Oregon Names Annual Award After 1939 NCAA Champ, RADM John Dick
April 13, 2003
EUGENE, Ore. - The University of Oregon men's basketball team has named its annual award recognizing the team's best defender in honor of Rear Admiral John Dick, Director of Athletics Bill Moos announced Sunday.
Dick was Oregon's leading scorer in the 1939 NCAA Championship game, scoring 13 points in a 46-33 win over Ohio State, and went on to serve his country in World War II as part of his distinguished U.S. Navy career.
Hailing from The Dalles, Ore., Dick was a starter as the Tall Firs first won the 1939 Pacific Coast Conference Northern Division with a 14-2 record. Oregon then defeated California in a playoff, two games to none, to earn a bid to the eight-team NCAA Tournament. The four qualifiers from the West - Oregon, Texas, Oklahoma and Utah State - met at Treasure Island near San Francisco. Oregon defeated Texas 56-41, while Oklahoma stopped Utah State 50-39 to advance to the Western final. The next night, Oregon defeated Oklahoma 55-37 to earn the right to face Eastern victor Ohio State in the very first NCAA Championship game.
As a senior and team captain in 1939-40, not only was Dick named an All-American and all-Pacific Coast Conference after scoring 333 points in 31 contests, but he was president of the student body. He led the PCC North in scoring, averaging 10.7 points per game and his 75 field goals tied what was then the school single-season record. The Webfoots finished 19-12 that year and 10-6 in the division, two games back of Oregon State. The three-year letterman's No. 18 is one of six jerseys retired by the University.
Beginning with his enrollment as a freshman in 1936-37, John Dick, who lives in Springfield, Ore., has been associated with the University for the past 66 years.
The Rear Admiral John Dick Award will be chosen by the Oregon coaching staff. Junior guard Luke Ridnour was the recipient of the 2002-03 award.