Michigan Basketball: All-Time 10 Best Centers

 

Ken Brady Michigan#10 – Ken Brady: Brady enjoyed a fine career at Michigan (1970-73). He was a co-captain on the team as a senior. Over the course of his career Brady averaged 12.1 ppg and 9.7 rpg.
Brady tallied 29 double-doubles in his career, which ranks 9th on the school’s all-time list. Brady’s career rebounding average of 9.95 per game ranks 7th on Michigan’s all-time list.
Brady collected 617 rebounds in his career which ranks 22nd in school history.
Brady earned All-Big Ten honorable mention twice (1971, 73).
Ken played professionally overseas.

Tim McCormick Michigan#9 – Tim McCormick: McCormick capped his Michigan career (1980-84) with an outstanding senior season. He averaged 12.9 ppg and 5.9 rpg while leading Michigan to a 24-9 record and their first postseason birth (NIT) in 3 years. McCormick led the Wolverines to the NIT title and was named the MVP of the Tournament. He also earned third team All-Big Ten honors that season.
After playing in all 30 games as a freshman, McCormick missed his entire sophomore season while recovering from knee surgery. As a junior, McCormick averaged 12.2 ppg and 6.6 rpg.
McCormick scored 873 points and hauled down 472 rebounds in his career. He also shot an outstanding 56% from the field over the course of his career.
McCormick was inducted into Michigan’s Hall of Honor in 2006.
McCormick was selected in the first round (12th overall) of the 1984 NBA Draft. He played in the association for 8 years.

CJ Kupec Michigan#8 – CJ Kupec: A two year starter, Kupec was a 1975 All-American selection. He averaged 18.1 ppg and 8.0 rpg that season. The prior season he averaged 11.59 rpg which is the 10th best single season average in school history.
In his career, Kupec hauled down 609 boards and tallied 25 double-doubles.
Kupec was selected in the 4th round of the 1975 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Lakers. He played in the association for 4 years.

 

Terry Mills Michigan#7 – Terry Mills: Mills was a three year starter at Michigan, including starting on the 1989 National Championship team. Mills is one of just 5 Wolverines to have three career 400 point and 200 rebound seasons.
Mills ranks 21st on Michigan’s all-time scoring list with 1,405 career points. He ranks 16th on Michigan’s all-time rebounding list 681 career boards.
Mills tallied 14 double-doubles in his career.
Mills earned All-Big Ten honors twice; in 1988 he was a honorable mention All-Big Ten selection and in 1990 he was a second team All-Big Ten selection.
Mills was selected in the first round of the 1990 NBA Draft by the Milwaukee Bucks. He played in the association for 11 years.

Ron Kramer Michigan Basketball#6 – Ron Kramer: A two-time All-American football player at Michigan, Kramer was also a standout on the hardwood (1954-57). Kramer is one of just 5 Wolverines to be voted the team MVP three teams. Over the course of his career, Kramer average 17.0 ppg, including 20.4 ppg as a junior.
Kramer scored 1,119 points in his career. Only one Michigan player who played in the 1950s or earlier has more career points then Kramer (John Tidwell 1958-61).
Kramer earned second team All-Big Ten honors as a sophomore and junior. In his senior season, Kramer was the team captain and a third team All-Big Ten selection.
Kramer is one of the greatest athletes in the history of Michigan athletics. He was inducted in Michigan’s Hall of Honor in 1978.
Kramer also made the list of the Top 10 Tight Ends in Michigan Football history, he checked in at #1.
After graduating from Michigan, Kramer enjoyed a highly successful career in the NFL.

Robert Traylor Michigan Basketball#5 – Robert Traylor: The 6-8, 300 pound Tractor Traylor had a stellar 3 year career at Michigan (1995-98). Traylor scored 1,210 points in his career. He ranks 12th on Michigan’s all-time rebounding list with 745 career boards. In his junior season he hauled down 344 rebounds which is the 8th best single season total in school history.
Traylor was also a good defensive player as he notched 103 steals and 97 blocks in his career. His career steals per game average of 1.13 ranks as the 10th best single season average in Michigan history.
Traylor is one of just 7 Wolverines to rack up 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, and 100 steals in his career.
Traylor was a first team All-Big Ten selection in 1998. He was the MVP of the 1997 NIT and the 1998 Big Ten Tournament.
All of Traylor’s records and achievements were stricken from the books due to NCAA sanctions.
Traylor was selected in the first round (6th overall) of the 1998 NBA Draft by the Dallas Mavericks. He played in the league for 7 seasons.

Roy Tarpley Michigan#4 – Roy Tarpley: Tarpley was a highly skilled big man who could devastate the opponent in multiple ways. By the time he finished his Michigan career (1982-86) he had solidified his status of one of the best players to don the Wolverine jersey.
Tarpley tallied 1,601 points in his career which ranks him 12th on Michigan’s all-time list. His 953 career rebounds place him 5th on the all-time list.
Tarpley is Michigan’s all-time leader in blocked shots with 251 career rejections. His per game average of 2.06 ranks 2nd on the all-time list. In his senior season, Tarpley set a single season record with 97 blocks and his per game average that season was 2.94, also a school record. He owns 3 of the top 9 spots on Michigan’s single blocks list. Tarpley set a school record when he swatted 10 shots in a 1985 win over Florida Southern. Three weeks later he blocked 9 shots in a win over Cleveland State.
Tarpley is one of 5 Wolverines to total over 1,400 points and 900 rebounds in his career. He is one of 5 Wolverines to record three career 400 point seasons and three career 200 rebound seasons.
Tarpley’s 41 career double-doubles are the 4th most in school history.
In 1985 Tarpley was the Big Ten Player of the Year and an All-American selection.
Tarpley was selected in the first round (7th overall) of the 1986 NBA Draft by the Dallas Mavericks. His NBA career was cut short for violating the leagues drug and alcohol policies.

Michigan Basketball Juwan Howard#3 – Juwan Howard: The first member of the Fab Five to commit to Michigan, Howard enjoyed a stellar three year career as a Wolverine (1991-94). Although he played power forward in the NBA, Howard started at center for Michigan in each of his 3 seasons. As a freshman, Howard averaged 11.1 ppg and 6.2 rpb and he earned honorable mention All-Big Ten honors. He followed that up his sophomore season with 14.6 ppg and 7.4 rbg en route to second team All-Big Ten honors. He capped it off with a sensational senior season in which he tallied 20.8 ppg and 9.0 rbg while earning first team All-Big Ten honors and being selected as an All-American.
He is one of six Wolverines to accumulate 1,500 points and 700 rebounds in his career.
Howard ranks 16th in school history with 1,526 career points. He ranks 11th with 745 career rebounds. He also recorded 19 double-doubles in his career.
Howard ranks 9th in NCAA Tournament history with 280 career points scored in the tourney.
Howard was selected in the first round (5th overall) of the 1994 NBA Draft by the Washington Bullets. Howard has played in the league for the past 15 years and has a career scoring average of 14.9 ppg.

Phil Hubbard Michigan#2 – Phil Hubbard: A dominating force in the middle, Hubbard enjoyed an outstanding career at Michigan (1975-79). Hubbard posted some big numbers and they would have been even bigger had he not missed his entire junior season with a knee injury.
As a freshman, Hubbard averaged 16.1 ppg and 11.0 rpg. He teamed with Rickey Green to lead Michigan to the National Championship game that season.
Hubbard had a monster sophomore season posting 19.6 ppg and 13.0 rpg. Michigan made a return trip to the Final Four that season. Hubbard earned All-American honors that season.
He missed his junior season due to a knee injury he suffered playing in The World University Games.
Hubbard returned for his senior season and he averaged 14.8 ppg and 9.2 rpg.
Hubbard finished his career with 1,455 points and 979 rebounds. He is Michigan’s 4th leading rebounder of all-time. Hubbard averaged 11.13 rebounds per game over the course of his career, which ranks 4th on the school’s all-time list. Hubbard set the single season rebounds record when he snatched 389 boards in his sophomore season. Hubbard totaled 53 double-doubles in his career which places him 2nd on the all-time list. He once posted double-doubles in a school record 14 consecutive games. He also owns the single season record with 24 double-doubles (1976-77).
Hubbard is one of 5 Wolverines to total over 1,400 points and 900 rebounds in his career.
Hubbard set a NCAA Tournament record in a 1977 Regional Semi-Final when he corralled 26 rebounds. That is also Hubbard’s career high and the 4th highest single game total in school history.
Hubbard’s rebounding average of 13.3 per game in the NCAA Tournament is the 4th best in the history of the Tourney.
Hubbard was selected in the first round of the 1979 NBA Draft by the Detroit Pistons. He played in the association for 10 years.

Bill Buntin Michigan#1 – Bill Buntin: Some thought at 6-7 Buntin might be undersized to handle the rigors of the Big Ten. Using his outstanding athleticism and leaping ability (his vertical leap was said to be better then 50 inches) Buntin proved that he not only belonged but he was a star. Due to freshmen eligibility rules Buntin’s Wolverine career (1962-65) did not start until his sophomore season.
He exploded onto the scene averaging 22.3 ppg and 15.7 rpg in his first season. Buntin would continue that torrid pace throughout his career. He ended up becoming the first Wolverine to top 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in his career. To this day he is one of just two Michigan players to accomplish that feat.
He ranks 9th in school history with 1,725 career points. His career scoring average of 21.8 ppg places him 4th on Michigan’s all-time list.
Buntin ranks second on Michigan’s career rebounding list with 1,037 boards. His career average of 13.13 rpg also ranks 2nd on the all-time list.
Buntin is one of 7 Wolverines to record 500 points and 300 rebounds in a season. He accomplished that feat in each of his 3 seasons and is the only Michigan player to do it 3 times.
He is also one of 11 players to notch three career 200 rebound seasons and one of 11 players to tally three career 400 point seasons. Buntin is one of just 5 Michigan players to appear on both of those lists.
Buntin was a two-time All-American selection (1964, 65). He is one of 4 Wolverines to earn multiple All-American honors. Buntin etched his name into Michigan’s basketball history as one of the greatest players to ever represent the Maize and Blue on the basketball court.
Buntin was selected in the first round (#2 overall) of the 1965 NBA Draft by the Detroit Pistons. He only played in the NBA for one season. While playing a pick-up game of basketball Buntin collapsed and died of a heart condition at the age of 26.
Michigan’s team MVP Award is named in Buntin’s honor.
On January 7th 2006, Michigan retired Buntin’s #22 jersey.

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