Ranking the 10 Most Unbreakable Records in College Basketball History
The old saying, "Records are made to be broken," is not always true.
Some records are so exceptional that there is little or no chance that they will be broken.
Here is a list of the 10 most unbreakable records in college basketball history.
Look through these incredible moments and drink in the excellence!
10. UNC's Tyler Hansbrough's Made Free Throws: 982
Tyler Hansbrough made quite a collegiate career by going strong to the basket, getting fouled, going to the line and making his free throws.
Over his four years in Chapel Hill, Hansbrough made 982 free throws. Part of this record is the fact that he played 142 college games. But, the fact that he averaged seven made FTs per game is very impressive.
In a day where more and more players struggle at the line, Hansbrough’s record at the charity stripe seems secure.
9. Duke's Shane Battier's Charges Taken: 111
Shane Battier was an excellent offensive threat for the Blue Devils, but he made a name for himself by being able to guard just about anyone on the court.
One of his distinctive skills is his ability to take charges. In his four years at Duke, he took 111 charges, which is an official school record (the official college basketball record is unknown). That’s a lot of times of getting hit and hitting the deck. That’s a whole bunch of getting set and hanging in there.
I can’t begin to imagine anyone else even trying to take that many charges during their college career.
8. Northern Illinois' Fewest Points in First Half: 4
The rest of the records on this list are records of excellence and expertise. Northern Illinois set a record this last season for ineptitude.
When the Huskies faced Eastern Michigan, they scored a record low four points in the first half. Four points! The Huskies could not buy a bucket. They shot 1-of-31 from the field, a super-frosty 3.2 percent (also an NCAA record), including a string of 29 straight missed shots.
NIU did not get much better in the second half. They closed out the game shooting 8-of-61 from the field for 13.1 percent, yet another NCAA record.
Daveon Balls (pictured) was the Huskies’ leading scorer with seven points, all in the final 8:38 of the game.
7. Lincoln University's Largest Margin of Victory in a Game: 123
The opposite of NIU’s futility was Division III Lincoln University’s ridiculous offense superiority.
In December of 2006, LU rolled over Ohio State Marion, 201-78. Lincoln’s point total was an NCAA Division III record. ESPN’s Joseph Santoliquito detailed the other five Division III records that were set in this once-in-a-lifetime game:
Points scored in a half (twice) -- as Lincoln scored 97 points in first half and then 104 in second half; Largest margin of victory (123); Shots made (78); and Shots taken (141).
The previous Division III record for points in a game was a mere 172.
I had never heard of any team of any level scoring over 200 points. This one is not getting broken any time soon.
Editor's note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that this was an NCAA men's basketball record for points scored in a game. That record belongs to Troy State, which beat DeVry by a 258-141 margin in 1992 at the Division II level. We regret the error.
6. Alabama A&M's Mickell Gladness's Single Game Blocks: 16
Mickell Gladness may be the least known player on this list, but that does not reduce the impressiveness of his shot-blocking record.
On February 24, 2007, the 6’11" forward threw back 16 Texas Southern shots in one game. This was an incredible moment in an unbelievable shot-blocking season. Mickell averaged 6.3 blocks per game (188 on the season) in 2006-07.
To compare, Kentucky’s Anthony Davis, who was considered a shot-blocking prodigy, blocked 4.7 shots per game, and his high game was eight blocks.
5. Oklahoma 's Mookie Blaylock's Single Game Steals: 13
Mookie Blaylock was one of the best all-around collegiate point guards of the 1990s. He was an excellent scorer, an outstanding distributor and a fantastic on-ball defender.
Blaylock’s first-rate athleticism, quick hands and uncanny anticipation helped him to be one of the best thieves in college hoops history. Over his two years as a Sooner, Blaylock registered an impressive 281 steals (3.8 SPG).
In a December, 1987 game against Centenary, he nabbed 13 steals. Almost one year to the day, Blaylock pulled off a repeat performance, pinching 13 additional steals in one game.
Do you an idea how impressive that is?
To compare, last season's NCAA steals leader Duke Mondy’s most larcenous games netted him six steals.
4. Grinnell College's Jack Taylor's Single Game Scoring: 138 Points
It’s relatively uncommon for a college basketball team to score over 100 points in a single game. That’s what makes Grinnell College’s Jack Taylor 138-point explosion that much more astounding.
When Taylor faced Faith Baptist Bible in late November 2012, no one knew that this game was going to create history.
But Taylor hoisted 108 shots, hitting on 52, including 27-of-71 from beyond the arc.
The Toronto Star’s Kamila Hinkson detailed the other collegiate 100-point games:
Before that miraculous night, Rio Grande’s Bevo Francis held the NCAA scoring record with 113 points against Hillsdale in 1954...Frank Selvy is the only other college player to reach triple figures, scoring 100 points for Division I Furman against Newberry in 1954.
Since it took someone over 50 years to break the previous single-game scoring record, I think Taylor's mark is locked up tight.
3. LSU Pete Maravich's Career Scoring Average: 44.2 Points Per Game
It’s hard to name an NCAA career scoring record that Pete Maravich doesn’t hold.
Maravich’s most impressive mark is his career scoring average of 44.2 points per game. It's huge news when someone scores 40 points in one game. For Pistol Pete, that was just a basic night in Baton Rouge.
To achieve such a mind-blowing mark, Maravich averaged 43.8, 44.2, and 44.5 PPG, respectively in his three varsity seasons, leading all scorers each year.
His NBA.com legends profile indicates that he had 28 career 50-point games while at LSU. He scored 3,667 total points in three years. To compare, North Carolina’s Tyler Hansbrough is the ACC’s all-time points leader. He scored 2,872 points in four years.
To put Maravich’s scoring in further perspective, BYU’s Jimmer Fredette drove the nation crazy with his prolific scoring in the 2010-11 season. He averaged “a mere” 28.9 PPG, almost 15 points less per game than Maravich’s lowest seasonal average.
2. UCLA's Consecutive Wins: 88
An undefeated season is a huge and rare accomplishment. No college basketball team has done it since the 1976 Indiana Hoosiers (32-0) pulled it off.
Now, think about UCLA winning 88 consecutive games over the course of four seasons. Wow! The Bruins destroyed the previous record of 60 wins by Bill Russell’s University of San Francisco Dons in the 1950s
The streak included three NCAA championships (1971-73) and two undefeated seasons (1971-72 and 1972-73; both 30-0).
Wikipedia’s “Basketball Winning Streaks” page points out that UCLA’s streak started after a loss to Notre Dame in 1971, and ended ironically with a loss to Notre Dame in 1974.
A hat tip is appropriate here to the UConn Women's teams from 2008-09 to 2010-11. They compiled 90 consecutive wins.
1. UCLA's Consecutive NCAA Championships: Seven
UCLA's string of seven consecutive NCAA championships (1967-1973) will never be exceeded. This run of the ultimate in season success is without equal in college basketball history.
Only seven programs have even pulled off back-to-back championships since the national tournament began in 1939. They are, as follows: Oklahoma A&M (1945, 1946), Kentucky (1948, 1949), San Francisco (1955, 1956), Cincinnati (1961, 1962), UCLA (1964, 1965), Duke (1991, 1992) and Florida (2006, 2007).
The likelihood of any program being able to improve on head coach John Wooden’s sequence of success is extremely remote. Think about it this way: Kentucky is the only college basketball program that has more than seven total championships. The Wildcats currently have eight.
It’s hard to find examples in any sport where a team has displayed this level of dominance. The University of Iowa’s men’s wrestling program won nine consecutive NCAA championships from 1978-1986. The Boston Celtics' string of eight consecutive NBA championships (1959-1966) surpasses the Bruins' achievement.
Even as dominant as the New York Yankees have been over the years, their longest cycle of World Series championships is five (1949-1953).