Byron Scott Earns Arizona State Degree 37 Years After Being Drafted by Lakers

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJune 15, 2020

LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 13:  Byron Scott of the Los Angeles Lakers looks on in the first half while taking on the Utah Jazz at Staples Center on April 13, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

Graduating from college isn't easy when an NBA playing and coaching career gets in the way.  

Byron Scott announced Sunday he obtained his bachelor's degree in liberal studies from Arizona State, 37 years after he first left the school. He said he had been working for the last year-and-a-half to complete his coursework.

"It was a promise I made a while back to my mother," Scott said in a May interview with Arizona State. "She passed a few years ago, and that thought came back to my mind that I had promised to get my degree. ... I wanted to keep that promise. I just said I have to do this."

The 59-year-old played three seasons with the Sun Devils, averaging 17.5 points and 3.1 assists while shooting 50.7 percent from the field. The school retired his No. 11 jersey in 2011.

The San Diego Clippers selected Scott fourth overall in the 1983 draft and quickly traded him to the Los Angeles Lakers. All but three of his 14 years as a player were spent with the Lakers, and he helped the team win three NBA titles.

Scott's coaching career began in 1998, when he took an assistant role with the Sacramento Kings. Two years later, he was in charge of the New Jersey Nets, the first of his 15 years as a head coach.    

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