April 13, 2000
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - University of Louisville senior forwards Nate Johnson and Tony Williams were jointly honored as the Peck Hickman Most Valuable Player at the 1999-2000 SunCom Cardinal Basketball Awards Banquet on Thursday (April 13) at the Cascade Ballroom of the Kentucky International Convention Center.
Johnson was second for the Cards in scoring (13.9, 15th in C-USA) and assists (3.1, 13th in C-USA) and team leader in steals (1.9, second in C-USA). He scored in double figures on 72 occasions in his career, including 20 times as a senior. He scored a career-high 35 points at Houston in the regular season finale and had 31 points against North Carolina.
The No. 2 scorer in Conference USA history, Johnson ranks 15th in all-time scoring at U of L with 1,513 career points and is sixth in career steals (182). Only four players started more games for U of L than his 124 career starts. He also received a statistical award as the Cards' Best Three-Point Shooter, connecting a team-leading 45 percent of his threes (23-of-51).
Williams scored 20 or more points on seven occasions as a senior and averaged 13.6 points for the Cardinals (16th in C-USA). His team-leading 56 three point goals marked the sixth-highest single-season total at U of L (56-of-161 threes, .348). He scored a career-high 28 points against Georgia in the Great Alaska Shootout, earning all-tournament honors with three-game averages of 20 points, six assists, four rebounds and 58 percent shooting from the field.
Williams ranks 37th in career scoring at U of L with 1,133 points. He hit a three-pointer in 75 of 93 games over the last three seasons (26 of 31 as a senior) and ranks fourth in career three-point goals at Louisville, hitting 147-of-429 career threes (.343).
Senior forward/center Dion Edward was honored with the team's Rebounding Award. Edward led the Cardinals and ranked eighth in Conference USA in rebounding, grabbing 7.4 a game. He had 59 more rebounds (228) than points (169), grabbing 37 percent of his rebounds at the offensive end. He averaged 5.5 points and was U of L's leader in blocked shots with 54, 4th in C-USA.
Junior guard Marques Maybin was honored with the Most Inspirational Player award. Maybin was the top scorer for the Cardinals, averaging 14.7 points (10th in C-USA). He scored in double figures in 21 games this year (U of L was 17-4 in those). His 111 free throws made were 45 more than the next closest Cardinal, drawing a majority of fouls on drives to the basket. He was 7th in C-USA in free throw percentage (.755) and led U of L with 39 dunks, aiding his 49.4 percent field goal accuracy (sixth in C-USA).
Maybin also was named the recipient of the Joe Kitchen Memorial Scholarship for the 2000-2001 season. Endowed in 1993, the scholarship is named for Kitchen, a former U of L letterman and longtime supporter who played on the Cards' first NCAA Final Four team in 1959. It is presented annually to a senior basketball player who exemplifies excellence in academics, athletics and community involvement.
Freshman guard Reece Gaines received the Cards' Best First-Year Player and Most Assists awards. Gaines averaged 9.1 points and a team-leading 3.4 assists (11th in C-USA) as the Cards' starting point guard. He became just the 12th freshman to start an opening game for U of L in Coach Denny Crum's 29 years with the Cardinals when he opened at point guard in U of L's Nov. 19 opener at VCU. He was third in Conference USA in steals (58, 1.9 average) and scored a season-high 20 points at Marquette.
Sophomore guard/forward Quintin Bailey was named U of L's Most Improved Player. A walk-on swingman from Louisville's Iroquois High School, Bailey was one of the first players off the bench and led Cardinal reserves with a 6.1 scoring average. He scored a career-high 16 points at No. 3 Cincinnati and scored five or more points on 19 occasions. He also received statistical awards for Best Field Goal Percentage (.514, 71-of-144) and Best Free Throw Percentage (.875, 28-of-32).
Junior guard Jeff McKinley received the Coaches' Award. McKinley played in eight games as a junior, totaling 10 points and seven rebounds. He scored six points in nine minutes of action against Alaska Anchorage.
Forward Hajj Turner earned the team's Scholar-Athlete Award. A redshirt sophomore who sat out the last two seasons rehabilitating after two surgeries on his right knee, Turner saw the first action of his career at Virginia Commonwealth and appeared in 11 games. His top effort was four points and three rebounds against Georgia.
The Cardinals posted a 19-12 record, defeating four Top 25 foes, and made their 29th NCAA Tournament appearance.
Co-Most Valuable Player Nate Johnson, Tony Williams Scholar-Athlete Award Hajj Turner Coaches' Award Jeff McKinley Most Inspirational Player Marques Maybin Most Improved Player Quintin Bailey Most Assists Reece Gaines Most Rebounds Dion Edward Best Free Throw Percentage Quintin Bailey Best Three-Point Shooter Nate Johnson Best Field Goal Percentage Quintin Bailey Best First-Year Player Reece Gaines Joe Kitchen Scholarship Marques Maybin