GOT Blog

The Best NCAA Team featuring NBA Alumni

The NBA and the NCAA Basketball have never been more popular than right now. Millions of brackets are filled out during March Madness and the NBA playoffs ratings grow every year. NBA commentators always bring up where players went to college, and that got me thinking: which college program could field the best team featuring NBA players? Thanks to Basketball Reference, I was able to go back and find stats from college programs and use them to create the best teams. I took NCAA programs with multiple NBA players and used the stats from their best college season.

We have 12 programs to break down but before we do that let’s throw out some honorable mentions that just missed making the cut. These are some of the biggest NCAA programs but they either do not have enough players in the NBA or they just do not have the star power.

Honorable Mentions: Virginia, Louisville, Michigan, Tennessee, Syracuse, and Gonzaga. These programs are always Title contenders with some great college players, unfortunately they will not be making our list.


-Texas Longhorns

  • Players in NBA: LaMarcus Aldridge, Jarrett Allen, DJ Augustin, Mo Bamba, Avery Bradley, Kevin Durant, Cory Joseph, Tristan Thompson, PJ Tucker, Myles Turner

  • Squad:

    • DJ Augustin, 2007-2008: 19.2 ppg, 5.8 apg

    • Avery Bradley, 2009-2010: 11.6 ppg, 2.9 rgb, 2.1 apg

    • Kevin Durant, 2006-2007: 25.8 ppg, 11.1 rpg NCAA Player of the Year

    • LaMarcus Aldridge, 2005-2006: 15 ppg, 9.2 rpg

    • PJ Tucker, 2005-2006: 16.1 ppg, 9.5 rpg, 2.9 apg Big 12 Player of the Year

    • Mo Bamba, 2017-2018: 12.9 ppg, 10.5 rpg, 3.7 bpg

Analysis: Texas is a pretty underrated program, this squad is no joke. Solid guard play and really good defense with Bradley, Tucker, and Bamba. Also having KD never hurts.

-Michigan State Spartans

  • Players in NBA: Miles Bridges, Bryn Forbes, Draymond Green, Gary Harris, Jaren Jackson, Kalin Lucas, Denzel Valentine

  • Squad:

    • Miles Bridges, 2016-2017: 16.9 ppg, 8.3 rpg

    • Draymond Green, 2011-2012: 16.2 ppg, 10.6 rpg, 3.8 apg Big Ten Player of the Year

    • Gary Harris, 2013-2014: 16.7 ppg, 4 rpg, 2.7 apg

    • Jaren Jackson, 2017-2018: 10.9 ppg, 5.8 rpg

    • Denzel Valentine, 2015-2016: 19.2 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 7.8 apg AP Player of the Year

    • Kalin Lucas, 2008-2009: 14.7 ppg, 4.6 apg Big Ten Player of the Year

  • Analysis: A solid all around squad, no superstar type guys but players that know their role and know how to play in the system. An underrated team no doubt

-Duke Blue Devils

  • Players in the NBA: Grayson Allen, Marvin Bagley, Wendell Carter, Quinn Cook, Seth Curry, Luol Deng, Harry Giles, Rodney Hood, Brandon Ingram, Kyrie Irving, Tyus Jones, Luke Kennard, Semi Ojeleye, Jahlil Okafor, Jabari Parker, Mason Plumee, Miles Plumlee, JJ Redick, Austin Rivers, Jayson Tatum, Gary Trent Jr, Justise Winslow

  • Squad:

    • JJ Redick, 2005-2006: 26.8 ppg, 42% 3 point AP Player of the Year

    • Grayson Allen, 2015-2016: 21.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 3.5 apg

    • Marvin Bagley, 2017-2018: 21 ppg, 11.1 rpg ACC Player of the Year

    • Jabari Parker, 2013-2014: 19.1 ppg, 8.7 rpg

    • Jahlil Okafor, 2014-2015: 17.9 ppg, 8.5 rpg ACC Player of the Year

    • Jayson Tatum, 2016-2017: 16.8 ppg, 7.3 rpg

  • Analysis: An absolute despicable team but you can’t argue with the talent, JJ doesn’t miss and they have a lot of athleticism. Not the greatest defensive team but good luck stopping them.

-University of North Carolina

  • Players in the NBA: Harrison Barnes, Reggie Bullock, Vince Carter, Ed Davis, Wayne Ellington, Raymond Felton, Danny Green, John Henson, Justin Jackson, Marvin Williams

  • Squad:

    • Harrison Barnes, 2011-2012: 17.1 ppg, 5.2 rpg

    • Vince Carter, 1997-1998: 15.6 ppg, 5.1 rpg

    • Ed Davis, 2009-2010: 13.4 ppg, 9.6 rpg

    • Wayne Ellington, 2007-2008: 16.6 ppg, 4.5 rpg

    • Raymond Felton, 2002-2003: 12.9 ppg, 6.7 apg, 4.1 rpb

    • Justin Jackson, 2016-2017: 18.3 ppg, 4.7 rpg ACC Player of the Year

  • Analysis: The numbers don’t jump off the screen but this team is great. Raymond Felton was an incredible college point guard and with wings like Harrison Barnes and Vince Carter watch out for the fast break slams.

-Kansas University

  • Players in the NBA: Joel Embiid, Josh Jackson, Frank Mason, Marcus Morris, Markieff Morris, Svi Mykhailiuk, Kelly Oubre, Wayne Selden, Andrew Wiggins

  • Squad:

    • Joel Embiid, 2013-2014: 11.2 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 2.6 blk

    • Josh Jackson, 2016-2017: 16.3 ppg, 7.4 rpg

    • Frank Mason, 2016-2017: 20.9 ppg, 5.2 ast, 4.2 rpg AP Player of the Year

    • Marcus Morris, 2010-2011: 17.2 ppg, 7.6 rpg Big 12 Player of the Year

    • Kelly Oubre, 2014-2015: 9.3 ppg, 5.0 rpg

    • Andrew Wiggins, 2013-2014: 17.1 ppg, 5.9 rpg

  • Analysis: Not many huge numbers from this KU squad but arguably one of the most athletic teams. They don’t have great shooting but Frank Mason was a stud guard that would carry these guys.

-Kentucky University

  • Players in the NBA: Bam Adebayo, Eric Bledsoe, Devin Booker, Willie Cauley-Stein, DeMarcus Cousins, Anthony Davis, De’Aaron Fox, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Terrence Jones, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Brandon Knight, Kevin Knox, Skal Labissiere, Trey Lyles, Jodie Meeks, Malik Monk, Jamal Murray, Nerlens Noel, Julius Randle, Rajon Rando, Karl Anthony-Towns, John Wall

  • Squad:

    • Anthony Davis, 2011-2012: 14.2 ppg, 10.4 rpg, 4.7 blk AP Player of the Year

    • Jodie Meeks, 2008-2009: 23.7 ppg

    • Malik Monk, 2016-2017: 19.8 ppg SEC Player of the Year

    • Jamal Murray, 2015-2016: 20.0 ppg, 5.2 rpb

    • Nerlens Noel, 2012-2013: 10.5 ppg, 9.5 rpg, 4.4 bpg

    • John Wall, 2009-2010: 16.6 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 6.5 apg SEC Player of the Year

  • Analysis: This team is absolutely ridiculous, with Davis and Noel down low shots are getting erased. Meeks and Murray were great shooters; Wall and Monk were pedal to the metal the whole time.This would be a must watch


  • Players in the NBA: Ryan Arcidiacono, Mikal Bridges, Jalen Brunson, Done DiVincenzo, Josh Hart, Kyle Lowry, Omari Spellman, Dante Cunningham

  • Squad:

    • Ryan Arcidiacono, 2015-2016: 12.5 ppg, 4.2 apg, 1.4 spg

    • Mikal Bridges, 2017-2018: 17.1 ppg, 5.3 rpg

    • Jalen Brunson, 2017-2018: 18.9 ppg, 4.6 apg AP Player of the Year

    • Josh Hart, 2016-2017: 18.7 ppg, 6.4 rpb

    • Kyle Lowry, 2005-2006: 11.0 ppg, 4.3 rpb, 3.7 apg

    • Omari Spellman, 2017-2018: 10.9 ppg 8.0 apg

  • Analysis: Just a typical Villanova team, they don’t do anything spectacular but they do everything the right way.

-University of Connecticut

  • Players in the NBA: Andre Drummond, Rudy Gay, Jeremy Lamb, Shabazz Napier, Kemba Walker, Emeka Okafor

  • Squad:

    • Andre Drummond, 2011-2012: 10.0 ppg, 7.6 rpb, 2.7 bpg

    • Rudy Gay, 2005-2006: 15.2 ppg, 6.4 rpg

    • Jeremy Lamb, 2011-2012: 17.7 ppg, 4.9 rpg

    • Shabazz Napier, 2013-2014: 18.0 ppg, 5.9 rpb, 4.9 apg AAC Player of the Year

    • Kemba Walker, 2010-2011: 23.5 ppg 5.4 rpg, 4.5 apg

    • Emeka Okafor, 2003-2004: 17.6 ppg, 11.5 rpb Big East Player of the Year

  • Analysis: A sneaky good team here from UCONN, Emeka was a perfect college basketball player, Kemba was a beast, and the rest of these guys are perfect role players.

-Indiana University

  • Players in the NBA: OG Anunoby, Yogi Ferrell, Eric Gordon, Victor Oladipo, Noah Vonleh, Cody Zeller, Troy Williams, Thomas Bryant

  • Squad:

    • OG Anunoby, 2016-2017: 11.1 ppg, 5.4 rpb

    • Yogi Ferrell, 2015-2016: 17.3 ppg, 5.6 apg

    • Eric Gordon, 2007-2008: 20.9 ppg

    • Victor Oladipo, 2012-2013: 13.6 ppg, 6.3 rpg

    • Noah Vonleh, 2013-2014: 11.3 ppg, 9.0 rpg

    • Cody Zeller, 2012-2013: 16.5 ppg, 8.0 rpb

  • Analysis: Eric Gordon was incredible in college and Oladipo was no slouch either. Solid numbers from this underrated squad.

-University of Arizona

  • Players in the NBA: DeAndre Ayton, Jerryd Bayless, Channing Frye,Aaron Gordon, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Andre Igoudala, Stanley Johnson, Lauri Maarkanen, TJ McConnell, Alonzo Trier, Rawle Alkins, Kadeem Allen, Solomon Hill

  • Squad Channing

    • DeAndre Ayton, 2017-2018: 20.1 ppg, 11.6 rpg Pac-12 Player of the Year

    • Jerryd Bayless, 2007-2008: 19.7ppg, 4.0 apg

    • Channing Frye, 2004-2005: 15.8 ppg, 7.6 rpg

    • Aaron Gordon, 2013-2014: 12.4 ppg, 8.0 rpb

    • Andre Igoudala, 2003-2004: 12.9 ppg, 8.4 rpg, 4.9 apg

    • TJ McConnell, 2014-2015: 10.4 ppg, 6.3 apg, 2.2 spg

  • Analysis: A really solid defensive team with TJ and Iggy, also really good on the blocks with Ayton and Frye. Probably not a program you think of but a good one no doubt.


  • Players in the NBA: Kyle Anderson, Trevor Ariza, Lonzo Ball, Darren Collison, Jrue Holiday, Zach LaVine, Kevin Love, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, Russell Westbrook, Jonah Bolden, TJ Leaf, Kevon Looney, Norman Powell, Thomas Welsh

  • Squad:

    • Kyle Anderson, 2013-2014: 14.6 ppg, 8.8 rpb 6.5 apg

    • Trevor Ariza, 2003-2004: 11.6 ppg, 6.5 rpg

    • Lonzo Ball, 2016-2017: 14.6 ppg, 6.0 rpb, 7.6 apg

    • Darren Collison, 2008-2009: 14.4 ppg, 4.7 apg

    • Kevin Love, 2007-2008: 17.5 ppg, 10.6 rpb Pac-10 Player of the Year

    • Russell Westbrook. 2007-2008: 12.7 ppg, 4.3 apg

  • Analysis: An interesting team no doubt, Anderson and Ariza are the same player and seeing Lonzo, Russell, and Collison playing together would really be something.

- University of Florida

60F9104F-F9FE-4008-9B56-6D42120B75D5 (2).JPG
  • Players in the NBA: Bradley Beal, Corey Brewer, Udonis Haslem, Al Horford, Joakim Noah, Chandler Parsons, Chris Chiozza, Dorian Finney-Smith, Devin Robinson

  • Squad:

    • Bradley Beal, 2011-2012: 14.87 ppg, 6.7 rpb

    • Corey Brewer, 2006-2007: 13.2 ppg, 4.7 rpb

    • Udonis Haslem, 2001-2002: 16.0 ppg, 8.3 rpb

    • Al Horford, 2006-2007: 13.2 ppg, 9.5 rpb

    • Joakim Noah, 2005-2006: 14.2 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 2.4 bpg

    • Chandler Parsons, 2010-2011: 11.3 ppg, 7.8 rpb

  • Analysis: The Florida teams of Brewer, Horford, and Noah were incredible and then you add in Beal and Parsons? A really really good team in the making here.

Who’s the Winner?

All of these programs are great, with some obvious choices and some not so obvious choices. So if you could create a team from alumni players in the NBA who would have the best team? It comes down to a couple teams for me: Texas, Duke, UNC, and Kentucky. Texas is incredibly underrated and anytime you have KD you have a great chance; Duke, UNC, and Kentucky are obvious choices with their great history. My choice is Kentucky (unfortunately) but when you have a team consisting of Anthony Davis, Nerlens Noel, John Wall, Malik Monk, Jodie Meeks and Jamal Murray you have everything you need. Which program wins for you?