Ricky Berry

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Ricky Berry
Personal information
Born(1964-10-06)October 6, 1964
Lansing, Michigan, U.S.
DiedAugust 14, 1989(1989-08-14) (aged 24)
Fair Oaks, California, U.S.
Listed height6 ft 8 in (2.03 m)
Listed weight205 lb (93 kg)
Career information
High schoolLive Oak (Morgan Hill, California)
NBA draft1988: 1st round, 18th overall pick
Selected by the Sacramento Kings
Playing career1988–1989
PositionSmall forward
Career history
1988–1989Sacramento Kings
Career highlights and awards
  • 3× First-team All-PCAA (1986–1988)
Stats Edit this at Wikidata at NBA.com
Stats Edit this at Wikidata at Basketball-Reference.com
Men's basketball
Representing  United States
Pan American Games
Silver medal – second place 1987 Indianapolis Team competition

Ricky Alan Berry (October 6, 1964 – August 14, 1989) was an American professional basketball player in the National Basketball Association (NBA) for the Sacramento Kings.

Early life[edit]

Berry was born in Lansing, Michigan in 1964, when his father Bill Berry was a student-athlete at Michigan State University. The Berry family moved to the Sacramento, California area in 1966 when Bill Berry became head coach at a local high school and later Cosumnes River Junior College.[1][2] Berry attended Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill, California, when his father became head coach at San Jose State in 1979.[3]

Basketball career[edit]

Berry was 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) and played small forward. After graduating from high school, he played for Oregon State in the 1983–84 season, and then transferred to San Jose State in 1984 to play under his father Bill Berry. After sitting out one year per transfer rules, Berry played for the San Jose State Spartans from 1985 to 1988. Berry was selected 18th overall in the 1988 NBA draft by the Sacramento Kings and had a solid rookie season, averaging 11.0 points, 3.1 rebounds, 1.3 assists while shooting 40.6 percent from three-point range.

Berry is one of only three former San Jose State players to have his jersey retired, when San Jose State retired his number 34 jersey.


In the 1989 off-season, and just weeks before his 25th birthday, Berry was found dead after a self-inflicted gunshot. He had showed no signs of depression, but left a suicide note in which he reportedly wrote that his wife did not love him and was taking advantage of him.[4][5]

Career statistics[edit]

  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage  3P%  3-point field goal percentage  FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high



Regular season[edit]

1988–89 Sacramento 64 21 22.0 .450 .406 .789 3.1 1.3 .6 .3 11.0

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Bill Berry". NBA. 2002. Archived from the original on February 13, 2005.
  2. ^ Davidson, Joe (August 14, 2009). "Grief remains 20 years after Ricky Berry suicide". Sacramento Bee. Archived from the original on August 17, 2009.
  3. ^ Geissinger, Steve (August 20, 1989). "What demons drove Kings' Ricky Berry to commit suicide?". Deseret News. Associated Press via Deseret News. Retrieved March 23, 2013.
  4. ^ Norwood, Robyn; Evans, Clay (August 15, 1989). "Ricky Berry Is Apparent Suicide Victim : Sacramento Kings' Top Pick in 1988 Found Dead of Gunshot Wound". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 20, 2020.
  5. ^ McNeal, Martin (August 19, 1990). "Ricky Berry's Suicide Still a Mystery". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 20, 2020.
  6. ^ "Ricky Berry". Basketball Reference. Sports Reference. Retrieved 7 September 2021.

External links[edit]