Thursday, August 23, 2012
50 in 50 series: No. 20 Utah (tie)
Editor's note: Using a point system devised by the ESPN Stats & Information department, ESPN.com is counting down the 50 most successful programs of the past 50 years. A running list of the top 50 can be found here. For an explanation of the scoring system, read our intro.
T-20. Utah (294 points)
Positives: Utah gets scoring credit for 16 conference titles and 11 tourney titles. Nine trips to the Sweet 16 in the past 35 years. Under Rick Majerus from 1989-2004, the Utes didn’t have a single losing season and reached four Sweet 16s. And don’t forget that 1998 national-title game, when they were a few minutes away from cutting down the nets. The school has already produced seven top-10 picks.
Negatives: Just one NCAA tournament appearance in the first 14 years of this study. And since Andrew Bogut departed after the Sweet 16 season of 2005, the Utes have fielded five different losing teams.
Fun fact: Utah has suited up three consensus first-team All Americans since 1995 (Keith Van Horn, Andre Miller, Andrew Bogut), which is the same total as UCLA and more than Indiana, Illinois and Michigan have combined for in that span.
Rank by the decade 1962-69: 32 (T-35th)
1970-79: 35 (T-46th)
1980-89: 42 (T-59th)
1990-99: 133 (8th)
2000-present: 52 (54th)
50 in 50 starting five (1962-present)
G – Andre Miller (1995-99)
G/F – Jerry Chambers (1964-66)
F – Tom Chambers (1977-81)
F – Keith Van Horn (1993-97)
C – Andrew Bogut (2003-05)
Top options off the bench Danny Vranes (1977-81)
Mike Newlin (1968-71)
Luther "Ticky" Burden (1972-75)
50 in 50 coach: Rick Majerus (1989-2004)
Best teams (1962-present)
1965-66 (23-8, NCAA national semifinals)
1996-97 (29-4, NCAA Elite Eight)
1997-98 (30-4, NCAA runner-up)
--Nick Loucks and Brett Edgerton contributed to this post