As a college player at the University of Cincinnati he became the first college player to lead the nation in scoring three consecutive years. In the days before the 3-point shot, he averaged 35.1, 32.6 and 33.7 points per game, became a three-time All-American and a 3-time winner of the UPI and Sporting News Player of the Year award. As a co-captain in 1958-59 and 1959-60, he led Cincinnati to the Final Four.
Robertson turned down professional basketball to remain at Cincinnati where he earned his degree and completed a career in which he averaged 33.8 points and 15.2 rebounds a game. His No. 12 jersey was retired by the University.
He was an Olympic gold medalist in 1960 prior to entering the NBA. He co-captained the Olympic team to an undefeated record and a fifth consecutive gold medal.
In his 14 seasons with the Cincinnati Royals and Milwaukee Bucks, Robertson scored 26,710 points and set the NBA record for most assists in a career, 9,887. The mark lasted almost two decades and still ranks him third all-time.
The 6-foot-5 Robertson adjusted to pro ball quickly and was the All-Star game MVP and Rookie of the Year in 1960-61. In 1961-62 he became the only player to average a triple-double (30.8 points, 12.5 rebounds and 11.4 assists) for a season. He was named NBA MVP in 1963-64. Among his many other honors: Nine times named to the All-NBA first team. Twelves times an NBA All-Star. MVP of the All-Star game in 1961, 1964, and 1969.
In 1996, he was named as one of the top fifty basketball players of all-time; however, many experts would name him to the top five of all-time.
Robertson's high school days were at Crispus Attucks of Indianapolis where he led his team to consecutive Indiana state championships in 1955 and 1956.
In 1980, he was elected to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.