2002–03 NCAA Division I men's basketball season

The 2002–03 NCAA Division I men's basketball season began on November 10, 2002, progressed through the regular season and conference tournaments, and concluded with the 2003 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament Championship Game on April 7, 2003 at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Syracuse Orange and coach Jim Boeheim won their first NCAA national championship with an 81–78 victory over the Kansas Jayhawks.

Season headlinesEdit

Major rule changesEdit

Beginning in 2002–03, the following rules changes were implemented:[2]

  • Two free-throw lane spaces closest to the free-thrower would remain unoccupied.
  • No free throws were awarded to the offended team in bonus for personal fouls committed by a team while in team control or in possession of the ball during a throw-in (team-control foul).

Season outlookEdit

Pre-season pollsEdit

The top 25 from the AP and ESPN/USA Today Coaches Polls November 13, 2002.[3]

Associated Press
Ranking Team
1 Arizona (50)
2 Kansas (14)
3 Oklahoma (6)
4 Texas
5 Pittsburgh (1)
6 Duke
7 Florida
8 Alabama
9 Michigan State
10 Xavier
11 Oregon
12 Mississippi State (1)
13 Maryland
15 Connecticut
16 Georgia
17 Kentucky
18 Marquette
19 Missouri
20 Western Kentucky
21 Indiana
22 Gonzaga
23 Cincinnati
24 Minnesota
25 Tulsa
ESPN/USA Today Coaches
Ranking Team
1 Arizona (27)
2 Kansas (3)
3 Oklahoma (1)
4 Pittsburgh
5 Texas
6 Duke
7 Florida
8 Alabama
9 Oregon
10 Michigan State
11 Xavier
13 Mississippi State
14 Connecticut
15 Maryland
16 Georgia
17 Kentucky
18 Missouri
19 Marquette
20 Cincinnati
21 Indiana
22 Gonzaga
23 Western Kentucky
24 Minnesota
25 Illinois

Conference membership changesEdit

These schools joined new conferences for the 2002–03 season.

School Former conference New conference
Gardner-Webb NCAA Division II Atlantic Sun Conference
IPFW NCAA Division II NCAA Division I Independent
Lipscomb NAIA NCAA Division I Independent
Savannah State NCAA Division II NCAA Division I Independent
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi NCAA Division III NCAA Division I Independent

Regular seasonEdit

Conference winners and tournamentsEdit

Conference Regular
Season Winner[4]
Player of the Year
Venue (City)
America East Conference Boston University Taylor Coppenrath, Vermont[5] 2003 America East Men's Basketball Tournament Walter Brown Arena
(Boston, Massachusetts)
(Except Finals)
Atlantic 10 Conference St. Joseph's (East)
Xavier (West)
David West, Xavier[7] 2003 Atlantic 10 Men's Basketball Tournament University of Dayton Arena
(Dayton, Ohio)
Atlantic Coast Conference Wake Forest Josh Howard, Wake Forest[9] 2003 ACC Men's Basketball Tournament Greensboro Coliseum
(Greensboro, North Carolina)
Atlantic Sun Conference Troy & Mercer Adam Sonn, Belmont[11] 2003 Atlantic Sun Men's Basketball Tournament GSU Sports Arena
(Atlanta, Georgia)
Big 12 Conference Kansas Nick Collison, Kansas[12] 2003 Big 12 Men's Basketball Tournament American Airlines Center
(Dallas, Texas)
Big East Conference Connecticut & Boston College (East)
Syracuse & Pittsburgh (West)
Troy Bell, Boston College[14] 2003 Big East Men's Basketball Tournament Madison Square Garden
(New York City, New York)
Big Sky Conference Weber State Jermaine Boyette, Weber State[15] 2003 Big Sky Men's Basketball Tournament Dee Events Center
(Ogden, Utah)
(Semifinals and Finals)
Weber State[16]
Big South Conference Winthrop Torrey Butler, Coastal Carolina[17] 2003 Big South Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Vines Center
(Lynchburg, Virginia)
(Semifinals and Finals)
UNC Asheville[17]
Big Ten Conference Wisconsin Brian Cook, Illinois[18] 2003 Big Ten Conference Men's Basketball Tournament United Center
(Chicago, Illinois)
Big West Conference UC Santa Barbara Branduinn Fullove, UC Santa Barbara[19] 2003 Big West Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Anaheim Convention Center
(Anaheim, California)
Utah State[19]
Colonial Athletic Association UNC Wilmington Brett Blizzard, UNC Wilmington[20] 2003 CAA Men's Basketball Tournament Richmond Coliseum
(Richmond, Virginia)
UNC Wilmington[20]
Conference USA Marquette Dwyane Wade, Marquette[21] 2003 Conference USA Men's Basketball Tournament Freedom Hall
(Louisville, Kentucky)
Horizon League Butler Willie Green, Detroit[23] 2003 Horizon League Men's Basketball Tournament U.S. Cellular Arena
(Milwaukee, Wisconsin)
(Except First Round)
Ivy League Penn Ugonna Onyekwe, Penn[24] No Tournament
Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Manhattan Luis Flores, Manhattan[25] 2003 MAAC Men's Basketball Tournament Sovereign Bank Arena
(Trenton, New Jersey)
Mid-American Conference Kent State (East)
Central Michigan (West)
Chris Kaman, Central Michigan[27] 2003 MAC Men's Basketball Tournament Gund Arena
(Cleveland, Ohio)
Central Michigan[27]
Mid-Continent Conference Valparaiso Mike Helms, Oakland[28] 2003 Mid-Continent Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Kemper Arena
(Kansas City, Missouri)
Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference South Carolina State Ron Williamson, Howard[30] 2003 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Richmond Coliseum
(Richmond, Virginia)
South Carolina State[31]
Missouri Valley Conference Southern Illinois Kyle Korver, Creighton[32] 2003 Missouri Valley Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Savvis Center
(St. Louis, Missouri)
Mountain West Conference Utah & BYU Ruben Douglas, New Mexico[34] 2003 MWC Men's Basketball Tournament Thomas & Mack Center
(Paradise, Nevada)
Colorado State[35]
Northeast Conference Wagner Jermaine Hall, Wagner[36] 2003 Northeast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Campus Sites Wagner[37]
Ohio Valley Conference Austin Peay & Morehead State Ricky Minard, Morehead State[38] 2003 Ohio Valley Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Gaylord Entertainment Center
(Nashville, Tennessee)
(Semifinals and Finals)
Austin Peay[38]
Pacific-10 Conference Arizona Luke Ridnour, Oregon[39] 2003 Pacific-10 Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Staples Center
(Los Angeles, California)
Patriot League Holy Cross Patrick Whearty, Holy Cross[41] 2003 Patriot League Men's Basketball Tournament Campus Sites Holy Cross[42]
Southeastern Conference Kentucky (East)
Mississippi State (West)
Keith Bogans, Kentucky (Coaches)[43]
Ron Slay, Tennessee (AP)[44]
2003 SEC Men's Basketball Tournament Louisiana Superdome
(New Orleans, Louisiana)
Southern Conference East Tennessee State, Appalachian State & Davidson (North)
Charleston (South)
Troy Wheless, Charleston[46] 2003 Southern Conference Men's Basketball Tournament North Charleston Coliseum
(North Charleston, South Carolina)
East Tennessee State[47]
Southland Conference Sam Houston State Donald Cole, Sam Houston State[48] 2003 Southland Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Bernard Johnson Coliseum
(Huntsville, Texas)
Sam Houston State[48]
Southwestern Athletic Conference Prairie View A&M Gregory Burks, Prairie View A&M[49] 2003 Southwestern Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Fair Park Arena
(Birmingham, Alabama)
Texas Southern[50]
Sun Belt Conference Western Kentucky (East)
Louisiana–Lafayette (West)
James Moore, New Mexico State[51] 2003 Sun Belt Men's Basketball Tournament E. A. Diddle Arena
(Bowling Green, Kentucky)
Western Kentucky[52]
West Coast Conference Gonzaga Blake Stepp, Gonzaga[53] 2003 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament Jenny Craig Pavilion
(San Diego, California)
San Diego[54]
Western Athletic Conference Fresno State Quinton Ross, Southern Methodist[55] 2003 WAC Men's Basketball Tournament Reynolds Center
(Tulsa, Oklahoma)

Statistical leadersEdit

Points Per Game
Rebounds Per Game
Assists Per Game
Steals Per Game
Player School PPG Player School RPG Player School APG Player School SPG
Ruben Douglas New Mexico 28.0 Brandon Hunter Ohio 12.6 Martell Bailey Illinois-Chicago 8.1 Alexis McMillan Stetson 4.0
Henry Domercant E. Illinois 27.9 Amien Hicks Morris Brown 12.4 Marques Green St. Bonaventure 8.0 Zakee Wadood E. Tennessee St. 3.2
Mike Helms Oakland 26.9 Adam Sonn Belmont 12.1 T. J. Ford Texas 7.7 Jay Heard Jacksonville St. 3.2
Michael Watson UMKC 25.5 Chris Kaman C. Michigan 12.0 Elliott Prasse-Freeman Harvard 7.7 Eric Bush UAB 3.1
Troy Bell Boston College 25.2 David West Xavier 11.8 Antawn Dobie LIU 7.4 Marcus Hatten St. John's 2.9
Blocked Shots Per Game
Field Goal Percentage
Three-Point FG Percentage
Free Throw Percentage
Player School BPG Player School FG% Player School 3FG% Player School FT%
Emeka Okafor UConn 4.7 Adam Mark Belmont 67.0 Jeff Schiffner Penn 49.3 Steve Drabyn Belmont 95.1
Nick Billings Binghamton 4.3 Rickey White Maine 66.2 Kyle Korver Creighton 48.0 Matt Logie Lehigh 94.8
Justin Rowe Maine 4.2 Matt Nelson Colorado St. 64.3 Terrence Woods Florida A&M 45.7 Hollis Price Oklahoma 92.9
Deng Gai Fairfield 3.8 Armond Williams Illinois-Chicago 63.9 Chez Marks Morehead St. 45.6 Brian Dux Canisius 92.0
Robert Battle Drexel 3.7 Michael Harris Rice 62.3 Tyson Dorsey Samford 45.5 JJ Redick Duke 91.9

Postseason tournamentsEdit

NCAA TournamentEdit

Final Four – Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans, LouisianaEdit

National Semifinals National Championship Game
E3 Syracuse 95
S1 Texas 84
E3 Syracuse 81
W2 Kansas 78
M3 Marquette 61
W2 Kansas 94

National Invitation TournamentEdit

Semifinals & FinalsEdit

Semifinals Finals
  Georgetown 88
  Minnesota 74
  Georgetown 67
  St. John's 70
  Texas Tech 63
  St. John's 64
  • Third Place – Texas Tech 71, Minnesota 61

Award winnersEdit

Consensus All-American teamsEdit

Consensus First Team
Player Position Class Team
David West F Senior Xavier
T.J. Ford G Sophomore Texas
Josh Howard F/G Senior Wake Forest
Nick Collison F Senior Kansas
Dwyane Wade G Junior Marquette
Consensus Second Team
Player Position Class Team
Hollis Price G Senior Oklahoma
Carmelo Anthony F/G Freshman Syracuse
Kyle Korver F Senior Creighton
Troy Bell G Senior Boston College
Jason Gardner G Senior Arizona

Major player of the year awardsEdit

Major freshman of the year awardsEdit

Major coach of the year awardsEdit

Other major awardsEdit

Coaching changesEdit

A number of teams changed coaches throughout the season and after the season ended.[56]

Team Former
Alcorn State Davey Whitney Samuel West
Arkansas-Little Rock Porter Moser Steve Shields
Cal State Fullerton Donny Daniels Bob Burton
Campbell Billy Lee Robbie Laing
Chicago State Bo Ellis Kevin Jones
Clemson Larry Shyatt Oliver Purnell
Cleveland State Rollie Massimino Mike Garland
Columbia Armond Hill Joe Jones
Dayton Oliver Purnell Brian Gregory
Drake Kurt Kanaskie Tom Davis
East Tennessee State Ed DeChellis Murry Bartow
Elon Mark Simons Ernie Nestor
Fordham Bob Hill Dereck Whittenburg
Georgia Jim Harrick Dennis Felton
Georgia State Lefty Driesell Michael Perry
High Point Jerry Steele Bart Lundy
Illinois Bill Self Bruce Weber
Illinois State Tom Richardson Porter Moser
Iowa State Larry Eustachy Wayne Morgan Eustachy quit following the release of pictures of him at a party near the campus of the University of Missouri.[57]
Jackson State Andy Stoglin Tevester Anderson
Kansas Roy Williams Bill Self After turning down the North Carolina job previously, Williams accepted the position at his alma mater.
Marshall Greg White Ron Jirsa
Mount St. Mary's Jim Phelan Milan Brown Phelan retired after 49 years and 830 victories.
Murray State Tevester Anderson Mick Cronin
North Carolina Matt Doherty Roy Williams Doherty resigned after rumors of player unrest.[58] UNC alum Williams is hired away from Kansas.
North Carolina A&T Curtis Hunter Jerry Eaves
Penn State Jerry Dunn Ed DeChellis
Pittsburgh Ben Howland Jamie Dixon
St. Bonaventure Jan van Breda Kolff Anthony Solomon
South Carolina State Cy Alexander Ben Betts
South Florida Seth Greenberg Robert McCullum
Southern Ben Jobe Michael Grant
Southern Illinois Bruce Weber Matt Painter
Tennessee State Nolan Richardson III Hosea Lewis Cy Alexander Richardson III was suspended and ultimately resigned after allegedly threatening an assistant coach with a gun.[59]
UCLA Steve Lavin Ben Howland Lavin was fired following a 10–19 season.
Virginia Tech Ricky Stokes Seth Greenberg
Wagner Dereck Whittenburg Mike Deane
Washington State Paul Graham Dick Bennett
Western Illinois Jim Kerwin Derek Thomas
Western Kentucky Dennis Felton Darrin Horn
Western Michigan Robert McCullum Steve Hawkins
William & Mary Rick Boyages Tony Shaver
Wright State Ed Schilling Paul Biancardi


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