- Set nine individual records as an All-American at St. Francis College in Loretto.
- Scored 2,282 career points.
- Made the NIT all-star team in 1954 and 1955.
- Averaged more than 20 rebounds a game in college and averaged more than 17 rebounds a game in the NBA with Rochester/Cincinnati.
- Named NBA Rookie of the Year with the Rochester Royals in 1955-56 and set a record of 1,256 rebounds the following year.
- Named to the NBA all-star team for the third time in his pro career when in the final regular-season game of the 1957-58 season, Stokes fell to the floor, hit his head and was knocked unconscious. Three days later, the 24-year-old went into a coma and was permanently paralyzed.
- Three-time NBA All-Star (1956-58) and All-NBA Second Team (1956-58).
- Became a nationally known inspiration to others as he coped with his illness, leading to a motion picture made about his story. The Stokes Center at St. Francis is named in his honor.
- Inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.