Michael Jordan Carolina Basketball Facts

Michael Jordan was part of a five-player freshman class in 1981-82 that included John Brownlee of Fort Worth, Texas; Warren Martin of Axton, Va.; Lynwood Robinson of Mt. Olive, N.C.; and Buzz Peterson of Asheville, N.C.

Jordan was listed as Mike Jordan in the 1981-82 media guide and was introduced to the crowd in his first game against Kansas as freshman guard Mike Jordan.
Michael Jordan flag dunk UNC
Jordan named Walter Davis and Magic Johnson as his favorite players.

The last player to wear No. 23 prior to Jordan was Ged Doughton, a guard from Winston-Salem, N.C., who played for Carolina from 1975-79.


A Raleigh Times column the day after the 1981 NCAA championship game identified Jordan as Michael “Magic” Jordan among the next season’s incoming freshmen.

Jordan was the fourth freshman to start his first college game for head coach Dean Smith, following Phil Ford, Mike O’Koren and James Worthy.

Jordan scored 12 points against Kansas in Charlotte on Nov. 28, 1981, in his first game as a Tar Heel.

Carolina was ranked No. 1 in the nation in the Associated Press poll in 57 of his 101 games as a Tar Heel.

Jordan’s teams went 11-1 against top-10 opponents.


Carolina was not ranked in the top 20 in the AP poll in only two of his 101 games (against Texas-Pan America and Chattanooga in December 1982).

Carolina finished his three seasons ranked No. 1 in 1981-82, No. 8 in 1982-83 and No. 1 in 1983-84.

Jordan scored in double figures in 90 of 101 games (63 of 67 games as a sophomore and junior).

Scored a career-high 39 points against Georgia Tech on Jan. 29, 1983.

Made a career-high 13 field goals against Duke as a sophomore and Chattanooga as a junior.

The most points he scored against any team were 159 against Duke. He scored 19-11-32-32-18-25-22 in his seven games against the Blue Devils (22.7 ppg).

Jordan’s 149 points against Georgia Tech are the most by any Tar Heel ever against the Yellow Jackets.

Jordan led the team in scoring as a sophomore and junior. As a freshman, he was the third-leading scorer behind junior James Worthy and sophomore Sam Perkins.

Jordan’s 16 points against Georgetown in 1982 are the most by a Tar Heel freshman in a national championship game.

Jordan led Carolina with nine rebounds in the 1982 NCAA title game vs. the Hoyas.

Jordan is one of six Tar Heel players who were elected to the Naismith Hall of Fame as a player with Billy Cunningham, Bob McAdoo, James Worthy, Charlie Scott and Bobby Jones.

ESPN named Jordan the Greatest Athlete of the 20th Century. He was one of 11 basketball players in the top 100. The next highest-ranked basketball player was Wilt Chamberlain at No. 13.

Jordan (1984) is one of four Tar Heels who earned consensus National Player of the Year honors with Phil Ford (1978), Antawn Jamison (1998) and Tyler Hansbrough (2008).

Jordan is one of two Tar Heels to win National Player of the Year honors in two seasons (1983 and 1984). George Glamack is the other (1940 and 1941).

Jordan is one of six Tar Heels who earned consensus first-team All-America honors in two or more seasons.

In 2004, a blue-ribbon panel selected Jordan as the Greatest Male Athlete in the first 50 years of the Atlantic Coast Conference. The Greatest Female Athlete was Carolina soccer player Mia Hamm.

Jordan was first-team All-ACC in 1983 and 1984. The only other player to earn first-team All-ACC honors in those seasons was his Tar Heel teammate, Sam Perkins.

Jordan is one of nine Tar Heels to win ACC Rookie of the Year honors.

Jordan scored 1,788 points as a Tar Heel (17.7 per game).

He averaged 20.0 points as a sophomore and 19.6 as a junior.

Jordan shot 44.7 percent from three-point range in 1982-83 when the ACC experimented for that one season with a 17-feet, 9-inch line.

Carolina went 88-13 overall and 42-4 in ACC regular-season play in Jordan’s three seasons.

Carolina was unbeaten against two ACC teams in Jordan’s three seasons – 8-0 vs. Clemson and 7-0 vs. Georgia Tech.

Jordan led Team USA to a gold medal in the 1984 Summer Olympics after his junior season at Carolina. He led Team USA in scoring with 137 points in eight games (17.1 ppg), including a game-high 20 points in the gold medal game against Spain.

Jordan’s coaches at UNC included head coach Dean Smith and assistant coaches Bill Guthridge, Eddie Fogler and Roy Williams. All four earned National Coach of the Year honors as head coaches.



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