Williams, a forward with the Indiana Pacers in the early 1990s, did not dispute he owes some child support, but said he never earned as much as prosecutors contended, The (Raleigh) News & Observer reported Tuesday.
Williams played one year at Barton Community College in Kansas and was drafted in the second round by the Pacers in 1990.
Federal prosecutors said he was making $750,000 a year in his fourth and last year with the Pacers, but not paying child support for the three children he had at the time.
In 1995, he was ordered to pay $3,750 a month in support.
After Williams left the Pacers, he played with teams in Italy, France and Israel, where he started a second family. Prosecutors claimed from 1995 to 2000, when he entered into a plea agreement, his salary ranged from $90,000 to $180,000 a year.
During that same period, his former wife and children received Welfare and Aid to Families with Dependent Children benefits.
U.S. District Judge Terrence Boyle sentenced Williams to nine months in prison with credit for several months he has already served. Williams was also ordered to pay $661,277 in restitution.