Syracuse in 1981-82) *Jerry Tarkanian 31 16-12 (UNLV in 1980-81) and 19-15 (Fresno State in 2001-02) John Wooden 29 14-12 (UCLA in 1959-60) Lou Carnesecca 24 17-12 (St. John's in 1987-88) Peck Hickman 23 13-12 (Louisville in 1957-58)
*Tarkanian also compiled seven more winning records in as many seasons for two community colleges in California, where he won five consecutive state championships after notching a 14-13 mark in 1961-62 at Riverside City College to begin his coaching odyssey.
Canada's recent basketball bounty has gone from Syracuse's Kris Joseph (Quebec) to Gonzaga's Kelly Olynyk (British Columbia) to three All-Americans last season in Iowa State's Melvin Ejim (Toronto), Michigan's Nik Stauskas (Ontario) and Kansas' Andrew Wiggins (Ontario). The next Canadian likely to earn All-American status and show the nation is more than a hockey hotbed probably is Gonzaga guard Kevin Pangos (Ontario).
Foreigners have been much more than bit players in a modern-day immigrant version of "Coming to America." Following is an alphabetical list of hoop princes of sorts as the first 21 All-Americans who spent most or all of their formative years in a country outside mainland U.S.:
|Foreigner||Pos.||College||Native Country||Year(s) All-American||NBA Draft Status|
|Andrew Bogut*||C||Utah||Australia||2005||1st pick overall by Milwaukee|
|Kresimir Cosic||C||Brigham Young||Yugoslavia||1972 and 1973||66th by L.A. Lakers|
|Tim Duncan*||C||Wake Forest||Virgin Islands||1995 through 1997||1st by San Antonio|
|Melvin Ejim||F||Iowa State||Toronto, Ontario||2014||undrafted|
|Patrick Ewing*||C||Georgetown||Jamaica||1982 through 1985||1st by New York|
|Adonal Foyle||C||Colgate||West Indies||1997||8th by Golden State|
|Al Horford||F-C||Florida||Dominican Republic||2007||3rd by Atlanta|
|Kris Joseph||F||Syracuse||Quebec||2012||51st by Boston|
|Dikembe Mutombo||C||Georgetown||Zaire||1991||4th by Denver|
|Eduardo Najera||F||Oklahoma||Mexico||2000||38th by Houston|
|Hakeem Olajuwon||C||Houston||Nigeria||1983 and 1984||1st by Houston|
|Kelly Olynyk||C||Gonzaga||British Columbia||2013||13th by Dallas|
|Juan "Pepe" Sanchez||G||Temple||Argentina||2000||undrafted|
|Detlef Schrempf||F||Washington||Germany||1985||8th by Dallas|
|Rony Seikaly||C||Syracuse||Greece||1988||9th by Miami|
|Doron Sheffer||G||Connecticut||Israel||1996||36th by L.A. Clippers|
|Nik Stauskas||G||Michigan||Ontario||2014||8th by Sacramento|
|Hasheem Thabeet||C||Connecticut||Tanzania||2009||2nd by Memphis|
|Mychal Thompson||F-C||Minnesota||Bahamas||1977 and 1978||1st by Portland|
|Greivis Vasquez||G||Maryland||Venezuela||2010||28th by Memphis|
|Andrew Wiggins||G-F||Kansas||Ontario||2014||1st by Cleveland|
*Named National Player of the Year.
"You don't choose your family. They are God's gift to you, as you are to them." - Desmond Tutu
At first glance to God-fearing fans, it appeared as if Grant's Army was retreating after Jerian Grant exited Notre Dame midway through last season because of academic shortcomings. But Jerian's departure was somewhat offset in the giving Grant household by the emergence of brother Jerami as Syracuse's leading rebounder. Combined with older brother Jerai, the leading rebounder for Clemson's 2011 NCAA playoff team, and father Harvey, an All-American for Oklahoma's 1988 NCAA Tournament runner-up, the "College Grants" rank among the top five hoop families in NCAA annals regarding a legacy list; especially since Jerian, the ACC's leading scorer this season, followed through on his promise to return to the Irish and if youngest son Jaelin is comparable to his brothers when he leaves high school in the near future.
Elsewhere, it seems somewhat ridiculous for a power conference school such as Indiana to offer a scholarship to an eighth-grader (Eron Gordon) several years ago. But that is before examining his family tree. His father, Eric Sr., averaged 14.1 points per game with Liberty from 1981-82 through 1983-84, leading the Flames in scoring as a senior with 18.1 ppg before the school moved up to the NCAA Division I level later in the decade. Oldest brother Eric Jr. led the Big Ten Conference in scoring as a freshman All-American in his lone season with IU in 2007-08 before moving on to the NBA. Older brother Evan was named to the Big South Conference All-Freshman team with Liberty in 2009-10 before becoming an all-league second-team selection as a sophomore prior to transferring to Arizona State and moving on again to Eric Jr.'s old stomping grounds with the Hoosiers. If Eron lives up to billing, the Gordons could become one of the most influential families in college basketball history.
Hoopdom's "Focus on the Family" will also concentrate on the Plumlees if youngest brother Marshall Plumlee finally overcomes his foot problems and improves as much as Duke siblings Mason and Miles. They could combine with their father, former Tennessee Tech frontcourter Perky, to comprise one of the all-time premier family units. Mason became the Blue Devils' go-to plumb line to keep them on the straight and narrow two seasons ago after forgoing leaving school early for the NBA.
Until we have a final reading on the Gordons and Plumlees, following are a dynamic dozen nuclear-power families. The "HoopDaddys" comprised of college players who had at least three sons also go on to compete in a significant way at a similar level include:
BARRY BARRY GOOD
1. Barry - Father Rick Barry, a first-team All-American as a senior when he led the nation in scoring, averaged 29.8 ppg and 16.5 rpg for Miami (FL) from 1962-63 through 1964-65. Son Scooter averaged 3.3 ppg for Kansas' 1988 NCAA titlist before leading the Jayhawks with 5.7 apg the next season. Son Jon, a junior college transfer, averaged 14.4 ppg, 3.6 rpg and 4.5 apg for Pacific and Georgia Tech in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Son Brent averaged 12.1 ppg, 3.7 rpg and 3.3 apg for Oregon State from 1991-92 through 1994-95. Son Drew, an All-ACC second-team selection as a senior, averaged 10.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg and 6.2 apg for Georgia Tech from 1992-93 through 1995-96, leading the ACC in assists each of his last three seasons. Son Canyon averaged 9.4 ppg and 2.7 rpg in the College of Charleston's debut season in the CAA as a redshirt freshman before being sidelined with a finger injury. As a sophomore, he was the Cougars' leading scorer midway through the 2014-15 campaign. Jon, an All-ACC third-team selection as a junior in 1991-92, and Brent, an All-Pacific-10 Conference choice as a senior, were late bloomers who went on to have productive NBA careers. Rick, Jon and Brent were NBA first-round draft choices while Drew was a second-round pick. Bruce Hale, Rick's father-in-law and a Santa Clara alumnus, coached him at Miami (FL) after playing five years in the NBA.
WALTON MOUNTAIN GANG
2. Walton - Father Bill Walton, a three-time national player of the year, averaged 20.3 ppg and 15.7 rpg for UCLA from 1971-72 through 1973-74. Son Adam lettered with LSU before incurring a rest-of-season suspension in Dale Brown's final year as coach in 1996-97 and subsequently transferring to a small college in California. Son Nate was an All-Ivy League first-team selection for Princeton as a senior in 2000-01, becoming the fourth player in school history with two seasons of at least 100 assists. Son Luke, a two-time All-Pacific-10 Conference choice, averaged 9.1 ppg, 5.1 rpg and 4.5 apg for Arizona from 1999-2000 through 2002-03. Son Chris finished among the top 15 in the Mountain West Conference in assists and rebounding as a junior in 2003-04 for San Diego State, finishing his four-year career with averages of 5.1 ppg and 3.4 rpg.
PRICE IS RIGHT CONTROL
3. Price - Father Dennis Price, an All-Big Eight Conference second-team selection as a junior, averaged 10.9 ppg for Oklahoma from 1957-58 through 1959-60. Son Mark, a three-time All-ACC first-team selection and All-American, averaged 17.4 ppg and 4 apg for Georgia Tech from 1982-83 through 1985-86. Son Matt scored 23 points in 18 games as a freshman for Appalachian State in 1984-85. Son Brent, an All-Big Eight Conference first-team selection as a senior, averaged 18 ppg and 5.8 apg for Oklahoma in 1990-91 and 1991-92 after transferring from South Carolina, where he averaged 12.6 ppg and 3.5 apg in 1987-88 and 1988-89.
GRANT'S ARMY MARCHES ON
4. Grant - Father Harvey Grant was an All-American in 1988 as the leading rebounder and second-leading scorer for Oklahoma's NCAA Tournament runner-up. Eldest son Jerai was the leading rebounder for Clemson's 2011 NCAA playoff squad. Son Jerian was Notre Dame's leader in scoring average each of the last three campaigns. Son Jerami was the leading rebounder for Syracuse's inaugural ACC club in 2013-14 before leaving school after sophomore season and becoming a second-round pick in the NBA draft by the Philadelphia 76ers.
JACOBSENS TESTAMENT TO GREAT BLESSINGS
5. Jacobsen - Father Von Jacobsen, who led San Diego State in scoring as a sophomore and junior, averaged 15.4 ppg and 4.9 rpg from 1968-69 through 1970-71. Son Adam averaged 12.6 ppg, 2.9 rpg and 3.6 apg as a three-time All-Big West Conference second-team selection with Pacific from 1993-94 through 1997-98. Son Brock averaged 8.4 ppg, 3 rpg and 2.8 apg for San Diego from 1995-96 through 1998-99. Son Casey, an All-American for Stanford as a junior before declaring early for the NBA draft, averaged 18.1 ppg and 3.8 rpg from 1999-00 through 2001-02. The trio of brothers combined for 625 three-pointers.
HIGH ON HAARLOW
6. Haarlow - Father Bill Haarlow Jr., a three-time All-Western Conference selection for the University of Chicago from 1933-34 through 1935-36, was the league's third-leading scorer as a sophomore (9.9 ppg), leading scorer as a junior (13) and second-leading scorer as a senior (12.6). He had three sons play for Princeton in the 1960s - A. William III averaged 10.8 ppg and 5 rpg in 1962-63, Bob averaged 8.5 ppg and 4.4 rpg from 1963-64 through 1965-66 (second-leading scorer for the Tigers' 1965 Final Four team as a teammate of All-American Bill Bradley) and John averaged 12.6 ppg and 7.3 rpg from 1965-66 through 1967-68 (All-Ivy League second-team selection as a junior). With Bill Jr. cited on CollegeHoopedia.com's comprehensive list of all-time All-Americans, the Haarlows might have been the initial most impactful family on the sport.
7. Paterno - Father Bill Paterno averaged 3.4 ppg with St. Francis (N.Y.) in 1948-49 and 1949-50 after scoring 18 points in nine games in 1947-48. Son Billy averaged 9.8 ppg and 4.7 rpg for Notre Dame from 1973-74 through 1976-77 under coach Digger Phelps, finishing team runner-up in scoring to All-American Adrian Dantley as a sophomore with 13.3 ppg. Son Mike averaged 3.1 ppg for Monmouth in 1987-88. Son Joe averaged 14.6 ppg and 5.1 rpg with Fordham from 1985-86 through 1988-89, leading the Rams in scoring in three seasons and finishing his career as their all-time second-leading scorer. Son Steve averaged 10.8 ppg and 3.6 rpg with Marist from 1987-88 through 1990-91, leading the Red Foxes in scoring as a junior before finishing runner-up as a senior.
TOASTING THE RAIVIOS
8. Raivio - Father Rick Raivio, a three-time All-WCAC selection who led Portland in field-goal shooting all four seasons, finished as the Pilots' all-time leading rebounder (910/9.4 rpg) while averaging 17.2 ppg before becoming a fifth-round draft choice by the Los Angeles Lakers. Son Derek, the WCC co-player of the year as a Gonzaga senior (18 ppg and nation-leading 96.1 FT%), averaged 11.5 ppg and 2.8 apg while shooting 41.6% from beyond the arc from 2003-04 through 2006-07 with Gonzaga en route to becoming the #2 all-time free-throw shooter in DI history (92.7%). Son Nik, a J.C. recruit, was an All-WCC selection as a junior with Portland in 2008-09 when he averaged 16 ppg and 6.5 rpg before heading overseas to play professionally after finishing his Pilots' career with 14.3 ppg and 5.3 rpg. Son Matt averaged 9.4 ppg, 2.8 rpg and 2.8 apg for Simon Fraser (Vancouver) in 2011-12 and 2012-13 after transferring from Santa Rosa (CA) JC.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN HIGH
9. Pollard - Father Pearl Pollard (6-9), a second-team All-Skyline Conference choice as a senior, averaged 10.5 ppg and 7.9 rpg for Utah from 1956-57 through 1958-59 with three national postseason tournament teams, leading the Utes in scoring and rebounding as a senior. Son Carl, 7-2, played briefly for BYU as a freshman in 1983-84 before redshirting in 1984-85, going on a two-year Mormon mission and transferring with a brother to Southern California, where he didn't play prior to competing with Southern Utah in 1989-90 and averaging 1.5 ppg and 2.9 rpg. Son Alan, 6-9, averaged 5.6 ppg and 5.3 rpg while splitting four seasons between Brigham Young and USC from 1984-85 through 1988-89, leading BYU in rebounding as a freshman. Son Mark, 6-11, played briefly for San Diego State in 1990-91 before also leaving at the same time with a brother. Son Neal, 7-0, redshirted at San Diego State in 1988-89 before going on a Mormon mission to New England, playing three games with the Aztecs in 1991-92 and transferring to Utah State, where he didn't play. Son Scot, 6-11, averaged 9.4 ppg, 6.6 rpg and 1.7 bpg for four Kansas teams reaching NCAA playoff regional semifinals from 1993-94 through 1996-97 before becoming an NBA first-round draft choice.
CAN'T FOIL THE DOYLES
10. Doyle - Father Dan Doyle averaged 13.7 ppg and 12.2 rpg for Belmont Abbey (N.C.) in his four-year career. He was selected by the Detroit Pistons in 5th round of 1961 NBA draft (44th pick overall) after pacing Al McGuire-coached teams in scoring average his final three seasons and rebounding as a junior and senior. Son Danny averaged 7.4 ppg and 2.1 rpg with Iona from 1989-90 through 1993-94, leading the Gaels in assists and steals as a senior. Son Joe led then-DII Sacred Heart in scoring, assists and steals as a senior in 1996-97. Son Tim played sparingly for St. John's in 2002-03 before transferring to Northwestern, where he averaged 8.1 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 3.7 apg and 1.3 spg from 2004-05 through 2006-07, leading the Wildcats in assists his last two seasons and in steals as a senior.
PLUMB LINE PLUMS
11. Plumlee - Father Millard (nicknamed "Perky") was a 6-8 backup frontcourter who averaged 3.6 ppg and 3 rpg while shooting 58% from the floor for Tennessee Tech from 1980-81 through 1982-83. Sons Miles (4.8 ppg and 4.8 rpg from 2008-09 through 2011-12), Mason (two-time All-ACC selection; 9.8 ppg, 7.7 rpg and 1.4 bpg from 2009-10 through 2012-13) and Marshall (1.2 ppg and 1.8 rpg from 2011-12 to 2014-15) all attended Duke.
HUGGY BEARS ALL
12. Huggins - Father Charlie Huggins was an All-WVIAC first-team selection for Alderson-Broaddus (W. Va.) in 1957-58 after transferring from West Virginia. Son Bob averaged 8.4 ppg and 2.8 rpg while shooting 45.9% from the floor and 79.4% from the free-throw line with West Virginia in the mid-1970s after transferring from Ohio University. Son Harry was a two-year letterman for Texas Lutheran in the late 1970s after transferring from Rice. Son Larry averaged 5.6 ppg, 2 rpg and 2.1 apg while shooting 46.3% from the floor and 79.3% from the free-throw line as a captain for Ohio State in the early 1980s.
Christensen - Father Harold, a member of Brigham Young's 1951 NIT championship team, averaged 7.8 ppg and 4.4 rpg. He was chosen by the Minneapolis Lakers in 1953 NBA draft before having three sons play for the Cougars - Craig averaged 5.1 ppg in half a season in 1981-82, Kurt averaged 4.5 ppg in 1992-93 and 1993-94, and Todd averaged 5.8 ppg in 1995-96, 1998-99 and 1999-00.
Fife - Father Dan Fife, a 10th-round draft choice by the Milwaukee Bucks before pitching briefly for the Minnesota Twins, averaged 12.6 ppg and 4.9 rpg for Michigan from 1968-69 through 1970-71. Son Dugan, overlooked during the Fab Five era, averaged 4.6 ppg and 2 rpg for Michigan from 1992-93 through 1995-96. Son Jeremy led Grand Valley State (MI) in assists in 1996-97 and 1997-98. Son Dane averaged 5.6 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 2.3 apg and 1.4 spg while shooting 38.2% from three-point range for Indiana from 1998-99 through 2001-02 before becoming a DI head coach with IUPU-Fort Wayne.
McGee - Father Anthony McGee led Long Beach State in scoring in 1975-76 with 14.8 ppg before contributing 4.5 ppg for the 49ers' NCAA playoff team the next season. Son Tony averaged 4 ppg for Eastern Washington in 1997-98 and 1998-99. Son Antoine averaged 1.4 ppg and 1.7 apg with Colorado from 2002-03 through 2005-06. Son Andre averaged 5.2 ppg and 1.8 apg while shooting 36.5% from beyond the arc with Louisville from 2005-06 through 2008-09, leading the Cardinals in three-point field-goal shooting as a junior (39.4%).
Woolridge - Father Orlando averaged 10.6 ppg and 5 rpg with Notre Dame from 1977-78 through 1980-81. Son Zach played sparingly for Princeton from 2005-06 through 2007-08 (23 points in 14 games). Son Renaldo averaged 3.2 ppg and 2.3 rpg for Tennessee from 2008-09 through 2011-12 before transferring to USC (20 points in 20 games in 2012-13). Son Royce played sparingly for Kansas in 2010-11 (nine points in 16 games) before transferring to Washington State (9.2 ppg in 2012-13 and 2013-14) and Grand Canyon (12.9 ppg in 2014-15). Orlando and Renaldo played in games where their teams defeated the nation's #1-ranked club.
Herewith is a hoop tidbit if you need one to win a bar bet: Centre College in Danville, Ky., boasts a distinction that could probably render Dickie V speechless. Centre clobbered both Kentucky (87-17 in 1909-10) and Louisville (61-7 in 1919-20) by more than 50 points, handing each perennial power its most-lopsided defeat in history. Additional major universities succumbing by staggering record-setting margins in the Dinosaur Age against obscure opponents include Bradley (bowed to Millikin), Cincinnati (Circleville), Connecticut (Wesleyan), Duke (Washington & Lee), Massachusetts (Williams), North Carolina (Lynchburg YMCA Elks), Oklahoma State (Southwestern KS), Rhode Island (Amherst), USC (L.A. Athletic Club) and Wichita State (Ottawa).
Returning from the time tunnel, Saint Joseph's, trailing 48-10 at halftime, suffered its most-lopsided loss in school annals early this season when the Hawks were humbled at Gonzaga, 94-42. Their previous worst setback was 123-79 under legendary coach Jack Ramsay against Cincinnati in 1959-60 and they had been one of six DI schools reaching the NCAA playoff national semifinals at some point in their careers to win at least 20 games in a major-college season when suffering their most-lopsided setback. After the St. Joe's blowout under all-time winningest coach Phil Martelli, the "Final Five" left standing in this category are Indiana (1993-94), Louisiana State (1969-70), St. John's (1951-52), Texas-El Paso (2000-01) and UCLA (1996-97). Kentucky was the opponent when Florida, Georgia, St. John's, Temple, Tennessee, Tennessee-Martin, Tulsa and Vanderbilt were saddled with their worst reversals.
IU's 106-56 loss against Minnesota in 1993-94 came only two years after the Big Ten Conference rivals reversed roles when the Hoosiers handed the Gophers their most-lopsided setback in history (96-50). In 1997-98, Missouri rebounded from the Tigers' most-lopsided reversal in school history (111-56 at Kansas State in Big 12 Conference opener) to defeat the Wildcats in their return engagement (89-59 at Mizzou in regular-season finale) for an incredible 85-point turnaround in margin.
Kansas' anemic 12-point second half resulted in a 72-40 rout by Kentucky early in the 2014-15 campaign. However, it didn't come close to the all-time worst loss for the Jayhawks. Dr. James Naismith founded the game of basketball but he apparently didn't boast any "inside" information gaining a competitive edge. In fact, Naismith is the only one of KU's first nine full-season head coaches to compile a career losing record (55-60 in nine campaigns from 1898-99 through 1906-07). One of the defeats was by an all-time high 40 points against Nebraska.
Naismith is among the following coaches, including a striking number of luminaries (such as Harold Anderson, Gene Bartow, Ben Carnevale, Gale Catlett, Chick Davies, Bill Foster, Marv Harshman, Doggie Julian, Bob Knight, Guy Lewis, Rick Majerus, Frank McGuire, Shelby Metcalf, Lute Olson, Johnny Orr, Vadal Peterson, Digger Phelps, Honey Russell, Norm Stewart and Dick Vitale) incurring the most-lopsided loss in history for a Division I university (info unavailable for some DI schools listed alphabetically below):
|Losing DI School||Season||Record||Coach||Victorious Opponent||Score||Margin|
|Air Force||1965-66||14-12||Bob Spear||Utah||108-57||51|
|Alabama State||1996-97||8-21||Rob Spivery||Minnesota||114-34||80|
|Appalachian State||1972-73||6-20||Press Maravich||North Carolina State||130-53||77|
|Arizona State||1955-56||10-16||Bill Kajikawa||Texas Tech||113-63||50|
|Arkansas||1973-74||10-16||Lanny Van Eman||Mississippi||117-66||51|
|Austin Peay||1981-82||6-20||Ron Bargatze||Clemson||102-53||49|
|Ball State||1946-47||9-8||Pete Phillips||Notre Dame||80-31||49|
|Ball State||1987-88||14-14||Rick Majerus||Purdue||96-47||49|
|Bethune-Cookman||1991-92||4-25||Jack "Cy" McClairen||Arkansas||128-46||82|
|Boston College||1955-56||6-18||Don Martin||Marshall||130-69||61|
|Boston University||1905-06||2-4||unavailable||Wesleyan CT||74-7||67|
|Bowling Green||1954-55||6-16||Harold Anderson||Dayton||109-38||71|
|Bradley||1913-14||10-10||Fred Brown||Millikin IL||62-10||52|
|Brigham Young||1996-97||1-25||Roger Reid||Washington||95-44||51|
|UC Irvine||1975-76||14-12||Tim Tift||UNLV||129-57||72|
|UC Santa Barbara||1966-67||10-16||Ralph Barkey||UCLA||119-75||44|
|UC Santa Barbara||1976-77||8-18||Ralph Barkey||UNLV||113-69||44|
|Cal State Fullerton||1964-65||1-25||Alex Omalev||U.S. International||91-32||59|
|Campbell||1997-98||10-17||Billy Lee||Florida International||96-43||53|
|Central Connecticut State||1995-96||13-15||Mark Adams||Connecticut||116-46||70|
|Central Michigan||1911-12||2-5||Harry Helmer||Michigan State||72-10||62|
|Cincinnati||1901-02||5-4||Henry S. Pratt||Circleville OH||84-13||71|
|Colorado||1951-52||8-16||Horace "Bebe" Lee||Kansas State||92-40||52|
|Dartmouth||1966-67||7-17||Alvin "Doggie" Julian||Princeton||116-42||74|
|Detroit||1962-63||14-12||Bob Calihan||Western Michigan||110-67||43|
|Detroit||1973-74||17-9||Dick Vitale||Southern Illinois||95-52||43|
|Duke||1912-13||11-8||J.E. Brinn||Washington & Lee VA||90-15||75|
|Duquesne||1937-38||6-11||Charles "Chick" Davies||Stanford||92-27||65|
|East Carolina||1963-64||9-15||Wendell Carr||Davidson||105-45||60|
|East Tennessee State||1996-97||7-20||Ed DeChellis||Davidson||97-47||50|
|East Tennessee State||2007-08||19-13||Murry Bartow||Syracuse||125-75||50|
|Eastern Illinois||2001-02||15-16||Rick Samuels||Oklahoma||109-50||59|
|Eastern Michigan||1957-58||1-20||James Skala||Southern Illinois||128-60||68|
|Fairfield||1949-50||5-16||Bob Noonan||Holy Cross||89-43||46|
|Florida A&M||1992-93||10-18||Willie Booker||Oklahoma||146-65||81|
|Florida Atlantic||2000-01||7-24||Sidney Green||Florida||100-42||58|
|Florida International||1989-90||7-21||Rich Walker||Ball State||105-50||55|
|Florida State||1957-58||9-16||J.K. "Bud" Kennedy||West Virginia||103-51||52|
|Fordham||1908-09||17-12||Chris Mahoney||Williams MA||77-12||65|
|George Mason||1970-71||9-17||John Linn||Randolph-Macon VA||118-36||82|
|George Washington||1961-62||9-15||Bill Reinhart||West Virginia||120-68||52|
|Georgia State||1994-95||11-17||Carter Wilson||Memphis State||124-52||72|
|Georgia Tech||1908-09||1-6||John Heisman||Georgia||78-9||69|
|Grambling State||1999-00||1-30||Larry Wright||Louisiana State||112-37||75|
|Hawaii||1965-66||0-18||Ephraim "Red" Rocha||Washington||111-52||59|
|Holy Cross||1901-02||4-5||Fred Powers||Dartmouth||78-27||51|
|Idaho State||1992-93||10-18||Herb Williams||Oklahoma||112-59||53|
|Illinois State||1958-59||24-4||James Collie||Tennessee State||131-74||57|
|Indiana State||1910-11||2-8||John P. Kimmel||Purdue||112-6||106|
|Iowa State||1989-90||10-18||Johnny Orr||Indiana||115-66||49|
|Jacksonville||1988-89||14-16||Rich Haddad||South Alabama||105-59||46|
|James Madison||1977-78||18-8||Lou Campanelli||Utah State||102-66||36|
|Kansas||1899-00||3-4||Dr. James Naismith||Nebraska||48-8||40|
|Kansas State||1945-46||4-20||Fritz Knorr||Marshall||88-42||46|
|Kentucky||1909-10||4-8||R.E. Spahr/E.R. Sweetland||Centre KY||87-17||70|
|Lamar||1963-64||19-6||Jack Martin||St. Louis||113-63||50|
|La Salle||1945-46||9-14||Joe Meehan||CCNY||94-52||42|
|Long Beach State||1990-91||11-17||Seth Greenberg||UNLV||114-63||51|
|Long Island||1998-99||10-17||Ray Martin||Florida||119-61||58|
|Louisiana State||1969-70||22-10||Press Maravich||UCLA||133-84||49|
|Louisiana Tech||1974-75||12-13||Emmett Hendricks||Tulane||88-40||48|
|Louisville||1919-20||6-5||Tuley Brucker||Centre KY||61-7||54|
|Loyola of Chicago||1916-17||1-3||unavailable||Whiting Owls||91-21||70|
|Loyola Marymount||1990-91||16-15||Jay Hillock||Oklahoma||172-112||60|
|Maine||1973-74||13-10||Tom "Skip" Chappelle||Massachusetts||108-38||70|
|Manhattan||1985-86||2-26||Thomas Sullivan||North Carolina||129-45||84|
|Marshall||1913-14||2-6||Boyd Chambers||Cincinnati Church of Christ||68-10||58|
|Maryland||1943-44||4-14||H. Burton Shipley||Army||85-22||63|
|Memphis||1927-28||10-11||Zach Curlin||Elks Club||79-30||49|
|Miami (Fla.)||1969-70||9-17||Ron Godfrey||UCLA||127-69||58|
|Miami (Ohio)||1948-49||8-13||Blue Foster||Cincinnati||94-36||58|
|Michigan||1999-00||15-14||Brian Ellerbe||Michigan State||114-63||51|
|Michigan State||1974-75||17-9||Gus Ganakas||Indiana||107-55||52|
|Middle Tennessee State||1954-55||11-16||Charles Greer||Morehead State||123-68||55|
|Milwaukee||1962-63||4-17||Russ Rebholz||Loyola of Chicago||107-47||60|
|Mississippi||1913-14||8-7||B.Y. Walton||Mississippi State||84-18||66|
|Mississippi State||1992-93||13-16||Richard Williams||Arkansas||115-58||57|
|Missouri||1997-98||17-15||Norm Stewart||Kansas State||111-56||55|
|Missouri State||1980-81||9-21||Bob Cleeland||Puget Sound WA||103-50||53|
|Morehead State||1992-93||6-21||Dick Fick||Michigan State||121-53||68|
|Murray State||1960-61||13-10||Cal Luther||St. Bonaventure||92-39||53|
|New Mexico||1954-55||7-17||Woody Clements||UCLA||106-41||65|
|New Orleans||2013-14||11-15||Mark Slessinger||Michigan State||101-48||53|
|Nicholls State||2002-03||3-25||Ricky Blanton||Texas Tech||107-35||72|
|North Carolina||1914-15||6-10||Charles Doak||Lynchburg YMCA Elks||63-20||43|
|UNC Asheville||1997-98||19-9||Eddie Biedenbach||Maryland||110-52||58|
|North Carolina A&T||1976-77||3-24||Warren Reynolds||North Carolina State||107-46||61|
|North Carolina State||1920-21||6-14||Richard Crozier||North Carolina||62-10||52|
|UNC Wilmington||1996-97||16-14||Jerry Wainwright||Villanova||87-38||49|
|North Texas||1998-99||4-22||Vic Trilli||Maryland||132-57||75|
|Northern Arizona||1991-92||7-20||Harold Merritt||Louisiana State||159-86||73|
|Northern Illinois||1966-67||8-12||Tom Jorgensen||Bradley||117-66||51|
|Northern Iowa||1906-07||5-4||R.F. Seymour||Iowa||73-16||57|
|Northwestern||1986-87||7-21||Bill E. Foster||Duke||106-55||51|
|Northwestern State||2000-01||19-13||Mike McConathy||Arkansas||115-47||68|
|Notre Dame||1971-72||6-20||Digger Phelps||Indiana||94-29||65|
|Ohio State||1955-56||16-6||Floyd Stahl||Illinois||111-64||47|
|Oklahoma||1916-17||13-8||Bennie Owen||Oklahoma A&M||58-11||47|
|Oklahoma State||1919-20||1-12||James Pixlee||Southwestern KS||53-9||44|
|Oral Roberts||1992-93||5-22||Ken Trickey||Kansas||140-72||68|
|Oregon State||1996-97||7-20||Eddie Payne||Arizona||99-48||51|
|Oregon State||2009-10||14-18||Craig Robinson||Seattle||99-48||51|
|Penn State||1985-86||12-17||Bruce Parkhill||Navy||103-50||53|
|Pepperdine||1965-66||2-24||Robert "Duck" Dowell||Iowa||111-50||61|
|Pittsburgh||1964-65||7-16||Bob Timmons||Wichita State||109-58||51|
|Portland State||1964-65||8-18||Loyal "Sharkey" Nelson||Montana State||97-43||54|
|Prairie View||1995-96||4-23||Elwood Plummer||Tulsa||141-50||91|
|Providence||1954-55||9-12||Vin Cuddy||Holy Cross||101-47||54|
|Rhode Island||1916-17||2-6||Jim Baldwin||Amherst MA||65-5||60|
|Rice||1971-72||6-20||Don Knodel||North Carolina||127-69||58|
|Robert Morris||1996-97||4-23||Jim Boone||Arizona||118-54||64|
|St. Francis (N.Y.)||1993-94||1-26||Ron Ganulin||Providence||108-48||60|
|St. John's||1951-52||25-6||Frank McGuire||Kentucky||81-40||41|
|Saint Joseph's||2014-15||TBD||Phil Martelli||Gonzaga||94-42||52|
|Saint Louis||1945-46||13-11||John Flanigan||Oklahoma A&M||86-33||53|
|Saint Mary's||2000-01||2-27||Dave Bollwinkel||Arizona||101-41||60|
|Saint Peter's||1941-42||5-11||Morgan Sweetman||St. Francis (N.Y.)||85-29||56|
|Sam Houston State||1991-92||2-25||Jerry Hopkins||Lamar||126-57||69|
|San Diego State||1998-99||4-22||Fred Trenkle||Utah||86-38||48|
|San Jose State||1970-71||2-24||Danny Glines||New Mexico State||114-55||59|
|Santa Clara||2001-02||13-15||Dick Davey||Ohio State||88-41||47|
|Seton Hall||1957-58||7-19||John "Honey" Russell||Cincinnati||118-54||64|
|South Alabama||1994-95||9-18||Ronnie Arrow||Southern Utah||140-72||68|
|South Carolina||1929-30||6-10||A.W. "Rock" Norman||Furman||70-11||59|
|South Florida||1987-88||6-22||Bobby Paschal||Syracuse||111-65||46|
|Southeastern Louisiana||1998-99||6-20||John Lyles||Auburn||114-60||54|
|Southern California||1913-14||5-7||unavailable||L.A. Athletic Club||77-14||63|
|Southern Illinois||1980-81||7-20||Joe Gottfried||West Texas State||97-57||40|
|Southern Methodist||1980-81||7-20||Dave Bliss||Arkansas||92-50||42|
|Southern Mississippi||2001-02||10-17||James Green||Cincinnati||89-37||52|
|Southern Utah||1988-89||10-18||Neil Roberts||Oklahoma||132-64||68|
|Tennessee Tech||1962-63||16-8||John Oldham||Loyola of Chicago||111-42||69|
|Texas A&M||1971-72||16-10||Shelby Metcalf||UCLA||117-53||64|
|Texas-Arlington||1993-94||7-22||Eddie McCarter||Iowa State||119-55||64|
|Texas Christian||1977-78||4-22||Tim Somerville||Clemson||125-62||63|
|Texas-El Paso||2000-01||23-9||Jason Rabedeaux||Fresno State||108-56||52|
|Texas-San Antonio||1996-97||9-17||Tim Carter||Texas Tech||99-51||48|
|Texas Southern||1993-94||19-11||Robert Moreland||Arkansas||129-63||66|
|Texas Tech||2007-08||16-15||Pat Knight||Kansas||109-51||58|
|Toledo||1932-33||3-13||Dave Connelly||Ohio State||64-10||54|
|UCF||1988-89||7-20||Phil Carter||Florida State||133-79||54|
|U.S. International||1989-90||12-16||Gary Zarecky||Oklahoma||173-101||72|
|Utah||1934-35||10-9||Vadal Peterson||Denver AC||60-16||44|
|Utah State||1909-10||3-7||Clayton Teetzel||Utah||69-15||54|
|Utah State||1925-26||13-5||Lowell Romney||Southern California||82-28||54|
|Virginia Commonwealth||1976-77||13-13||Dana Kirk||Auburn||109-59||50|
|Virginia Tech||1952-53||4-19||Gerald "Red" Laird||Marshall||113-57||56|
|Wake Forest||1913-14||10-7||J.R. Crozier||Virginia||80-16||64|
|Washington State||1964-65||9-17||Marv Harshman||UCLA||93-41||52|
|Washington State||2004-05||12-16||Dick Bennett||Oklahoma State||81-29||52|
|Weber State||1988-89||17-11||Denny Huston||Akron||92-50||42|
|West Virginia||1978-79||16-12||Gale Catlett||Louisville||106-60||46|
|Western Carolina||1998-99||8-21||Phil Hopkins||Maryland||113-46||67|
|Western Kentucky||1990-91||14-14||Ralph Willard||Georgia||124-65||59|
|Western Michigan||1988-89||12-16||Vern Payne||Michigan||107-60||47|
|Wichita State||1912-13||1-11||E.V. Long||Ottawa KS||80-8||72|
|William & Mary||1918-19||3-6||V.M. Geddy||Roanoke VA||87-6||81|
|Wright State||1976-77||11-16||Marcus Jackson||Cincinnati||120-52||68|
|Youngstown State||1941-42||9-12||Dom Rosselli||Toledo||88-32||56|
Has there ever been a coach in an elite "Power 6" league with a consistent track record for dramatic player development anywhere close to duplicating Wisconsin's Bo Ryan? A UW player became an All-Big Ten Conference selection each of the previous five campaigns and seven of last eight after previously averaging fewer than three points per game as a freshman. This year, point guard Traevon Jackson (1.1 in 2011-12) could join the following chronological list of Badgers becoming an all-league choice under Ryan after averaging fewer than 3 ppg as a freshman (all but one of them fewer than 2 ppg):
G Kammron Taylor (1.2 ppg in 2003-04 to 13.3 ppg in 2006-07)
G Michael Flowers (1.2 ppg in 2004-05 to 9.6 ppg in 2007-08)
G Trevon Hughes (1.4 ppg in 2006-07 to 15.3 ppg in 2009-10)
F Jon Leuer (2.9 ppg in 2007-08 to 18.3 ppg in 2010-11)
G Jordan Taylor (1.6 ppg in 2008-09 to 18.1 ppg in 2010-11 and 14.8 ppg in 2011-12)
C Jared Berggren (1.1 ppg in 2009-10 to 11 ppg in 2012-13)
C Frank Kaminsky (1.8 ppg in 2011-12 to 14.1 ppg in 2013-14 and 18.4 ppg in 2014-15)
"Saving" his program time and time again by turning scars into stars, it is no wonder Wisconsin won 50 consecutive contests under "General" Ryan in one stretch when the Badgers were ahead or tied with five minutes remaining in regulation. They never finished lower than fourth place in the Big Ten standings in his first 13 years at their helm. Kaminsky scored a school-record 43 points early in the 2013-14 campaign en route to pacing the team in scoring average. It is time to right "Ryan's Wrong." There is no satisfactory explanation why Ryan never has been named national coach of the year.
Regal recruit Jahlil Okafor, designated preseason national player of the year in some quarters, hit 9 of 10 field-goal attempts for Duke as the Blue Devils hosed the Presbyterian Blue Hose, 113-44, in their season opener. But Okafor (19 points/6 rebounds) still needs to compete against quality competition for observers to try to gauge his potential. Will Okafor's first-season impact be more like Anthony Davis, the national player of the year two seasons ago when he sparked Kentucky to an NCAA title, or Andre Drummond, who averaged a modest 10 ppg and 7.6 rpg for Connecticut as the disappointing Huskies finished out of the 2011-12 final Top 25 polls?
Actually, textbook centers are becoming a rare breed. Time will tell if Davis or Okafor eventually deserve to be included among the premier pivotmen in college basketball history. By almost any measure, centers in the last 40 years don't seem to be anywhere close to duplicating feats that luminaries Lew Alcindor, Artis Gilmore, Bob Lanier, Jerry Lucas, Bill Russell and Bill Walton achieved in their initial varsity campaigns.
Similar to Navy's David Robinson in 1983-84, Drummond was scoreless in his season debut three years ago against Columbia. In a forgettable debut, Wake Forest's Tim Duncan was also scoreless in a season-opening loss to NCAA Division II Alaska-Anchorage in 1993-94 before rebounding with a 12-point, 12-rebound performance in his next outing against Hawaii.
Alcindor (77: 56 points/21 rebounds) and Chamberlain (83: 52 points/31 rebounds) each totaled more points and rebounds in their college game debut than Drummond, Duncan, Patrick Ewing, Nerlens Noel, Hakeem Olajuwon, Shaquille O'Neal, Robinson and Ralph Sampson amassed collectively. Following is a look at how many of the premier centers in history fared in their varsity debut against a major college and a summary of their first season of NCAA Division I competition:
|Celebrated Center||School||First Varsity Season||Debut Game||PPG||RPG||W-L Mark|
|Nerlens Noel||Kentucky||2012-13||4 points/9 rebounds||10.5||9.5||21-12|
|Anthony Davis||Kentucky||2011-12||23 points/10 rebounds||14.2||10.4||38-2|
|Greg Oden||Ohio State||2006-07||14 points/10 rebounds||15.7||9.6||35-4|
|Tim Duncan||Wake Forest||1993-94||12 points/12 rebounds||9.8||9.6||21-12|
|Shaquille O'Neal||Louisiana State||1989-90||10 points/5 rebounds||13.9||12.0||23-9|
|Alonzo Mourning||Georgetown||1988-89||10 points/10 rebounds||13.1||7.3||29-5|
|David Robinson||Navy||1983-84||scoreless/1 rebound||7.6||4.0||24-8|
|Hakeem Olajuwon||Houston||1981-82||2 points/0 rebounds||8.3||6.5||25-8|
|Patrick Ewing||Georgetown||1981-82||7 points/4 rebounds||12.7||8.5||30-7|
|Ralph Sampson||Virginia||1979-80||4 points/6 rebounds||14.9||11.2||24-10|
|*Bill Walton||UCLA||1971-72||19 points/14 rebounds||21.1||15.5||29-1|
|**Artis Gilmore||Jacksonville||1969-70||35 points/18 rebounds||26.5||22.2||17-7|
|*Bob Lanier||St. Bonaventure||1967-68||23 points/17 rebounds||26.2||15.6||23-2|
|*Lew Alcindor||UCLA||1966-67||56 points/21 rebounds||29.0||15.5||30-0|
|*Jerry Lucas||Ohio State||1959-60||16 points/28 rebounds||26.3||16.3||25-3|
|*Wilt Chamberlain||Kansas||1956-57||52 points/31 rebounds||29.6||18.9||24-3|
|*Bill Russell||San Francisco||1953-54||16 points/17 rebounds||19.9||19.2||14-7|
**Junior classification after attending junior college.
"I claim to be a simple individual liable to err like any other fellow mortal. I own, however, that I have humility enough to confess my errors and to retrace my steps." - Mahatma Gandhi
An exhibition game setback for Memphis against local Division II institution Christian Brothers was a generous dose of humility for the Tigers and coach Josh Pastner. But they can take some comfort from the fact that the inexplicable defeat won't formally count against their record. Tom Izzo-coached Michigan State (Grand Valley State MI prior to start of 2007-08 campaign) and Jim Boeheim-coached Syracuse (LeMoyne NY in 2009-10) each incurred the ignominy of succumbing against a small-school opponent in an exhibition contest before reaching an NCAA playoff regional semifinal by season's end. In 2010-11, Xavier participated in the NCAA tourney after bowing to Bellarmine KY. Actually, Pastner is in good company among mentors exposed to the humility described in Gandhi's quote.
Many of the biggest names in college coaching history had to recover from embarrassing defeats that aren't cited on their otherwise mostly-regal resumes. For instance, there are numerous mentors who captured NCAA championships despite losing to a small school at some point in their careers - Phog Allen (lost to Emporia State), Jim Calhoun (American International, Assumption, Brandeis, Bridgeport, Florida Southern, Merrimack, St. Anselm, Stonehill and Tufts), John Calipari (Florida Tech and Lowell), Denny Crum (Chaminade), Jim Harrick (Abilene Christian), Don Haskins (Louisiana College), Hank Iba (Abilene Christian and Westminster), George Ireland (Regis), Doggie Julian (Amherst, Colby, St. Anselm, St. Michael's, Springfield, Tampa and Williams), Mike Krzyzewski (King's, Scranton and SUNY-Buffalo), Rollie Massimino (New Orleans and Philadelphia Textile), Al McGuire (Evansville and Washington MO), Rick Pitino (Adelphi), Nolan Richardson Jr. (American-Puerto Rico), Norman Sloan (Presbyterian), John Thompson Jr. (Assumption, Gannon, Randolph-Macon and Roanoke) and Jim Valvano (Armstrong State, Bloomsburg, Gannon, Tampa and Wilkes).
Another power conference reversal in exhibition play this season was Texas Tech against Texas A&M-Commerce. In 2003-04, CBC defeated a DI university (Troy State) during the regular season. Kansas' Bill Self lost 18 consecutive contests bridging the 1993-94 and 1994-95 seasons with Oral Roberts but at least he didn't lose a decision to a non-Division I institution. The following alphabetical list "retraces steps" of prominent coaches like former national COY Frank Haith this season who lost games to non-Division I colleges during their major-college careers:
- Forrest "Phog" Allen - Lost to Emporia State (Kan.) in 1947-48 while coaching Kansas.
- Forrest "Forddy" Anderson - Lost to Emporia State (Kan.) in 1947-48 while coaching Drake. Lost to Northern Michigan in 1960-61 while coaching Michigan State.
- John Bach - Lost to Adelphi (N.Y.) in 1958-59 while coaching Fordham.
- Kevin Bannon - Lost to Grand Canyon (Ariz.) at Hawaii in 1991-92 while coaching Rider.
- Rick Barnes - Lost at Chaminade (Hawaii) in 1991-92 while coaching Providence and in 2012-13 while coaching Texas.
- J.D. Barnett - Lost to Louisiana Christian in 1995-96 while coaching Northwestern State (La.).
- Jim Baron - Lost to Walsh (Ohio) in 1992-93 while coaching St. Bonaventure. Lost to Lubbock Christian (Tex.) at Las Vegas in 2003-04 while coaching Rhode Island. Lost to Metro State (Colo.) in 2013-14 while coaching Canisius.
- Gene Bartow - Lost at American-Puerto Rico in 1994-95 while coaching UAB.
- Dick Bennett - Lost to Wisconsin-Eau Claire in 1985-86 and 1986-87 while coaching Wisconsin-Green Bay.
- Eddie Biedenbach - Lost to Montreat (N.C.) in 2001-02 and Lenoir-Rhyne (N.C.) in 2005-06 while coaching UNC Asheville.
- Tom Blackburn - Lost to Anderson (Ind.) in 1947-48, Ohio Wesleyan in 1948-49, Muskingum (Ohio) in 1949-50 and Wittenberg (Ohio) in 1962-63 while coaching Dayton.
- Bill Blair - Lost to Morris Harvey (W. Va.) and twice to Roanoke (Va.) in 1972-73 and to West Virginia Tech and Shepherd (W.Va.) in 1973-74 while coaching VMI.
- George Blaney - Lost to Springfield (Mass.) in 1969-70 and 1971-72 while coaching Dartmouth. Lost to Assumption (Mass.) in 1973-74 and 1985-86 and at Florida Southern in 1979-80 while coaching Holy Cross.
- Dave Bliss - Lost to Rollins (Fla.) and Texas Wesleyan in 1980-81 and at Chaminade (Hawaii) in 1984-85 while coaching SMU. Lost to Eastern New Mexico in 1991-92 while coaching New Mexico.
- Bob Boyd - Lost to Tennessee-Martin in 1981-82 and Delta State (Miss.) in 1985-86 while coaching Mississippi State.
- Jim Brandenburg - Lost to South Dakota in 1979-80 while coaching Wyoming.
- Byron "Buster" Brannon - Lost to Sam Houston State (Tex.) twice in 1938-39 and once in 1940-41 while coaching Rice. Lost to East Texas State, at Hamline (Minn.) and twice to Austin (Tex.) College in 1948-49, Midwestern State (Tex.) in 1953-54 and Kentucky Wesleyan in 1955-56 while coaching Texas Christian.
- Tom Brennan - Lost to St. Michael's (Vt.) in 1986-87, 1987-88 and 1988-89 while coaching Vermont.
- John Bunn - Lost to Eastern New Mexico (six times from 1957-58 through 1962-63), Fort Hays (Kan.) State (five times from 1957-58 through 1962-63), New Mexico Highlands in 1960-61, twice to Panhandle State (Okla.) in 1957-58, St. Cloud State (Minn.) in 1962-63, Southwestern Oklahoma State in 1956-57, Wayne State (Neb.) in 1962-63 and Western New Mexico in 1961-62 while coaching Northern Colorado.
- Jim Calhoun - Lost to Assumption (Mass.) in 1972-73; to Tufts (Mass.), American International (Mass.), Bridgeport (Conn.) and at Assumption (Mass.) in 1973-74; Assumption (Mass.) and Brandeis (Mass.) in 1974-75; Merrimack (Mass.) in 1975-76; Bridgeport (Conn.), Merrimack (Mass.), St. Anselm (Vt.) and Stonehill (Mass.) in 1976-77; American International (Mass.) and Assumption (Mass.) in 1978-79 and Florida Southern in 1980-81 while coaching Northeastern.
- John Calipari - Lost at Florida Tech in 1988-89 and to Lowell (Mass.) in 1989-90 while coaching Massachusetts.
- Lou Campanelli - Lost to West Virginia Tech in 1980-81 while coaching James Madison. Lost to Alaska-Anchorage in 1990-91 on neutral court while coaching California.
- Howard Cann - Lost to Panzer in 1938-39 and Brandeis (Mass.) in 1956-57 while coaching NYU.
- P.J. Carlesimo - Lost at Bentley (Mass.), to Southern Connecticut on a neutral court, to C.W. Post (N.Y.), at Springfield (Mass.) and at Bridgeport (Conn.) in 1976-77; to New Haven (Conn.) and at C.W. Post (N.Y.) in 1977-78, and at Staten Island (N.Y.) and U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (N.Y.) in 1981-82 while coaching Wagner.
- Henry "Doc" Carlson - Lost to Bethany (W. Va.) in 1948-49, Geneva (Pa.) in 1941-42, 1950-51 and 1952-53 and Carnegie Tech (Pa.) three times in four seasons from 1938-39 through 1941-42 plus five times in six seasons from 1949-50 through 1954-55 while coaching Pittsburgh.
- Pete Carril - Lost to East Stroudsburg (Pa.) in 1966-67 while coaching Lehigh.
- Don Casey - Lost to Philadelphia Textile in 1975-76 while coaching Temple.
- Joe Cipriano - Lost at Hawaii-Hilo in 1976-77 while coaching Nebraska.
- Gary Colson - Lost to John Brown (Ark.) in 1972-73 and Moorhead (Minn.) State in 1973-74 while coaching Pepperdine. Lost to Alaska-Anchorage in 1983-84 while coaching New Mexico.
- Bobby Cremins - Lost to Lenoir-Rhyne (N.C.) in 1975-76 and twice in 1977-78 while coaching Appalachian State.
- Denny Crum - Lost at Chaminade (Hawaii) in 1983-84 and 1984-85 while coaching Louisville.
- Charles "Chick" Davies - Lost to Waynesburg (Pa.) in 1937-38 and 1938-39 and to Wooster (Ohio) in 1937-38 while coaching Duquesne.
- Tom Davis - Lost to Moravian (Pa.) in 1973-74 and at Albright (Pa.) in 1975-76 while coaching Lafayette. Lost to Chico State (Calif.) in 1982-83 while coaching Stanford. Lost to UC Riverside in 1988-89 while coaching Iowa.
- Johnny Dee - Lost to Jacksonville (Ala.) State in 1952-53 while coaching Alabama.
- Don DeVoe - Lost to Johns Hopkins (Md.) in 2002-03 while coaching Navy.
- Ed Diddle - Lost to Kentucky Wesleyan in 1955-56, David Lipscomb (Tenn.) in 1962-63 and LeMoyne (N.Y.) in 1963-64 while coaching Western Kentucky.
- Bob Donewald - Lost to Cal State Bakersfield in 1980-81 while coaching Illinois State.
- Homer Drew - Lost to Bethel (Ind.) in 1997-98 while coaching Valparaiso.
- Charles "Lefty" Driesell - Lost to Catawba (N.C.) twice in 1960-61 and to Carson-Newman (Tenn.) and Erskine (S.C.) in 1961-62 while coaching Davidson.
- Hugh Durham - Lost at Puerto Rico-Mayaguez in 2001-02 while coaching Jacksonville.
- Bobby Dye - Lost at Chapman (Calif.) in 1975-76 while coaching Cal State Fullerton. Lost to Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) in 1985-86 while coaching Boise State.
- Norm Ellenberger - Lost at Hawaii-Hilo in 1976-77 while coaching New Mexico.
- Fred Enke - Lost to Regis (Colo.) in 1959-60 while coaching Arizona.
- Larry Eustachy - Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1991-92 and to Elizabeth City State (N.C.) in 1992-93 while coaching Idaho.
- Paul Evans - Lost at Rollins (Fla.) in 1981-82 while coaching Navy.
- Bill C. Foster - Lost at University of the South (Tenn.) and Roanoke (Va.) in 1970-71 and to Valdosta (Ga.) State in 1971-72 while coaching UNC Charlotte. Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1987-88 while coaching Miami (Fla.).
- Bill E. Foster - Lost at Albright (Pa.) in 1964-65 while coaching Rutgers. Lost at Chaminade (Hawaii) in 1981-82 while coaching South Carolina. Lost to Rollins (Fla.) in 1986-87 and 1987-88 while coaching Northwestern.
- Harold "Bud" Foster - Lost to South Dakota in 1956-57 while coaching Wisconsin.
- Bill Frieder - Lost to Alaska-Anchorage on a neutral court in 1988-89 while coaching Michigan.
- Jack Friel - Lost at Centenary (La.) and to Spring Hill (Ala.) in 1955-56 and Whitworth (Wash.) five times from 1951-52 through 1956-57 while coaching Washington State.
- John "Taps" Gallagher - Lost to Wayne State (Mich.) in 1951-52 and Gannon (Pa.) and Rochester (N.Y.) in 1964-65 while coaching Niagara.
- Dave Gavitt - Lost at Springfield (Mass.) in 1967-68 while coaching Dartmouth.
- Boyd Grant - Lost to Wisconsin-Parkside in 1978-79 while coaching Fresno State.
- Murray Greason - Lost to Rio Grande (Ohio) in 1953-54 while coaching Wake Forest.
- Ron Greene - Lost to Spring Hill (Ala.) in 1966-67 while coaching Loyola of New Orleans. Lost to Tennessee Wesleyan and Mississippi College in 1978-79, Arkansas College in 1981-82, West Virginia Tech in 1982-83 and Lincoln Memorial (Tenn.) in 1984-85 while coaching Murray State. Lost to Rollins (Fla.) in 1986-87 while coaching Indiana State.
- Tim Grgurich - Lost to Morris Harvey (W. Va.) in 1977-78 while coaching Pittsburgh.
- Frank Haith - Lost to Southeastern Oklahoma State in 2014-15 while coaching Tulsa.
- Leonard Hamilton - Lost at BYU-Hawaii in 1987-88 while coaching Oklahoma State.
- Jim Harrick - Lost at Abilene (Tex.) Christian in 1984-85 while coaching Pepperdine.
- Dick Harter - Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1978-79 while coaching Penn State.
- Jack Hartman - Lost to Kentucky Wesleyan four times in three years from 1967-68 through 1969-70 while coaching Southern Illinois.
- Don Haskins - Lost to Louisiana College in 1977-78 while coaching Texas-El Paso.
- George "Jud" Heathcote - Lost at Puget Sound (Wash.) in 1972-73, 1973-74 and 1975-76 and at Southern Colorado in 1972-73 while coaching Montana.
- Bill Henderson - Lost to Howard Payne (Tex.) in 1955-56 while coaching Baylor.
- Lou Henson - Lost to Howard Payne (Tex.) twice, Midwestern State (Tex.), Eastern New Mexico and Abilene Christian (Tex.) in 1962-63; Abilene Christian and Midwestern State in 1964-65, and Pittsburg State (Kan.) in 1965-66 while coaching Hardin-Simmons. Lost at Eastern New Mexico in 1966-67, to Angelo State (Tex.) in 1971-72, at Alaska-Fairbanks in 1998-99 and at BYU-Hawaii in 2001-02 while coaching New Mexico State.
- Eddie Hickey - Lost to South Dakota in 1938-39 and 1939-40 while coaching Creighton.
- Bernard "Peck" Hickman - Lost to Georgetown College (Ky.) in 1958-59 while coaching Louisville.
- Paul "Tony" Hinkle - Lost to Wabash (Ind.) in 1959-60, twice in 1960-61 and in 1966-67 while coaching Butler.
- Terry Holland - Lost at Chaminade (Hawaii) in 1982-83 while coaching Virginia.
- Ben Howland - Lost to Concordia (Calif.) in 1994-95 while coaching Northern Arizona.
- Henry "Hank" Iba - Lost to Westminster (Mo.) in 1934-35 and 1936-37 and Abilene (Tex.) Christian in 1965-66 while coaching Oklahoma A&M/Oklahoma State.
- Moe Iba - Lost to Union (Tenn.) in 1968-69 and 1969-70 while coaching Memphis State.
- George Ireland - Lost to Regis (Colo.) in 1954-55, North Dakota State in 1966-67, Illinois Wesleyan in 1970-71 and Missouri Western in 1972-73 while coaching Loyola of Chicago.
- Maurice "Maury" John - Lost to South Dakota State in 1958-59 and Washington (Mo.) in 1963-64 while coaching Drake.
- Alvin "Doggie" Julian - Lost to St. Michael's (Vt.), at St. Anselm (N.H.) and at Tampa (Fla.) in 1950-51; to Amherst (Mass.) in 1952-53; at St. Michael's (Vt.), to Williams (Mass.) and at Springfield (Mass.) in 1960-61; to Colby (Maine) in 1961-62, and to Williams (Mass.) in 1964-65 while coaching Dartmouth.
- Jim Killingsworth - Lost to Westmont (Calif.) in 1980-81 while coaching Texas Christian.
- Bob King - Lost at Washington (Mo.) in 1963-64 while coaching New Mexico.
- Dana Kirk - Lost to Wisconsin-Parkside in 1979-80 while coaching Memphis State.
- Jack Kraft - Lost to Assumption (Mass.) in 1974-75 while coaching Rhode Island.
- Mike Krzyzewski - Lost to SUNY-Buffalo, Scranton (Pa.) and King's College (Pa.) in 1975-76 while coaching Army.
- Steve Lappas - Lost to Springfield (Mass.) in 1988-89 while coaching Manhattan.
- Jim Larranaga - Lost to Findlay (Ohio) in 1991-92 while coaching Bowling Green.
- Frank Layden - Lost to Thomas More (Ky.) in 1970-71 while coaching Niagara.
- Jack Leaman - Lost to American International (Mass.) in 1966-67 and 1969-70, Springfield (Mass.) in 1970-71 and Bentley (Mass.) in 1978-79 while coaching Massachusetts.
- A.E. "Abe" Lemons - Lost to Centenary (La.) in 1958-59, McMurry (Tex.) in 1960-61 and Wayland Baptist (Tex.) in 1984-85 while coaching Oklahoma City. Lost to Texas A&I in 1973-74 while coaching Pan American.
- Jim Les - Lost to Lubbock (Tex.) Christian at Las Vegas in 2003-04 while coaching Bradley.
- Guy Lewis - Lost to St. Mary's (Tex.) in 1969-70 and 1974-75, Texas A&I in 1979-80 and Alaska-Anchorage and Biscayne (Fla.) in 1980-81 while coaching Houston.
- Harry Litwack - Lost to West Chester (Pa.) in 1969-70 while coaching Temple.
- Taylor "Tates" Locke - Lost to North Park (Ill.) in 1978-79 while coaching Jacksonville.
- Ken Loeffler - Lost to Centenary (La.) in 1956-57 while coaching Texas A&M.
- Jim Lynam - Lost to Saint Leo (Fla.) and at Assumption (Mass.) in 1968-69 and to Southern Connecticut in 1969-70 while coaching Fairfield. Lost at King's (Pa.) in 1975-76 while coaching American University. Lost at Rollins (Fla.) in 1979-80 while coaching St. Joseph's.
- Nick Macarchuk - Lost to Buffalo State in 1982-83 while coaching Canisius.
- John MacLeod - Lost to Samford (Ala.) in 1971-72 while coaching Oklahoma. Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1998-99 while coaching Notre Dame.
- John "Red" Manning - Lost to Carnegie-Mellon (Pa.) in 1959-60 while coaching Duquesne.
- Rollie Massimino - Lost at New Orleans in 1973-74 and to Philadelphia Textile in 1975-76 and 1976-77 while coaching Villanova.
- James "Babe" McCarthy - Lost to University of the South (Tenn.) in 1955-56 and Mississippi College in 1964-65 while coaching Mississippi State.
- Neil McCarthy - Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1978-79 while coaching Weber State. Lost to Western New Mexico in 1986-87 while coaching New Mexico State.
- Al McGuire - Lost at Washington (Mo.) in 1964-65 and Evansville in 1965-66 while coaching Marquette.
- Frank McGuire - Lost at Florida Southern in 1979-80 while coaching South Carolina.
- Jack McKinney - Lost to Catholic (D.C.) in 1966-67 while coaching St. Joseph's.
- Eddie Melvin - Lost to Cortland (N.Y.) State in 1947-48 and Gannon (Pa.) in 1948-49 while coaching St. Bonaventure. Lost to Morris Harvey (W. Va.) in 1956-57 and Wittenberg (Ohio) in 1958-59 and 1959-60 while coaching Toledo.
- Shelby Metcalf - Lost at Eastern Montana in 1980-81 and to St. Mary's (Tex.) in 1984-85 while coaching Texas A&M.
- Ray Meyer - Lost to Beloit (Wis.) in 1950-51, Wayne State (Mich.) in 1955-56, at North Dakota in 1965-66 and to St. Joseph's (Ind.) in 1969-70 while coaching DePaul.
- Eldon Miller - Lost to Winona (Minn.) State and Wisconsin-Platteville in 1986-87 and at American-Puerto Rico and to Morningside (Iowa) in 1990-91 while coaching Northern Iowa.
- Ralph Miller - Lost at Beloit (Wis.) in 1951-52 while coaching Wichita.
- Charles Moir - Lost to Dillard (La.) in 1973-74 and 1974-75 and Xavier (La.) in 1973-74 while coaching Tulane.
- Mike Montgomery - Lost to Puget Sound (Wash.) in 1978-79 and 1980-81 while coaching Montana. Lost at Chaminade (Hawaii) in 1992-93 while coaching Stanford.
- Stan Morrison - Lost to San Francisco State in 1974-75 and at North Dakota in 1978-79 while coaching Pacific.
- Joe Mullaney - Lost to Assumption (Mass.) in 1963-64 and 1984-85 while coaching Providence. Lost to Stonehill (Mass.) in 1979-80 while coaching Brown.
- Jeff Mullins - Lost at Florida Southern in 1987-88 while coaching UNC Charlotte.
- Gerald Myers - Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1990-91 while coaching Texas Tech.
- Lynn Nance - Lost to Nebraska-Omaha in 1979-80 while coaching Iowa State.
- Danny Nee - Lost to Charleston (W. Va.) in 1980-81 while coaching Ohio University.
- Jim O'Brien - Lost at Florida Tech in 1988-89 while coaching Boston College.
- Dave Odom - Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1993-94 while coaching Wake Forest.
- Johnny Orr - Lost at Washington (Mo.) in 1964-65 while coaching Massachusetts. Lost at Eastern Montana in 1981-82 while coaching Iowa State.
- Bobby Paschal - Lost to Tampa in 1986-87 and 1987-88 while coaching South Florida.
- Tom Penders - Lost at CCNY in 1974-75 and at San Francisco State in 1977-78 while coaching Columbia. Lost at Hawaii-Pacific in 1985-86 while coaching Fordham.
- Jerry Pimm - Lost to Midwestern State (Tex.) in 1979-80 while coaching Utah. Lost to San Francisco State in 1983-84 while coaching UC Santa Barbara.
- Rick Pitino - Lost to Adelphi (N.Y.) in 1978-79 while coaching Boston University.
- Harry Rabenhorst - Lost to Louisiana College in 1955-56 and at Centenary (La.) in 1956-57 while coaching Louisiana State.
- Bill Raftery - Lost to Siena (N.Y.) in 1972-73, at Rollins (Fla.) in 1973-74 and to King's College (Pa.) in 1975-76 while coaching Seton Hall.
- Jack Ramsay - Lost to Albright (Pa.) in 1957-58 and 1961-62 while coaching St. Joseph's.
- George Raveling - Lost to St. Martin's (Wash.) in 1980-81 and Eastern Montana in 1981-82 while coaching Washington State.
- Roger Reid - Lost to Colorado-Colorado Springs in 2007-08 while coaching Southern Utah.
- Nolan Richardson Jr. - Lost at American-Puerto Rico in 1997-98 while coaching Arkansas.
- Alfred "A.J." Robertson - Lost to South Dakota in 1947-48 while coaching Bradley.
- Les Robinson - Lost to Francis Marion (S.C.) in 1983-84 while coaching The Citadel.
- Lee Rose - Lost at Eastern Montana in 1977-78 while coaching UNC Charlotte.
- Lou Rossini - Lost to Scranton (Pa.) in 1975-76 and Bentley (Mass.) in 1978-79 while coaching St. Francis (N.Y.).
- John "Honey" Russell - Lost at Saint Thomas (Minn.) in 1937-38, to David & Elkins (W. Va.) in 1949-50 and to Albright (Pa.) in 1949-50 and 1957-58 while coaching Seton Hall.
- Alex Severance - Lost to Albright (Pa.) in 1941-42, Swarthmore (Pa.) in 1943-44 and 1944-45 and Scranton (Pa.) in 1957-58 while coaching Villanova.
- Norman Sloan - Lost at Presbyterian (S.C.) in 1956-57 while coaching The Citadel.
- Jim Snyder - Lost to Marietta (Ohio) four times in five years from 1949-50 through 1953-54 and in 1959-60, Mount Union (Ohio) in 1949-50, Muskingum (Ohio) in 1950-51, Beloit (Wis.) and Lake Forest (Ill.) in 1951-52, Ohio Wesleyan in 1952-53 and Otterbein (Ohio) in 1966-67 while coaching Ohio University.
- Norm Stewart - Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1985-86 while coaching Missouri.
- John Thompson Jr. - Lost to Assumption (Mass.) in 1973-74; Gannon (Pa.) in 1975-76; Randolph-Macon (Va.) in 1974-75; Roanoke (Va.) in 1972-73, and at South Florida in 1972-73 while coaching Georgetown.
- Ken Trickey - Lost to Union (Tenn.) in 1965-66, Transylvania (Ky.) in 1966-67 and 1968-69 and Oglethorpe (Ga.) in 1967-68 while coaching Middle Tennessee State. Lost to Nebraska-Omaha and South Dakota in 1975-76 while coaching Iowa State. Lost to Cameron (Okla.) in 1980-81 while coaching Oral Roberts.
- Billy Tubbs - Lost to Ohio Northern in 1980-81 while coaching Oklahoma. Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1995-96 while coaching Texas Christian. Lost to Delta State (Miss.) in 2005-06 while coaching Lamar.
- M.K. Turk - Lost at Florida Southern in 1979-80 and to Fairmont State (W. Va.) in 1984-85 while coaching Southern Mississippi.
- Jim Valvano - Lost to Armstrong State (Ga.) and Gannon (Pa.) in 1972-73, Wilkes (Pa.) in 1973-74 and Bloomsburg (Pa.) in 1974-75 while coaching Bucknell. Lost at Tampa in 1986-87 while coaching North Carolina State.
- Bob Vanatta - Lost at Centenary (La.) in 1956-57 while coaching Memphis State.
- Willem "Butch" van Breda Kolff - Lost at Albright (Pa.) in 1951-52 while coaching Lafayette. Lost at Florida Southern in 1988-89 while coaching Hofstra.
- Perry Watson - Lost to Wayne State (Mich.) in 1993-94 while coaching Detroit.
- Stan Watts - Lost to Hamline (Minn.) in 1951-52 while coaching Brigham Young.
- Clifford Wells - Lost to Spring Hill (Ala.) in 1953-54 and Louisiana College in 1962-63 while coaching Tulane.
- Bob Weltlich - Lost at Alaska-Anchorage in 1986-87 while coaching Texas.
- Paul Westhead - Lost at Biscayne (Fla.) in 1971-72 and Florida Southern in 1978-79 while coaching La Salle.
- Davey Whitney - Lost to Delta State (Miss.) six times in five years from 1985-86 through 1989-90; Dillard (La.) in 1986-87; Miles (Ala.) in 1988-89 and 1990-91; Mississippi College in 1990-91, 1992-93 and 1993-94; Slippery Rock (Pa.) in 1993-94, and Tougaloo (Miss.) in 1996-97 while coaching Alcorn State.
- Ralph Willard - Lost to Williams (Mass.) in 2003-04 while coaching Holy Cross.
- Carroll Williams - Lost to San Francisco State in 1970-71 and at Alaska-Anchorage in 1991-92 while coaching Santa Clara.
- Charlie Woollum - Lost to Rochester (N.Y.) in 1975-76 and 1976-77, Upsala (N.J.) in 1977-78 and Messiah (Pa.) in 1981-82 while coaching Bucknell.
- Jay Wright - Lost at Chaminade (Hawaii) in 2003-04 while coaching Villanova.
- Ned Wulk - Lost to Lawrence Tech (Mich.) and twice to Baldwin-Wallace (Ohio) in 1952-53 while coaching Xavier. Lost to Cal Poly Pomona in 1969-70 while coaching Arizona State.
Fox News carried a riveting two-part program featuring Navy SEAL Team 6 member Robert O'Neill (senior chief petty officer is recipient of two Silver and five Bronze Stars) as "The Man Who Killed Usama Bin Laden." Amid focusing on ridding Planet Earth of UBL, it seems we should also be celebrating an authentic hero from the college basketball ranks who was instrumental in tracking the terrorist down. But the selfless ex-athlete from a Midwest university hasn't "come out of the closet" for security reasons and might be underground with a fake identification unless, of course, ax-grinding Left Coast Sen. Dianne Feinstein rats him out amid her vendetta.
In the documentation about dispatching UBL to hell (equivalent status even if satisfying 72 virgins is what transpired), the White House unveiled a photograph of President Barack Obama and his Cabinet inside the Situation Room, watching the daring commando raid unfold on May 1, 2011. But POTUS (JV player for Occidental CA) apparently wasn't the tallest ex-college hoopster in the room. Standing just outside the frame of that famous pic was an anonymous Central Intelligence Agency officer ("CIA John") who pursued UBL as a dogmatic deputy chief and reportedly was also influential as one of the principal proponents of drone deterrence. Two days after the world's most-wanted man was transformed into marine treat when dumped into the North Arabian Sea, "CIA John" accompanied then CIA Director Leon Panetta to Capitol Hill, where the Senate Intelligence Committee received a full briefing on the mission.
According to AP accounts at the time, the meticulous senior intelligence analyst was the first individual to put in writing that a legitimate CIA lead had been assembled on possibly locating UBL. He spearheaded the collection of clues for nearly 10 years, leading the agency to a fortified compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, and its epic counter-terrorism success. Our freedom-loving nation is eternally grateful that his manhunt accuracy as a deep-cover agent in pinpointing UBL's whereabouts stood in stark contrast to his free-throw marksmanship as a deep-bench player (barely over 30%) as a member of multiple NCAA playoff teams.
Box-office hit "Zero Dark Thirty" was an inspiring movie focusing on a young female CIA operative allegedly also from flyover country. She exhibited her tenacity, dedication and courage in primarily monitoring a vital courier for al-Qaeda's upper brass. According to Esquire, the shooter who killed UBL (subsequently acknowledged as Butte MT native O'Neill) gave the magazine out of his gun as a souvenir to bloodhound "Maya." While the film doesn't do justice to the male super spy, the patriot is likely to defer anyway to the concept "there is no 'I' in team." Naturally, Langley issued a perfunctory "no comment" because concern exists about publishing his name and running biographical details might make him a target for retribution.
Over the decades, there have been other notable "Secret Agent Men" in the CIA who were former college hoopsters. In fact, a Final Four player isn't required to hit a decisive basket or be selected Most Outstanding Player to be a hero. He doesn't even need to participate on the court. Bob Ames, a member of the Tom Gola-led La Salle teams in 1954 (national champion) and 1955 (runner-up to San Francisco), never got off the bench at the Final Four those two years although he was the only La Salle player to hit more than three-fourths of his free throws the season the Explorers won the NCAA title.
"Our coach, Ken Loeffler, only used seven guys, and Bob was the eighth man," said Frank Blatcher, a starter for the Explorers each season and their leading scorer with a total of 42 points at the Final Four on the championship team. "He had the talent. He just never got a chance to show it."
Ames, a pre-law major who scored a total of eight points in three NCAA playoff games in 1955, did have an opportunity to show his ability in another more vital endeavor, however. He joined the CIA and worked his way up the chain of command to become the Director of the CIA's Office of Analysis of the Near East and South Asia. "The Spy Who Loved Basketball" worked closely with both the Carter and Reagan administrations.
Regrettably, Ames was killed in Beirut in 1983. A truck loaded with TNT on a suicide mission rammed into the facility where Ames was staying while serving as a liaison trying to allay contacts among the Lebanese, Syrians and Israelis in hopes of calming the escalating discord.
"Here was a guy that turned out to have had a greater influence on our lives than just about any 1,000 other basketball players you can name," Blatcher said. "It just shows you that you don't have to be a star to accomplish something." Something like becoming a genuine American hero.
Elsewhere, the CIA's deputy director under George Bush in 1976 was Hank Knoche, the leading scorer in the Mountain States (Big Seven) Conference with 16.4 points per game for Colorado's 1946 NCAA Tournament team. Knoche, the father of former American University coach Chris Knoche, reputedly was the first player selected in the NBA's first college draft in 1947 after enrolling at Washington and Jefferson (Pa.) to play on a 16-4 team with two of his brothers. But he never appeared in the then-fledgling league, which doesn't have any official draft records prior to 1949. The franchise that selected him, the Pittsburgh Ironmen, folded shortly after the draft, and his rights reverted to the New York Knicks.
"I didn't know I was the first No. 1 pick until a writer from Atlanta called me for a story," Knoche said. "An NBA historian had informed him of my alleged status."
The elder Knoche, who went to live in the Denver area, chose not to play in an uncertain situation for little money. "I never received any contact from the Ironmen," he said. "The Knicks sent a contract offer in the mail, but it was for just $3,500 and that's if I made the team (many NBA standouts earn five times that amount every quarter).
"I chose to play industrial basketball, where I remember playing six times one year against seven-footer Bob Kurland (Oklahoma State three-time first-team All-American who never played in the NBA). That wasn't much fun going against Kurland because I was just a 6-4 center."
Knoche was recalled to the military during the Korean War, where he was assigned to intelligence work for the Navy and later embarked on a civilian career leading to a job with the CIA.
Another former college hoopster who carved out a CIA career was Pete Sivess, a center for Dickinson PA in 1935-36 before compiling a 7-11 record as a righthanded pitcher with the Philadelphia Phillies in three years from 1936 through 1938. While Moe Berg is the most famous MLB player linked with the CIA, his career as a spy pales in comparison to baseball contemporary Sivess, who is credited with defining CIA policy for handling Eastern Bloc defectors. During the height of the Cold War, Sivess conducted a "first haven" on Maryland's Eastern Shore where defectors were shipped to be debriefed. Probably the highest-profile spy Sivess monitored was "notorious double agent" Nicholas Shadrin, who died on a trip to Vienna in 1975 in a kidnapping attempt by Moscow's counterspies.
In the shadowy world of the CIA, no precise clues exist as to whether a basketball background for "CIA John" contributed to helping POTUS develop a comfort-zone bond with him similar to other ex-college hoopsters in his inner circle - Secretary of Education Arne Duncan (Harvard), departing Attorney General Eric Holder (Columbia), former "body man" Reggie Love (Duke) and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen (Navy). But it isn't ridiculous to suggest there might not have been a second inauguration for President Obama if he didn't trust "CIA John."
A vital hurdle approving the raid came when the SEAL Squadron leader briefed Mullen on merits of the mission. According to O'Neill's anonymous interview with Esquire, Vice Admiral William McRaven, head of Joint Special Ops Command, compared the raid and its fighters to the basketball movie Hoosiers in a final briefing with the participants in Operation Neptune's Spear.
A pithy precept occasionally surfaces in basketball trash talking that "some talk a good game and some play a good game." Depending upon your point of view, Time's Person of the Year in 2011 and each subsequent year could have been "CIA John." Surely, ex-Time managing editor Rick Stengel, a backup for Pete Carril-coached Princeton in the mid-1970s, would have encouraged his colleagues to give "CIA John" special consideration after the White House acknowledged him and his colleagues as "unbelievably competent professionals."
Deserved or not, other ex-college hoopsters may get the bulk of the glory ranging from taking credit for UBL's demise to some searing social issue actually paling in comparison. When, if ever, will our nation get the opportunity to pay homage to a genuine hoop hero comparable to Ames, Knoche and Sivess? Heaven only knows we need an authentic hero these days to offset a lawless West Wing supported by ideologically-driven lame-stream media plus collegiate academic scandals and athletes treating women as bad as Sharia-Law zealot Islamic radicals. But at the moment, the stirring tale will simply be "The Greatest Hoop Story Never Fully Told."
College basketball aficionados occasionally cite achievements they think never will be duplicated. On Veterans Day, they should be reminded about truly incredible comebacks likely never to be matched. In 1946-47, Andy Phillip (Illinois) and Gerry Tucker (Oklahoma) returned to first-team All-American status after missing three seasons while serving in the U.S. military during World War II. Charles Black (Kansas) and Kenny Sailors (Wyoming) also returned to All-American acclaim after missing two seasons serving in similar capacities.
Numerous standout players had their college playing careers interrupted by WWII. While much of the misguided media currently obsess with mundane matters as a new campaign is ushered in, they should be reminded about authentic American heroes. The press should be focusing on the following list of All-Americans - three each from Illinois, Kentucky and Notre Dame - who deserve to be honored, at least for a day, after having their college careers interrupted in the mid-1940s while serving in the U.S. Armed Forces:
Army - Don Barksdale (UCLA), Lew Beck (Oregon State), A.L. Bennett (Oklahoma A&M), Gale Bishop (Washington State), Vince Boryla (Notre Dame/Denver), Harry Boykoff (St. John's), Bob Brannum (Kentucky), Arnie Ferrin (Utah), Alex Groza (Kentucky), Ralph Hamilton (Indiana), Walt Kirk (Illinois), Allie Paine (Oklahoma), Don Rehfeldt (Wisconsin), Jack Smiley (Illinois), Odie Spears (Western Kentucky) and Gerry Tucker (Oklahoma).
Navy - Bobby Cook (Wisconsin), Howie Dallmar (Stanford/Penn), Dick Dickey (North Carolina State), Bob Faught (Notre Dame), Harold Gensichen (Western Michigan), Wyndol Gray (Bowling Green State), Hal Haskins (Hamline), Leo Klier (Notre Dame), Dick McGuire (St. John's) and John Oldham (Western Kentucky).
An old adage portends "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree." You know the father-son deal whether they boasted big-man credentials enabling them to dominate in the post or were adept as a playmaker driving to the post! A challenging dynamic exists when playing for the same school where your dad was a standout. Whether or not it's a fair sampling (majority of dads are better), comparing the following father-son duos might provide a window depicting when the quality of play was superior.
The Valentine's Versatile Way (Carlton and Denzel) will generate headlines for Michigan State in the Big Ten Conference this season after the Marble Collection (Roy and Roy Devyn) excelled for Iowa in recent campaigns. Another Big Ten family affair for the same school making an impact this year will be at Purdue (sophomore son Kendall Stephens following in footsteps of father Everette).
Marques Johnson was the third-leading scorer and fourth-leading rebounder for UCLA's 1975 NCAA champion and son Kris was a backup freshman for the Bruins' 1995 titlist. They are the only father-son duo to capture NCAA crowns for the same institution, propelling them atop the list of premier father-son combinations.
The Valentines likely will gain more prominence if Denzel flourishes as expected. On the other hand, they could be overshadowed in this category by son Tyler Haws and father Marty Haws if Tyler continues his scoring exploits with BYU. Other duos to keep an eye on involve Vanderbilt frontcourter Luke Kornet, the son of All-SEC second-team selection Frank Kornet in 1988-89; South Carolina guard Justin McKie, the son of Gamecocks all-time leading scorer BJ McKie (2,119 points from 1995-96 through 1998-99); Florida State's Xavier Rathan-Mayes, the son of Seminoles leading scorer Tharon Mayes in 1989-90, and J.C. transfer Gary Payton II, the son of an Oregon State unanimous first-team All-American in 1990. USC will dip into the father-son well again next season with recruit P.J. Dozier. At any rate, there is something in the family DNA for the following all-time father-son tandems making the most impact for same major university factoring in how long they attended school:
|Rank||Family||School||Father's College Career Summary||Son's College Career Summary|
|1.||Johnson||UCLA||Marques, the national player of the year as a senior, averaged 14.4 ppg and 7.8 rpg from 1973-74 through 1976-77.||Kris averaged 11.6 ppg and 3.7 rpg from 1994-95 through 1997-98.|
|2.||Marble||Iowa||Roy, a three-time All-Big Ten Conference selection and the Hawkeyes' all-time leading scorer (2,116 points), averaged 15.8 ppg and 5 rpg from 1985-86 through 1988-89.||Roy Devyn averaged 12 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 2.7 apg and 1.3 spg from 2010-11 through 2013-14, ranking among the school's all-time top seven in points, rebounds, assists and steals.|
|3.||Burtt||Iona||Steve Sr., a two-time MAAC MVP, became the school's all-time leading scorer with 2,534 points by finishing among nation's top 17 scorers each of his last three seasons from 1981-82 through 1983-84.||Steve Jr., a three-time All-MAAC selection, is school runner-up with 2,034 points from 2002-03 through 2005-06, finishing seventh in country in scoring as a senior.|
|4.||Paxson||Dayton||James, a starter for two NIT runner-up teams, averaged 10.9 ppg and 7.6 rpg in three seasons in mid-1950s.||Jim, an All-American as a senior, averaged 18 ppg and 4.5 rpg from 1975-76 through 1978-79.|
|5.||Perry||Holy Cross||Ronnie Sr. averaged 13.6 ppg from 1951-52 through 1953-54.||Ronnie Jr., a three-time All-American, averaged 23.2 ppg and 3.9 apg while shooting 88.5% at free-throw line from 1976-77 through 1979-80.|
|6.||Hosket||Ohio State||Wilmer Clemens was named to third five on College Humor Magazine A-A in 1932-33 when he was fourth-leading scorer in Big Ten (8 ppg) as member of league co-champion.||Bill, a member of the U.S. Olympic squad after appearing in Final Four as a senior, averaged 19.5 ppg and 12.3 rpg in three seasons from 1965-66 through 1967-68.|
|7.||Haws||Brigham Young||Marty, an All-WAC first-team selection as a senior when leading the Cougars in scoring with 18.5 ppg, averaged 10.9 ppg and 4.1 apg from 1986-87 through 1989-90.||Tyler averaged 18.6 ppg and 4.3 rpg in his first three seasons, ranking among the nation's top seven scorers as a sophomore and junior.|
|8.||Rautins||Syracuse||Leo, who led the Orangemen in rebounds and assists as a senior when he was an All-Big East Conference third-team selection, averaged 12.1 ppg, 6.3 rpg and 5 apg from 1980-81 through 1982-83 after transferring from Minnesota.||Andy, an All-Big East second-team selection as a senior, averaged 8.8 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 2.7 apg and 1.4 spg from 2005-06 through 2009-10.|
|9.||Brewer||Arkansas||Ron, an All-American as a senior for a 1978 Final Four team, averaged 15.8 ppg and 3.3 rpg after one season at JC level.||Ronnie, a two-time All-SEC selection, averaged 15.7 ppg and 5 rpg from 2003-04 through 2005-06 before declaring early for NBA draft.|
|10.||Robinzine||DePaul||William Sr. averaged 15.3 ppg in 1954-55 and 1955-56.||William Jr. averaged 16.6 ppg and 11.4 rpg from 1972-73 through 1974-75, including team highs of 19.4 ppg and 13.5 rpg as a senior.|
|11.||Young||Houston||Michael, an All-American as a senior, was top scorer for back-to-back Final Four teams featuring Akeem Olajuwon (1983 and 1984), averaging 18.6 ppg over final two years.||Joseph averaged 14.8 ppg, 3.5 rpg and 2.4 apg in 2011-12 and 2012-13 with UH before transferring to Oregon.|
|12.||Warren||North Carolina State||Tony Sr. averaged 9.3 ppg and 4.3 rpg from 1976-77 through 1978-79 under coach Norm Sloan, leading Wolfpack in field-goal percentage as junior.||Tony "T.J." Jr. was an All-American and ACC Player of the Year as sophomore in 2013-14 before declaring early for NBA draft.|
|13.||Price||Oklahoma||Dennis averaged 10.9 ppg from 1957-58 through 1959-60.||Brent averaged 18 ppg and 5.8 apg for the Sooners in 1990-91 and 1991-92 after transferring from South Carolina.|
|14.||Hummer||Princeton||Edward, a Final Four teammate of All-American Bill Bradley before becoming an All-Ivy League second-team selection, averaged 10.2 ppg and 7 rpg from 1964-65 through 1966-67.||Ian, a three-time All-Ivy League selection, averaged 13.2 ppg and 5.9 rpg from 2009-10 through 2012-13.|
|15.||Cox||San Francisco||Chubby, setting stage for first father-son tandem to both be two-time all-conference selection for same school in same league, averaged team-high 5.4 apg in each of his final two seasons in 1976-77 and 1977-78.||John averaged 15.8 ppg and 4.2 rpg from 2001-02 through 2004-05, leading the WCC in scoring as a senior.|
|16.||Evans||Oklahoma||Eddie averaged 11.9 ppg from 1960-61 through 1962-63, including a team-high 16.4 ppg as a senior.||Terry averaged 11.1 ppg and 5.3 apg from 1989-90 through 1992-93, setting school records in assists (628) and three-point field goals (259).|
|17.||Raivio||Portland||Rick, a three-time All-WCAC selection who led the Pilots in FG% all four seasons, finished as their all-time leading rebounder (910/9.4 rpg) while averaging 17.2 ppg before becoming 1980 fifth-round draft choice by L.A. Lakers.||Nik, a J.C. recruit, was an All-WCC selection as a junior in 2008-09 when he averaged 16 ppg and 6.5 rpg before heading overseas to play professionally after concluding his college career with 14.3 ppg and 5.3 rpg.|
|18.||Temple||Louisiana State||Collis Jr., the first African-American varsity player in LSU history in 1971-72, averaged 10.1 ppg and 8.1 rpg in three seasons, ranking second in SEC in rebounding (11.1 rpg) and seventh in field-goal shooting (54.9%) as a senior.||Collis III averaged 10.2 ppg from 1999-00 through 2002-03, including career-high 14.3 ppg as sophomore when he scored 30 points in regular-season finale at Tennessee. Garrett was defensive whiz for 2006 Final Four club before becoming an All-SEC second-team pick as senior in 2008-09.|
|19.||Ainge||Brigham Young||Danny, a three-time All-American who averaged 20.9 ppg, was named national player of the year as a senior in 1980-81.||Austin posted personal season highs of 9.5 ppg and 4.1 apg as a sophomore in 2004-05 en route to career marks of 6.6 ppg and 3.5 apg.|
|20.||Guokas||St. Joseph's||Matt Sr. was tallest player and an original member of the famed "Mighty Mites" who asserted themselves in the Philly Big Five by winning 54 of 71 games in the late 1930s.||Matt Jr. averaged 15.4 ppg and 4.6 rpg for the Hawks in 1964-65 and 1965-66 after transferring from Miami (Fla.).|
|21.||Komives||Bowling Green||Howard averaged 25.8 ppg from 1961-62 through 1963-64, leading nation in scoring as senior All-American with 36.7 ppg.||Shane averaged 10.6 ppg from 1992-93 through 1995-96, including career-high 14.3 ppg as a sophomore.|
|22.||Ellis||San Francisco||Joe, a three-time All-WCAC first-team selection from 1963-64 through 1965-66, averaged 13.5 ppg and 8.9 rpg.||Kevin averaged 9.1 ppg and 3 rpg his final two seasons in 1988-89 and 1989-90.|
|23.||Springer||Iona||Gary Sr., a three-time All-MAAC selection, averaged 15.4 ppg and 8.4 rpg from 1980-81 through 1983-84.||Gary Jr., an All-MAAC third-team selection as a senior in 2008-09, averaged 7.6 ppg and 5.2 rpg.|
|24.||Becker||Arizona State||Art, a two-time All-WAC selection, averaged 15.7 ppg and 9 rpg from 1961-62 through 1963-64, ranks among school career leaders in rebound average, FG% (52.4) and FT% (79.7). Teammate of Joe Caldwell had two games with more than 20 points and 20 rebounds as a junior when leading team with 11.2 rpg.||Mark averaged 8.8 ppg and 4.8 rpg from 1986-87 through 1989-90, leading team in rebounding as a sophomore with 5.5 per game.|
|25.||Henry||Kansas||Carl, an OCU transfer, averaged 17.1 ppg and 6.4 rpg in 1982-83 and 1983-84 as a two-time All-Big Eight Conference selection.||Xavier, an All-Big 12 Conference Rookie Team choice, averaged 13.4 ppg and 4.4 rpg as freshman in 2009-10 before leaving school early for NBA draft.|
|26.||Frederick||South Carolina||Zam Sr. led nation in scoring as a senior in 1980-81 with 28.9 ppg to finish career with 13.7 ppg.||Zam II, an All-SEC second-team selection as a senior, averaged 15.1 ppg with the Gamecocks in 2007-08 and 2008-09 after transferring from Georgia Tech.|
|27.||Payne||Iowa||Tom was leading the Hawkeyes in scoring and rebounding at end of first semester of junior season (1956-57) when declared academically ineligible.||Michael averaged 9.6 ppg and 7.3 rpg from 1981-82 through 1984-85, pacing team in rebounding his first two seasons.|
|28.||Howard||Brigham Young||Orin was a multi-sport Hall of Famer for the school in the 1920s.||Doug, a second-team All-WAC selection as a junior in 1968-69 (15.4 ppg, 4 rpg, 85.3 FT%) and senior in 1969-70 (18.2 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 85.3 FT%) led Cougars in scoring his last two years.|
|29.||Butler||Richmond||Jeff, a transfer from Robert Morris (Pa.) when it was a junior college, led UR in scoring and rebounding in 1975-76 and 1976-77, averaging 15.2 ppg and 9.6 rpg.||Ryan, a starter much of stint from 2006-07 through 2009-10, finished his career fifth in total steals and three-pointers, averaging 6.6 ppg and 2.8 rpg.|
|30.||Ewing||Georgetown||Patrick Sr., the national player of the year as a senior, averaged 15.3 ppg and 9.2 rpg from 1981-82 through 1984-85.||Patrick Jr. averaged 5.1 ppg and 3.1 rpg with the Hoyas in 2006-07 and 2007-08 after transferring from Indiana.|
|31.||Valentine||Michigan State||Carlton was the Spartans' leading scorer and rebounder as a senior in 1987-88, finishing his career with 8.5 ppg and 4.1 rpg.||Denzel averaged 6.2 ppg and 5 rpg for NCAA playoff teams in 2012-13 and 2013-14.|
|32.||Stockton||Gonzaga||John, MVP of the WCAC as a senior, averaged 12.5 ppg and 5.2 apg from 1980-81 through 1983-84.||David averaged 4.6 ppg and 2.9 apg for four NCAA playoff teams from 2010-11 through 2013-14.|
|33.||Mimlitz||St. Louis||Jack, a two-time All-Missouri Valley Conference selection, averaged 14.2 ppg from 1955-56 through 1957-58.||Ted averaged 7 ppg for SLU in 1985-86 and 1986-87 after transferring from Missouri.|
|34.||Morningstar||Kansas||Roger, runner-up in scoring for a Final Four squad, averaged 11.7 ppg and 4.8 rpg in 1973-74 and 1974-75 after transferring from a junior college.||Brady averaged 5.6 ppg, 2.3 rpg and 2.6 apg from 2006-07 through 2010-11.|
|35.||Shepherd||Butler||Bill Sr. averaged 5.9 ppg in 1947-48 and 6.6 ppg in 1948-49.||Billy Jr., who scored 49 points in a game at Arizona as a junior, averaged 24.1 ppg from 1969-70 through 1971-72 (career-low senior mark of 19.3 ppg while contributing team-high 5.8 apg).|
|36.||Fife||Michigan||Dan averaged 12.6 ppg and 4.9 rpg from 1968-69 through 1970-71.||Dugan, a backup on the last Fab Five Final Four team, averaged 4.6 ppg and 2 rpg from 1992-93 through 1995-96.|
|37.||Suttle||Pepperdine||Dane Sr., co-MVP of the WCAC as a senior, averaged 16.2 ppg from 1979-80 through 1982-83 before playing briefly in NBA.||Dane Jr. averaged 5.6 ppg from 2009-10 through 2011-12.|
|38.||Rose||Houston||Lynden, a J.C. recruit who became co-captain of 1982 Final Four squad, averaged 7.5 ppg and 3.3 apg.||L.J. averaged 8.1 ppg and 5.1 apg as a UH sophomore in 2013-14 after transferring from Baylor.|
|39.||Wilkins||Illinois State||Jeff averaged 16.4 ppg and 9.8 rpg from 1974-75 through 1976-77, leading team in scoring, rebounding and FG% as a senior before becoming an NBA second-round draft choice.||John, a J.C. transfer, averaged 7.1 ppg and 3.8 rpg from 2010-11 through 2012-13.|
|40.||Whitehead||Louisville||Eddie averaged 5.8 ppg and 5.2 rpg from 1963-64 through 1965-66, finishing runner-up in rebounding behind All-American Wes Unseld as a senior.||Luke averaged 9.1 ppg and 3.8 rpg from 2000-01 through 2003-04, including NCAA playoff squads his final two seasons (leading rebounder and runner-up in scoring as senior).|
|41.||Mills||Kentucky||Terry averaged 6.7 ppg for three NCAA Tournament teams from 1968-69 through 1970-71.||Cameron, who averaged 4.3 ppg from 1994-95 through 1996-97, led UK in three-point FG% as a junior when he averaged 11.8 ppg in the NCAA playoffs.|
|42.||Sutton||Oklahoma State||Eddie averaged 6.6 ppg and 2.6 rpg while shooting 82.1% from free-throw line in the late 1950s.||Sean, pacing the Pokes in assists and three-point shooting both seasons, averaged 11 ppg, 2.5 rpg and 4.4 apg in 1990-91 and 1991-92 for two NCAA playoff teams after transferring from UK.|
|43.||Melchionni||Duke||Gary averaged 10.4 ppg and 2.7 rpg from 1970-71 through 1972-73.||Lee averaged 4.5 ppg and 2.2 rpg while shooting 35.9% from beyond the arc from 2002-03 through 2005-06.|
|44.||Altenberger||Illinois||Bill averaged 7.7 ppg from 1954-55 through 1956-57.||Doug averaged 9.6 ppg from 1982-83 through 1986-87, including 13.6 ppg as a senior when he was an All-Big Ten third-team selection.|
|45.||McElwain||Stanford||Les played in early 1930s.||Mal averaged 10.9 ppg and 6.3 rpg as a three-year starting forward in late 1960s.|
|46.||Urzetta||St. Bonaventure||Sam, who led the nation in FT% as a sophomore and senior, averaged 6.2 ppg from 1946-47 through 1949-50.||Nick averaged 8.7 ppg in late 1970s.|
|47.||Vopicka||Illinois||James was second-leading scorer in 1935-36 and a starter on 1936-37 club tying for Big Ten title.||Jim averaged 5.7 ppg in 1963-64 and 3.8 ppg in 1964-65.|
|48.||Christensen||Brigham Young||Harold, a member of 1951 NIT championship team, averaged 7.8 ppg and 4.4 rpg before he was chosen by the Minneapolis Lakers in 1953 NBA draft.||Todd averaged 5.8 ppg in 1995-96, 1998-99 and 1999-00.|
|49.||Parkinson||Purdue||Bruce, an All-Big Ten first-team selection as a junior, averaged 10.9 ppg and 4.3 rpg from 1972-73 through 1976-77.||Austin averaged 2.2 ppg and 3.2 apg from 2000-01 through 2003-04.|
|T50.||Hall||Vanderbilt||Jerry Don averaged 6.3 ppg and 1.7 rpg from 1960-61 through 1962-63.||Dan, who led Vandy in rebounding as a sophomore, averaged 7.1 ppg and 4.7 rpg in 1989-90 and from 1991-92 through 1993-94.|
|T50.||Craig||Brigham Young||Robert, a member of 1951 NIT titlist, averaged 3.5 ppg in 1949-50 and 1950-51.||Steve, a teammate of All-American Danny Ainge, averaged 7.2 ppg and 2.5 rpg in 1975-76 and from 1978-79 through 1980-81.|
When Minnesota (coached by son Richard Pitino) opposed Louisville (coached by father Rick Pitino) in their season opener at Puerto Rico, you almost knew the result in advance. But the meeting deserved acknowledgment if only because father-son coaching duels are rare events in NCAA annals. Until this year, the only father-son tandem to oppose each other more than once at the NCAA Division I level was Ed Diddle Sr. (Western Kentucky) and Ed Diddle Jr. (Middle Tennessee State) when they were Ohio Valley Conference rivals.
The Diddle duo combined for 815 victories in their college coaching careers but eight other family combinations boast more triumphs. The Suttons (father Eddie and sons Scott and Sean) are atop this list and surpassed the 1,100-win plateau.
Fathers know best insofar as dads won 16 of the first 18 family-feud games in the wake of Louisville leveling Minnesota, 81-68. Following is a chronological list of the first six coaching matchups involving fathers and sons of Division I schools (father listed first):
Ed Diddle Sr., Western Kentucky (11) vs.
Ed Diddle Jr., Middle Tennessee State (1)
Jan. 30, 1957 (Western Kentucky, 79-72)
March 2, 1957 (Western Kentucky, 86-82)
Jan. 23, 1958 (Western Kentucky, 69-67)
Feb. 18, 1958 (Middle Tennessee State, 81-75)
Jan. 19, 1959 (Western Kentucky, 89-65)
Feb. 28, 1959 (Western Kentucky, 110-85)
Feb. 6, 1960 (Western Kentucky, 109-89)
Feb. 27, 1960 (Western Kentucky, 109-80)
Dec. 1, 1960 (Western Kentucky, 70-67)
Feb. 27, 1961 (Western Kentucky, 84-73)
Jan. 20, 1962 (Western Kentucky, 89-69)
Feb. 13, 1962 (Western Kentucky, 87-81)
Ray Meyer, DePaul (1) vs.
Tom Meyer, Illinois-Chicago Circle (0)
Dec. 1, 1981 (DePaul, 78-53)
Butch van Breda Kolff, Hofstra (0) vs.
Jan van Breda Kolff, Cornell (1)
Jan. 12, 1993 (Cornell, 70-56)
Hugh Durham, Georgia (1) vs.
Doug Durham, Georgia Southern (0)
Nov. 28, 1994 (Georgia, 87-57)
Nolan Richardson Jr., Arkansas (1) vs.
Nolan Richardson III, Tennessee State (0)
Nov. 17, 2000 (Arkansas, 90-68)
Rick Pitino, Louisville (2) vs.
Richard Pitino, Florida International/Minnesota (0)
Dec. 19, 2012 (Louisville, 79-55)
Nov. 14, 2014 (Louisville, 81-68)
NOTE: NAIA affiliate Quincy College (coached by father Sherrill Hanks) lost at Samford (coached by son Mike Hanks), 99-92 in overtime, on December 21, 1982.
Is there a Final Four curse? That's a topic for ESPN talking heads to debate in its family feud although Bill Simmons might know just a mite more about basketball than concussion-ravaged Mike Golic. At any rate, the remains of former UCLA forward Gavin Smith, who scored 14 points for the third-place Bruins at the 1976 Final Four, were found in a rural desert area of Southern California in the latest of what could be considered the Final Four curse. Police had been probing Smith's mysterious disappearance 2 1/2 years earlier. Smith, a 57-year-old movie executive for Fox, was driving a black 2000 four-door Mercedes E Class when he vanished at night.
Smith, whose son (Evan) played for Southern California, didn't participate at either the 1974 or 1975 Final Fours before transferring from the Bruins' bench to becoming one of the NCAA's top scorers. Most media outlets focus on Smith's connection to UCLA but he actually made a hoop name for himself playing with Hawaii, where he finished 16th in the nation in scoring in 1976-77 by setting a Rainbows' single-season record (23.4 points per game).
Smith's vehicle was recovered at a storage facility in Simi Valley linked to an individual incarcerated on an unrelated narcotics conviction. Smith reportedly met in some sort of rehab therapy the wife of an admitted middleman in L.A.'s illicit drug world. Speaking with Inside Edition, Smith's wife opened up about her husband's extramarital affairs and his history of drug use.
Ranging from famous military battles to freak circumstances to mysterious disappearances to nuclear bombs to CIA activity to suicides, the existence of a Final Four curse is debatable although there is no denying that a striking number of prominent national semifinal players and coaches died prematurely. For instance, Sid Tanenbaum, the second-leading scorer for NYU's 1945 national runner-up, was murdered on September 4, 1986, at the age of 60 when stabbed to death by a local woman in his Queens machine shop. According to police reports, Tanenbaum was assaulted because he chose to stop lending money to his attacker after previously assisting her numerous times.
Any tribute isn't enough when a man is buried before his time. The following list of additional Final Four players (cited chronologically) passed away early (60 and younger), but the deceased left lasting memories:
Three of Oregon's starting five on the first NCAA championship team in 1939 - guards Bobby Anet and Wally Johansen and center Slim Wintermute - all died in their 40s. Wintermute disappeared in Lake Washington in 1977, a case that never has been solved.
Center Bill Menke, the third-leading scorer for Indiana's 1940 NCAA champion who supplied a team-high 10 points in the Hoosiers' national semifinal victory over Duquesne, later became a Navy pilot and served in World War II. In January 1945, he was declared missing in action (and presumed dead) when he didn't return from a flight in the Caribbean.
Thomas P. Hunter, a three-year letterman who was a sophomore member of Kansas' 1940 runner-up, was killed in action against the Japanese on Guam, July 21, 1944, while fighting with the Ninth Marines as a first lieutenant. Hunter was elected posthumously as captain of the Jayhawks' 1945-46 squad that compiled a 19-2 record.
Dale Gentry, the fifth-leading scorer for Washington State's 1941 national runner-up, collapsed and died of a heart attack in 1963 at the age of 50 after completing arrangements for his 16-year-old son's funeral following injuries incurred in an auto accident.
All 11 regulars on Pitt's 1941 Final Four team participated in World War II and one of them, guard Bob Artman, was killed in action.
Center Ed Voss, the second-leading scorer for 1942 champion Stanford, died of polio in 1953 at the age of 31, a month after his 7-year-old son also succumbed to the disease. Cardinal teammate Jack Dana's wife, California socialite Renee Cohu, died of a sleeping pill overdose in the winter of 1970 at the age of 42 when the missing daughter of a former TWA president was found in a Miami Beach motel.
Charles "Stubbie" Pearson, captain of Dartmouth's 1942 national runner-up and valedictorian of his class the same year, was killed in action on March 30, 1945, while dive-bombing a Japanese ship off the Palau Islands. He was posthumously awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. Teammate George Galbraith Jr., a backup forward, died in a training flight over Mississippi.
Three of the top seven scorers for Kentucky's first NCAA Tournament and Final Four team in 1942 died during World War II - Mel Brewer (Army second lieutenant/25 years old in France), Ken England (Army captain of ski troop/23 in Italy) and Jim King (Army second lieutenant and co-pilot/24 in Germany).
Georgetown's Lloyd Potolicchio, who matched DePaul legend George Mikan's 11-point output in the 1943 national semifinals when the Hoyas eliminated the Blue Demons before bowing to Wyoming in title tilt, joined the Air Force. Potolicchio was boom operator Master Sergeant when killed in a refueling mission on January 17, 1966, in a B-52 crash off the coast of southern Spain. His KC-135 tanker was completely destroyed when its fuel load ignited, resulting in the B-52G breaking apart with B28RI hydrogen weapons falling to earth and plutonium contamination occurring near the fishing village of Palomares. In March 2009, Time magazine identified the Palomares accident as one of the world's "worst nuclear disasters." Teammate Bob Duffey, a backup swingman, was killed on November 13, 1944, in European theater combat.
Frontcourter Frank Oftring, a key contributor for Holy Cross' 1947 champion and 1948 national third-place team, died on October 4, 1982, at the age of 58. Teammate Bob Curran, a regular for both squads, was 56 when he passed away on October 18, 1977.
Forward Tom Hamilton, a regular as a freshman forward with Texas' 1947 national third-place club, died at the age of 48 on November 29, 1973, after suffering a brain hemorrhage prior to officiating a high school football game in Tyler, Tex. Hamilton, a first baseman briefly with the Philadelphia Athletics in 1952 and 1953, served as baseball coach and athletic director for St. Edward's (Tex.) at the time of his death.
Center Bob Harris, the leading scorer for Oklahoma A&M's 1949 national runner-up, died on April 10, 1977 at the age of 50. Teammate Joe Bradley, A&M's second-leading scorer, passed away on June 5, 1987, at the age of 58.
Bill Erickson, a starting guard for Illinois' 1949 national third-place team, died on September 21, 1987, at the age of 59. Teammate Don Sunderlage, the Illini's sixth-leading scorer in 1949 and top point producer for another third-place squad in 1951, died in mid-July 1961 at the age of 31 following an automobile accident in Lake Geneva, Wis.
Don Schlundt, the leading scorer and rebounder for Indiana's 1953 NCAA champion, died of pancreatic cancer in October 1985 at the age of 52. Teammate Dick Farley, the Hoosiers' third-leading scorer, passed away from cancer in early October 1969 at the age of 37.
Forward Bob Ames, who scored a total of eight points in three playoff games in 1955 for La Salle's national runner-up after being a member of the Explorers' 1954 NCAA titlist, was killed in Beirut in 1983 at the age of 49. A truck loaded with TNT on a suicide mission rammed into the facility where Ames, a father of six children, was staying while serving as a liaison trying to allay contacts among the Lebanese, Syrians and Israelis in hopes of calming the escalating discord. He joined the CIA and worked his way up the chain of command to become the Director of the CIA's Office of Analysis of the Near East and South Asia. "The Spy Who Loved Basketball" worked closely with both the Carter and Reagan administrations.
Bucky O'Connor, coach for Iowa's 1955 Final Four club and 1956 runner-up, died in 1958 at the age of 44 in a highway accident near Waterloo. "The boy who has faith in God can look to the future without worry or strain," O'Connor told his players. "I firmly believe that the boys on our team who attend church are more likely to be successful because they can face their problems with hope and encouragement."
Jim Krebs, the leading scorer and rebounder for Southern Methodist's 1956 Final Four squad, was killed in 1965 at the age of 29 in a freak accident. While helping a neighbor clear storm damage, a tree limb fell the wrong way and crushed his skull.
Forward Al Filardi, the third-leading rebounder for NYU's 1960 national fourth-place squad, just turned 60 when he died in early August 1999.
Gary Bradds, a backup to national player of the year Jerry Lucas for Ohio State's 1962 NCAA runner-up before earning the same award himself two years later, died of cancer in July 1983 when he was 40. Bradds was principal of an elementary school in Bowersville, Ohio, at the time of his demise.
Vic Rouse, leading rebounder for Loyola of Chicago's 1963 NCAA champion, died in late May 1999 at the age of 56. He owned an educational consulting firm after earning three masters degrees and an PhD.
Bill Buntin, the leading rebounder and second-leading scorer (behind Cazzie Russell) for Michigan's Final Four teams in 1964 and 1965, collapsed and died during an informal workout one day after his 26th birthday in May 1968.
Forward Jamie Thompson, the third-leading scorer for Wichita's 1965 fourth-place team who tallied 36 points when the Shockers were eliminated in the national semifinals by eventual champion UCLA, died in January 2006 at the age of 60.
Guard Rudy Waterman, Dayton's third-leading scorer for 1967 national runner-up, died at 34 in mid-June 1979 after shooting himself and developing bacterial meningitis while hospitalized in New York. He had been fired from his job as a sales representative for a Midwest aluminum company.
Ken Spain and Theodis Lee, starting frontcourters with All-American Elvin Hayes for Houston's team that entered the 1968 Final Four with an undefeated record, each died of cancer. Spain, who overcame cancer after he was first diagnosed with it in 1977, died of the disease 13 years later in October 1990 when he was 44. Lee, who played for the Harlem Globetrotters, was 33 when he passed away in March 1979, one week after the illness was diagnosed. Teammate Don Kruse, a center for the Cougars' national third-place team in 1967, died in the spring of 2004 at the age of 59.
Steve Patterson, one of UCLA's top three rebounders for NCAA kingpins in 1970 and 1971 after serving as Lew Alcindor's understudy for another titlist in 1969, died in 2004 at the age of 56 because of lung cancer.
Howard Porter, Villanova's leading scorer and rebounder for 1971 runner-up, was trying to trade money and crack cocaine for sex with a prostitute in St. Paul in May 2007 when the probation officer was beaten to death at the age of 58, according to murder charges filed several months later.
Forward Mike Lawhon, Louisville's third-leading scorer for the Cardinals' 1972 national fourth-place team, died in early April 2004 at the age of 53. Lawhon was an orthopedic surgeon who passed away while attending a medical conference.
Larry Finch, Memphis State's leading scorer for 1973 runner-up, died in early April 2011 at the age of 60. Finch suffered the first of multiple strokes 10 years earlier. In early September 2014, his daughter (Shanae), suffering from Crohn's disease, collapsed and died at the age of 39. Teammate Ronnie Robinson, the Tigers' second-leading rebounder and third-leading scorer, died in early May 2004 at the age of 53 from congestive heart failure.
Maurice Lucas, leading scorer and rebounder for Marquette's 1974 national runner-up, died in 2010 at the age of 58 from bladder cancer. Teammate Jerry Homan, a backup frontcourter, had a son, Luke, pass away in the fall of 2006 when the UW-LaCrosse student's body was recovered in the Mississippi River after last seen celebrating Oktoberfest (UW-L teammate Austin Scott was charged with two counts of obstructing officers for lying to authorities during the death investigation).
Danny Knight, the leading scorer and rebounder for Kansas' 1974 Final Four team, was 24 when he died in June 1977, three weeks after sustaining injuries in a fall down the steps at his home. Knight had been suffering headaches for some time and doctors attributed his death to an aneurysm in the brain. Teammate Norm Cook, the Jayhawks' second-leading rebounder and fourth-leading scorer as a freshman, was 53 in 2008 when he died after suffering from paranoid schizophrenia most of his adult life.
Dan Hall, a frontcourt backup from Kentucky's historic recruiting class as a freshman for UK's 1975 NCAA Tournament runner-up, died of an apparent suicide at age 58 the first full week in January 2013. Hall subsequently transferred to Marshall, where he averaged 10.4 ppg and 5.6 rpg in 1976-77 and 1977-78. UK teammate G.J. Smith, a reserve forward, died in late summer 2012 at the age of 59 because of a heart attack.
Center Jerome Whitehead, the second-leading rebounder and third-leading scorer for Marquette's 1977 NCAA titlist, was 56 in mid-December 2012 when he was found dead because of chronic alcohol abuse. Teammate Gary Rosenberger, a guard who was the fourth-leading scorer in coach Al McGuire's swan song, passed away in the fall of 2013 at the age of 57 due to complications from a heart attack and stroke.
Forward Glen Gondrezick, the leading rebounder and third-leading scorer for UNLV's 1977 third-place club, died in late April 2009 at the age of 53 due to complications stemming from a heart transplant he received the previous September. Teammate Lewis Brown, the third-leading rebounder and sixth-leading scorer for UNLV, spent more than 10 years homeless on the streets of Santa Monica, Calif., before passing away in mid-September 2011 at the age of 56. According to the New York Times, family members said the 6-11 center used cocaine with the Rebels. "Drugs were his downfall," said his sister. Murray State transfer Larry Moffett, UNLV's second-leading rebounder, passed away in early May 2011 in Shreveport, La., at the age of 56. He previously was a cab driver in Las Vegas.
Guard Chad Kinch, the third-leading scorer for UNC Charlotte's 1977 national fourth-place team as a freshman, died at his parents' home in Cartaret, N.J., from complications caused by AIDS. He passed away on April 3, 1994, the day between the Final Four semifinals and final in Charlotte. The host school happened to be UNC Charlotte. It was the second time Kinch's parents lost a son. Sixteen years earlier, Ray Kinch, a Rutgers football player, was killed in a house fire. UNCC teammate Lew Massey, the 49ers' runner-up in scoring and rebounding, died in mid-January 2014 at the age of 57.
Orlando Woolridge, a backup freshman in 1978 when Notre Dame made its lone Final Four appearance before he became a scoring specialist in 13 NBA seasons, died at the end of May 2012 at the age of 52 because of a chronic heart condition.
Matt White, the second-leading rebounder and third-leading scorer for Penn's 1979 Final Four squad as a senior, was fatally stabbed in mid-February 2013 by his wife, who told police she had caught him looking at child pornography. White, the Quakers' all-time leader in field-goal shooting (59.1%), was 55.
Derek Smith, the leading rebounder and second-leading scorer as a sophomore forward for Louisville's 1980 NCAA champion, died of a heart ailment at age 34 on August 9, 1996, while on a cruise with his family. He was the leading scorer and second-leading rebounder for the Cardinals' 1982 Final Four team before averaging 12.8 ppg and 3.2 rpg in the NBA with five different franchises. His son, Nolan, became a starting guard for Duke's 2010 NCAA titlist.
Rob Williams, leading scorer for Houston's 1982 Final Four team, died of congestive heart failure at the age of 52 in March 2014 after suffering a stroke 15 years earlier that left him blind in his left eye and partially paralyzed on his left side. Williams denied rumors he was too high on cocaine to play up to par against North Carolina in the national semifinals (0-for-8 field-goal shooting). But Williams admitted he used drugs. "Cocaine came later but I started out smoking weed (in junior high)," Williams said. "I was always a curious type of fellow, so I wanted to see what cocaine was about. So I tried it. And to tell you the truth, I liked it."
Lorenzo Charles, the second-leading rebounder for N.C. State's 1983 champion, provided one of the tourney's most memorable moments with a game-winning dunk against heavily-favored Houston in the final. Working for a limousine and bus company based in Apex, N.C., he was killed in June 2011 when the charter bus the 47-year-old was driving with no passengers aboard crashed along Interstate 40 in Raleigh. Wolfpack coach Jim Valvano also was 47 in the spring of 1993 when he passed away because of cancer. Backup forward Quinton Leonard died of a heart attack in the spring of 2006 at the age of 44.
Melvin Turpin, the leading scorer and second-leading rebounder as a senior for Kentucky's 1984 Final Four team (29-5 record), was 49 and battling diabetes in July 2010 when he committed suicide with a self-inflicted gunshot to the chest.
Baskerville Holmes, a starting forward who averaged 9.6 points and 5.9 rebounds per game for Memphis State's 1985 Final Four team, and his girlfriend were found shot to death on March 18, 1997 in an apparent murder-suicide in Memphis. He was 32.
Mike Masucci, a freshman backup center for Kansas' eventual 1988 champion dismissed from the Jayhawks before the tourney commenced and his subsequent transfer, died in January 2005 at the age of 36 from a heart attack.
Guard Phil Henderson, the leading scorer and senior captain of Duke's 1990 NCAA Tournament runner-up, died of cardiac arrest in mid-February 2013 at his home in the Philippines at the age of 44. He was the Blue Devils' second-leading scorer as a junior and sixth-leading scorer as a sophomore for two more Final Four squads.
Larry Marks, a backup forward for Arkansas' 1990 Final Four squad after being a starter the previous season, died of an apparent heart attack in mid-June 2000 after playing some recreational basketball. He was 33.
Sean Tunstall, a reserve guard for Kansas' 1991 NCAA Tournament runner-up was shot and killed at age 28 in the parking lot of a recreation center in his native St. Louis on October 16, 1997, in a drug deal gone bad. Tunstall, recruited to KU when Larry Brown was the Jayhawks' coach, had received a prison sentence after pleading guilty to one count of selling cocaine in 1993. "He was one of the few kids I never thought I completely reached," then KU coach Roy Williams said. Power forward Chris Lindley, who signed with Kansas and would have been a freshman for the 1991 squad before having his right foot amputated in January 1990 after a train accident, died at 34 in mid-February 2007.
Peter Sauer, a captain and third-leading rebounder for Stanford's 1998 Final Four squad, was 35 when he collapsed during a recreation game in White Plains, N.Y., hit his head and never was revived. His father, Mark Sauer, is a former president of two pro franchises - the NHL's St. Louis Blues and MLB's Pittsburgh Pirates.
A 32-year-old brother of defensive stopper Byron Mouton, Maryland's fourth-leading scorer and rebounder for a 2001 Final Four team, was shot and killed in an apparent carjacking incident in Houston about one month into the next season. The Terrapins went on to capture the 2002 NCAA championship as the Tulane transfer finished as their third-leading rebounder and fourth-leading scorer.
Rutgers might need to visit its archives and bring Dick Vitale back as a recruiter. The Scarlet Knights have fallen on hard times and are the nation's only NCAA Division I school not to have an all-conference choice in the previous eight seasons. Vitale helped lure diploma-less coach Eddie Jordan to Piscataway before the Scarlet Knights reached the 1976 Final Four.
Rutgers, failing to secure an all-league choice since Quincy Douby in 2005-06, is headed for its third alliance in as many campaigns. The Knights' arrival gives the Big Ten Conference additional Nebraska/Northwestern/Penn State mediocrity - a famine-relief trio combining for three NCAA playoff victories in previous 59 years (all by Nittany Lions).
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 last season, is joined by DePaul and Samford on the following list of schools enduring honor droughts having no all-league picks at least the past six seasons:
"It is better to be looked over than overlooked." - Mae West
It doesn't seem possible, but Rick Barnes (Texas), Billy Donovan (Florida) and Bo Ryan (Wisconsin) never have been anointed as national coach of the year by a major award despite being the all-time winningest coaches for their respective power conference schools. Enhancing their prospects for placement on a pedestal this campaign is recognition among the AP preseason Top 10 teams.
Maryland named its court after Gary Williams, the school's all-time winningest coach who guided the Terrapins to the 2002 NCAA title during a span when he became the only mentor ever to defeat the nation's top-ranked team in four straight seasons (2000-01 through 2003-04). Surprisingly, Williams never was courted as national coach of the year by one of the major awards, joining Donovan (back-to-back titles in 2006 and 2007) and other NCAA championship coaches such as Denny Crum, Joe B. Hall, Don Haskins, Rollie Massimino and Jim Valvano "shorted" by this dubious distinction.
Does this blemish exist because of envious fellow coaches or the media in dire need of brain scans? A total of 17 individuals received acclaim as national COY despite never reaching an NCAA playoff regional final - Rod Barnes, Tony Bennett, Mike Brey, Perry Clark, Jim Crews, Keno Davis, Matt Doherty, Cliff Ellis, Eddie Fogler, Frank Haith, Leonard Hamilton, Marv Harshman, Todd Lickliter, George Raveling, Al Skinner, Charlie Spoonhour and Dick Versace. Following is an alphabetical list of high-profile retired coaches who never received one of the five major national coach of the year awards since 1955 despite their significant achievements:
Dave Bliss - Compiled a total of 14 20-win seasons with three different schools.
Dale Brown - Led LSU to 15 consecutive postseason tournaments (1979 through 1993) en route to becoming the second-winningest coach in SEC history at the time (behind Adolph Rupp) in both overall and SEC games.
Denny Crum - Won 15 regular-season conference championships in the Missouri Valley and Metro in his first 23 seasons with Louisville; only coach to twice win conference and NCAA tournaments in the same year (1980 and 1986).
Don DeVoe - Compiled a total of 12 20-win seasons with three different schools.
Don Donoher - One of first 10 coaches to take his first three teams to the NCAA playoffs guided his first seven Dayton clubs to national postseason competition; posted double digits in victories all 25 seasons.
Lefty Driesell - One of only three different coaches to guide four different schools to the NCAA playoffs; captured conference tournament titles in four different leagues; only coach to win more than 100 games for four different schools en route to total of 786 victories; had 14 final Top 20 rankings.
Jack Gardner - Only coach to direct two different schools to the Final Four at least twice apiece.
Pete Gillen - Remarkable run with Xavier (winning five Midwestern Collegiate Conference Tournament titles in six-year span from 1986 through 1991) before posting 20-win seasons with Providence in the Big East and Virginia in the ACC.
Don Haskins - Captured four Western Athletic Conference Tournament championships with Texas-El Paso in a seven-year span from 1984 through 1990 while winning more than 20 games each of those seasons; compiled a total of 17 20-win campaigns.
Harry Litwack - Finished third with Temple in three consecutive national postseason tournaments (1956 and 1958 in NCAA and 1957 in NIT). Posted only one losing record in 21 seasons with the Owls through 1973.
Rollie Massimino - Averaged more than 20 victories annually in the 1980s; participated in 14 consecutive national postseason tournaments with Villanova and UNLV before coaching at small-school level in Florida.
Joe Mullaney - Reached the 20-win plateau nine straight seasons from 1958-59 through 1966-67, directing Providence to the NIT semifinals four times in the first five years of that stretch; won more than two-thirds of his games with the Friars decided by fewer than five points.
Tom Penders - Won at least 20 games with three different schools (Rhode Island, Texas and George Washington) a total of 10 times in a 13-year span from 1987 through 1999 before winning more than 20 games three times in six seasons with Houston.
Fred Schaus - Won Southern Conference Tournament championships each of his six seasons with West Virginia from 1955 through 1960 before posting winning records in Big Ten competition all six years with Purdue.
Billy Tubbs - Directed Oklahoma to 12 consecutive 20-win seasons, a Big Eight Conference best; took the Sooners to national postseason play his last 13 years with them before moving on to TCU and Lamar.
Which will be the next touted team failing to live up to enormous preseason hype? There has been an average of one such squad fall in that dubious category each year thus far this century. It doesn't seem possible, but could Kentucky under John Calipari dramatically disappoint for the third consecutive campaign if the Wildcats' flaunted freshmen flop? Or could Arizona, Duke, Kansas and Wisconsin be knocked off their preseason pedestals?
The last 21 squads in this great-expectations category incurred at least double digits in defeats. Following is a chronological list of the first 25 teams that were preseason Top 5 selections since 1968-69 but finished 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|
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 last season that had multiple players declare early for the NBA?
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. Will UK, after freshmen Julius Randle and James Young were among the top 17 NBA draft choices in 2014, duplicate that feat this campaign? 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. 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 such pro defections, Kentucky faces an uphill climb based on 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 Lost to NBA Draft||Record||Postseason Outcome Next Season|
|1995||Arkansas (2)||Scotty Thurman, Corliss Williamson||20-13||Lost regional semifinal|
|1995||North Carolina (2)||Jerry Stackhouse, Rasheed Wallace||21-11||Lost in second round|
|1996||Mississippi State (2)||Erick Dampier, Dontae' Jones||12-18||Did not qualify|
|1998||North Carolina (2)||Vince Carter, Antawn Jamison||24-10||Lost in first round|
|1999||Duke (3)||William Avery, Elton Brand, Corey Maggette||29-5||Lost regional semifinal|
|2000||Florida (2)||Donnell Harvey, Mike Miller||24-7||Lost in second round|
|2001||Arizona (3)||Gilbert Arenas, Richard Jefferson, Michael Wright||24-10||Lost regional semifinal|
|2001||Michigan State (2)||Zach Randolph, Jason Richardson||19-12||Lost in first round|
|2004||Connecticut (2)||Ben Gordon, Emeka Okafor||23-8||Lost in second round|
|2005||Illinois (2)||Dee Brown, Deron Williams||26-7||Lost in second round|
|2005||North Carolina (4)||Raymond Felton, Sean May, Rashad McCants, Marvin Williams||23-8||Lost in second round|
|2007||Florida (4)||Corey Brewer, Taurean Green, Al Horford, Joakim Noah||24-12||Reached NIT semifinals|
|2007||Ohio State (3)||Mike Conley Jr., Daequan Cook, Greg Oden||24-13||Won NIT|
|2008||Kansas (3)||Darrell Arthur, Mario Chalmers, Brandon Rush||27-8||Lost regional semifinal|
|2008||UCLA (3)||Kevin Love, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, Russell Westbrook||26-9||Lost in second round|
|2011||Kentucky (2)||Brandon Knight, DeAndre Liggins||38-2||Won national title|
|2012||Kentucky (5)||Anthony Davis, Terrence Jones, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Doron Lamb, Marquis Teague||21-12||Lost in NIT first round|
|2013||Michigan (2)||Trey Burke, Tim Hardaway Jr.||28-9||Lost regional final|
|2014||Kentucky (2)||Julius Randle, James Young||TBD||TBD|
Did You Know?: Rick Barnes (Texas), Gene Bartow (UAB), Bob McKillop (Davidson), Mike Montgomery (Stanford) and Bo Ryan (Wisconsin) incurred defeats in their debuts before eventually becoming the all-time winningest coaches for these schools. Check out the following November calendar for memorable games in NCAA major-college history:
9 - Brad Stevens made his Butler debut in 2007 with a 61-45 victory at Ball State before guiding the Bulldogs to the NCAA Tournament championship game in back-to-back years in 2010 and 2011. . . . David Holston (43 points vs. St. Bonaventure at Austin, Tex., in 2006) set Chicago State's Division I single-game scoring record. . . . Junior Hairston (21 rebounds vs. Loyola Maryland in 2007) set Towson's Division I single-game rebounding record.
13 - Rotnei Clarke (51 points vs. Alcorn State in 2009) set Arkansas' single-game scoring record before transferring to Butler. . . . Gregg Marshall made his Wichita State debut in 2007 with a 61-56 victory vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff before guiding the Shockers to the 2013 Final Four and becoming national COY in 2014. . . . Siena's school-record 38-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Vermont (80-76 in 2010). . . . Shaka Smart made his VCU coaching debut in 2009 with a 77-51 triumph vs. Bethune-Cookman before directing the Rams to the 2011 Final Four.
14 - Jamie Dixon made his Pittsburgh coaching debut in 2003 with a 71-62 triumph vs. Alabama in New York before becoming national COY in 2009. . . . Larry Eustachy made his Idaho debut in 1990 with an 88-54 victory vs. Simon Fraser before becoming national COY with Iowa State in 2000 and the first coach in NCAA history to compile at least 24 wins in a single season with five different DI schools. . . . Bill Guthridge made his North Carolina debut in 1997 with an 84-56 success vs. Middle Tennessee State en route to becoming the winningest first-year coach in NCAA history and national COY.
15 - Reggie Williams (45 points vs. Virginia Intermont in 2006) set Virginia Military's single-game scoring record.
16 - Al Skinner made his Boston College debut in 1997 with an 87-54 victory vs. Central Connecticut State before going on to become the Eagles' all-time winnningest coach and national COY in 2001.
17 - Rick Barnes made his Texas debut in 1998 with a 71-69 reversal at Houston before going on to become the Longhorns' all-time winningest coach. . . . Bo Ryan made his Wisconsin debut in 2001 with a 74-69 defeat at UNLV before going on to become the Badgers' all-time winningest coach. . . . Florida's school-record 33-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Miami FL (69-67) in 2014.
18 - Mike Brey made his Notre Dame coaching debut in 2000 with a 104-58 rout of Sacred Heart before becoming national COY in 2011. . . . Jim Larranaga made his George Mason debut in 1997 with a 78-72 victory at Howard University before going on to become the Patriots' all-time winningest coach and guiding them to the 2006 Final Four.
19 - Wisconsin's Frank Kaminsky (43 points vs. North Dakota in 2013/modern-era mark) and Stony Brook's D.J. Munir (36 at Sacred Heart in 2001) set school Division I single-game scoring records.
20 - Okechi Egbe (44 points vs. Bethel in 2000) set Tennessee-Martin's Division I single-game scoring record. . . . Tom Izzo made his Michigan State debut in 1995 with a 69-66 triumph at Chaminade en route to becoming the Spartans' all-time winningest coach. . . . Chicago product Ben Wilson, entering his senior season generally regarded as the nation's premier prospect because of Magic Johnson-like skills, was shot within a block of high school campus and died the next day after bumping into two gang members while walking down the street following lunch break.
21 - Nick Davis (23 rebounds vs. Jackson State in 1997) set Arkansas' single-game rebounding record. . . . Mark Few made his Gonzaga debut in 1999 with a 76-61 triumph at Montana en route to becoming the Zags' all-time winningest coach. . . . Jay Wright made his Villanova coaching debut in 2001 with an 82-68 victory vs. Grambling State before becoming national COY in 2006 and guiding the Wildcats to the 2009 Final Four.
22 - Billy Donovan made his Florida debut in 1996 with an 80-63 triumph vs. UCF en route to becoming the Gators' all-time winningest coach. . . . Scott Drew made his Baylor debut in 2003 with a 72-59 success vs. Texas Southern en route to becoming the Bears' all-time winningest coach. . . . Western Carolina's Kevin Martin (46 points vs. Coastal Carolina in 2002) and Stony Brook's Anthony Jackson (36 at Toledo in 2013) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Bruce Weber made his Illinois coaching debut in 2003 with a 94-66 victory vs. Western Illinois before becoming national COY in 2005 when guiding the Illini to the NCAA Tournament championship game.
23 - Kevin Stallings made his Vanderbilt debut in 1999 with a 72-55 triumph over Belmont en route to becoming the Commodores' all-time winningest coach.
24 - Gene Bartow made his UAB debut in 1978 with a 64-55 defeat against Nebraska before becoming the Blazers' all-time winningest coach. . . . Steve Fisher made his San Diego State debut in 1999 with a 73-57 victory vs. UC Riverside en route to becoming the Aztecs' all-time winningest coach and national COY in 2011. . . . Nolan Richardson made his Arkansas debut in 1985 with an 86-72 triumph over Southern Illinois en route to becoming the Razorbacks' all-time winningest coach.
25 - Bethune-Cookman's Reggie Cunningham (46 points at Stetson in 1995) and Nevada's Kevin Franklin (48 at Loyola Marymount in 1989) set school Division I single-game scoring records. . . . Louisiana Tech's school-record 39-game homecourt winning streak was snapped by Stephen F. Austin (67-58) in 1985. . . . Steve Alford made his Southwest Missouri State coaching debut in 1995 with an 83-71 win vs. Texas-Pan American en route to guiding four different DI schools to the NCAA playoffs. . . . Lute Olson made his Arizona debut in 1983 with a 72-65 triumph over Northern Arizona en route to becoming the Wildcats' all-time winningest coach. . . . Bob Huggins made his Cincinnati debut in 1989 with a 66-64 triumph over Minnesota en route to becoming the Bearcats' all-time winningest coach. . . . Gale Catlett made his West Virginia debut in 1978 with an 86-66 triumph over Rider en route to becoming the Mountaineers' all-time winningest coach. . . . Bob McKillop made his Davidson debut in 1989 with an 84-65 setback at Wake Forest before becoming the Wildcats' all-time winningest coach and earning national COY acclaim in 2008. . . . Roy Williams made his Kansas coaching debut in 1988 with a 94-81 success at Alaska-Anchorage before becoming national COY on four occasions. . . . Eventual national player of year Tim Duncan went scoreless in his Wake Forest debut, a 70-68 loss at NCAA Division II Alaska-Anchorage in 1993.
26 - Dana Altman made his Creighton debut in 1994 with a 68-61 win at Oral Roberts en route to becoming the Bluejays' all-time winningest coach. . . . Dave Bliss made his New Mexico debut in 1988 with a 96-71 success vs. Loyola (Md.) en route to becoming the Lobos' all-time winningest coach. . . . Jim Boeheim made his Syracuse debut in 1976 with a 75-48 triumph over Harvard en route to setting the NCAA career record for most victories by a coach at a single school. . . . Larry Brown made his Kansas coaching debut in 1983 with a 91-76 reversal at Houston before guiding the Jayhawks to the 1988 NCAA title when he was named national COY. . . . John Calipari made his Massachusetts coaching debut in 1988 with an 84-61 success vs. Southern Connecticut before directing the Minutemen and two more schools to the Final Four. . . . In his freshman debut, Rudy Macklin (32 rebounds vs. Tulane in 1976) set Louisiana State's single-game rebounding record. By contrast, eventual national player of year David Robinson went scoreless with only one rebound for Navy in his first game against a DI opponent (Yale in 1983). . . . Kelvin Sampson made his Oklahoma coaching debut in 1994 with an 85-74 victory vs. Coppin State before becoming a two-time national COY with the Sooners. . . . . Bill Self made his ORU debut in 1993 with a 78-66 win vs. Sam Houston State before becoming the only coach in NCAA history to reach a Division I Tournament regional final in back-to-back years with different schools. . . . Tubby Smith made his Tulsa debut in 1991 with a 94-81 setback at TCU before becoming the only coach to take three consecutive teams seeded sixth or worse to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA playoffs and earn national COY acclaim with Kentucky in 2003.
27 - Brandon Wood (39 points at Georgia Southern in 2009) set Valparaiso's single-game scoring record against a Division I opponent. . . . P.J. Carlesimo made his Seton Hall coaching debut in 1982 with an 87-63 victory vs. St. Anselm (N.H.) before directing the Pirates to an NCAA Tournament runner-up finish in 1989 when he was named national COY. . . . Lon Kruger made his Texas-Pan American debut in 1982 with a 66-58 setback vs. Louisiana Tech before becoming the first coach to direct three different schools to the Top 20 of a final wire-service poll. . . . John Thompson Jr. made his Georgetown debut in 1972 with a 61-60 triumph over St. Francis (Pa.) en route to a school-record 596 victories with the Hoyas. . . . Alvan Adams (28 rebounds vs. Indiana State in 1972) set Oklahoma's single-game rebounding record.
28 - Tom Davis made his Iowa debut in 1986 with a 91-81 success at Alaska-Anchorage en route to becoming the Hawkeyes' all-time winningest coach. . . . Lou Henson made his Illinois debut in 1975 with a 60-58 triumph at Nebraska en route to becoming the Illini's all-time winningest coach. . . . Mike Krzyzewski made his Army head coaching debut in 1975 with a 56-29 victory over Lehigh before becoming the all-time winningest coach in NCAA history with Duke. . . . Mike Montgomery made his Stanford debut in 1986 with a 67-65 defeat against Georgia Tech at Richmond before becoming the Cardinal's all-time winningest coach.
29 - The three-point goal was an experimental rule in the Southern Conference in 1980 when Western Carolina's Ronnie Carr made the first three-pointer in history at Reid Gymnasium vs. Middle Tennessee State. . . . Craig Bradshaw (42 points at Ohio University in 2014) set Belmont's single-game scoring record against a DI opponent. . . . Alan Williams (39 vs. South Dakota State in 2013) tied UC Santa Barbara's single-game scoring record. . . . Mike Krzyzewski made his Duke debut in 1980 with a 67-49 triumph over Stetson en route to becoming the Blue Devils' all-time winningest coach. . . . Jim Calhoun made his Connecticut debut in 1986 with a 58-54 triumph over Massachusetts en route to becoming the Huskies' all-time winningest coach. . . . Cliff Ellis made his South Alabama debut with an 82-68 defeat vs. Centenary before becoming the only coach in the 20th Century to hold three school single-season records with at least 25 victories at the same time. . . . Billy Tubbs made his Lamar head coaching debut in 1976 with an 80-73 triumph over Houston Baptist en route to more than 600 victories with three schools. . . . Gene Keady made his Purdue debut in 1980 with a 72-59 triumph over Colorado State en route to becoming the Boilermakers' all-time winningest coach.
30 - Dartmouth set an NCAA single-game record by having nine different players contribute at least one three-point basket vs. Boston College in 1993. . . . John Chaney made his Temple debut in 1982 with a 68-67 triumph at George Washington en route to becoming the Owls' all-time winningest coach. . . . Bobby Cremins made his Georgia Tech debut in 1981 with an 82-66 triumph against Presbyterian (S.C.) en route to becoming the Yellow Jackets' all-time winningest coach.
On the hardwood, Syracuse has been white hot for much of coach Jim Boeheim's four-decade stint. But the Orange joined North Carolina in ACC academic disarray. To the cage cynic, that might translate into additional NCAA probation for non-power conference schools such as Centenary, Cleveland State, Long Beach State, Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana Tech, Western Kentucky and Wichita State.
Off the court, Boeheim occasionally is fire chief extraordinaire, putting out fire after fire including calling an NCAA proposal "completely nuts" requiring teams to be on track to graduating half their players, the dismissal of assistant coach Bernie Fine amid predator allegations and Yahoo Sports publishing a story claiming SU didn't follow its drug-testing policies in allowing 10 players in the previous decade to continue playing after positive results. Right as one might think Boeheim deserved Ex-Cuse fire retardant, the program was embroiled in an NCAA probe resulting in an assortment of sanctions announced near the conclusion of the 2014-15 campaign.
Unaccountable Boeheim seems beleaguered when he doesn't defuse scrutiny by making it appear beneath his dignity to address any significant issue (including hiding under his desk at season-ending post-game press conference). The surly mentor sounds as if he needs a generous dose of truth serum when discussing his program's drug-testing culture and academic anemia. Any relevant candor appears odd such as Boeheim being "impressed" about one-and-done Carmelo Anthony's 1.8 gpa before failing to mention if Anthony attended more classes than games his second semester. Odd also describes the NCAA's timing for not having its probe go back to include Anthony's NCAA titlist squad in 2003.
The tales of tumult escalate when a dismissive Boeheim fails to control his tongue, let alone disdainful facial expressions. Apology notwithstanding, his incendiary money-motivated defense of the alleged 'Cuse Abuse certainly wasn't "fine" when considering the "high" number of suspect students he recruited. In deference to what seemingly is more important to them, the Orange Village People should sing YMCA while passing the hat for player donations before home games rather than a hand-over-the-heart National Anthem.
Syracuse, where Child and Family Studies is emphasized, was one of 13 schools in the 2012 NCAA playoffs that would not have participated in the tournament if a new APR (Academic Progress Rate) was in effect that year. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, who averaged a team-high 16.9 points per game for Harvard in 1986-87, didn't mention Boeheim by name but seemed to take a backhanded slap at him when discussing graduation rates. And Duncan probably wasn't even aware of SU's athletic department Fab(ulous) scholastic string-pulling to keep a defensive dynamo eligible.
"When athletic programs have their priorities in order," Duncan was quoted in USA Today, "there are simply no better ways to teach invaluable life lessons than on the playing field or on the court. I just never understood why a small number of universities and colleges allowed rogue programs and coaches to taint that tremendous record of achievement and success."
SU had a longstanding reputation for giving the most clang for your buck when it came to success at the foul line. A need for eye exams and other physical testing may explain the previous faulty free-throw marksmanship if a striking number of players indeed were fitted for orange jumpsuits upon immersion in alleged off-the-court shenanigans.
Fine was not charged with a crime and refuted the allegations lodged against him. But is accuser Bobby Davis, a former ball boy who unsuccessfully tried to sue Boeheim and the university for defamation (although case still simmers after reinstatement by New York's highest court), lying about him being noticed in Fine's road hotel room or is additional backtracking in the offing for Boeheim? In a worst-case scenario, could he be equally oblivious to the problematical academic progress and drug testing? Perhaps all of these questions will be adequately answered in the next three seasons before Boeheim plans to retire.
Post-college career or not, it isn't worth recounting the off-the-court distractions encountered by a disconcerting number of "Boeheim Bad Boys" who were All-Big East selections. There doesn't appear to be a smoking gun glowing over some of the garbage. But where there's smoke, there's a high likelihood of orange-tinged fire. By any measure, the unseemly incidents and scholastic neglect covering an extended period leave an unsavory culture-of-corruption stench.
If it was easy, then everyone could do it. After playing college hoops for current Division I universities, MLB All-Stars Joe Adcock (LSU/.250 with no extra-base hits), Mickey Cochrane (Boston University/.245), Dick Groat (Duke/.204), Davey Johnson (Texas A&M/.192 and homerless), Kenny Lofton (Arizona/.250), Wally Moon (Texas A&M/.240 with only one extra-base hit), Graig Nettles (San Diego State/.225 and homerless), Jackie Robinson (UCLA/.234) and Dave Winfield (Minnesota/.136 and homerless) struggled at the plate in World Series competition significantly more than they did during the regular season.
On the other hand, which such versatile athletes thrived in the Fall Classic? The premier pitcher and player overall in this category probably is Bob Gibson (Creighton) while the most regal regular may come from among outfielders Earle Combs (Eastern Kentucky), Tony Gwynn (San Diego State) and Riggs Stephenson (Alabama). Following is an All-Mr. October Team featuring former varsity basketball players who attended schools that are or were major colleges before excelling in the World Series:
|Position||Ex-College Hoopster||DI School||World Series Summary|
|LHP||Marius Russo||Long Island||Permitted only one earned run in winning both of his Fall Classic complete games with Yankees - 1941 (vs. Dodgers) and 1943 (Cardinals).|
|RHP||Bob Gibson||Creighton||Compiled 7-2 record and 1.89 ERA with 92 strikeouts in 81 innings with Cardinals in 1964 (Yankees), 1967 (Red Sox) and 1968 (Tigers).|
|Reliever||Ron Reed||Notre Dame||Allowed one run in 5 1/3 innings in five relief appearances with Phillies in 1980 (Royals) and 1983 (Orioles).|
|C||Tom Haller||Illinois||Hit .286 (4-for-14 including one homer off Hall of Fame P Whitey Ford) with Giants in 1962 (Yankees).|
|1B||Hank Greenberg||NYU||Hit .318 (27-for-85) with 14 extra-base hits and 22 RBI with Tigers in 1934 (Cardinals), 1935 (Cubs), 1940 (Reds) and 1945 (Cubs).|
|2B||Charles "Buddy" Myer||Mississippi State||Hit .286 (8-for-28) in eight games with Senators in 1925 (Pirates) and 1933 (Giants).|
|3B||Billy Werber||Duke||Hit .326 (14-for-43) in games with Reds in 1939 (Yankees) and 1940 (Tigers).|
|SS||Alvin Dark||LSU/USL||Hit .323 (21-for-65) in 16 games for Braves (.167) and Giants (.415) in 1948 (Indians), 1951 (Yankees) and 1954 (Indians).|
|LF||Riggs Stephenson||Alabama||Hit .378 (14-for-37) in nine games with Cubs in 1929 (Athletics) and 1932 (Yankees).|
|CF||Earle Combs||Eastern Kentucky||Hit .350 (21-for-60) in 16 games with Yankees in 1926 (Cardinals), 1927 (Pirates), 1928 (Cardinals) and 1932 (Cubs).|
|RF||Tony Gwynn||San Diego State||Hit .371 (13-for-35) with Padres in 1984 (Tigers) and 1998 (Yankees).|
|Most Underrated||Charlie Keller||Maryland||OF hit .306 (22-of-72 with 10 extra-base hits) in 19 games with Yankees in 1939 (Reds), 1941 (Dodgers), 1942 (Cardinals) and 1943 (Cardinals).|
|Manager||Walter Alston||Miami (Ohio)||Seven N.L. pennants with Dodgers resulted in four World Series championships (1955-59-63-65).|
If you need more unassailable evidence proving who are the best team-sport athletes in the world, check out Julius Thomas on the list of premier tight ends in the NFL. Thomas was slated to be the league's most-coveted free agent in the spring of 2015. A striking number of the elite players at that rigorous position are former college basketball players although ESPN (Engineering Social Priorities Network) probably is more interested in positioning Michael Sam for another destination after he was "kissed" adrift from the Dallas Cowboys' practice squad. In the past, what kind of "picks" do you think imposing Mike Ditka (Pittsburgh) and John Mackey (Syracuse) set back in the day before the Big East Conference was formed? Wouldn't you love to see LeBron James maneuver down the field like Charles Atlas the same way he does when driving down the lane?
Although ex-California hoopster Tony Gonzalez failed to reach the 2013 postseason with the Atlanta Falcons in his quest to finally win a playoff game before he retired, succeeding in the NFL remains a "Battle of the Titans" at the TE position. Former hoopsters Antonio Gates (Kent State) and Jimmy Graham (Miami, Fla.) spark the San Diego Chargers and New Orleans Saints, respectively. Coming on strong at the same position is fellow ex-college hoopster Thomas, a relatively obscure player for the Denver Broncos until exploding on the scene last season as their runner-up in touchdowns with 12 and contributing a team-high eight pass receptions in an AFC title-game victory against the New England Patriots.
Thomas, an All-Big Sky Conference hoopster with Portland State, flashed potential as the next game-changing tight end when he caught nine touchdown passes in the Broncos' first five games this season. A 74-yard TD strike to "It's So Easy" at San Diego in mid-season last year illustrated that QB Peyton Manning intends to capitalize on Thomas' athleticism the same way he did ex-hoopster Marcus Pollard (Bradley) with the Indianapolis Colts. Pollard, a J.C. transfer who was the Braves' leading rebounder in 1992-93, caught at least three touchdown passes each of Manning's first seven NFL seasons from 1998 through 2004.
Ditka has a quality successor as an ex-hoopster tight end with the Bears in Martellus Bennett (Texas A&M). Thomas, Bennett and Jordan Cameron of the Cleveland Browns should keep moving up the following list of Top 25 NFL tight ends who were former college basketball players:
|Rank||Former College Hoopster||Alma Mater||Summary of NFL Tight End Career|
|1.||Tony Gonzalez||California||First tight end in NFL history with 100 touchdowns completed his 17-year career in 2013 with 1,325 receptions for 15,127 yards and 111 TDs. He was 13-time Pro Bowl selection.|
|2.||Antonio Gates||Kent State||Set an NFL single-season record with 13 TD receptions in 2004 en route to becoming San Diego Chargers' all-time leader for TD catches, receptions and receiving yards.|
|3.||Mike Ditka||Pittsburgh||Five-time Pro Bowl selection caught 427 passes for 5,812 yards and 43 TDs in 12 seasons.|
|4.||John Mackey||Syracuse||Hall of Famer caught 331 passes for 5,236 yards and 38 TDs in 10 seasons.|
|5.||Jimmy Graham||Miami (Fla.)||Led New Orleans Saints in pass receptions in 2012 and 2013. Twice has had streaks of at least four games with more than 100 yards in pass receptions. After only four years, he ranked second all-time among New Orleans Saints' tight ends in receiving.|
|6.||Todd Heap||Arizona State||Caught 467 passes for 5,492 yards and 41 TDs with the Baltimore Ravens from 2001 through 2010, leading them in receptions in 2002 with 68.|
|7.||Ben Coates||Livingstone (N.C.)||Established NFL single-season record for most receptions by a TE with 96 in 1994.|
|8.||Marcus Pollard||Bradley||Finished his 13-year career with 349 receptions for 4,280 yards and 40 TDs (long of 86 yards in 2001 midway through stint as starter for the Indianapolis Colts).|
|9.||Pete Metzelaars||Wabash (Ind.)||Played in more games at TE than any player in NFL history when he retired. Led the Buffalo Bills with 68 receptions in 1993.|
|10.||Julius Thomas||Portland State||Began 2014 campaign with a bang by catching three first-half TD passes in season opener from Peyton Manning en route to nine TDs in first five games for the Denver Broncos. Thomas was team runner-up with 12 TD receptions the previous year.|
|11.||Joe Senser||West Chester State (Pa.)||Caught 165 passes for 1,822 yards and 16 TDs in four-year career with the Minnesota Vikings in early 1980s.|
|12.||Andrew Glover||Grambling State||Caught at least one TD pass each of his 10 pro seasons from 1991 through 2000, finishing with 208 receptions for 2,478 yards and 24 TDs.|
|13.||Rich McGeorge||Elon (N.C.)||Caught 175 passes for 2,370 yards and 13 TDs with the Green Bay Packers in nine years from 1970 through 1978.|
|14.||Rickey Dudley||Ohio State||Scored 29 TDs in five seasons with the Oakland Raiders before hooking on with two other teams.|
|15.||Derrick Ramsey||Kentucky||Caught 188 passes for 2,364 yards and 21 TDs with three different teams from 1978 to 1987.|
|16.||Jordan Cameron||BYU/Southern California||Blossomed in third year with Cleveland Browns in 2013, catching 80 passes for 917 yards and seven TDs (three in game at Minnesota). He had three contests with at least nine receptions.|
|17.||Reuben Gant||Oklahoma State||Caught 127 passes for 1,850 yards and 15 TDs with the Buffalo Bills in seven seasons from 1974 through 1980.|
|18.||Bob Windsor||Kentucky||Caught 185 passes for 2,307 yards and 14 TDs with the San Francisco 49ers and New England Patriots in nine years from 1967 through 1975.|
|19.||Keith McKeller||Jacksonville State (Ala.)||Caught 124 passes for 1,464 yards and 11 TDs with the Buffalo Bills in seven years from 1987 through 1993.|
|20.||Martellus Bennett||Texas A&M||Caught 205 passes for 2,231 yards and 14 TDs with the Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants and Chicago Bears in first six years from 2008 through 2013.|
|21.||Greg Latta||Morgan State (Md.)||Caught 90 passes for 1,081 yards and seven TDs with the Chicago Bears in five years from 1975 through 1979.|
|22.||Pat Richter||Wisconsin||Caught 99 passes for 1,315 yards and 14 TDs in nine seasons for the Washington Redskins after being their first-round pick in 1962.|
|23.||Jeff King||Virginia Tech||Registered 93 receptions for 802 yards and seven TDs with the Carolina Panthers and Arizona Cardinals in first seven years from 2006 through 2012.|
|24.||Ulysses Norris||Georgia||Best season of seven-year career was in 1983 when he had seven TDs with the Detroit Lions.|
|T25.||Dee Mackey||East Texas State||Caught 94 passes for 1,352 yards and eight TDs in six NFL/AFL seasons from 1960 through 1965.|
|T25.||Al Dixon||Iowa State||Caught 84 passes for 1,248 yards and eight TDs with four different teams from 1977 through 1984.|