The University of Louisville has produced several great players in the NBA. One of the most successful and well-known is Darrell Griffith, who helped lead the Cardinals to their first NCAA title in 1980.
Griffith's career began playing at Louisville Male High School. The talented young many was heavily recruited by many college programs. In the end, he chose to stay close to home and attend the University of Louisville. His abilities led to a 59-54 victory over UCLA in the 1980 NCAA Championship his senior year. He was named Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four, and was named First Team All-American and was given the Wooden Award. His number--35--was retired after he left the school. He is still the school's all-time leading scorer with 2,333 points.
In the 1980 NBA Draft, the Utah Jazz--who had just moved from New Orleans--chose Griffith to be the team's new star. He lived up to the hype, averaging 20 points per game and was named Rookie of the Year. He lead the team to their first Midwest Division title in the 1983-84 season. It was during this time he gained the moniker "Golden Griff".
By the 1986 season, Griffith had become prone to injuries. His top spot was overshadowed with the emergence of Karl Malone and John Stockton. In the 1987-88 season he missed most of the season due to a stress fracture in his foot. He regained his spot the following season, only to permanently lose it the next year. He stayed with the Jazz until his retirement in 1991. His number 35 jersey--the same number he played in college--was retired in 1993.
Today Darrell Griffith is a special assitant to the Univeristy of Louisville's president. He was inducted into the Kentucky High School Basketball Hall of Fame in 2012.