As College Basketball continues to get bigger and bigger every year, drawing significant crowds and earning the NCAA millions of dollars, the level of talent that comes through is undeniable.
Every NBA legend was a college basketball player at one time; however, the levels of performance are varying. College success does not always translate into automatic legendary status in the NBA. However, all ten of these individuals are icons of the NBA. These are the ten top college basketball players of all time.
10. Larry Bird (Indiana State, 1976-1979)
Larry Bird is one of the all-time excellent scorers in the NBA, and this was evident from early on in his college career. Larry Legends’ career averages are 30.3PTS-13.3R-4.6A per game. He averaged a double-double for his entire career. In 1979, he was the National Collegiate Player of the Year leading Indian State to the championship game.
9. David Thompson (North Carolina State, 1972-1975)
Skywalker is among the athletes responsible for converting Basketball into the high-flying sport it is today. He’s also responsible for ending UCLA’s Unbeaten run with North Carolina State. He won the NCAA championship in 1974, and next year won the National Collegiate Player of the Year.
8. Jerry Lucas (Ohio State, 1959-1962)
Jerry Lucas was an all-round presence on the Basketball Court. He was averaging 24.3 points and 17.2 rebounds per game at Ohio State. He led his Ohio State team to the NCAA trophy in 1960, where he also won the most outstanding player award. He won the same award next year. Even today, there’s no other player that’s been the Big Ten Player of the Year three times in a row.
7. Elvin Hayes (Houston, 1965-1968)
Elvin Hayes isn’t just a legendary college basketball player; he’s an American icon and ranks very high in college player rankings. He earned legendary status during the 1968 championship. In what was dubbed the Game of the Century, Elvin led his Houston Cougars to a 2-point victory over the UCLA Bruins. Elvin scored 39 points and brought down 15 rebounds, in a magnificent performance. However, his most important contribution was perhaps breaking down the door for more black players in the southern colleges.
6. Tom Gola (La Salle, 1951-1955)
Tom Gola is the player with most rebounds in all-time college players rankings. In his career, he pulled down more than 2000 rebounds and is one of only two men to manage 2000 points in his career as well. His career averages are 20.9 points per game and 18.7 rebounds per game. If you want to repeat his legendary career, you will need a lot of time for training. So a good idea might be to buy assignment online at uk.edubirdie. Just order assignments online and work hard on your sports skills.
5. Oscar Robertson (Cincinnati, 1957-1960)
Several sports enthusiasts consider Oscar Robertson as one of the greatest players to never win a title. However, it wasn’t for lack of trying. Oscar did everything possible, reaching the NCAA final twice with Cincinnati. He was averaging 33.8 points and 15.2 rebounds per game. The Big O is easily one of the best college basketball players ever.
4. Bill Russel (San Francisco, 1953-56)
No one in Basketball has had a better career than Bill Russell, one of the best college players ever. He went on to win 11 NBA titles, and his career in college was equally glittering. He led San Francisco to the NCAA championships two years in a row in 1955 and 56. Russell is also among only five men to average a double-double.
3. Bill Walton (UCLA, 1971-1974)
Bill is responsible for guiding the final stretch of the Bruin’s incredible run during the 60s and 70s. This made him one of the best college basketball players of the year. His productivity on the court was almost machine-like and won the National Collegiate Player of the Year three times in a row. He’s also one of the few players to win multiple titles at the college level.
2. Pete Maravich (LSU, 1967-1970)
If you’re considering pure offense, then there’s no argument for the best college player ever. Pistol Pete had an astonishing 44.2 points per game during his career while dishing out 5.1 assists per game. He’s the holder of the all-time points in college basketball rankings. Pistol Pete holds almost every scoring record at the collegiate level and won college basketball player of the year as well.
1. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (UCLA, 1966-1969)
No one in college history was as dominant as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar; he was under the name of Lew Alcindor back then. He won all three NCAA titles during his time at the UCLA Bruins thanks to his best basketball play, which was unheard of. During those successful years, he won the college basketball player of the year three times in a row as well. The most dominant player in the most dominant team!