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Big 12 2002-03 Recap

April 19, 2003 Conference Notes No Comments

Big 12 Conference – 2002-03 Recap

by Mitch Schneider

The Big 12’s regular season played out just as most people expected (with a few surprises). The conference’s Big Three of Kansas, Texas and Oklahoma finished in exactly that manner at the top of the standings, with O-kie State and Missouri rounding out the top five.

This year’s sleeper team, Colorado, astonished many by notching wins over Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma State and Missouri to finish tied for fifth in regular season play. The Buffs’ strong 2003 campaign overshadowed Texas Tech’s mediocre mark (6-10), as well as Texas A&M’s (6-10) and Baylor’s (5-11) poor Big 12 records.

Big 12 Tournament

After three exciting rounds chalk full of buzzer-beaters, upsets and overtime affairs, the Oklahoma Sooners survived a Big 12 onslaught en route to their third straight conference tournament championship. In the finals, OU outlasted an upstart Missouri Tigers’ squad, 49-47, as guard Hollis Price led the way with 14 points in the win.

Prior to their championship loss, Missouri had strung together three impressive wins over Nebraska, Oklahoma State and Kansas to reach the title game. Texas Tech also had a solid tournament, as well, as the Red Raiders nearly bounced Oklahoma in the semis a night after upsetting Texas.

Here’s a look at all the scores from the 2003 Big 12 Tournament held in Dallas, Texas:

First round:
No. 9 Iowa State 97, No. 8 Texas A&M 70
No. 5 Missouri 70, No. 12 Nebraska 61
No. 7 Texas Tech 68, No. 10 Baylor 65
No. 6 Colorado 77, No. 11 Kansas State 76

Second round:
No. 1 Kansas 89, No. 9 Iowa State 74
No. 5 Missouri 60, No. 4 Oklahoma State 58
No. 7 Texas Tech 92, No. 2 Texas 81
No. 3 Oklahoma 74, No. 6 Colorado 59

No. 5 Missouri 68, No. 1 Kansas 63
No. 3 Oklahoma 67, No. 7 Texas Tech 60 (OT)

No. 3 Oklahoma 49, No. 5 Missouri 47

NCAA Tournament

The Big 12 sent half of its teams to this year’s Dance, with Oklahoma and Texas each nabbing Number one seeds. Along with the Sooners and Longhorns, Kansas (No. 2), Missouri (No. 6) and Oklahoma State (No. 6) all made return trips to March Madness, while Colorado (No. 10) earned its first NCAA bid since 1997.

Despite the Buffs’ first round loss to Michigan State and Missouri and Oklahoma State’s second round defeats, the Big 12 had a solid tournament overall. Big 12 teams combined for 14 NCAA wins this year, with Kansas and Texas playing their ways into the Final Four.

The Jayhawks almost made 2003 the Year of the Big 12 after making a run into the title game in New Orleans. But unfortunately for Roy Williams and company, KU couldn’t overcome Syracuse and its talented freshmen in the finale.

Here’s a look at how Big 12 teams fared in the 2003 NCAA Tournament:

Colorado – No. 10 (South)
First round: Loss, No. 7 Michigan State (79-64)

Kansas – No. 2 (West)
First round: Win, No. 15 Utah State (64-61)
Second round: Win, No. 10 Arizona State (108-76)
Sweet 16: Win, No. 3 Duke (69-65)
Elite 8: Win, No. 1 Arizona (78-75)
Final Four: Win, No. 3 Marquette (94-61)
Championship: Loss, No. 3 Syracuse (81-78)

Missouri – No. 6 (Midwest)
First round: Win, No. 11 So. Illinois (72-71)
Second round: Loss, No. 3 Marquette (101-92 OT)

Oklahoma – No. 1 (East)
First round: Win, No. 16 So. Carolina State (71-54)
Second round: Win, No. 8 California (74-65)
Sweet 16: Win, No. 12 Butler (65-54)
Elite 8: Loss, No. 3 Syracuse (63-47)

Oklahoma State – No. 6 (East)
First round: Win, No. 11 Pennsylvania (77-63)
Second round: Loss, No. 3 Syracuse (68-56)

Texas – No. 1 (South)
First round: Win, No. 16 NC Asheville (82-61)
Second round: Win, No. 9 Purdue (77-67)
Sweet 16: Win, No. 5 Connecticut (82-78)
Elite 8: Win, No. 7 Michigan State (85-76)
Final Four: Loss, No. 3 Syracuse (95-84)


Iowa State and Texas Tech represented the Big 12 in this year’s NIT. Both teams added to their season win totals with victories in the first round, and the Red Raiders piled up a few more along the way. Tech came up just two points short of playing for the tournament championship, but bounced back to beat Minnesota in the consolation final.

Here’s a look at how the Cyclones and Red Raiders fared in the 2003 National Invitational Tournament:

Iowa State
First round: Win, Wichita State (76-65)
Second round: Loss, Iowa (54-53)

Texas Tech
Second round: Win, Nevada (66-54)
Third round: Win, San Diego State (57-48)
Third round: Win, Georgia Tech (80-72)
Semifinals: Loss, St. John’s (64-63)
Consolation final: Win, Minnesota (71-61)

Big 12 Conference – Awards

First Team
G Hollis Price, Oklahoma
G T.J. Ford, Texas
G Andre Emmett, Texas Tech
G Kirk Hinrich, Kansas
F Nick Collison, Kansas

Honorable Mention
G Rickey Paulding, Missouri
G Victor Williams, Oklahoma State
G Michel Morandais, Colorado
F Stephane Pelle, Colorado
C Arthur Johnson, Missouri

Big 12 Player of the Year

G T.J. Ford, Texas

Ford led the Longhorns in scoring (15.0 PPG), assists (7.4 APG), steals (2.0 SPG), free throw percentage (81%) and minutes per game (33.5). The sophomore guard was the catalyst for a Texas team that qualified for its first Final Four in 56 years and, arguably, meant more to his squad than any other player in the nation.

Other nominees:
F Nick Collison (Sr.), Kansas
G Kirk Hinrich (Sr.), Kansas
G Hollis Price (Sr.), Oklahoma

Big 12 Freshman of the Year

F Antoine Wright, Texas A&M

Wright registered 14.5 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game in helping the Aggies to a respectable 14-14 record (a big improvement over last year’s 9-22 mark). Wright, one of the greatest recruits in A&M history, nailed almost 40% of his shots from behind the arc and was one of just five freshmen in the nation to average at least 14.0 points and 6.0 boards per game.

Big 12 Newcomer of the Year

G Tony Allen (Jr.), Oklahoma State

Allen, a junior college transfer from Wabash Valley (IL) CC, ignited the Cowboys’ offense by averaging 14.4 points, 5.4 boards and 2.7 assists per game. Allen played a huge role in guiding Oklahoma State to fifteen straight wins during the regular season and a No. 6 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year

F Nick Collison (Sr.), Kansas

While Collison didn’t even make the Big 12’s official All-Defensive team, the senior quietly finished the season ranked in the conference’s top three in blocks (1.9) and rebounds (9.6) per game. The 6-9 forward shut down many larger post players this year, and fouled out only twice during the regular season.

Big 12 Coach of the Year

Ricardo Patton, Colorado (20-11)

Patton entered the 2002-03 season a coach on the proverbial hot seat, but managed to cool the flames in guiding the Buffs to a stellar year. Under Patton, Colorado won 20 games for the just the third time in school history, and qualified for its first NCAA Tournament since 1997. Patton’s platoon notched impressive wins over Kansas, Texas, Missouri and Oklahoma State, and did this all despite losing starting point guard, James “Mookie” Wright,” for the majority of the season.

Big 12 Team capsules (in order of conference finish)

Kansas (30-8, 14-2/1st)

Number of starters lost/returning: 2/3
Key losses: G Kirk Hinrich (graduated); F Nick Collison (graduated)
Key returns: G Aaron Miles; G/F Keith Langford; F Wayne Simien; F Jeff Graves
Coaching news: Roy Williams signs on with North Carolina; replacement to be named.
Key injuries: Wayne Simien (shoulder) – Should be back to full strength next season.
Leading scorer: Nick Collison, 18.4 PPG
Leading rebounder: Nick Collison, 9.3 RPG
Leading assist man: Aaron Miles, 6.5 APG

Texas (26-7, 13-3/2nd)

Number of starters lost/returning: 0/5
Key losses: None
Key returns: G T.J. Ford; G Royal Ivey; G Brandon Mouton; F Brad Buckman; F Brian Boddicker; C James Thomas
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: T.J. Ford, 15.1 PPG
Leading rebounder: James Thomas, 11.2 RPG
Leading assist man: T.J. Ford, 7.3 APG

Oklahoma (27-7, 12-4/3rd)

Number of starters lost/returning: 3/2
Key losses: G Hollis Price (graduated); G Ebi Ere (graduated); G Quannas White (graduated)
Key returns: G DeAngelo Alexander; F Kevin Bookout; C Jabahri Brown
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: Hollis Price, 19.7 PPG
Leading rebounder: Kevin Bookout, 6.2 RPG
Leading assist man: Quannas White, 4.1 APG

Oklahoma State (22-10, 10-6/4th)

Number of starters lost/returning: 3/2
Key losses: G Victor Williams (graduated); G Cheyne Gadson (graduated); G/F Melvin Sanders (graduated); F Andre Williams (graduated)
Key returns: G Tony Allen; F Ivan McFarlin; F Jason Miller
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: Victor Williams, 15.2 PPG
Leading rebounder: Ivan McFarlin, 7.6 RPG
Leading assist man: Cheyne Gadson, 3.2 APG

Missouri (22-11, 9-7/T-5th)

Number of starters lost/returning: 0/5*
Key losses: None
Key returns: G Ricky Clemons; G Jimmy McKinney; F Rickey Paulding* (assuming he doesn’t turn pro); F Travon Bryant; C Arthur Johnson* (assuming he doesn’t turn pro);
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: Rickey Paulding, 17.0 PPG
Leading rebounder: Arthur Johnson, 9.2 RPG
Leading assist man: Ricky Clemons, 3.8 APG

Colorado (20-12, 9-7/T-5th)

Number of starters lost/returning: 2/3*
Key losses: F Stephane Pelle (graduated); G James “Mookie” Wright (graduated)
Key returns: G Michel Morandais* (assuming he doesn’t turn pro); G/F Blair Wilson; G Antoine McGee; C David Harrison
Coaching news: Expect Ricardo Patton to get an extension after last year’s successful season.
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: Michel Morandais, 17.0 PPG
Leading rebounder: Stephane Pelle, 9.4 RPG
Leading assist man: James “Mookie” Wright, 3.8 APG

Texas Tech (22-13, 6-10/T-7th)

Number of starters lost/returning: 2/3*
Key losses: G Will Chavis (graduated); F Kasib Powell (graduated); F Pawel Storozynski (graduated); G Nick Valdez (graduated)
Key returns: G Andre Emmett* (assuming he doesn’t turn pro); G Nathan Doudney; F Robert Tomaszek
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: Andre Emmett, 22.1 PPG
Leading rebounder: Andre Emmett, 6.1 RPG
Leading assist man: Kasib Powell, 4.4 APG

Texas A&M (14-14, 6-10/T-7th)

Number of starters lost/returning: 3/2*
Key losses: G Bernard King (graduated); G Bradley Jackson (graduated); F Keith Bean (graduated)
Key returns: G/F Antoine Wright* (assuming he doesn’t turn pro); G Kevin Turner; F Tomas Ress
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: Bernard King, 17.0 PPG
Leading rebounder: Antoine Wright, 6.6 RPG
Leading assist man: Bernard King, 5.6 APG

Iowa State (17-13, 5-11/T-9th)

Number of starters lost/returning: 0/5
Key losses: None
Key returns: G Jake Sullivan; G Tim Barnes; G Adam Haluska; F Jackson Vroman; C Jared Homan
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: Jake Sullivan, 17.1 PPG
Leading rebounder: Jackson Vroman, 9.5 RPG
Leading assist man: Tim Barnes, 5.0 APG

Baylor (14-14, 5-11/T-9th)

Number of starters lost/returning: 0/5
Key losses: None
Key returns: G John Lucas; G Matt Sayman; G Kenny Taylor; F Lawrence Roberts; F Terrance Thomas; C R.T. Guinn
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: Lawrence Roberts, 15.2 PPG
Leading rebounder: Lawrence Roberts, 10.4 RPG
Leading assist man: John Lucas, 4.4 APG

Kansas State (13-17, 4-12/11th)

Number of starters lost/returning: 3/2
Key losses: G Gilson DeJesus (graduated); F Perivs Pasco (graduated); F Matt Siebrandt (graduated)
Key returns: G Frank Richards’ G Jarrett Hart; G Tim Ellis
Key injuries: None
Leading scorer: Gilson DeJesus, 11.2 PPG
Leading rebounder: Pervis Pasco, 7.5 RPG
Leading assist man: Frank Richards, 4.9 APG

Nebraska (11-19, 3-13/12th)

Number of starters lost/returning: 0/5
Key losses: G Brennon Clemmons (graduated)
Key returns: G Jake Muhleisen; G Nate Johnson; G Corey Simms; F Andrew Drevo; F/C John Turek
Key injuries: Jake Muhleisen (hip) – Should be back to full strength next season.
Leading scorer: Andrew Drevo, 13.9 PPG
Leading rebounder: Andrew Drevo, 7.9 RPG
Leading assist man: Jake Muhleisen, 3.4 APG


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