Players Who Won Both NCAA And NBA Championships

Mario Chalmers

Before an Achilles injury essentially ended his time as a productive player, Mario Chalmers enjoyed a successful basketball career. As a junior in college, Chalmers nailed a game-tying three with 2.1 seconds remaining to send the National Championship contest to overtime. The guard would go on to lead Kansas to victory. The KU legend spent the first seven years of his career in Miami — where he won two NBA titles.

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Arnie Ferrin

As a result of leading the Utah Utes to the 1944 NCAA championship, Arnie Ferrin was named the Most Outstanding Player of the tournament. Although his time in the NBA was brief, Ferrin won two titles as a member of the Minneapolis Lakers.

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Bob Cousy

Before embarking upon a Hall of Fame career with the Celtics (in which he won six rings), Bob Cousy starred at Holy Cross. The Cousy-led Crusaders captured the NCAA title in 1947, and ascended to a No. 4 ranking during Cousy’s final year in school. Cousy remains one of basketball’s all-time winners.

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Danny Green

A co-captain of the 2009 NCAA champion North Carolina Tar Heels, Danny Green helped his team reach the promised land with excellent defense and three-point shooting. Green’s game has translated well to the next level. Green shot 41 percent from three in 2014 en route to another San Antonio triumph.

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Frank Ramsey

Frank Ramsey —  aka “The Kentucky Colonel” — led his hometown Kentucky Wildcats to the 1951 NCAA championship. His winning ways followed him to the NBA, as the 6-foot-3 small forward won seven NBA titles with the Boston Celtics.

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Marreese Speights

Marreese “Mo’ Buckets” Speights has been a part of great teams at both the collegiate and professional levels. Speights was a member of the 2007 NCAA champion Florida Gators. Some of his notable teammates included Joakim Noah, Al Horford and Corey Brewer. In 2015, Speights was a top scoring option off the bench for the 2015 NBA champion Golden State Warriors.

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Bill Russell

Bill Russell is basketball’s ultimate champion. The legendary center led San Francisco to back-to-back NCAA titles in 1955-56. As a member of the Boston Celtics, Russell won an NBA record 11 championships as a player (and two more as a coach).

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Shane Battier

One of Coach K’s favorite players, Shane Battier led Duke to the 2001 National Championship.  He also took home National Player of the Year honors in the same year. Battier ultimately earned playing time with the two-time champion Miami Heat due to his defensive prowess.

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Magic Johnson

The greatest point guard of all-time, Magic Johnson became a household name while playing at Michigan State. Magic led Michigan State to a victory over a Larry Bird-led Indiana State squad in the 1979 National Championship game. Magic cemented his legacy by winning five titles with the Los Angeles Lakers.

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Glen Rice

Glen Rice led Michigan to the 1989 NCAA championship in stunning fashion. Rice scored an NCAA-record 184 points during the tournament, thus earning the sharpshooter the Most Outstanding Player award. Rice would earn three All-Star nods in the NBA, and was a member of the historic 2000 Lakers squad. Rice scored 16 points in LA’s title-clinching victory over the Indiana Pacers.

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K.C. Jones

Teammates with Bill Russell at the University of San Francisco and with the Celtics, K.C. Jones enjoyed a Hall of Fame career of his own. Jones won back-to-back NCAA titles with San Francisco, and captured eight NBA titles as a player with the Celtics. The Boston legend tacked on four additional NBA titles as a coach.

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Richard Hamilton

Richard “Rip” Hamilton led UConn to an unlikely NCAA Championship win over a stacked Duke team in 1999. Hamilton poured in 27 points against Duke — a team that featured four players whom were drafted within the top-14 of the ’99 NBA Draft. Hamilton starred for the Detroit Pistons during their improbable title run in 2004 — culminating in a victory over a heavily-favored Lakers team that sported four future Hall of Famers.

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John Havlicek

The fifth Celtic to appear on this list, John Havlicek was a key member of Boston’s dynasty. Before reaching the NBA, Havlicek won the 1960 NCAA title with the Ohio State Buckeyes. The 6-foot-5 forward developed into a Hall of Famer with the Celtics. Havlicek’s No. 17 was retired by the Celtics due in large part to the eight NBA championships the forward helped win.

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Jason Terry

Before enjoying a 19-year career in the NBA, Jason Terry helped lead Arizona to the 1997 NCAA championship. As the fourth-leading scorer, Terry averaged 10.6 points and 4.4 assists for the Wildcats. Terry captured his lone NBA title while playing for the Dallas Mavericks in 2011. Terry averaged 18 points off the bench for the underdog Mavs.

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Michael Jordan

There is not much to say about Michael Jordan that hasn’t already been discussed at length. While at North Carolina, Jordan made the game-winning shot in the 1982 National Championship against Georgetown. Jordan would go on to win six NBA titles with the Bulls — solidifying the notion that he is the G.O.A.T.

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Gail Goodrich

A two-time NCAA champion at UCLA, Gail Goodrich scored a then-record 42 points in the 1965 NCAA Championship game against Michigan. Goodrich’s success continued at the next level. The 6-foot-1 guard earned five All-Star bids, and was a member of the 1972 NBA champion Lakers.

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Antoine Walker

As a freshman in 1996, Antoine Walker was named to the All-SEC First Team. The Chicago native also helped Kentucky capture its sixth NCAA Championship. Towards the end of Walker’s NBA career, the big man averaged 13.8 PPG in the 2006 NBA Finals — including a 14-point, 11-rebound performance in the title-clinching game for the Heat.

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Bill Walton

Bill Walton is arguably the greatest college basketball player of all-time. Walton won three-straight College Player of the Year Awards, and led UCLA to two National Championships. While injuries limited his NBA career, Walton still won two NBA titles. One came with the Portland Trailblazers, and his second with the Boston Celtics.

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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, formerly known as Lew Alcindor, is one of the all-time greats. After winning three-straight championships at UCLA from 1967-69, Abdul-Jabbar won six NBA titles. One came with the Milwaukee Bucks, and the other five most notably occurred as a member of the Los Angeles Lakers.

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Isiah Thomas

Before rocking this glorious jacket, Isiah Thomas found glory with the Indiana Hoosiers when capturing the 1981 National Championship. Thomas would go on to lead the Detroit “Bad Boys” Pistons to back-to-back titles in 1989 and 1990. While some guy named Michael Jordan helped end Thomas’ run, his time in Detroit was an unquestioned success.

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James Worthy

Perhaps one of the more underrated players of recent times, James Worthy found great success at both the collegiate and professional levels. Worthy led North Carolina to the 1982 NCAA Championship, and subsequently became a three-time NBA champion with the Lakers.

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Jerry Lucas

While at Ohio State, Jerry Lucas was a two-time winner of the Final Four Most Outstanding Player award. He ultimately led his team to a National Championship in 1960. Lucas would go on to enjoy a successful NBA career. A seven-time All-Star, Lucas was a member of the 1973 champion New York Knicks.

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Lucius Allen

Yet another UCLA product, Lucius Allen was a part of the John Wooden-led dynasty that was UCLA basketball. Allen was a member of two National Championship winning squads with the Bruins. While his NBA career wasn’t anything special, Allen did help the Milwaukee Bucks win a title in 1971.

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Henry Bibby

How about one more former Bruin? Henry Bibby was an important member of the 1970-72 Bruins — a team which won three-straight titles. Bibby would wind up with the Knicks after being selected in the fourth-round of the 1972 NBA Draft. Bibby’s winning ways continued as the Knicks won the NBA Championship in his rookie season.

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Keith Erickson

Before embarking on a rather pedestrian NBA career, Keith Erickson won two National Championships at UCLA. Erickson won his only NBA title with the 1972 Lakers. After the end of his playing career, Erickson would sit alongside the legendary Chick Hearn as the Lakers color commentator.

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Jamaal Wilkes

A two-time consensus first-team All-American at UCLA, Jamaal Wilkes helped lead the way to National Championships in 1972 and 1973. Wilkes was drafted by the Golden State Warriors, eventually winning an NBA title in 1975. After joining the Lakers in 1977, Wilkes would help lead the franchise to three championships in six years.

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Tom Thacker

The pinnacle of Tom Thacker’s occurred at the University of Cincinnati. Thacker averaged more than 12 PPG in leading the Bearcats to back-to-back National Championships (1961-62). Despite averaging only 4.2 PPG with the Celtics in 1968, Thacker collected a ring in his lone year in Boston.

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Quinn Buckner

On the strength of tremendous defensive ability, Quinn Buckner is one of only seven players in history to win an NCAA Championship, NBA Championship, and an Olympic Gold Medal. Buckner was a member of the 1976 Indiana Hoosiers — the last school to finish a season undefeated. Buckner was a member of the Celtics during their NBA title run in 1984 (although he didn’t contribute much).

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Billy Thompson

As a senior, Billy Thompson led the Louisville Cardinal to the 1986 National Championship. Thompson was drafted by the Atlanta Hawks, but in a bit of good fortune was sent to the Lakers in a draft-day trade. Thompson and the Lakers would go on to win back-to-back championships in the Louisville star’s first two seasons as a professional.

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Corey Brewer

Before becoming a career-journeyman in the NBA, Corey Brewer was an integral part of the juggernaut 2006-07 Florida Gators squad. Brewer was named as the Final Four Most Outstanding Player in 2007 (following the Gators’ second championship). As a bit player with the Dallas Mavericks in 2011, Brewer captured his only NBA Championship to date.

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