High School Hierarchy: 6-10
SLAMonline ranks the top pro-producing high schools of all time.
8. Springarn High School, Washington DC
NBA Players Produced: Dave Bing, Elgin Baylor, Stan Washington, Sherman Douglas, John Tresvant, Earl Jones
Combined Experience: 50 seasons
NBA/ABA Championships Won: 0
All-Star Appearances: 18
Hall of Famers: 2
Total Points: 104
The DC area basketball scene stacks up historically against any traditional hoops hotbed in the country, and, with two Hall of Famers who also were selected among the NBA’s 50 Greatest Players of All Time, Springarn is the top NBA talent-producing school in the nation’s capitol. One of those legends, Dave Bing, has taken up another DC tradition: politics. Bing is currently the mayor of Detroit.
You’ve probably heard of: DC-based writer and author Bijan C. Bayne wrote this about Elgin Baylor:
“It was a DC-product, Elgin Baylor, who lifted the game of basketball off the floor and into the air, which spawned the likes of Connie Hawkins, Julius Erving and Michael Jordan. Elgin held the NBA single game scoring record at 71 before it was broken by Wilt Chamberlain with 100 points. Elgin also held the record for the most points in a playoff game with 63 until that was broken by Michael Jordan. Elgin ranks third among NBA players with playoff games over 30 points and 15 rebounds and third among NBA scoring averages.”
Whether it’s a result of the fact that his Lakers didn’t win a title when he played, or maybe his disastrous run as GM of the Clippers, Baylor is an often-overlooked name when the greatest players of all time are discussed. One player, however, never forgot what Baylor meant to the game. Kobe Bryant admitted that he has used many elements of Baylor’s game, particularly Baylor’s first step, as he’s added things to his own game throughout his career.
Don’t forget about: Sherman Douglas was overlooked as a basketball player at every level. Douglas played for Springarn and only received one Division I scholarship offer, from Syracuse University. He helped lead Syracuse to a national title game and, at one time, was the NCAA’s all-time leader in assists and was Syracuse’s all-time leading scorer (both records were later bested). Douglas wasn’t the most athletic looking player, and the fact that he relied on an unorthodox floater as his primary scoring weapon didn’t help him gain much attention from NBA scouts so he fell into the second round. As a rookie with the Heat, he averaged 14 points and nearly 8 assists per game while making the All-Rookie First-Team. He was traded to Boston and led a declining Celtics team to the Playoffs three of his four seasons there. Douglas made his NBA name with steady point guard play, but as he told Heat.com while recounting his career-high 42-point night against Denver, he was a scorer at heart: “My job as a pro was to help my teammates score as a playmaker. But every once in a while, I turned the jumper back on and piled up big points,” Douglas said.
He retired in 2001 with career averages of 11 points, 6 assists and 1 steal per game on 48 percent shooting.
Random fact: If there’s a young player out there who wants to become a better rebounder, Springarn alum John Tresvant has the machine for you. His Total Rebounder Exercise System is designed to bring back a lost art, according to Tresvant, “I’m trying to bring rebounding back to basketball, to have coaches teach it more, and I’m giving them the devices.”
Tresvant averaged 10 rebounds per 36 minutes in his solid nine-year NBA career, but he was a dominant rebounder in college at the Seattle University, where he once hauled in 40 rebounds in a single game.