Ole Miss Basketball Awards Banquet Held Tuesday Night

April 8, 2003

OXFORD, Miss. - The Ole Miss men's basketball team held its 2002-03 awards banquet Tuesday on campus, and seniors Derrick Allen and David Sanders went out in style, with each winning three honors.

Allen, a Gadsden, Ala., native, took home the team's Scholar-Athlete of the Year honor and the Rod Barnes "Heart of A Champion" Award, which is bestowed upon an Ole Miss player who - like Barnes - strives for excellence on and off the court. Allen shared the W.L. "Mr. Bill" Watt Award with fellow senior Emmanuel Wade. The Watt Award is given to the players that persevere and have a "never-give-up" attitude.

The 6-foot-8 forward, who was named to the Southeastern Conference Good Works Team this year, averaged 8.2 points and 4.9 rebounds. Allen also shot 50 percent from the field and 72.6 percent from the foul line. He was named to the UMAA Honor Roll (3.00-3.49 GPA) for the 2002 fall semester.

Wade played in all 29 games and averaged 8.5 points and 2.7 boards. The 6-foot-3 guard shot 48 percent from the field and 73.1 percent from the foul line. The Marianna, Ark., native played in 128 career games, second most in Ole Miss basketball history.

Sanders also received three awards at the banquet. The 6-foot-3 guard was honored with the Free Throw, Assist and Best Defensive Player awards. The Jackson, Miss., native led the Rebels with a 77.9 free throw shooting percentage and 90 assists. He finished the year ranked sixth in the SEC in free throw shooting percentage.

Sanders, who averaged 10.1 points and 3.9 boards, tied for the team lead with 35 steals and also had eight blocked shots from his guard spot.

A 2003 All-SEC third team pick, junior Justin Reed received two awards. The 6-foot-8 forward, a two-time Wooden Award nominee, was named the team's Most Valuable Player and also earned the Rebound Award.

Reed led the Rebels in scoring (15.4 ppg), rebounding (5.3 rpg), blocked shots (27) and steals (35). The Jackson, Miss., native finished the season ranked among the SEC statistical leaders in scoring, rebounding, field goal percentage and free throw percentage. This past year, Reed went over the 1,000-point and 500-rebound milestones for his career. He now has 1,268 points and 557 boards and is only the ninth player in Ole Miss history to have 1,200 points and 550 rebounds.

Junior Aaron Harper took home the squad's Most Improved Player Award. The 6-foot-7 forward/guard averaged 12.2 points and 3.7 boards in 2002-03. He shot 43.9 percent from the field, 40.6 percent from the arc and 72.6 percent from the charity stripe. Harper also had 61 assists and 24 steals.

The Jackson, Miss., native, who earned SEC Player of the Week honors in January, also went over the 1,000-point plateau for his career this year. He now has 1,043 career points. Harper led the team in three-pointers with 65 and was ranked among the SEC leaders in three-point field goal percentage and three-pointers made per game. The 65 treys are the fourth most for a single season and his 212 career three-pointers are third on the Rebel all-time chart.

The Rebels completed the 2002-03 campaign with a 14-15 record.

2002-03 Ole Miss Basketball Award Winners

Scholar-Athlete of the Year - Derrick Allen
Most Valuable Player - Justin Reed
Best Defensive Player - David Sanders
Most Improved Award - Aaron Harper
Rebound Award - Justin Reed
Free Throw Award - David Sanders
Assist Award - David Sanders
W.L. "Mr. Bill" Watt Award - Derrick Allen and Emmanuel Wade
Rod Barnes "Heart of A Champion" Award - Derrick Allen

 

 

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