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These are the best of the best when it comes to scoring the basketball in the NCAA Tournament (as noted by the NCAA).

Note: The official NCAA Tournament records list Florida’s Kenny Boynton (2010-13) with 267 career points in the event. However, that number does not coincide with his actual game logs (which total 175 points in 13 games). We have contacted the NCAA to clarify this matter; in the meantime, he is not included on our list.

 

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T21. 260 points (17 games) — Reggie Williams, Georgetown, 1984-87

T21. 260 points (17 games) -- Reggie Williams, Georgetown, 1984-87

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An All-American, Williams helped the Hoyas win the 1984 national championship as a freshman. He scored 19 points off the bench in Georgetown’s national-title win over Houston. However, he was just beginning. Williams helped the Hoyas get back to the national final the next season, but from an individual standpoint, his most productive NCAA Tournament came in 1987, when he averaged 26 points per game as Georgetown reached the Elite Eight.

 

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T21. 260 points (14 games) — Miles Simon, Arizona, 1995-98

T21. 260 points (14 games) -- Miles Simon, Arizona, 1995-98

Brian Bahr/Allsport/Getty Images

Among Arizona basketball fandom and die-hard fans of the game, Simon is best remembered for his two 30-point games in the 1997 NCAA Tournament, which earned him Most Outstanding Player honors during the Wildcats’ run to the national championship. One of those 30-point efforts came in the national-title game win over favored Kentucky. An established performer throughout his four seasons at Arizona, the All-American averaged 18.6 points and shot 46 percent per contest during those 14 NCAA Tournament games.

 

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19. 266 points (12 games) — Jerry Lucas, Ohio State, 1960-62

266 points (12 games) -- Jerry Lucas, Ohio State, 1960-62

Rich Clarkson/NCAA Photos / Contributor/Getty Images

 

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18. 267 points (16 games) — Nick Collison, Kansas, 2000-03

267 points (16 games) -- Nick Collison, Kansas, 2000-03

Jerry Holt/Star Tribune via Getty Images

The 6-foot-9 Collison was a fantastic overall court presence for the Jayhawks. He ranks second in school history for points (2,097), second in made field goals (858), third in rebounds (1,143), and fourth in blocked shots (243). He was especially good during the NCAA Tournament, averaging 16.7 points and 11.3 rebounds in 16 games. During Kansas’ run to the 2003 national championship game, Collison was dominant while averaging 18.7 points and 13.5 boards during those six games.

 

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T17. 269 points (20 games) — Grant Hill, Duke, 1991-94

T17. 269 points (20 games) -- Grant Hill, Duke, 1991-94

Doug Pensinger/Allsport/Getty Images

One of the stars on Duke’s 1991 and ’92 national championship squads. In addition to being the guy who threw the long inbounds pass to Christian Laettner for that legendary Elite Eight buzzer-beater versus Kentucky, Hill did pretty well for himself when aiming at the basket. A three-time national-finalist, Hill was a 52.6-percent shooter for his NCAA Tournament career. During the 1994 event, Hill averaged 17.7 points while helping the Blue Devils reach the title game versus Arkansas. 

 

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T17. 269 points (19 games) — Danny Ferry, Duke, 1986-89

T17. 269 points (19 games) -- Danny Ferry, Duke, 1986-89

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Sticking with the Blue Devils. The pride of prep powerhouse DeMatha Catholic under legendary coach Morgan Wooten, Ferry was a prized recruit for Coach K, and got better each year at Duke. His career culminated with a senior season in which he averaged 22.6 points on 52.2 percent shooting and 7.4 rebounds to win the Naismith and UPI Player of the Year Awards. A two-time ACC Player of the Year (1988, ’89), Ferry was part of three Final Four teams at Duke. In the Blue Devils’ 1988 national semifinal loss to Kansas, Ferry had 19 points and 12 rebounds. Then in the same round, despite Duke falling to Seton Hall, Ferry went for 34 and 10.

 

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15. 275 points (9 games) — Jerry West, West Virginia, 1958-60

275 points (9 games) -- Jerry West, West Virginia, 1958-60

The Parkersburg News and Sentinel/Jerry West/West Virginia University

Another all-around great, West averaged 24.8 points and 13.3 rebounds for the Mountaineers during his three seasons of college ball. Meanwhile, his 160 total points spanning five games in the 1959 NCAA Tournament tied for the most-ever at the time, and earned West Final Four Most Outstanding Player honors. In his nine tournament games, the two-time First-Team All-American averaged 30.6 points. West totaled 105 of those points in just three games during the 1960 NCAA Tournament.

 

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14. 278 points (19 games) — Shane Battier, Duke, 1998-2001

278 points (19 games) -- Shane Battier, Duke, 1998-2001

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No, we’re not done highlighting Duke players just yet. In addition to being one of the great defensive players in Duke history (ranks second in school history with 266 steals and the all-time leader with 111 charges taken), Battier was pretty solid with the basketball. He helped the Blue Devils win the 2001 national championship, during a tournament in which he was named Most Outstanding Player while averaging 22.5 points, plus 10.2 rebounds. Battier’s 278 NCAA Tournament points rank second-most in school history.

 

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13. 279 points (13 games) — Calbert Cheaney, Indiana, 1990-93

279 points (13 games) -- Calbert Cheaney, Indiana, 1990-93

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

To the Indiana outsider, Cheaney might be best remembered for his involvement in the whipping incident with coach Bob Knight during a practice session at the 1992 NCAA Tournament. But, when his four-year career at Indiana finished, he was the Big Ten’s all-time leading scorer with 2,613 points. Cheaney scored nearly 280 of those points in the NCAA Tournament. He shot 57.1 percent and averaged an impressive 21.5 points while starring in the Big Dance. During the 1993 event, when Indiana reached the Elite Eight, he averaged 26.5 points per game.

 

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12. 289 points (7 games) — Austin Carr, Notre Dame, 1969-71

289 points (7 games) -- Austin Carr, Notre Dame, 1969-71

Malcolm Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

 

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11. 294 points (16 games) — Juan Dixon, Maryland, 1999-2002

294 points (16 games) -- Juan Dixon, Maryland, 1999-2002

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Dixon scored 155 of those 294 NCAA Tournament points in 2002, when he led Maryland to the national championship. How about those 33 points against Kansas in the national semifinals that year? However, Dixon, who scored 2,269 times during his four seasons with the Terrapins, was an exceptional tournament performer, averaging 18.4 points, shooting 48.3 percent from the field and 43.2 percent from 3-point range during those 13 games. Maryland went 13-3 in the NCAA Tournament with Dixon on the floor.

 

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10. 301 points (13 games) — Drew Timme, Gonzaga, 2021-23

301 points (13 games) -- Drew Timme, Gonzaga, 2021-23

Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports

The most recent player to reach the 300-point mark in NCAA Tournament. If it seemed like the 6-foot-10 Timme played forever at Gonzaga, it only seemed that way. However, the big man certainly came to play, and helped the Zags go 10-3 during his tournament run and reach the 2021 national-title contest with a 31-0 mark. Timme averaged 23.3 points and shot 60 percent in those 13 games. Three times he scored 30 or more points, and also posted five double-doubles for points and rebounds.

 

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T9. 303 points (15 games) — Corliss Williamson, Arkansas, 1993-95

T9. 303 points (15 games) -- Corliss Williamson, Arkansas, 1993-95

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Twice named SEC Player of the Year, Williamson was the undisputed superstar that led Arkansas to back-to-back appearances in the national championship game in 1994 and 1995. During the ’94 event, when Nolan Richardson’s Razorbacks won it all, Williamson was named Most Outstanding Player while averaging 21.7 points and shooting worse than 60 percent from the field just once during the Hogs’ six-game undefeated run. He also posted four double-double points and rebounds game during his NCAA Tournament career that spanned those 15 games.

 

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T9. 303 points (9 games) — Bill Bradley, Princeton, 1963-65

T9. 303 points (9 games) -- Bill Bradley, Princeton, 1963-65

Rich Clarkson/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

Before becoming a senator and presidential nominee, Bradley was a basketball star at Princeton. He helped the Tigers reach the Final Four in 1965, at which he was named Most Outstanding Player, after scoring 58 points on 22-of-29 shooting in the tournament’s third-place game victory over Wichita State. Bradley is one of 10 players, entering the 2024 event, to score at least 300 points in the NCAA Tournament (spanning nine games), and averaged 33.7 points per contest — which ranks second all time.

 

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7. 304 points (12 games) — Lew Alcindor, UCLA, 1967-69

304 points (12 games) -- Lew Alcindor, UCLA, 1967-69

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Before going by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, he won three national championships with UCLA as Lew Alcindor. The former New York City prep phenom was a three-time First-Team All-American and the inaugural winner of the Naismith Player of the Year Award while playing for the legendary John Wooden and the Bruins. Alcindor, considered by many to be the most dominant college player ever, was particularly good come tournament time. In his three national championship game appearances, Alcindor totaled 91 points on 38-of-53 (71.7 percent) shooting.

 

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6. 308 points (13 games) — Glen Rice, Michigan, 1986-89

308 points (13 games) -- Glen Rice, Michigan, 1986-89

Staff Photo/Getty Images

Rice is Michigan’s all-time leading scorer with 2,442 points — and a national champion. He was the Big Ten Player of the Year in 1988-89. That was the season Rice averaged 30.7 points, and went 27-of-49 from 3-point range during the NCAA Tournament to earn Most Outstanding Player honors during the Wolverines’ improbable run to their only national championship. Rice was a remarkable scorer, who made things look easy as his college career went on — five times he scored at least 31 points in the Big Dance.

 

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5. 324 points (10 games) — Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati, 1958-60

324 points (10 games) -- Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati, 1958-60

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There might not be a more complete player in the annals of the college game than Robertson. The “Big O” averaged 33.8 points, 15.2 rebounds and more than four assists during his three years with the Bearcats. Robertson, who left school as college basketball’s all-time leading scorer (2,973 points), led Cincinnati to two Final Four appearances — but didn’t win a national championship. However, when it came to tournament-time stars, Robertson remains one of the brightest. He scored 56 points in his second NCAA Tournament game in 1958, and posted a triple-double in each of Cincinnati’s two national third-place contests.

 

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4. 325 points (17 games) — Tyler Hansbrough, North Carolina, 2006-07

325 points (17 games) -- Tyler Hansbrough, North Carolina, 2006-07

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No player in North Carolina basketball history has scored more points than Hansbrough’s 2,872 (also an ACC record) or pulled down as many rebounds (1,219). He’s also the school career-record holder for double-figure scoring games (138), made field goals (939), and made free throws (982). Meanwhile, when it came to performing in the NCAA Tournament, Hansbrough maintained his star status. He averaged 19.1 points in those 17 tournament games, and scored at least 21 points eight times while taking part in the Big Dance.

 

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3. 328 points (16 games) — Danny Manning, Kansas, 1985-88

328 points (16 games) -- Danny Manning, Kansas, 1985-88

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Manning not only enjoyed one of college basketball’s great careers, but his performance in the 1988 NCAA Tournament remains remarkable. In leading the upstart Jayhawks — dubbed “Danny and the Miracles” — to the national championship, Manning recorded 163 points and 69 field goals. Manning averaged 20.1 points for his career, and of those 328 points in a hefty 16 NCAA Tournament games, he topped the 30-point mark three times, highlighted by his 31-point, 18-rebound performance in the Jayhawks’ national-final victory over Oklahoma.

 

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2. 358 points (13 games) — Elvin Hayes, Houston, 1966-68

358 points (13 games) -- Elvin Hayes, Houston, 1966-68

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Brought in by famed coach Guy V. Lewis, Hayes and teammate Don Chaney were the first African-Americans to play basketball at Houston. The legendary Hayes averaged 31.0 points as a Cougar, and those 358 points in just 13 NCAA Tournament games still seem remarkable. Oh yeah, his 222 rebounds in the Big Dance are No. 1 all-time. During the first three games of Houston’s 1968 NCAA Tournament, Hayes scored 49, 35 and 39 points, respectively. He later dropped 34 during the national third-place game loss to Ohio State.

 

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1. 407 points (23 games) — Christian Laettner, Duke, 1989-92

407 points (23 games) -- Christian Laettner, Duke, 1989-92

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Loved by the Cameron Crazies and the rest of Duke fans, and hated by most other college hoops fans. Still, it’s hard to argue with Laettner’s collegiate greatness. A career 60.1 percent NCAA Tournament shooter and the all-time leader with those 407 points, Laettner was a two-time national champion, an All-American and one of the most clutch players ever. His game-winning shot against Kentucky in the 1992 regional final only solidified him as a collegiate legend. In a day of one-and-done and moving in and out of the transfer portal, it’s unlikely any one will top Laettner’s point total and 23 games played in the Big Dance.

A Chicago native, Jeff Mezydlo has professionally written about sports, entertainment and pop culture for nearly 30 years. If he could do it again, he’d attend Degrassi Junior High, Ampipe High and Grand Lakes University.





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