Round 2: #2 Chris Smith vs. #7 Jerome Dyson

Chris Smith vs. Jerome Dyson

#2 Chris Smith – (1988-1992)
by Peter Bard

In Rd 1, Smith defeated #15 Jack Rose, 135-1

Chris Smith was the star of the UConn team when I started understanding sports, and I honestly can’t tell you if he became my favorite player because he wore my favorite number (#13), or of that became my favorite number because he was my favorite player.

It could be argued that, after Calhoun, Chris Smith is the most important person in UConn Men’s Basketball history. A combo guard out of Bridgeport, Smith was Jim Calhoun’s first big recruiting coup. Prior to Smith signing with UConn, most New England recruits went to Providence or Boston College, or they didn’t stay in New England. Then Smith brought his sweet shooting stroke and his high-handed crossover to Storrs, and everything changed. He was the best player on the first great UConn team, and he remains the program’s all-time leading scorer to this day, with a staggering 2,145 career points scored in his career, to go along with 436 assists (12th all-time) and 193 steals (4th all-time).

Career Points: 2145

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Career Rebounds: 362

Career Assists: 436

Career Steals: 193

Career Blocks: 43


UConn all-time leading scorer
1st Team Big East 1991-1992
2nd Team Big East 1989-1990, 1990-1991
1000 point club

  #7 Jerome Dyson – (2006-2010)
by Peter Bard

In Rd 1, Dyson defeated #10 Joey Whelton, 154-61

“Slicin’” Jerome Dyson was the most polished member of the massively talented 2006 recruiting class. Maybe it’s because of unfair expectations, but I’ve always felt that this group, as a whole underperformed. While they did play in a Final Four (though without the injured Dyson), the way that a Dyson/Stanley Robinson-led team folded down the stretch of the 2009-2010 season was really difficult to watch.
When he was on, though, Dyson was a sight to behold. I’ve never seen a UConn player dominate games so angrily. Dyson always played as though he felt slighted. There was a lot of emotion in his game (which may have contributed to his lackadaisical play as a senior).
Despite it all, Dyson still led the team in scoring twice, and finished his career with 1630 points, 13th all-time. If that’s not enough, then maybe I expected too much.

Career Points: 1630

Career Rebounds: 443

Career Assists: 333

Career Steals: 188

Career Blocks: 56


3rd Team Big East 2009-2010
1000 point club
Member of 2009 Final Four team

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