Average Free Throw Percentage (NBA, College, High School) | thatsportlife.com (2023)

The free throw in basketball has always been an important part of the game, and now it's more important than ever to be a good free throw shooter. It's one thing to get to the free throw line and another to hit a high percentage of your free throws.

Statistics show that the average free throw percentage (FT%) for the NBA, WNBA and NCAA is around 70%. Basketball players with an FT% average of 90% or higher are considered elite free throw shooters. Basketball players with a free throw percentage below 70% are considered below average free throw shooters.

Other than that, a good free throw percentage depends on the position of the player and the level and the league in which it is played. Also remember that the volume or number of free throws attempted also plays a role.

In this article, we'll go into more detail about what's considered a good free throw percentage at the NBA, NCAA, and high school levels, as well as talk about some of the best and worst free throw shooters I've ever had. the basketball game. seen.

Let's start.

Basketball Free Throw Percentage

There are many factors to consider when it comes to what makes a good free throw shooter and what sets him apart from other players.

One of the most common and effective ways to gauge if a player is good at free throws is to look at their Free Throw Percentage (FT%) and see how many they shoot versus how many they shoot during a game, season, and career.

At most levels of basketball, a player or team shooting around 70-80% is pretty average. Anything above 80% is considered above average and any player who hits between 85 and 95% is an elite free throw shooter. However, this number can vary depending on the level of play and the number of attempts.

Here is a breakdown of what is considered a good elite free throw percentage at different levels of basketball.

Basketball Free Throw Percentage by Level

basketball levelFT% (below average)%FT (promedio)FT% (Elite)
NBALess than 70%70%85-90%
UniversidadLess than 70%70%85-90%
High schoolbelow 65%65-70%80-90%

NBA Free Throw Percentage

In the NBA, free throw percentage is an important stat that can have a huge impact on the game. A good free throw percentage in the NBA is above 80%. However, the average free throw percentage for most NBA players is around 70%. Elite free throw shooters like Steph Curry have a 90% free throw percentage.

(Video) Worst Free Throw Attempts in Basketball History

In my opinion, I would consider these to be the different levels of free throw percentages in the NBA.

NBA 3 Point Tiers

Below average70% or less

College Free Throw Percentage

In college basketball, a player's average free throw percentage during a season is around 70%. Elite college basketball players typically have a free throw percentage of 85% or higher. Below average shooters typically have less than 70% free throw percentage.

Respectivelyteamrankings.comThe best free-throw team of the 2021-2022 season was Villanova, who shot behind the line with a team average of 83%. The worst free throw team that same season was the Sam Houston St. Bearkats, who averaged a 60.5% free throw percentage. Most Division 1 men's basketball teams shoot a team average of 70-75% from the free throw line in any given season.

In general, the best free throw shooters in college basketball are guards and forwards, but some centers can also shoot from behind the line with a high percentage.

High School Free Throw Percentage

Unsurprisingly, a good free throw percentage is lower in high school compared to college basketball and NBA players.

The average free throw percentage for a high school basketball player is around 65-70%. A very good high school basketball player shoots 80-85% from the free throw line. A below average free throw percentage in high school would be anything below 65%.

Other than that, these numbers can also vary depending on what level of high school basketball is played at. For example, varsity players are more likely to shoot a higher 3-point percentage than the freshman team, and larger high schools tend to have more experienced players than smaller schools.

How free throw percentage is calculated

Calculating your free throw percentage is pretty easy. Just take the number of free throws made and divide it by the total number of attempts. From there, multiply that number by 100 to get the percentage. Most basketball leagues and statistics websites round their percentage to the nearest tenth.

For example, if Steph Curry makes 9 free throws out of 10 attempts in a game. He can calculate his free throw percentage by dividing his free throws made (9) by the number of attempts (10) and then multiplying by 100 to get the percentage. (9/10 = 0.9 x 100 = 90%)

most important basketball statistics

  • What is a good percentage of 3 points? (With examples)
  • What is a good field goal percentage in basketball? (NBA, college, high school)
  • How long do basketball games last?

How to become a good free throw shooter

Average Free Throw Percentage (NBA, College, High School) | thatsportlife.com (1)

establish a routine

(Video) Why Shooting 95% From the Free-Throw Line Is Almost Impossible (ft. Steve Nash) | WIRED

Consistency is key to becoming an effective free throw taker. One thing that can help you increase your free throw percentage is establishing a simple routine every time you get to the line. You start to make a habit and you will end up being more constant.

balance is the key

The power of your shot comes from your legs. Make sure to keep your balance and knees bent with your weight on your toes as you balance the ball with your non-dominant hand. From there you can activate your core and be in a stable position to aim for the hoop.


This tip may sound simple, but it's best to keep your eyes on your target. As you get more comfortable with your routine, it becomes second nature and you can focus on the goal and not other things like your elbow or the ball, allowing for more precision when aiming for the basketball rim.

follow through

Perhaps one of the most important components of a free kick is tracking. Be sure to straighten your knees and elbows, and most importantly, flex your wrist. This creates a backward spin on the ball. All of these movements should be done in one fluid motion, keeping your feet on the ground.

For more information on how to become a better free throw shooter, check out this article:5 tips to improve your free kick.

Mental Game

Being a consistent free throw shooter requires a lot of mental effort. A lot of bad free throw shooters have the skill and ability, but they're not in the right headspace mentally. Focus on being mentally strong and positive as you work on your free throw game.

Best Free Throw Shooter of All Time (NBA)

steph curry

(Video) How Good Is Bronny James Actually?

Steph Curry, one of the greatest shooters of all time, is known for lighting up the scoring from behind the three-point line. He is also statically the best free throw shooter in NBA history. Stephen Curry has a career free throw rate of 90.47%.

steve us

Another all-time great free throw shooter is Steve Nash, who averaged a 90.43% free throw percentage throughout his NBA career. Nash could hurt you with his playmaking ability and his deep reach, and when he hits the free throw line, you can count on him to knock down his shorts.

Ray Allen

Many of the best free throw shooters in NBA history are also the best.three pointsProtect too. Allen historically has some of the best shooting form in basketball history, as does his free throw shooting ability. Ray Allen has a free throw career average of 89.39%, making him one of the elite free throw company.

Chauncey Billups

They don't get the nickname "mr hotshot' without taking a few free throws. Chauncey not only shot his free throws at a high percentage, but also made some great shots. When his team needed points, they could always count on Chauncey to deliver, especially when he got to the free throw line. Chauncey Billups has averaged an 89.4% free throw percentage in his career.

To learn more about some of the greatest free throw shooters in NBA history, check out this sportscasting.com article:The 7 best free throw shooters in NBA history.

Worst Free Throw Shooters of All Time (NBA)

Shaquille O'Neal (Shaq)

Shaquille O'Neal was a big commanding man and one of the best centers in the NBA of all time. He was also known to be a poor free throw shooter. So what was Shaq's free throw percentage throughout his career?

Shaquille O'Neal averaged 52.7 percent from the free throw line during his NBA career (basketball-reference.com). His free throws were often so bad that other teams used a strategy called "Hack-a-Shaq", in which they deliberately defended him to force his free throws. In Shaq's career, he missed more than 5,300 free throws and could never find his rhythm behind the line.

(Video) Top 5 Basketball Tryouts Tips! 😳 (Make the TEAM)

Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain was one of the greatest basketball players of all time and still holds many records that may never be broken. However, his game was not without its weaknesses and he was a poor free throw shooter.

Wilt Chamberlain had a career free throw percentage of 51.1%, which is well below the NBA average. To put this in perspective, most high school basketball players shoot around 60% and good high school basketball players shoot around 75%.

ben wallace

Statistically, Ben Wallace is historically the worst free throw shooter in NBA history. He has the lowest free throw percentage of his career at 41.4 percent.

Its shot feel and accuracy were absolutely horrendous, and its mechanics were subpar at best. However, he was a dominant rebounder and shot blocker and a four-time Defensive Player of the Year.

dennis rodmann

Another notably poor free throw shooter in NBA history is Dennis Rodman. "The Worm" was a standout rebounder who led the league in seven different seasons. He was also one of the worst free throw shooters of that era.

Dennis Rodman had a career free throw percentage of 58.4%. Rodman was always bad from the start, both on every team he played for. (Detroit, Chicago and San Antonio)

For more on bad free throw shooters in the NBA, check out this Bleacher Report article:The 10 worst free throw shooters of all time in the NBA

final thoughts

The free throw is an important part of the game of basketball. More and more teams and players are changing their approach to being able to shoot effectively and consistently from behind the line.

(Video) How the 3-point line is breaking basketball

If you want to be a successful and effective basketball player these days, the free throw is something every basketball player should work on and master.

I hope this article provides some clarity on what is considered a good free throw percentage at different levels of basketball and that you consider the different variables we discuss in this article.


1. 3 Free Throw Tips from a Pro NBA Skills Trainer | NBA Playmakers
(NBA Playmakers)
3. Shooting HACK Works INSTANTLY🔥 #Shorts
(Get Handles Basketball)
4. These Regular Guys Challenged An NBA Player And Instantly Regretted It
5. Why Tacko Fall Is Banned From The NBA
6. How an NBA Shooting Coach Perfects Jumpshots | The Assist | GQ Sports
(GQ Sports)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Prof. Nancy Dach

Last Updated: 03/31/2023

Views: 6643

Rating: 4.7 / 5 (57 voted)

Reviews: 80% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Prof. Nancy Dach

Birthday: 1993-08-23

Address: 569 Waelchi Ports, South Blainebury, LA 11589

Phone: +9958996486049

Job: Sales Manager

Hobby: Web surfing, Scuba diving, Mountaineering, Writing, Sailing, Dance, Blacksmithing

Introduction: My name is Prof. Nancy Dach, I am a lively, joyous, courageous, lovely, tender, charming, open person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.