Oklahoma Basketball: All-Time Sooners Men’s Basketball Team

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Mar 20, 2014; Spokane, WA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners cheerleader performs in the first half of a men

Gerald Tucker (1942-47), Third Team Center

Gerald Tucker is one of three Oklahoma men’s players to be named National Player of the Year (the other two are Vic Holt in 1928 and Blake Griffin in 2009). He received the honor in 1946-47.

At 6-6, Tucker was small for the center position by today’s standards, but he was one of the best in the college game when he played. He was a two-time First Team All-American (in 1943 and 1947) and was the leading scorer on the first Sooner basketball team to play for the national championship (in 1947). Tucker averaged 10.5 points per game that season on an OU team that was 24-7 overall and won the Big Six Conference championship. The Sooners lost to Holy Cross in the national title game.

After finishing his outstanding college career, Tucker played for the Bartlesville 66ers of the National Industrial Basketball League, a rival then of the NBA. He was named an AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) All-American and also was an AAU All-Star.

Tucker would later become the head coach of the Bartlesville NIBL team. He was coach of the 66ers for four seasons, and every season he was at the helm, the Bartlesville team lead the league in wins.

Tucker died in May of 1979 at the age of 57. In 1989, he was named to the Final Four All-1940s team.

Next: Lester Lane (1951-55), Third Team Guard