The list of all-time leading NCAA Tournament scorers is a who’s who of legends. Guys who threw teams on their backs and hacked a trail with a machete to a title. Glen Rice still tops the list with his transcendent performance in 1989, leading Michigan to an unlikely title over Seton Hall. His 184 points over six games just nicks two Hall of Famers who only had five games to get the job done: Princeton’s Bill Bradley (177) and Houston’s Elvin Hayes (167). You’ve probably heard of the rest of the top 10: Danny Manning, Jerry West, Hal Lear, Joe Barry Carroll, Juan Dixon, Jay Williams and … one other guy. Why is his performance more notable than the others? Rather than take five or six games to make this list, and ahead of the thousands of other players who could have made it, this guy lit up the scoreboards in only THREE appearances. Name this player who went on to a 10-year NBA career.
Austin Carr of Notre Dame dumped in buckets by the backhoe in the 1970 tournament. Carr dropped 61 (still the record for most in one game), 52 and 45 points as the Irish won third place in the Mideast Regional (and yes, that used to be “a thing”). The following year, Carr and ND beat UCLA, which was already notable in those days, but seriously notable this time because UCLA would not lose again for 88 straight games … until running into Notre Dame again. Carr won the AP and Naismith Player of the Year Awards in that 1971 season and was the number one overall pick in the draft, heading to Cleveland. Carr would go on to become known as “Mr. Cavalier” after his NBA career, where he was named to the All-Rookie team in 1972 and made one All-Star team side in 1974.