The Rutgers University Scarlet Knights have generally had one of the weaker basketball programs in the Big East Conference. They have not been without success, however, as the school has been to six NCAA Tournaments. According to Basketball Reference, the Scarlet Knights have graduated nine players to the NBA, four of whom were members of the only Rutgers team to reach the Final Four.
The all-time best NBA player from Rutgers University is retired big man Roy Hinson. With the Scarlet Knights, Hinson helped the team reach its fourth NCAA Tournament as one of the greatest shot-blockers in school history. He was drafted in the first round of the 1983 NBA Draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers, and quickly became their starting power forward. In eight seasons, Hinson averaged better than 15 points per game five times, topping out at 19.6 points per game in the 1985-86 season. He was one of the best shot-blockers of the 1980s, swatting 882 shots in his NBA career.
Retired backup guard John Battle was one of the best NBA players from Rutgers University. A member of the Scarlet Knights’ 1983 NCAA Tournament team, Battle poured in more than 20 points per game in each of the following two collegiate seasons. In the NBA, he played ten seasons with the Hawks and Cavs, scoring double-figure averages four times with a career average of 8.7 points per game. He had his career season in 1990-91 with averages of 13.6 points and 2.7 assists per game.
Eddie Jordan has spent parts of the last four decades in professional basketball as a coach and as one of the top NBA players from Rutgers University. Jordan helped take the Scarlet Knights to their first and only Final Four in 1976 before being drafted by the Cavs in 1977. He spent two seasons as the Nets’ point guard, peaking in 1979-80 with averages of 13.3 points, 6.8 assists, and 2.7 steals per contest, ranking among the top ten in the latter two categories. After his retirement as a player, Eddie Jordan returned to Rutgers as an assistant coach before becoming a head coach for three NBA teams.
Forward James Bailey played nine professional seasons as one of the best NBA players from Rutgers. Another member of the 1976 Rutgers Final Four team, Bailey scored more than 2,000 points in four NCAA seasons. He had a few strong seasons with the Sonics, Rockets, and Knicks. In 1980-81, he averaged career highs in every major category including 14.0 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 1.7 blocks per game.
Since 1986, the only Rutgers basketball player to debut the NBA is 2006 first round draft pick Quincy Douby. Douby led the Scarlet Knights to their last two NIT playoffs, averaging 18 points per game in three collegiate seasons. He spent two-plus seasons as a role player for the Sacramento Kings and played a handful of games with the Raptors with a career scoring average of 4.1 points per game. After the 2008-09 season, Douby was released by the Raptors and now plays professionally overseas.
NBA & ABA Players Who Attended Rutgers University. Basketball-Reference.com