|#2 Ben Gordon – (2001-2004)
by Peter Bard
I’m not sure that UConn has ever had a more versatile and creative offensive player than Ben Gordon. Gordon was at his best slashing through the defense and getting to the paint. Or was he at his best releasing his beautiful jump shot from behind the arc, which he hit at 42.3% career, good for second all-time at UConn? Maybe it was distributing to the myriad of talented players surrounding him (11th all-time in assists). Whatever it was, Gordon was one of the most comforting players to see with the ball.
Derisively nicknamed “Gentle Ben” because of his hesitancy to take over games despite his incredible talents, Gordon was often the focus of Calhoun’s frustrations, even as he was leading the team in scoring two years in a row. Then he scored 81 points over three games in the Big East Tournament.
Gordon was half of perhaps the best recruiting class ever at UConn (sit down, Chad Wise), along with fellow 2004 National Champion Emeka Okafor. Okafor was definitely the bigger name, and the better overall player, but I never felt better than when Gordon had the ball.
Gordon has achieved admirable success in the NBA, being named the Sixth Man of the Year as a rookie, and participating in the rookie challenge on All-Star weekend. He was also the leading scorer on four playoff-bound Bulls teams, averaging more than 20 points per game in two of those seasons.
Career Points: 1795
Career Rebounds: 415
Career Assists: 437
Career Steals: 125
Career Blocks: 19
1st Team Big East 2003-2004
|#15 Alex Oriakhi – (2009-2012)
by Tyler Wilkinson
No player in UConn history has been subject to the same level of vitriol as Alex Oriakhi. Despite being the best player on the court against Butler, as UConn completed their historic National Championship run in 2011, Oriakhi is regarded as a turncoat and a traitor by many of the same fans who cheered him on. On stats alone, Oriakhi’s career was memorable and impressive. If he had returned to UConn for his senior season, he had an outside chance of joining the 1,000/1,000 club. Instead, upset over playing time and upcoming NCAA sanctions, he (and his father) fled to Missouri to play out the final season of his career.
Career Points: 789
Career Rebounds: 745
Career Assists: 37
Career Steals: 33
Career Blocks: 166
Member of 2011 National Championship team
Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.