Round 2: #1 Kemba Walker vs. #8 Kevin Ollie

Kemba Walker vs. Kevin Ollie

#1 Kemba Walker – (2008-2011)
by Peter Bard

In Rd 1, Walker defeated #16 Johnnie Selvie, 197-8

Where to start? Walker came to UConn a blisteringly fast whirling dirvish of a point guard. He lacked discipline, but would make plays that just made you shake your head. His sophomore year, while statistically impressive, was a disappointment for the team, as they missed the NCAA tournament.
Heading into the 2010-2011 season, UConn was looking at another down year. Outside of Walker and sophomore F/C Alex Oriakhi, there was almost no experience on the roster, as the team generally started those two alongside three freshmen.
And then, Kemba happened. I couldn’t even begin to guess what the signature moment was for Walker that season. I read an article before they played Wichita State in the third game of the season that assured me that it wouldn’t be an upset when UConn lost. Of course, UConn won. And then they won again, against #2 Michigan State, thanks in no small part to Kemba’s 30 points. When he scored 29 the next day in an 84-67 drubbing of Kentucky, he’d scored 90 points in three days, and UConn had vaulted from having received 0 votes in the first poll of the season to being #7 in the country as of the second poll.
There were, of course, ups and downs, as UConn struggled through a very tough league schedule, with some highlights along the way (that circus three-pointer against #1 Texas being the among most memorable). Kemba’s legend was cemented in tournament play that year, when he carried the team to Big East Tournament and NCAA titles through what appeared to be sheer force of will. He ended his career 7th all-time in scoring, 6th in steals, and 10th in assists, and he set a program record his senior year with 965 points.

Career Points: 1783

Career Rebounds: 493

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Career Assists: 460

Career Steals: 185

Career Blocks: 28


1st Team All-American 2010-2011
1st Team Big East 2010-2011
UConn record 11 games in a season with 30+ points
Member of 2011 National Championship Team
Member 0f 2009 Final Four Team
1000 point club
NBA Lottery pick
Left UConn after junior season

#8 Kevin Ollie – (1991-1995)
by Meghan Bard

In Rd 1, Ollie defeated #9 Bob Staak, 173-9

Kevin Ollie is the kind of player every other player should aspire to be. He may not the most physically talented player to come through Storrs, but no one has ever out-worked Kevin Ollie. Ollie spent four years at UConn, and graduated in 1995. The kid from Crenshaw High, who is now our beloved head coach, was the heart and soul of the UConn squad of the early-to-mid 90s. A natural leader and a true student of the game, Ollie played point guard along side UConn luminaries like Donyell Marshall and Ray Allen, and dished out 619 career assists.

Career Points: 825

Career Rebounds: 252

Career Assists: 619

Career Steals: 107

Career Blocks: 7


3rd Team Big East 1994-1995

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  1. Toughest vote of the set. Under Kemba, the 11/12 team was and astonishing 14 and 0 in tournament games. But KO came back to rescue us in dire times. Does that count, or must we go only by their UConn playing careers?

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