Pete Maravich's LSU Career Will Never Be Topped

Published July 29, 2020 51,652 Views

Rumble Pistol Pete Maravich lived and breathed basketball from an early age. It was only natural. His father, Press Maravich, had devoted his life to the game as a coach and intended to pass that devotion to his son.

Pistol Pete's legend began in 1966 when his father accepted the head coaching job at Louisiana State University of the Southeastern Conference, and his son followed.

The Pistol joined LSU's varsity team as a sophomore when averaged 43.8 points and grabbed 7.5 rebounds per game. Maravich's play helped the LSU Tigers improve to a 14-12 record after going 3-23 the previous year.

Pete didn't slow down as a junior, upping his scoring average to 44.2 points while snatching 6.5 rebounds and dishing 4.9 assists per game.

The First-Team All-American's senior year was his best. He improved to 44.5 points and 6.2 assists per game, the most of his career. His career-high 69 points came against Alabama, along with a 64-point performance against Kentucky. He broke the NCAA Division I single-game record for most free throws in a game, making 30-of-31 attempts against Oregon State.

The Tigers went 22-10 that year. He was named College Player of the Year and won the Naismith Award as the best college basketball player in the country.

Although the LSU basketball team never reached the NCAA Tournament during Maravich's tenure, but they were much better due to hit 43.8 shooting percentage during his career.

Pete left college as the all-time leading scorer in college basketball history, totaling 3,667 points with a scoring record of 44.2 points per game. He owns multiple NCAA records, including field goals made and attempted and 50 point games in a season and career, all of which still stand. It's estimated Maravich would've averaged 57 points per game with the three-point line. Absurd.

Pete entered the NBA draft and was selected third overall by the Atlanta Hawks. He enjoyed a 10-year career—averaging 24.2 points per game—with the Hawks, New Orleans Jazz (later Utah Jazz), and Boston Celtics. Pistol Pete was a five-time NBA All-Star and was named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History in 1996.

Pete Maravich is the greatest scorer college basketball has seen. His ball-handling wizardry, shooting ability, and baggy socks are cemented in the sport's lore. The Pete Maravich Assembly Center in Baton Rouge now bears his name as a reminder of how incredible he truly was.

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