Charles Barkley is one of the greatest basketball players of all time, an under-sized college center at Auburn known for his rebounding and shot-blocking who became of the best players in the NBA for his era.

Here’s everything you need to know about Charles Barkley’s college career at Auburn.

Charles Barkley’s college stats and vitals

School: Auburn
Position: Center
Height: 6-6
Weight: 252 pounds
Years active: 1981-84
NCAA tournament record: 0-1
Career averages: 14.1 points per game, 9.6 rebounds per game, 62.6% shooting

SEASON GAMES FG FGA FG% REBOUNDS BLOCKS POINTS
1981-82 28 5.1 8.6 .595 9.8 1.8 12.7
1982-83 28 5.8 8.9 .644 9.5 1.6 14.4
1983-84 28 5.8 9.1 .638 9.5 1.8 15.1
Career 84 5.6 8.9 .626 9.6 1.7 14.1

How many points did Charles Barkley average in college?

Charles Barkley averaged double figures in each of his three seasons at Auburn, most notably a career-best 15.1 points per game as a junior in the 1983-84 season. He averaged 14.1 points per game for his career.

What was Charles Barkley’s record in college?

Auburn went 49-38 in three seasons with Charles Barkley. The Tigers’ record improved each season Barkley was on campus, from 14-14 to 15-13 to 20-11.

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What kind of prospect was Charles Barkley in high school?

A story published in The Selma Times-Journal (Selma, Alabama) in July 1980, the summer before Barkley’s senior year of high school, noted that the 6-6 center was All-State, All-State Tournament, All-Region, All-County and the county MVP after averaging 19.7 points, 18.9 rebounds, 5.1 blocks and 3.1 assists per game. The Alabama Journal ranked Barkley as the No. 7 high school basketball player in the state of Alabama in 1981, a year that UAB’s Gene Bartow called “a banner year” and Alabama assistant coach John Bostick called the “best I’ve ever seen.”

So Barkley was a well-regarded high school player but no one knew he’d be a future NBA MVP. In fact, he wasn’t being recruited by any big-time schools in the summer of 1980, according to The Montgomery Advertiser. Barkley wasn’t heavily recruited until late in his senior year at Leeds High School.

His recruitment took off when he posted 24 points and 20 rebounds against 6-11 standout Bobby Lee Lewis, who would later attend Alabama.

In a story published in The Anniston Star (Anniston, Alabama), the paper received scouting reports from Bill Cronauer, the head of the “most authoritative basketball scouting service in the nation,” on each of the SEC schools. “They were looking for guys that would get them in the first division — on paper, I don’t see any guys that will put them in the first division,” Cronauer said of Auburn’s 1981 recruiting class. “I don’t think you give them much more than a ‘fair.'”

What was Charles Barkley’s game like?

Despite being just 6-6, Barkley played center and held his own in the low post, on the glass and defensively. He kept up with — and bested — taller opponents, all while having a lot of fun in the process.

“The best way to look at Charles Barkley is to just relax in your seat and digest him slowly,” wrote The Montgomery Advertiser’s Bob Mayes during Barkley’s freshman year. “To watch him have fun … and to him, having fun means rejecting shots, soaring high for rebounds and nailing spectacular slam dunks.”

Barkley was incredibly active on both ends of a floor. He used his great leaping ability and sturdy frame to get prime positioning and beat his opponents to the ball. Barkley broke Auburn’s single-season block record by the 12th game of his freshman year, even though he said defense was the most difficult transition from high school to college.

Barkley showed is personality, too, engaging the crowd by waving or blowing kisses.

“I think Auburn people were starved for somebody to identify with, to cling to or support,” Auburn coach Sonny Smith said. “He arrived on the scene at the right time. I think he’s really a hot item because of his mannerisms more than anything else … the spectacular way that he scores or rebounds or blocks shots.”