ASU's Bobby Hurley is Duke's most impressive point guard

Hurley has the potential to pass on his expert knowledge

Bobby Hurley may be ASU men's basketball's head coach, but what fans, students and faculty may not know is that Hurley is the greatest point guard Duke University has ever seen.

With Hurley at the helm, ASU basketball is being pointed in the right direction. In his second season coaching for the University of Buffalo, the former Duke point guard led the Buffalo Bulls to the NCAA Tournament.

In his four years as a player at Duke University, the current Sun Devil coach won back-to-back NCAA championships, made two NCAA All-Tournament teams and won the 1991-92 NCAA All-Tournament Most Outstanding Player Award.

At point guard, it was Hurley who was the facilitator on a team that featured the likes of 1992 Olympian Christian Laettner and seven-time NBA All Star Grant Hill.

Hurley’s ability to share the rock with his teammates shows up on the stat sheet — he is the NCAA’s all-time leader in career assists, with 1,076. 

“He always found a way to get the ball to people in positions to score,” Stephen Wiseman, Duke beat writer for The Herald Sun, said.

Part of Hurley’s repertoire on the court was the toughness he would display on a nightly basis. “His grit, his toughness, stand out. He was a tough little guy,” Wiseman said.

In an interview with Cronkite News, Hurley’s former teammate Grant Hill said, “I think (Hurley is) the type of guy that people would want to follow. I know as a player I did.”

“(Hurley) knew how to make everybody succeed,” Wiseman said. “A personality like Christian Laettner or a guy like Grant Hill, (...) they all thrived with Bobby leading the way as the point guard.”

To go along with a knack for the right pass and an impressive set of leadership skills, Hurley was also an excellent three-point shooter. He shot just over 40 percent from beyond the arc in his college career and finished second as a senior in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) in three-point shots made.

Hurley was also a hawk on the defensive end and led the ACC in steals per game his sophomore year. 

Hurley’s pro career was short-lived when a car crash during his 1993 rookie season with the Sacramento Kings ended his basketball career for good.

Even though his career in the NBA was not fulfilled, Hurley can still call himself the greatest point guard Duke has ever seen.

"If you made me (decide who was the greatest point guard in Duke's history), I would probably pick Bobby Hurley," said Pat Forde, a Yahoo national college basketball columnist.

Being the catalyst on a team that won back to back NCAA championships while setting the all time NCAA record in career assists gives Hurley a college pedigree that is almost impossible to defeat. 

Plus, the odds of anyone surpassing Hurley's metrics are especially low since now there are so many great college basketball players going straight to the NBA after their freshman year of college.

Bobby Hurley is the greatest point guard Duke has ever seen, and quite possibly the greatest point guard college basketball has ever witnessed. With these credentials now in mind, it’s fair to say that ASU men’s basketball is in the right hands.

Reach the columnist at and on twitter @Kokiriley.

Editor’s note: The opinions presented in this column are the author’s and do not imply any endorsement from The State Press or its editors.

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