The Eagles men’s basketball team of Eastern Michigan University play in the NCAA’s Mid-American Conference. The Eagles have had nine players reach the NBA and since 1988 they have been to four NCAA Tournaments. The best NBA players from Eastern Michigan are led by Basketball Hall of Famer George Gervin.
The greatest NBA player from Eastern Michigan University is Hall of Fame swingman George Gervin. The Iceman averaged 29.5 points and 15.3 rebounds for the Eagles in 1971-72 before entering the ABA with the Virginia Squares. In 1974, Gervin was traded to San Antonio where he put together an incredible 12-year run with the team. In four ABA seasons between Virginia and San Antonio, he averaged 21.9 points and earned three All-Star selections.
The Spurs joined the NBA in 1976 where Gervin became one of the league’s all-time greatest players. Known for his patented finger-roll, Gervin was a terrific athletic scorer with the eighth highest scoring average in NBA history at 26.2 points per game. From 1977-78 to 1979-80, he was the NBA scoring champion three straight times. He accomplished the feat for a fourth time in 1981-82. Gervin took home five consecutive All-NBA First Team honors from 1978 to 1982 and played in nine NBA All-Star Games.
With 23,602 points for San Antonio, the Iceman is the Spurs’ all-time leading scorer. He combined for 26,595 points between the Squares, Spurs, and Bulls which ranks 13th all-time in NBA/ABA history. Gervin added 5,602 rebounds and 1,283 steals in his professional career.
Grant Long was a power forward for 15 seasons and one of the best NBA players from Eastern Michigan University. Long played four seasons for the Eagles from 1984 to 1988 and led them to the first NCAA Tournament appearance in school history. He was drafted by the Miami Heat and spent the first half of his career with them. Long averaged 11.6 points and 7.0 rebounds in seven seasons with Miami before spending the rest of his career bouncing from team to team. He had his career year in 1991-92 with 14.2 points, 8.1 rebounds, and 1.6 steals per contest. Long retired in 2003 with 9,518 points and 6,154 rebounds in his career.
Five-foot-five point guard Earl Boykins is the only current NBA player from Eastern Michigan University. At Eastern Michigan, Boykins was an explosive scorer with 2,211 points in NCAA competition. In 1998, he went undrafted, but he was signed by the Nets and stuck around the NBA for 11 seasons and counting. His best years came with the Nuggets from 2003 to 2007 when he averaged 12.1 points and 4.0 assists per game. Boykins will enter the 2010-11 season with the Bucks.
NBA & ABA Players Who Attended Eastern Michigan University. Basketball-Reference.com