Tallent, Ngongba to be Honored as 2017 Atlantic 10 Legends
Former GW basketball stars to be recognized at A-10 men's and women's basketball championships
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. -- GW basketball alumni Bob Tallent ('69) and Tajama Abraham Ngongba ('97) will be honored as Atlantic 10 Legends at the conference's respective men's and women's basketball championships in March, the league announced on Thursday.
Tallent and Ngongba are among a 2017 class that includes 28 former men's and women's basketball student-athletes and coaches who made an immeasurable impact on each A-10 institution and its basketball program. This year marks the fifth class of A-10 Legends.
"The Atlantic 10 is pleased to honor the achievements and success of these 28 outstanding individuals," said A-10 Commissioner Bernadette V. McGlade. "Their meaningful impact on their institutions, teams and on college basketball as a whole have made a lasting impression, and they are each very deserving of this prestigious accolade."
The eldest of the Tallent trio, Bob Tallent played only one season at GW, but it was one of the most dominant single seasons for any player in program history. Tallent totaled 723 points and averaged 28.9 points for the Colonials in 1968-69, still the best single-season scoring totals in school annals and the ninth-best single-season average in Southern Conference history just ahead of current NBA star Stephen Curry's 28.6 points in 2008-09. He earned First Team All-Southern Conference honors that season, helping the Colonials to their first winning record (14-11) in nine seasons, a third-place finish in the league standings and a trip to the SoCon tourney semifinals.
Tallent reached double figures in all 25 games, including 23 games of 20-or-more points, 11 games with 30-or-more, and a pair of 40-plus point outings. His 46 points in a victory over Pittsburgh on Jan. 11, 1969 are the second-most in one game in school history. He was drafted by the Denver Rockets in the 1969 ABA Draft, but returned to Foggy Bottom as a coach and eventually spent seven seasons as head coach, helping the Colonials to 102 victories from 1975-81, the fourth-most wins of any coach in program history. Bob was inducted into the GW Athletic Hall of Fame in 1990 and was a member of the All-Century Team in 2001.
Ngongba is GW's all-time leading scorer and only player to eclipse 2,000 points (2,134). She still holds all-time career rankings of third in rebounding (970) and second in scoring average (16.4), made free throws (432) and blocks (326). She played in a program-record 130 games in her four-year career after making four consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament (1994-97). GW enjoyed a record of 103-27 in those years. In her senior season, she was a Kodak First Team All-America selection in addition to the Atlantic 10 Player of the Year as the Colonials made the program's first-ever NCAA Elite 8 appearance.
Throughout her career, Ngongba was also named Kodak All-America Honorable Mention (1996), A-10 Rookie of the Year (1994), was a two-time Atlantic 10 First Team All-Conference pick (1996, 1997), an A-10 Second Team All-Conference selection (1995), the 1996 A-10 Championship Most Outstanding Player and a five-time A-10 Player of the Week. She also holds single-season records for points (675, 1996-97), field goals made (257, 1995-96), free throws made (165, 1996-97), free throws attempted (219, 1996-97) and games played (34, 1996-97). A member of the GW Athletics Hall of Fame, she returned to GW as an assistant coach from 2004-08.
The women's basketball Legends will be saluted with a breakfast on Friday, March 3 prior to the 2017 A-10 Women's Basketball Championship quarterfinals. The event will take place at the Richmond Marriott beginning at 8:00 a.m.
The men's basketball Legends will be honored on Saturday, March 11 at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh, Pa., prior to the 2017 Men's Basketball Championship semifinals. The celebration awards brunch will be in the Lexus Club, beginning at 10:00 a.m.
A limited number of brunch tickets are available to the general public. For more information, please contact the Atlantic 10 Conference at 757-706-3052. Fans interested in GW section tickets for the 2017 A-10 Men's and Women's Basketball Championships can call the Charles E. Smith Center box office at 202-99-GWTIX.