Six years ago a lanky unknown shot blocker from Fort Pierce, Florida landed at VCU. Today, that man, Larry Sanders, signed a four-year contract extension worth a reported $44 million to extend his career with the Milwaukee Bucks, with bonuses that could push the deal close to $48 million.
Sanders became the first VCU junior to get drafted by an NBA team, joining the Bucks in 2010 as the 15th overall selection in that season’s draft. After a slow start in the NBA, the 6’11 Sanders broke out this past season, blocking 2.83 shots in just over 27 minutes per game, good for second best in the league and enough to earn the former Ram NBA Defensive Player of the Year votes. Sanders added 9.8 points and 9.5 rebounds while hitting 50.6% of his shots on the season.
Sanders was one of VCU’s most dominating defensive players, averaging at least 2.6 blocks per game in his three seasons on Broad Street, including an eye-popping 3 bpg in just 16 minutes as a freshman.