Paul R. Unruh (born May 7, 1928) is an American former college basketball standout at Bradley University from 1946 to 1950. He finished as Bradley's all-time leading scorer and was a Consensus First Team All-American as a senior in 1949–50. A native of the greater Peoria, Illinois metropolitan area, Unruh attended Toulon High School prior to matriculating at Bradley.

Paul Unruh
Personal information
Born (1928-05-07) May 7, 1928 (age 94)
Listed height6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Listed weight180 lb (82 kg)
Career information
High schoolToulon (Toulon, Illinois)
CollegeBradley (1946–1950)
NBA draft1950 / Round: 2 / Pick: 20th overall
Selected by the Indianapolis Olympians
PositionForward / Center
Career highlights and awards
Stats Edit this at Wikidata at

Bradley careerEdit

As a freshman in 1946–47, Unruh scored 383 points, which was a freshman scoring record at Bradley until Mitchell "J.J." Anderson surpassed it in 1979. Over the course of his four-year career, Unruh scored 1,822 points and led Bradley in scoring all four seasons. When he graduated he was the school's all-time leading scorer and is one of two players to lead the Braves in scoring all four years. In his senior season, Unruh scored 475 points while leading Bradley to second-place finishes to CCNY in both the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) and National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Tournament—a team accomplishment that had never been accomplished, nor will ever be accomplished again due to the impossibility of a team participating in both postseason tournaments in the same season. When Unruh's career ended, he had won 112 of the 135 games he played in during his tenure and is considered one of the pioneers of the modern jump shot.

Unruh was selected as the 9th pick in the second round (20th overall) of the 1950 NBA Draft by the Indianapolis Olympians, but never ended up playing in the league.

Post collegeEdit

Two years after graduating from Bradley, Unruh earned a spot on the United States Olympic basketball team's roster. He was drafted into the army, however, and missed out on an opportunity to win a gold medal at the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki, Finland. He played for the National AAU Basketball League's Peoria Cats after his stint in the military, but did not play competitively afterward.

Unruh returned to Peoria and entered the insurance business. He got married and had three children—Brent, Brenda and Bryce.


  1. "Paul Unruh". Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame, Inc. Retrieved June 24, 2010.
  2. "Bradley's Best: Paul Unruh". Gatehouse Media, Inc. Archived from the original on 15 July 2011. Retrieved 24 June 2010.
  3. "Indianapolis Olympians Draft Picks". Sports Reference, LLC. Retrieved June 24, 2010.
  4. "Vintage Basketball Autographs". Mel Bashore. Retrieved June 24, 2010.