Ridnour Named UO's MVP, Defender of the Year

April 13, 2003

EUGENE, Ore. - The University of Oregon men's basketball team handed out its annual awards Sunday at the Hilton and junior guard Luke Ridnour was named the 2002-03 season's Most Valuable Player and garnered the Rear Admiral John Dick Award as the team's best defender. Senior forward Robert Johnson won the John Warren Award as the team's most inspirational player.

Also earning recognition were freshmen Matt Short and Jordan Kent. Short was named the Jesse Nash Award winner as the team's most improved player and Kent was the Ducks' Harry Ritchie Scholar-Athlete Award winner.

An honorable mention All-American by the Associated Press, Ridnour, who averaged 19.7 points and 6.6 assists per game, became just the second player ever to win both Pac-10 player of the year and Pac-10 Tournament MVP honors. He set an Oregon season record with 218 assists and set UO and Pac-10 records with 62 consecutive free throws made between Jan. 9 and Feb. 22. His 649 points in 2002-03 were the third-most ever in one season at Oregon. He made 88 percent of his free throw attempts -- good for third on the school's list. On defense, he tied the school record with 63 steals. He finished the season ranked ninth in UO career scoring (1,399 points), third in assists (500), second in steals (150), third in three-point field goals (203) and second in free throw percentage (.859).

Johnson, who started every game of his two-year Oregon career, averaged 7.6 points and 6.5 rebounds per game. He finished 10th in UO career blocked shots with 46. Short, a redshirt freshman, played in all 32 games, starting eight, and averaged 2.8 points and 2.2 rebounds per game.

Below is a list of honors and accomplishments by the 2002-03 Oregon men's basketball team.

Luke Ridnour
All-America, Honorable Mention (Associated Press)
Pac-10 Player of the Year
Pac-10 Tournament MVP
All-Pac-10, First Team
Pac-10 All-Tournament Team
Basketball Times All-West Coast, First Team
USBWA All-District 9 First Team
John Thompson Foundation Challenge MVP

Luke Jackson
All-Pac-10, First Team
Pac-10 All-Tournament Team
Basketball Times All-West Coast, First Team

Ian Crosswhite
Pac-10 All-Freshman, Honorable Mention

James Davis
Pac-10 All-Tournament Team

Andre Joseph
Pac-10 Newcomer of the Year

Bests

Oregon won its first-ever Pac-10 Tournament championship.

Oregon's No. 5 ranking on Dec. 9, 2002, was the highest in school history.

Going back to last season, Oregon was ranked for a school-record 18 consecutive weeks.

For the first time ever, Oregon has five consecutive wins over UCLA, including three in 2002-03.

The Oregon-Kansas game Dec. 7, 2002, at the Rose Garden drew a State of Oregon record crowd of 20,762 fans.

Team Records

For the second year in a row, Oregon set school and Pac-10 records for free throw accuracy. The 2002-03 team hit 77.4 percent at the free throw line.

Also for the second year in a row, Oregon established a new mark for steals in a season with 263 and set a school record with 753 three-point attempts on the season.

Oregon matched a school record with 23 consecutive home wins. Additionally, the Ducks are 30-2 at McArthur Court over the last two seasons; that's the second-best two-year period in the history of Mac Court, surpassed only by the 1937-38 and 1938-39 teams that combined to go 26-1 at home.

Oregon set a single-game school record by making 19-of-19 free throw attempts Jan. 25 vs. Washington State.

The Ducks also tied school records with 30 assists Dec. 20 vs. Florida A&M and with 17 steals Nov. 24 vs. Grambling State.

Individual Records

Luke Ridnour set a UO season record with 218 assists and tied another mark with 63 steals.

Ridnour also set school and Pac-10 records with 62 consecutive free throws made between Jan. 9 and Feb. 22, 2003.

Noteworthy Accomplishments

Oregon won 20 games in consecutive seasons for the first time in 64 years (1937-38 and 1938-39). Additionally, Oregon's 85 wins during the last four seasons are the most since the school won 91 games between 1938 and 1941. Among Pac-10 schools, only Arizona and Stanford have won more games than Oregon the last four years.

Oregon made consecutive appearances in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 42 years (1960 and 1961). And the Ducks' three NCAA appearances in the last four seasons is a first for the school.

Ernie Kent became the third fastest to 100 coaching wins in Oregon history. He finished the season by passing Dick Harter - his college coach - and Don Monson for fourth on the UO coaching list with 117 victories.

Luke Ridnour became just the second player in Pac-10 history to be named the conference's regular season player of the year and tournament MVP. Arizona's Sean Elliott was the other.

- www.GoDucks.com -

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