Friday, April 3, 2009

Best-ever Tar Heels: SFs and post players

Is James Worthy, of Gastonia, the top post player in Tar Heels history?


With North Carolina in the Final Four again, we thought it would be a good time to list our choices for the Tar Heels’ top five players at small forward and post players: Point guards and shooting guards were in Thursday's O List.

Small Forwards

5. JERRY STACKHOUSE (1993-95): Unfair pressure from those who expected the Next Michael Jordan, but a spectacular player nonetheless. Stackhouse was a consensus all-American in 1995, specializing in magnificent dunks, and he also was a proficient three-point shooter.

4. AL WOOD (1977-81): One of the purest shooters to ever wear Carolina Blue, and remembered largely for scoring 39 on Virginia and Ralph Sampson in the 1981 Final Four semifinals. But Wood was smooth and consistent. Fifth on the school scoring list with 2,015 points.

3. LENNIE ROSENBLUTH (1953-57): Led the most magical Tar Heels’ season ever, when North Carolina went 32-0 and won the 1957 national championship. That season was the Year of Lennie. Rosenbluth, a prolific scorer and tenacious rebounder, was named NCAA National Player of the Year, ACC Player of the Year, ACC tournament MVP, and NCAA regional MVP.

2. LARRY MILLER (1965-69): Just 6-foot-4, Miller still managed to dominate at the college level. He was a tremendous banger inside and a driver who also had an on-target jumper from the wing or the corner. He led the Tar Heels to Dean Smith’s first two Final Fours. And he was twice named ACC Player of the Year, in 1967 and ’68. By the way, he scored an ABA-record 67 points in one game as a Carolina Cougar.

1. BILLY CUNNINGHAM (1962-65): The Kangaroo Kid – check this out – led the ACC in scoring in both 1964 and ’65, and averaged 24.8 points and 15.4 rebounds for his career. A great leaper, Cunningham is UNC’s all-time leading rebounder despite standing 6-foot-6, and the 1965 ACC Player of the Year was named one of the league’s 50 best players. Also starred for years in the NBA and ABA.

Post Players


5. ANTAWN JAMISON (1995-98): Led UNC to Final Fours in 1997 and ’98, and in the latter season he was the unanimous national player of the year. He also became the first UNC player in 22 seasons to average double figures in points (22.2) and rebounds (10.5). A quick leaper with a deft touch inside that carried over into the NBA.

4. SEAN MAY (2002-05): OK, so you’re not happy about his weight as a Charlotte Bobcat. We’re talking college here, where he got better and better (and in better shape) until he was Final Four MVP in UNC’s 2005 national title run. May was a combination of finesse and power inside, with some of the best hands ever given a big man.

3. SAM PERKINS (1980-84): North Carolina’s all-time leading rebounder (1,167) helped the program to three straight regular-season ACC titles. Perkins was so quick and smooth that his play seemed effortless, and he seemed to do everything well. Somewhat overshadowed by Michael Jordan and James Worthy, he was still a three-time first-team all-America.

2. JAMES WORTHY (1979-82): Gastonia’s own “Big Game James” was exactly that. Remember him at 6-foot-9, taking the ball right at Georgetown’s 7-foot Patrick Ewing in the 1982 national title game? Worthy and the Tar Heels won (he scored 28), and he was named national player of the year. He would become a member of both the top 50 ACC players and top 50 NBA players.

1. TYLER HANSBROUGH (2005-09): Relentless inside, always working, always hustling. Some folks get tired of hearing that, but it’s said so often because it’s true. The leading scorer in ACC history and a four-time consensus all-American. He returned for his senior year to put the last notch in his resume, a national title. Hansbrough might not have as good an NBA career as others on this list, but a more effective college player is hard to find. Stan Olson

Disagree with any of the choices? Remind us who we left out in the comments section below. No matter how much you beg, though, Pete Budko doesn’t make it.

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

SO there are 10 guys on this list and two of them are the UNC 'all time leading rebounder'...what the...

Anonymous said...

Brad Daugherty-True Center

Anonymous said...

Worth was not named poy. He was MOP of the Final Four. Big Ralph was poy.

Anonymous said...

wheres leon martin?

Anonymous said...

James Worthy has to be over Hansbrough. If James doesn't get hurt his freshman year and then go pro after the 82 title he more than likely would be regarded as the most accomplished player in UNC history. Putting Sleepy Floyd on a poster with that dunk seals the deal.

Anonymous said...

Mitch Kupchak

Anonymous said...

Mike O'Koren
Dudley Bradley
Bobby Jones
Rasheed Wallace
J.R. Reid

Anonymous said...

J.R. Reid was a force in college. I also think Brad Daugherty was a very smooth post player.

Charles said...

No Bobby Jones? No Bob McAdoo even though 1 year = 1 Final Four? Hansbrough #1. What are y'all drinking down there? Please, don't do anymore lists. It just makes you look incompetent.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:45 AM You are right; plus the High School Class of 1979 is considered by most the best ever(James Worthy, Ralph Sampson, John Paxson, Quintin Dailey, Sidney Green, Clark Kellogg, Antoine Carr, Byron Scott, Dominique Wilkins, Sidney Lowe, Dereck Whittenburg, etc).....

Anonymous said...

Also Isiah Thomas was part of the High School Class of 1979.....

Anonymous said...

“Cunningham is UNC’s all-time leading rebounder”

“SAM PERKINS (1980-84): North Carolina’s all-time leading rebounder (1,167)”


Really? Are you sure about that?

You should proofread your work.

Anonymous said...

Terrible list. Jamison was better than May and they were both better than Tyler Hansborough. Worthy was better than them al.

Anonymous said...

This is for Anonymous! Stopping hating and get a life! You hating so hating so much it seem like you a sorry Duke fan! If not act like you fan of the Carolina blue and represent that! I been a Tarheel Fan since I was around ten or eleven broken in by my late grandmother! So remember everybody have a opinion and your isn't the last! Also, get a hobby or hobbies and stopping blogging so mush and sharing blogging with other people!

Anonymous said...

sean may decided to play the last 8 games of the season, NO WAY and I mean NO WAY , does he belong near this list, not even honorable mention. Brad daugherty has to be on that list, taken first pick in the NBA draft, consistent night in and night out, stan, come on!!! I can give you more that are better than may. Serge swikker, warren martin, Tyler zeller, chiki yoniker, you never even mentioned Eric Montross, sean may , I don't think so

Anonymous said...

Honorable mention

Rasheed Wallace
Eric montross
JR Reid
Pete Chilcut
Rich yonicker
Mike okoren
Mitch kupchak
Tommy laguard
There are many more,but not sean may

Anonymous said...

Continued

Bobby jones
Bob mcadoo

Anonymous said...

ED DAVIS
joe wolf

Anonymous said...

Bones mckinney

Anonymous said...

Worthy is easily the best UNC and ACC post player ever. He is a candidate for top 5 ever in the country. Not to sure about the May pick though.

vic said...

looks as though some just look for something to criticize, believe the writer was quoting rebound stats for the individual positions. the article is about the 5 best players at every position.

Anonymous said...

It is hard to argue the Tyler selection as #1, especially if they win tonight. He is the ACC's all-time leading scorer and NCAA all-time leader in made free-throws. Dont let the others NBA careers taint your view. This is a college only list. Laettner (as much as it pains me to say it) was one of the top 5 all-time college players even though he struggled in the pros. Be objective and look at Tyler's college play, not what you think he'll do later.

Anonymous said...

4 words...Serge mutha flippin'Zwikker.

Anonymous said...

The Tarheel Observer's in Hansbrough Euphoria mode. 10 years down the road Hans won't make the Top 3 of this list.

Anonymous said...

Watch and Celebrate the Tarheels Championship!
Go to http://www.ioffer.com/i/102103533
NO# 5 and still counting!

AJ Johnson said...

How can you leave off George Lynch? I remember his freshman year, he had two nasty dunks off offensive rebounds against Georgetown and Alonzo Mourning and Dikembe Mutombo! He took it right at them even though they were 7 footers and he was giving up 4 inches on them both!

Anonymous said...

Stackhouse was a 4.

Anonymous said...

all i have 2 say is....Michael Jordan....hands down best tar hell player