3. Steve Alford
College: Indiana. Averaged 19.5 ppg over his career and shot 53 percent from 3-point range his senior season. He was a first-team All-American his junior and senior seasons.
NBA Draft: Dallas Mavericks, 26th overall in 1987.
NBA: In four seasons he averaged 4.4 ppg and started just three games (out of 169 played).
Basketball was Steve Alford’s life. His dad was a high school basketball coach and Steve would often grab his dad’s gym keys to shoot in the middle of the night. His practice paid off as he was named Indiana’s Mr. Basketball his senior season in high school, won a gold medal in the 1984 Olympics and won a national title with the Hoosiers in 1987. Most remember Keith Smart’s game-winning shot to defeat Syracuse for the NCAA title but without Alford’s hot hand (7 of 10 from 3-point range) the Hoosiers wouldn’t have won that game.
When the Pacers selected Reggie Miller with the 11th pick in the 1987 draft, fans were outraged that they hadn’t picked the hometown hero Alford. It turned out the Pacers knew what they were doing. Alford had benefited greatly from the addition of the 3-point line to college basketball in 1986 and built his career off of his shooting prowess. But he was too small and too slow to be able to get his shot off in the pros. He's since become a successful college basketball coach, now coaching at New Mexico after stints at Southwest Missouri State and Iowa.