Marquette's Wade and Crean Earn Top C-USA Men's Basketball Honors
Marquette junior guard Dwyane Wade has been named the Conference USA Player of the Year for the 2002-03 season, while Golden Eagles head coach Tom Crean has been named the Ray Meyer Coach of the Year recipient for the second consecutive year, it was announced today in Louisville, site of the 2003 Kelly Tires Conference USA Men's Basketball Tournament.
Wade leads Conference USA in scoring (21.7 ppg), the fourth-highest single season average in Marquette history. He ranks second on the team and ninth among C-USA players in assists (4.12), is second on the team and eighth in the league in field goal shooting (.509) and is second in the conference with an average of 2.23 steals per game. In helping the Golden Eagles to their first Conference USA regular season championship, Wade has led or tied for the team lead in scoring 20 times and paced or shared the team lead in rebounding on eight occasions.
In addition to being named First Team all-Conference USA this season, Wade has been named a finalist for the Naismith Award and the Oscar Robertson Award and was named to the Wooden Award Top 15 Semifinal List. Five times this season he was honored as the C-USA Player of the Week and he has gained National Player of the Week honors from The Sporting News (Dec. 16) and FoxSports.com (Mar. 3).
Crean wins the award for the second straight season after leading Marquette (14-2 in Conference USA play) to its first regular season title since winning the Great Midwest Conference championship during the 1993-94 season. He joins Cincinnati's Bob Huggins, who won the award three straight years (1998-2000) as the only C-USA coaches to win the award in back-to-back seasons.
In his fourth season at the helm of the Golden Eagles program, Crean has produced a record of 78-39 (.667), which includes a 48-11 mark over the last two seasons. With a mark of 22-4 overall this year, Marquette is poised to make its second consecutive NCAA appearance, the first time that has occurred at MU since 1996 and 1997. The Golden Eagles are the No.1 seed this week at the Kelly Tires Conference USA Tournament and will face either UAB or Charlotte in their first game on Thursday at 7:00 p.m. EST.
2002-03 CONFERENCE USA PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Dwyane Wade, Marquette, G, 6-5, 210, Jr., Robbins, Ill. (Richards)
2002-03 CONFERENCE USA RAY MEYER COACH OF THE YEAR
Tom Crean, Marquette (78-39 in four seasons)