The Pac-12 conference has been around since 1959 and has produced many March madness champions since then. The Pac-12 is home to teams such as UCLA and Oregon. The Pac-12 is home to the winningest program in men’s basketball, the UCLA Bruins.
Today in this article we will look at the five greatest Pac-12 players of all time and see what made them so great.
5. Don MacLean: UCLA
Don MacLean played for the UCLA Bruins from 1988-1992. As of 2022 MacLean is the Pac-12’s all time leading scorer. He is also 15th in total rebounds. MacLean made the all-conference team three times and was a one time All-American.
During his senior year MacLean averaged 20 points per game and led the UCLA Bruins to a 25-8 record. MacLean went on to be drafted in the first round of the 1992 NBA Draft by the Washington Wizards.
4. Ed O’Bannon: UCLA
Ed O’Bannon played for the UCLA Bruins from 1991-1995. Ed O’Bannon’s best season has to be his senior 1995 season. During that season he averaged 20 points per game plus 8 rebounds per game, earning him his third all conference team appearance.
During 1995 O’Bannon also won the Pac-12 conference player of the year award and the Wooden award. Finally O’Bannon led the UCLA Bruins to the March Madness title and won the tournament’s most outstanding player award.
O’Bannon went on to be drafted in the first round of the 1995 NBA Draft by the Brooklyn Nets.
3. Jason Kidd: California
Jason Kidd played for the California Golden Bears from 1992-1994. If Kidd had stayed all four years at Cal he would be even higher on this list. Kidd averaged six rebounds per game and nearly 15 points per game.
The Golden Bears made the tournament both years that Kidd was there. Kidd made the all conference team both years and in his sophomore year he won the Pac-12 conference player of the year which was the first time a sophomore has ever won that award.
Kidd went on to be selected in the first round of the 1994 NBA Draft by the Dallas Mavericks and went on to have an amazing NBA career.
2. Gary Payton: Oregon State
Gary Payton played for the Oregon State Beavers from 1986-1990. Payton is sixth in the Pac-12 in points and ranks first in assists. Payton is also first in steals. Payton led the Pac-12 all four years in assists and three years in steals.
Payton won Pac-12 player of the week nine times in his college career. Payton was on the all conference first team three times. In his senior year he was an All-American and won Pac-12 player of the year.
Payton went on to be drafted in the first round of the 1990 NBA Draft by the Seattle Supersonics.
1. Sean Elliott: Arizona
Sean Elliott played for the Arizona Wildcats from 1985-1989. Elliott is second all time in scoring. Elliott is also a two time conference player of the year and a three time first team all conference player.
Elliott was also the consensus national player of the year in his senior year. He averaged 22 points per game, seven assists and four rebounds. Elliott went on to be drafted in the first round of the 1989 NBA Draft by the San Antonio Spurs.