#3 Mike Miller (1998-1999)
Mike Miller played for the Gators in the late 90s and led the program to its first National Championship game in school history (an 89-76 loss to the #1 seeded Michigan State Spartans) during his sophomore year.
While at Florida, Miller averaged 13.3 points per game while shooting 48% on field goals, 35% on three-pointers, and a 72% from the free throw line. He scored a total of 862 points while collecting 389 rebounds, 149 assists, and 81 steals.
After the National Championship loss to MSU, Miller declared for the 2000 NBA Draft as just a sophomore. He would be selected fifth overall by the Orlando Magic. Miller took the league by storm as he won NBA Rookie of the Year for the 2001 season and was named to the NBA All-Rookie First Team. Five years later, he won the Sixth Man of the Year Award while playing for the Memphis Grizzlies.
Miller also took home two NBA titles while playing for the Miami Heat in 2011 and 2012. He played a huge role in the Heat's first championship run as he hit 7 of 9 three-pointers for 23 points in Game 5 of the Finals to help seal the championship clinching victory in Miami.
Currently, Miller plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers and could be in the hunt for a potential third championship as the Cavs prepare to take on the Chicago Bulls in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Regardless of how this series pans out, Miller has had a great NBA career full of personal accolades and championships since leaving the University of Florida.
#2 Chandler Parsons (2007-2010)
Chandler Parsons joined the Gators right after they won their second National Championship in 2007. He is the only UF player on this list to stay for all four years of his collegiate eligibility.
With four years to hone his skills, Parsons averaged 10.2 points per game for a total of 1452 points. He shot 48% from the field, 34% from three-point land, and 61% from the free throw line. He also compiled 859 rebounds, 339 assists, 129 steals.
Parsons' hard work over his four years as a Gator would pay off as he was awarded the following honors his senior year:
- SEC Player of the Year in 2011
- First-team All-SEC in 2011
- AP Honorable Mention All-American in 2011
His senior year, Parsons led the Gators to an Elite Eight appearance, where they fell to the #8 seeded Butler Bulldogs 74-71 in overtime. After the Elite Eight loss, Parsons entered the 2011 NBA Draft and was selected 38th overall in the second round by the Houston Rockets.
Parsons fared well his rookie year as he was selected to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team in 2012. He played with the Rockets for three years before signing with the Dallas Mavericks in the 2014 offseason. He missed a majority of the 2015 playoffs due to a knee injury, but should be back healthy for the start of the 2015 regular season.
#1 Corey Brewer (2004-2006)
Coming in at No.1 is Corey Brewer, who started for both those Florida Gator National Championship teams. In his three years as a Gator, Brewer averaged 11.3 PPG while scoring 1225 total points. He had a 48% field goal percentage, 36% three-point percentage, and a 71% free throw percentage. He nabbed 469 rebounds, dished out 300 assists, and was a lockdown defender with 176 steals.
During the Gators' second Final Four run, Brewer was named the NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player in 2007 as the Gators beat the Ohio State Buckeyes 84-75 to win back-to-back titles. After reaching the promise land yet again, Brewer decided to forgo his senior year of eligibility and enter the 2007 NBA Draft. He would be selected 7th overall by the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Brewer would play three seasons for the Timberwolves before being traded to the New York Knicks in 2011. After being cut by the Knicks without even playing one game for them, Brewer signed with the Dallas Mavericks that same year. He would go on to win his first NBA championship with the Mavs when they beat the Heat in six games in the 2011 NBA Finals.
Currently, Brewer plays with the Houston Rockets, who just beat the Mavs in five games to get to the Western Conference Semifinals. Brewer scored 15+ points in four of the five games and will need to keep playing well if the Rockets want to defeat Chris Paul and the Los Angeles Clippers in the semifinals.
Matt Bonner (1999-2003)
I hope you enjoyed this Top 3 article! In my next article, I will list my Top 3 Gator Power Forwards! Until then, stay tuned!
*All stats accredited to http://www.sports-reference.com/cbb/ & Wikipedia.com, NBA.com, & of course "The Source"
*All photos accredited to ufinsouthflorida.com, flickr.com, & pelicansreport.com
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