The Stanford Cardinal men’s basketball team competes in the powerful Pacific-10 Conference. Among Stanford’s basketball accomplishments are 16 NCAA Tournament appearances, three national championships, and two dozen players in the NBA. The best NBA players from Stanford University include two members of the Basketball Hall of Fame, George Yardley and Jim Pollard.
Hall of Fame forward George Yardley was one of the greatest NBA players from Stanford University. Yardley was a six-time All-Star in the 1950s with the Pistons and the Nationals. He put together a pair of double-double seasons in 1956-57 and 1957-58, winning the NBA’s scoring crown in the latter season with 27.8 points per game. For his nine-year career, Yardley posted averages of 19.2 points, 8.9 rebounds, and 1.7 assists. He owns the first 2,000 point season in the history of the NBA.
Forward Jim Pollard is a Hall of Famer, a five-time NBA Champion, and one of the top NBA players from Stanford University. In 1942, Pollard helped lead the Cardinal to an NCAA Championship. He was chosen in the first ever draft and joined the Lakers a year later. He earned four All-Star selections and played on five title winners in his seven NBA seasons from 1948 to 1955. Pollard was frequently among the scoring leaders in the early seasons of the league and he retired with averages of 13.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per contest.
The top active NBA player from Stanford University is rising star center Brook Lopez. Lopez carried the Cardinals to their most recent Sweet Sixteen in 2008 as he earned All-America honors from the AP. He entered the NBA as a lottery pick by the Nets and was named to the All-Rookie First Team with 13.0 points, 8.1 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks per game. While the Nets struggled, Lopez picked up his individual production in the 2009-10 campaign with 18.8 points per game. He enters the 2010-11 season as one of the NBA’s best young centers.
Guard Josh Childress is one of the most talented NBA players from Stanford University. Childress was a member of three NCAA Tournament teams at Stanford and he earned All-America First Team honors in 2004. He joined the Hawks as the sixth pick of the 2004 NBA Draft and played four good seasons with the organization. He has averages of 11.1 points, 5.6 rebounds, a .522 field goal percentage through 285 games. After a two-season stint playing professionally in Greece, Childress is returning to the NBA in 2010 with the Suns.
Former center Rich Kelley was one of the best NBA players from Stanford University. Kelley had a great collegiate career with the Cardinal, averaging 18.6 points and 12.4 rebounds in three years. The Jazz chose him seventh overall in 1975 to start a steady 11-year career in the NBA. Kelley steadily improved in his first four years with the Jazz, posting his best season in his last season with the organization. In 1978-79, he averaged 15.7 points, 12,8 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 2.1 blocks, each of which marked his career highs. Kelley totaled 6,199 points and 5,678 rebounds in 814 games.
NBA & ABA Players Who Attended Stanford University. Basketball-Reference.com