Villanova Wildcats Basketball: Top 12 Point Guards in School History

Ron Pasceri@@RonPasceriCorrespondent IIDecember 28, 2011

Villanova Wildcats Basketball: Top 12 Point Guards in School History

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    Villanova basketball has a long and storied history. They aren't thought of among the big programs like Duke or Kentucky, but they have had a lot of success.

    Just outside of Philadelphia, Villanova has a tradition of tough basketball teams, usually led by its guards.

    There has been no shortage of great Wildcats guards, and here is a look at the top dozen Villanova point guards.

12. Maalik Wayns: 2009-Present

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    The newest player on this list, Wayns is possibly the most electrifying. He is lightning fast and quick, and there isn’t much Wayns can’t do with the basketball.

    He hasn’t been able to sustain the winning tradition, but he is an amazing player. In his first season as the leader he is averaging 17.4 points and 5.2 assists per game.

    If Villanova is going to be successful this year or next, it will be because of Maalik Wayns.

11. Mike Nardi: 2003-07

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    Mike Nardi was never the most heralded guard in his time with Villanova, but he was indispensable.

    Nardi provided ball handling, toughness, defense and reliable long-distance shooting.

    In his career he scored 10.1 points with 3.3 assists per game. He shot 37.8 percent from three-point range.

    He helped take the Wildcats to the Sweet 16 and Elite Eight. As a senior, he was named an All-Big East Honorable Mention.

10. Alvin Williams: 1993-97

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    Williams is a great example of what Villanova basketball strives to achieve. He started as a shaky freshman, turned into a contributing sophomore, was a key component as a junior and, as a senior, he was running the show.

    He ranks third in Villanova history in assists with 553 and fifth in steals at 200. As a senior, Williams averaged 17.1 points and 3.8 assists per game, on his way to being named an All-American Honorable Mention. He was also First-Team All-Big East.

    The one thing tarnishing Williams' legacy is never getting beyond the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

9. Corey Fisher: 2007-11

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    Fisher was a tough point guard from New York, and he was dazzling at times. For his career, he averaged 12.1 points and 3.5 assists per game.

    His scoring punch off the bench helped carry Villanova to the Sweet 16 and Final Four. Fisher was a two-time All-Big East selection and was voted the Big East Sixth Man of the Year in 2008-09.

    Fisher was under-appreciated as a senior, because he followed the act of the top performer on the list.

8. Stewart Granger: 1979-83

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    Stewart Granger isn't as well known as some of his Villanova brethren, but he probably should be.

    Granger guided Villanova into the NCAA Tournament all four years he was there, including to appearances in the Elite Eight.

    He scored 10.5 points per game in his career and is second on Villanova's all-time assists list with 595.

    Granger was named All-Big East three times in four years.

7. Rory Sparrow: 1976-80

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    Sparrow wasn't an electric or dynamic point guard, but he was known for his steady hand.

    He did score 1184 points in 124 career games to go along with 495 assists. Sparrow led Villanova into the NCAA Tournament twice, reaching the Elite Eight in 1978. He also led the Wildcats to a third-place finish in the 1977 NIT.

    In five career NCAA Tournament games, Sparrow averaged 13.4 points and 6.0 assists per game.

    In 1987, he was named Sports Illustrated's Co-Sportsperson of the Year for his charitable acts.

6. Kenny Wilson: 1985-89

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    Villanova's all-time assist leader with 627, Wilson was a leader and a winner. He also scored 10.1 points per game in his career and swiped 146 steals.

    Wilson led Villanova to two 20-win seasons and two NCAA Tournament appearances, reaching the Elite Eight in 1988. He also led them to an Elite Eight in the 1989 NIT.

    In six NCAA Tournament games, Wilson averaged 13.5 points and 5.3  assists per game. He was named to the 1988 All-Southeast Region team.

5. Tom Inglesby: 1970-73

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    Inglesby was not known as a great distributor, having averaged just 3.2 assists per game, but he could definitely score.  Scoring 18.6 points a game for his career he places eighth on Villanova's all-time list.

    He helped Howard Porter carry the Wildcats to the 1971 championship game, averaging 12.2 and 5.6 assists per game.

    Inglesby was a 1972 Big Five All-Star, and he was the 27th pick in the 1973 NBA draft.

4. Bill Melchionni: 1963-66

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    Melchionni was one of the earliest star point guards in Villanova's program. In three varsity seasons, he averaged 19.2 points per game, sixth place in Villanova history. 

    In 1964, he led Villanova to the Final 16 of the NCAA Tournament. The following year, he led the Wildcats to a runner-up finish in the NIT and in 1966 he was the NIT Most Valuable Player, leading Villanova to a third-place finish.

    Melchionni was a first-team All-America in 1966, and his number 25 jersey is retired.

3. Kyle Lowry: 2004-06

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    Some people may think this is too high for a kid that only played two seasons and put up modest numbers, but Kyle Lowry was more than numbers. 

    Lowry represented everything a Villanova guard was supposed to be and every positive trait that Jay Wright's teams were meant to exhibit. Lowry was tough and had no fear. No task was too tall.

    In his short stay he helped the Wildcats to the Sweet 16 and Elite Eight. He was the 2004-05 Big East Rookie of the Year. He was also second-team All-Big East in 2005-06.

    Kyle Lowry is a Villanova legend, and if you don't quite believe that, watch the video.

2. Wali Jones: 1961-64

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    Wali Jones was a terror to Villanova's opponents. He scored 16.8 points per game in his career and was a pest on defense.

    He led Villanova to the Final Eight in 1962 and Final 16 in 1964. In his six NCAA Tournament games, he averaged 22.5 points and 5.5 rebounds per game.

    Jones was named first-team All-America in 1964 and his number 24 jersey was retired in 1995.

1. Scottie Reynolds: 2006-10

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    Scottie Reynolds is the clear top choice. He was great from Day One and never stopped being great.

    Whether is was scoring 40 points in Storrs against UConn as a freshman, or hitting the game-winning shot against Pitt to reach the Final Four, Reynolds just did whatever it took.

    He was the 2006-07 Big east Rookie of the Year. He was All-Big East all four years. He was First-Team All-America in 2009-10.

    Reynolds is the second-leading scorer in Villanova history with 2,222 points, and he is in the top-10 in assists and steals as well. Reynolds should go down as one of the greatest Wildcats of all time.

    Villanova has a great guard tradition, and this doesn't even touch on the great shooting guards.  The Wildcats have won more games as the lower-seeded team than any other school in NCAA Tournament history, and their point guards are a huge reason why.