How Mid-Major Players Make it Big in the NBA

Every aspiring college basketball player would love to play for a school like Kentucky, Duke, or North Carolina, those three are among others at the top of the college hoops totem pole. Going to higher accoladed schools will increase chances at a national championship, and will certainly increase publicity. There are also plenty of stars in today’s game that didn’t attend the schools we would think of as the top basketball schools. There are plenty of mid-major players that turned into stars, and they help prove that playing college ball at a lesser known school isn’t bad at all. 

Just to think about some of the names that came from mid-majors, four players in the NBA’s superstar realm attended mid major schools.

Stephen Curry- Davidson

Paul George- Fresno State

Damian Lillard- Weber State

Kawhi Leonard- San Diego State 

These four have 19 combined all-star appearances, and only one of them is over thirty years old (Curry). They weren’t the first to do it either. Dwyane Wade came from Marquette, and Larry Bird from Indiana State and the list goes on. Plenty of the stars in the history of basketball have missed out on attending major programs, so how did they end up the way that they did?

It stems from the fact that these players aren’t heavily recruited. Stephen Curry was a three star recruit out of high school, and his only Power 5 offer was from Virginia Tech. He chose to stay close to home and attend Davidson University. During his time at college, and his first few years in the NBA, Curry worked to get better. He went from a skinny sharpshooter from a mid-major to a two time MVP, and one of the best point guards of all time. Steph helps prove that any player, taking any path to the NBA can be great. While some did, not every great player came from places like Kentucky, Duke and North Carolina. Players have exploded from mid-major schools due to their motivation, and countless hours of hard work. The big schools will always produce stars, but there will also be an unproven player, at a lesser known school, that will be a diamond in the rough.

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