There have been a lot of college basketball players who have had successful careers. But after their college careers were over, some players became an afterthought. Not all of those successful college players had that same success in their professional careers.
One player who dominated during his college career was North Carolina star, Tyler Hansbrough. This was one player in college who always played at a high level no matter what. He achieved a lot of success playing under Roy Williams. He was a winner in college, but once he got into the NBA, he would not have the same success.
Hansbrough’s career at North Carolina
Hansbrough came to North Carolina in 2005 and immediately made an impact on the basketball program. In his freshman season, he averaged 18.9 points and 7.8 rebounds per game. He was a unanimous selection for the ACC Rookie of the Year. He also earned First Team All-America honors. North Carolina had a gem in Hansbrough, and he would only get better during his time in Chapel Hill.
In his sophomore season, Hansbrough received first-team All-American honors yet again and was voted North Carolina’s Most Valuable Player by his teammates and coaches. The college basketball world quickly gravitated to North Carolina because of the success that Hansbrough was having in his first two years.
It seemed as though Hansbrough was the face of college basketball. During his junior year, he was named the consensus National Player of the Year. He became the 11th North Carolina player to win the award and the fourth player in ACC history to win the National Player of the Year, ACC Player of the Year, ACC Tournament MVP, and NCAA Regional MVP all in the same season. The awards just kept racking up for him.
Senior year was the icing on the cake for the North Carolina star. He would go on to break the all-time career scoring record at 2,872 points. He also led North Carolina to a national title in 2009, defeating Michigan State. His career at North Carolina will go down as one of the best in the history of all college basketball. No player wanted to win more than Hansbrough. His jersey was retired by North Carolina in 2010.
Playing in the NBA
After an impressive college career, Hansbrough decided to enter the NBA draft. The Indiana Pacers selected him at No. 13 in the 2009 draft. He missed a good amount of the season his rookie year due to multiple injuries. Hansbrough never had the success in the NBA that he did in college.
After four seasons with the Pacers, he spent two with the Toronto Raptors and one with the Charlotte Hornets, and that was the end of his NBA career. He has not been in the NBA since the 2015-16 season. Once a terrific college player finds himself out of the league after seven seasons.
Still playing basketball
Now Hansbrough is still playing professional basketball. He joined the Chinese Basketball Association for the 2017-18 season and has been playing ever since. With the career that Hansbrough had at North Carolina, it was surprising to see him not have that same success in the league. But he continues to play the game that he loves.