There is a lot of talk about great college players who busted out of the NBA, but there are an equal number of players who kinda did the opposite. For various reasons, they thrive in the NBA, but never made as much of a mark as college players.
Many of these are guys who were simply too young to be good yet. They spent one year in college, did what they could, and answered the NBA’s call. Others have styles of play that just make more sense for an NBA team and some — possibly many — were poorly utilized by their college coaches.
Whatever the reasons, these are 10 active NBA players who are better in the NBA than they ever were in college.
DeAndre Jordan played for Mark Turgeon at Texas A&M, and either he was simply not any good yet or Turgeon had no idea what to do with him. It struck me as odd that Jordan signed on to play for Turgeon in the first place, and at almost no point during his one year in College Station did it look like he belonged there.
He averaged 7.9 points, 4.1 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 20.1 minutes per game. Those are the numbers of a reliable senior who plays in Turkey for three years before moving back home and opening a bar.
The Clippers took Jordan in the second round on the hunch that a guy that big and athletic couldn’t be too bad. Jordan rewarded them by leading the NBA in rebounding twice, being named to two All-Defensive teams, two All-NBA third teams, and a first-team All-NBA season in 2016.