Last Ball in U-Hall: Parkhill Raised UVa’s Profile

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Barry Parkhill averaged 21.6 ppg in 1971-72 and became the ACC Player of the Year.

After 10 minutes inside University Hall, Barry Parkhill was awestruck. The 17-year-old high school recruit from State College, Pennsylvania, visited the arena in 1968 when it was only three years old and was impressed enough with the new facility to sign on to play at Virginia once the Cavaliers offered him a scholarship.

“I was not highly recruited and that was one of the biggest, nicest new arenas I had seen,” Parkhill said. “Back then it was ‘Wow, this is really neat. It’s a big building and it’s clean’”

Parkhill wound up being a steal for the Cavaliers, who had finished below .500 for 16 straight seasons before Parkhill took the floor for the first time in 1970. Restricted to only three seasons of play because of NCAA rules, Parkhill still managed to score 1,437 points in his career, good enough for No. 16 all-time in Virginia history.

The 6-foot-4 guard was both the ACC Basketball Player of the Year and the ACC Athlete of the Year for the 1971-72 season when he averaged 21.6 points per game and led the Cavaliers to their second postseason appearance in school history. He still holds the record for most points scored in a single game (51, against Baldwin-Wallace in Dec. 1971) and finished with a career scoring average of 18.2, ranking him sixth all-time at Virginia. Most importantly, he almost single-handedly put Virginia basketball on the map.

“Barry was a very intense, dedicated player,” said teammate and co-captain of the 1972-73 team Jim Hobgood. “Technically he was our point guard. He brought the ball up the floor and called the plays, but in addition to being the point guard, he was our leading scorer. He did it all.”

In his first season playing for the Virginia varsity squad as a sophomore in 1970-71, Parkhill burst onto the scene, helping the Cavaliers open