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Ronnie Lester
Ronnie Lester
Ronnie Lester
Ronnie Lester
Ronnie Lester
Ronnie Lester
Ronnie Lester
Ronnie Lester
Ronnie Lester
Ronnie Lester

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Ronnie Lester      Illinois Wikipedia 

Position(s): G

HIGH SCHOOL: Ronnie Lester attended Dunbar High School and lived in or near Chicago, Illinois. He started 3 seasons in high school, and averaged 27 points per game as a senior, and helped lead his team to the Chicago Public League Championship game. He ultimately chose Iowa after being recruited by Arizona, Creighton, Louisville, Nebraska and Texas-El Paso.

COLLEGE: He started as a freshman and played a key role, as he was second on the team in scoring and led the Hawkeyes in assists. As a sophomore, he averaged 19.9 points, 6.0 assists and 2.5 rebounds and was named All-Big Ten First Team. He averaged 18.7 points, 5.3 assists and 2.3 rebounds as a junior, and Iowa finished 20–8, capturing the Big 10 Championship and advanced to the 40-team 1979 NCAA Tournament. He was again named First Team All-Big 10, and was named second team All-American.

Before his senior season, he represented the US as a member of the 1979 Team USA that went 9-0 and won the Gold medal in the Pan-American Games, averaging 10.7 points in the tournament.

As a senior in the 1979–1980, he suffered a knee injury in the seventh game of the season. His knee improved and he returned for the end of the regular season, leading Iowa to 3 straight victories to end the season with a 18–8 record. His #12 jersey was retired by Iowa in a ceremony at the finale.

Iowa made the 48-team NCAA tournament with a 18–8 record. In the NCAA National Semi-Final (Final Four), he injured his knee 12 minutes into the game, after scoring 10 of Iowa's first 12 points on 4 for 4 shooting and 2 for 2 from the line. It was his final collegiate game, and he did not return as Iowa fell to eventual NCAA champion Louisville 80–72. Overall, Iowa was 15–1 with Lester fully in the lineup that season, and 8–9 in his absence.

Overall, he finished his 99-game Iowa career with 1675 total points and 480 total assists and averages of 16.9 points, 4.8 assists and 2.3 rebounds, while shooting 47% from the field and 77% from the line.

PROFESSIONAL: He was drafted in the first round of the 1980 NBA Draft by the Portland Trail Blazers. He was immediately traded to the Chicago Bulls, where he played four seasons. In 1985 and 1986 Lester was a member of the Los Angeles Lakers, winning an NBA championship in the first of those two seasons.

Born 1/1/1959 and is 65 years old.

All Conference: 1st Team (1978, 1979) All American: 2nd team (1979) U of Iowa Athletics Hall of Fame Drafted Round 1 by Portland Trail Blazers in 1980 



Ronnie #12 Ronnie #12 (1/1/1983)
An autobiography written by Ronnie and Brad Loomer shortly a few years after he graduated from Iowa, and started his pro career. Includes photos from growing up, high school, college and the early part of his pro career.

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FAMOUS QUOTES from Ronnie Lester

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FAMOUS QUOTES about Ronnie Lester

Lute Olson Lute Olson  from Iowa vs. Illinois on 1/3/1980
We're 20 points better with him in there. If we can hang in there three or four weeks, we'll be all right.

- Discussing the absence of Ronnie Lester in the game

Lute Olson Lute Olson  from Iowa vs. Illinois on 3/1/1980
Nadine, I applied for a fifth year of eligibility for your son, but the Big Ten coaches voted, and it was nine to one against. So I guess we're going to have to do this thing [retire his jersey].

- Said to Ronnie Lester's mother (Nadine) during his jersey retirement ceremony before the Illinois game.


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Ronnie Lester - Iowa Hawkeyes Player Profile | Basketball - Summary of Iowa football and basketball games