Alcindor tops personal all-time list

Updated: February 20, 2008, 5:45 PM ET
By Fran Fraschilla
ESPN is in the midst of unveiling its IBM Top 25 Greatest Basketball Players in College Basketball history. The No.1 player will be announced on March 8 during the North Carolina-Duke rematch at Cameron Indoor Stadium. A blue-ribbon panel of basketball experts has compiled the list.

A couple of summers ago, to keep myself busy, I researched my own Top 100 players. It was a good exercise for me, and it's great fodder for debate. So, here is a look at my Top 25:
1. Lew Alcindor, UCLA
2. Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati
3. Bill Russell, San Francisco
4. Bill Walton, UCLA
5. Jerry Lucas, Ohio State
6. David Thompson, NC State
7. Pete Maravich, LSU
8. Elgin Baylor, Seattle
9. Magic Johnson, Michigan State
10. Elvin Hayes, Houston
11. Bill Bradley, Princeton
12. Tom Gola, La Salle
13. Larry Bird, Indiana State
14. Christian Laettner, Duke
15. Hank Luisetti, Stanford
16. George Mikan, DePaul
17. Patrick Ewing, Georgetown
18. Austin Carr, Notre Dame
19. Phil Ford, North Carolina
20. Wilt Chamberlain, Kansas
21. Bob Lanier, St. Bonaventure
22. Bob Pettit, LSU
23. Jerry West, West Virginia
24. Danny Manning, Kansas
25. Mark Aguirre, DePaul

I know what you are thinking. Where's Michael Jordan? I had him No. 26 because he was a far greater NBA player than he was a college player. Conversely, the Tar Heels best college player ever may have been Phil Ford, who, without the shot clock, was a better closer than Mariano Rivera. When Dean Smith put Ford in the middle of his Four Corners offense with the lead, the game was over.