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Deadpoolio's Neat-o Stats: College Edition

What college has supplied the most Suns? How about the most Suns All-Star appearances? Which university has had the bigger impact on Phoenix basketball, Arizona State or Arizona? Find out here.

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Welcome one and all to Deadpoolio's Neat-o Stats: College Edition. Everything you never knew you wanted to know about the Phoenix Suns and the organization's connections to different colleges/universities has been assembled within this article for your perusal. Well, okay, not everything has been assembled here. I don't get paid enough for everything. Let's go with enough. As always, Deadpoolio's Neat-o Stats are brought to you by the good people at

Let's begin, shall we?

Of the 327 players in franchise history who have appeared in a game for the Phoenix Suns, 304 have also attended a U.S. college. In total, 129 different institutions have seen at least one former player appear in purple and orange.

Entering the 2015-16 season, Kentucky, North Carolina, and UCLA have sent the most players to play for Phoenix with nine apiece. However, Kentucky will move into first place all by itself when Devin Booker appears in his first game this season and makes it 10 for that school.

Colleges with the most Suns
1. Kentucky (9)*
North Carolina (9)
UCLA (9)
4. Stanford (8)
Syracuse (8)
6. Duke (6)
Oklahoma (6)
UNLV (6)
9. Arkansas (5)**
Auburn (5)
Iowa St. (5)
N.C. State (5)

* Doesn't include Devin Booker
** Doesn't include Sonny Weems

Despite Kentucky's reign at the top of the all-time list, it has not been the busiest pipeline to Phoenix over the past five seasons. That distinction belongs to Duke and North Carolina, with each school providing four players.

Most Suns over the past 5 seasons
Duke 4
North Carolina 4
Kentucky 3
Syracuse 3
Kansas 2
Michigan St. 2
Stanford 2

And if you contrast the most recent five seasons with Phoenix's first five seasons, you will see none of the schools appear on both lists. Oh, how times change.

Most Suns in the first 5 seasons
Creighton 2
Davidson 2
South Carolina 2
University of Texas-El Paso 2
University of Texas-Pan American 2

Moving right along, of the 33 institutions to have ever won the NCAA tournament, only four have not also seen a player play for Phoenix. Those are City College of New York, Holy Cross, Loyola University Chicago, and San Francisco. (Holy Cross and Loyola University Chicago did have players drafted by Phoenix, however.)

The Suns have also been represented just twice in uniform by players from the Ivy League, first by Corky Calhoun (Pennsylvania) from the 1972-73 season to the 1974-75 season and then by Chris Dudley (Yale) during the 2000-01 season. If training camp invitee Kyle Casey (Harvard) makes the team, he would be the third.

Boy, giving out all these stats sure works up a mighty thirst. A cool glass of water would really hit the spot right about now. Makes me feel sorry for all those people in California dealing with water restrictions due to the drought. Speaking of droughts, did you know it has been 46 seasons since a player from Drake last played for the Suns? The Drake drought is closely followed by the NYU drought at 45 years. The good news, though, is that both school do still have basketball programs. Hope springs eternal.

On the other end of the spectrum, five schools have managed to put three alums on the Suns' roster in the same season, the most recent schools being Kentucky and Duke last season. Of those five schools, three saw all three players appear in the same game at least once.

In one season & in same game (italics is season only)
2014-15 3 Kentucky, 3 Duke
1994-95 3 Auburn
1988-89 3 Old Dominion
1984-85 3 UCLA

Not to be forgotten, Illinois has had the most Suns coaches hail from its grounds...with two. Those were Red Kerr and Jerry Colangelo in the early days of the franchise. Since then, it has been an exercise in college diversity.

Colleges of Suns coaches
Illinois (2) — Jerry Colangelo, Red Kerr
Appalachian St. — Alvin Gentry
Bellarmine — John MacLeod
Brigham Young — Danny Ainge
Indiana — Dick Van Arsdale
Iowa St. — Jeff Hornacek
Jackson St. — Lindsey Hunter
Marshall — Mike D'Antoni
Michigan St. — Scott Skiles
Midwestern St. — Cotton Fitzsimmons
NYU — Butch Van Breda Kolff
USC — Paul Westphal
Virginia Tech — John Wetzel
Wake Forest — Frank Johnson
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point — Terry Porter

Getting back to the players, 20 colleges have combined to produce 57 Suns All-Star appearances, with North Carolina leading the way with nine total. Note: The Suns have had 62 total All-Star appearances, with five belonging to Amar'e Stoudemire and Cypress Creek High School.

Colleges w/ most Suns All Stars
North Carolina — 9 (Walter Davis 6, Charlie Scott 3)
California — 6 (Jason Kidd 3, Kevin Johnson 3)
Santa Clara — 6 (Steve Nash)
Auburn — 4 (Charles Barkley)
Iowa — 4 (Connie Hawkins)
UNLV — 4 (Shawn Marion)
USC — 4 (Paul Westphal)
Central Michigan — 3 (Dan Majerle)
Indiana — 3 (Dick Van Arsdale)
Utah — 3 (Tom Chambers)

And now, for the all-time leaders. This one should be pretty self-explanatory. Note: To mitigate the influence one player could have on the results, schools were only considered for per game averages if they were represented by three or more players and had 500 or more total games.

All-Time Leaders

Oklahoma — 1,496

North Carolina — 22,813

Points Per Game
North Carolina — 17.5

Oklahoma — 9,707

Rebounds Per Game
UNLV — 7.4

California — 9,533

Assists Per Game
California — 9.4

Oklahoma — 1,715

Steals Per Game
California — 1.68

Oklahoma — 1,197

Blocks Per Game
Old Dominion — 1.49

We'll round things out with a look at which colleges have had the best history in the NBA Draft with the Phoenix Suns.

NBA Draft

Most 1st round picks
Kentucky — 3
UNLV — 3
North Carolina — 2
South Carolina — 2
Stanford — 2
Syracuse — 2
Wisconsin — 2

Most overall selections
Arizona St. — 10
Arizona — 6
Maryland — 6

Highest pick
UNLV — Round 1, Pick 2 (1987, Armen Gilliam)
Florida — Round 1, Pick 2 (1969, Neal Walk)

Lowest pick
Oklahoma — Round 10, Pick 224 (1983, Bo Overton)

Best average selection — round
North Carolina — 1.0 (2 selections, average pick position: 9th)
South Carolina — 1.0 (2 selections, average pick position: 11th)
Wisconsin — 1.0 (2 selections, average pick position: 25th)

Best average selection — pick
Notre Dame — 4th
Pennsylvania — 4th

Miscellaneous Stats

Only two players in Suns history have come from the University of Indiana and the University of Utah, and each pair shared the same last name. For Indiana, those players were Dick Van Arsdale and Tom Van Arsdale. For Utah, those players were Jerry Chambers and Tom Chambers. Dick and Tom were twins; Jerry and Tom were...not related.

Bonus Stats

For all you curious about how the Arizona schools fared, here are the results (and, as usual, it's a pretty good ASU-UA rivalry...for a while anyway):

Arizona St. and Arizona have each seen four players play for the Suns while Grand Canyon University has had two. For the ASU Sun Devils, those players were Mario Bennett, Eddie House, Jim Owens, and Paul Stovall. For the UA Wildcats, they were Jud Buechler, Ben Davis, Channing Frye, and Steve Kerr. For the Grand Canyon Antelopes, they were Bayard Forrest and Horacio Llamas. Northern Arizona University has never had a player become a Sun.

While ASU can claim the first player in a Phoenix uniform (Stovall, 1972-73), UA has the first Suns draft pick from an Arizona school (Bill Davis, 1968).

History has ASU and UA in a virtual dead heat when it comes to supplying talent to Phoenix, but the all-time stats lean heavily in Arizona's favor.

Arizona — 361
Arizona St. — 183
Grand Canyon — 167

Arizona — 3,557
Arizona St. — 1,134
Grand Canyon — 627

Points Per Game
Arizona — 9.9
Arizona St. — 6.2
Grand Canyon — 3.8

Arizona — 1,796
Grand Canyon — 601
Arizona St. — 294

Rebounds Per Game
Arizona — 5.0
Grand Canyon — 3.6
Arizona St. — 1.6

Arizona — 424
Grand Canyon — 301
Arizona St. — 231

Assists Per Game
Grand Canyon — 1.8
Arizona St. — 1.3
Arizona — 1.2

Arizona — 225
Arizona St. — 74
Grand Canyon — 63

Steals Per Game
Arizona — .62
Arizona St. — .47
Grand Canyon — .38

Arizona — 288
Grand Canyon — 79
Arizona St. — 25

Blocks Per Game
Arizona — .80
Grand Canyon — .47
Arizona St. — .16

UA dominated the statistical comparisons (thanks largely to Channing Frye), but things even out slightly in regards to drafted players from each Arizona school. Both ASU and UA have had one player selected by Phoenix in the first round to lead all Arizona colleges, but ASU has had a whopping 10 alums selected overall by Phoenix.

Most overall selections by Suns from an Arizona college
Arizona St. — 10
Arizona — 6
Grand Canyon — 4
Northern Arizona — 3

Highest pick by Suns from an Arizona college
Arizona — Round 1, Pick 24 (1989, Anthony Cook)

Lowest pick by Suns from an Arizona college
Northern Arizona — Round 20, Pick 216 (1969, Jim Plump)

Best average selection — round
Arizona — 4.7

Best average selection — pick
Arizona — 74.5th

And that's that. Thanks for reading. Hope you learned something. If you're wondering about something that I didn't include, leave it in the comments below, and I'll see what I can do.

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