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Harry Fodder

Wednesday September 12, 2012On this date in Gators history: Sept. 12, 1965

Vernon Maxwell, one of the greatest and (without question) the most notorious player in UF basketball history, was born in Gainesville.

MaxMaxwell, who starred at Buchholz High, helped lead UF to its first NCAA berth in school history -- a surprising run to the Sweet 16 in 1987 -- but was the central figure in an NCAA scandal and federal drug investigation that eventually led to the forced resignation of Coach Norm Sloan and probation for the program.

In four years at Florida, "Mad Max" scored 2,450 points, the second-most in Southeastern Conference history behind only LSU's Pete Maravich, but two of his seasons with the Gators were wiped from the history books as part of NCAA sanctions levied on the UF program in 1990. penalties. Maxwell still remains No. 47 on the school's all-time scoring list with 1,046 points.

A second-round pick of the Denver Nuggets in 1988, Maxwell spent time with nine teams over an 11-year NBA career, averaging 12.8 points. He's probably best remembered as a key performer for the Houston Rockets when they swept the Orlando Magic in the 1995 NBA Finals.

Maxwell is just one of five players in NBA history to score 30 points in a quarter, hitting that milestone Jan. 26, 1995 on his way to scoring a career-high 51 against Cleveland.

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