Alabama Crimson Tide men's basketball
The Alabama Crimson Tide men's basketball team represents the University of Alabama in NCAA Division I men's basketball. The program plays in the Southeastern Conference. In the conference it trails only long-time basketball powerhouse Kentucky in basketball wins and SEC tournament titles, is third behind Kentucky and LSU in SEC regular season conference titles. Alabama was retroactively recognized as the pre-NCAA Tournament national champion for the 1929–30 season by the Premo-Porretta Power Poll; the men's basketball program has spent most of its history in the shadow of Alabama's football team, but has risen in stature over the past several decades. Under former coach Mark Gottfried, the team achieved a No. 1 national ranking in 2003, competed for a NCAA Regional Tournament Championship in 2004. The program was notable as a regular conference basketball contender in the 1980s and early 1990s under the direction of coach Wimp Sanderson and in the 1970s under coach C. M. Newton. Alabama has eight NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 appearances.
In the 2003–04 season, the team defeated #1-seeded Stanford in the NCAA Tournament, reached the Elite Eight round where they lost to the eventual national champion, Connecticut. Former coaches with at least five years with the Crimson Tide include the following: Hank Crisp, Hayden Riley, C. M. Newton, Wimp Sanderson – Alabama's winningest coach, David Hobbs, Mark Gottfried, Anthony Grant. Other coaches include John Dee, Floyd Burdette, Charles A. Bernier. In 1968, legendary Alabama football coach Paul "Bear" Bryant, Alabama's athletic director, called Kentucky men's basketball coach Adolph Rupp looking for someone to turn around Alabama's basketball program. Rupp recommended C. M. Newton, a former backup player at Kentucky, at Transylvania University for 12 years. In twelve seasons at Alabama, Newton led the Tide to a record of 211–123; the Crimson Tide won three straight SEC titles under Newton, the only program besides Kentucky to accomplish this feat. Newton guided Alabama to four NIT and two NCAA Men's Division I Championship tournament berths, prompting the school to name a recruiting suite in his honor in 2006.
Just as he did at Transylvania, Newton recruited Alabama's first black player, Wendell Hudson, in 1969, integrating his second team in as many coaching stops. Newton resigned as head coach after the 1980–81 season to become assistant commissioner of the SEC, he was succeeded by Wimp Sanderson. He had been at Alabama since 1960 as a graduate assistant to Hayden Riley. In 12 years as head coach his teams averaged 21.8 wins a year, with a 267–119 record, they won 4 SEC tournaments. They played in one NIT and eight NCAA tournaments making the "Sweet 16" five times. Sanderson is the only coach in Alabama history to win 200 or more games in his first 10 years, he was the SEC Coach of the Year in 1987, 1989 and 1990, was the National Coach of the Year in 1987. Sanderson was best known for wearing garish plaid sports jackets on the sidelines. At one point, Coleman Coliseum was known as the "Plaid Palace", the mid-court logo was painted in a crimson-and-white plaid pattern. Hobbs was hired at Alabama as an assistant coach for Wimp Sanderson in 1985 and spent seven years as an assistant in Tuscaloosa helping the Crimson Tide win one SEC Championship and four SEC Tournament crowns while the Tide made four appearances in the NCAA Tournament's Sweet 16.
As an assistant, he had the opportunity to coach such All-SEC performers as Robert Horry, James "Hollywood" Robinson and Latrell Sprewell. When Sanderson left Alabama following the 1992 season, Hobbs was named head coach. In his first season, the Tide finished 16–13 and advanced to the NIT. In 1994 and 1995, Alabama recorded 20-win seasons and advanced to the NCAA Tournament behind the play of future NBA All-Star Antonio McDyess. In 1996, Hobbs led UA to a 19 -- a berth in the NIT Final Four, he resigned his post following the 1998 season after compiling a 110–76 career record and producing nine All-SEC players. Mark Gottfried served as the Crimson Tide's head coach from the 1998–99 season until midway through the 2008–09 season. Gottfried played 3 seasons of basketball at Alabama under Wimp Sanderson, the Crimson Tide advanced to the Sweet Sixteen in each of those seasons, he was hired by Alabama in March 1998 after coaching at Murray State for three seasons. The Crimson Tide achieved the highest pinnacle for the school in both the NCAA Championship Tournament and the Associated Press Poll reaching the Elite Eight in the tournament in 2004 and reaching the No. 1 spot in the nation in the AP poll in 2002, both under Mark Gottfried's command.
Gottfried led the Tide to its only SEC Championship under his watch during the 2001–02 season, although the team never won a conference tournament championship during his tenure. For his efforts in 2002, Gottfried was named SEC Coach of the Year by both the Associated Press and his fellow Southeastern Conference coaches, his biggest accomplishment as coach at Alabama was leading the Crimson Tide to five consecutive NCAA tournaments from 2002–2006, another first for the school that occurred under his watch. Gottfried resigned on January 26, 2009 with 11 regular season games still remaining on the team's schedule. Athletic Director Mal Moore named long-time Alabama assistant and former player, Philip Pearson as interim head coach for the remainder of the 2008–09 season. On March 27, 2009 Anthony Grant agreed in principle to become the twentieth Crimson Tide head men's basketball coach. Grant came to Alabama after serving as the head coach at V
Leland Stanford Junior University is a private research university in Stanford, California. Stanford is known for its academic strength, proximity to Silicon Valley, ranking as one of the world's top universities; the university was founded in 1885 by Leland and Jane Stanford in memory of their only child, Leland Stanford Jr. who had died of typhoid fever at age 15 the previous year. Stanford was a U. S. Senator and former Governor of California who made his fortune as a railroad tycoon; the school admitted its first students on October 1, 1891, as a coeducational and non-denominational institution. Stanford University struggled financially after the death of Leland Stanford in 1893 and again after much of the campus was damaged by the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Following World War II, Provost Frederick Terman supported faculty and graduates' entrepreneurialism to build self-sufficient local industry in what would be known as Silicon Valley; the university is one of the top fundraising institutions in the country, becoming the first school to raise more than a billion dollars in a year.
The university is organized around three traditional schools consisting of 40 academic departments at the undergraduate and graduate level and four professional schools that focus on graduate programs in Law, Medicine and Business. Stanford's undergraduate program is the most selective in the United States by acceptance rate. Students compete in 36 varsity sports, the university is one of two private institutions in the Division I FBS Pac-12 Conference, it has gained the most for a university. Stanford athletes have won 512 individual championships, Stanford has won the NACDA Directors' Cup for 24 consecutive years, beginning in 1994–1995. In addition, Stanford students and alumni have won 270 Olympic medals including 139 gold medals; as of October 2018, 83 Nobel laureates, 27 Turing Award laureates, 8 Fields Medalists have been affiliated with Stanford as students, faculty or staff. In addition, Stanford University is noted for its entrepreneurship and is one of the most successful universities in attracting funding for start-ups.
Stanford alumni have founded a large number of companies, which combined produce more than $2.7 trillion in annual revenue and have created 5.4 million jobs as of 2011 equivalent to the 10th largest economy in the world. Stanford is the alma mater of 30 living billionaires and 17 astronauts, is one of the leading producers of members of the United States Congress. Stanford University was founded in 1885 by Leland and Jane Stanford, dedicated to Leland Stanford Jr, their only child; the institution opened in 1891 on Stanford's previous Palo Alto farm. Despite being impacted by earthquakes in both 1906 and 1989, the campus was rebuilt each time. In 1919, The Hoover Institution on War and Peace was started by Herbert Hoover to preserve artifacts related to World War I; the Stanford Medical Center, completed in 1959, is a teaching hospital with over 800 beds. The SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, established in 1962, performs research in particle physics. Jane and Leland Stanford modeled their university after the great eastern universities, most Cornell University and Harvard University.
Stanford opened being called the "Cornell of the West" in 1891 due to faculty being former Cornell affiliates including its first president, David Starr Jordan. Both Cornell and Stanford were among the first to have higher education be accessible and open to women as well as to men. Cornell is credited as one of the first American universities to adopt this radical departure from traditional education, Stanford became an early adopter as well. Most of Stanford University is on one of the largest in the United States, it is located on the San Francisco Peninsula, in the northwest part of the Santa Clara Valley 37 miles southeast of San Francisco and 20 miles northwest of San Jose. In 2008, 60% of this land remained undeveloped. Stanford's main campus includes a census-designated place within unincorporated Santa Clara County, although some of the university land is within the city limits of Palo Alto; the campus includes much land in unincorporated San Mateo County, as well as in the city limits of Menlo Park and Portola Valley.
The academic central campus is adjacent to Palo Alto, bounded by El Camino Real, Stanford Avenue, Junipero Serra Boulevard, Sand Hill Road. The United States Postal Service has assigned it two ZIP Codes: 94305 for campus mail and 94309 for P. O. box mail. It lies within area code 650. Stanford operates or intends to operate in various locations outside of its central campus. On the founding grant: Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve is a 1,200-acre natural reserve south of the central campus owned by the university and used by wildlife biologists for research. SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory is a facility west of the central campus operated by the university for the Department of Energy, it contains the longest linear particle accelerator in the world, 2 miles on 426 acres of land. Golf course and a seasonal lake: The university has its own golf course and a seasonal lake, both home to the vulnerable California tiger salamander; as of 2012 Lake Laguni
Utah Utes men's basketball
The Utah Utes men's basketball team represents the University of Utah as an NCAA Division I program that plays in the Pac-12 Conference. They are led by head coach Larry Krystkowiak and play their home games at the Jon M. Huntsman Center; the school has made the NCAA Tournament 27 times, which ranks 20th in NCAA history and tied for third most appearances behind UCLA and the University of Arizona in the Western United States. They last made the tournament in 2016. Utah won the NCAA Championship in 1944, defeating Dartmouth College 42–40 for the school's only NCAA basketball championship. However, the school claims the 1916 AAU National Championship, awarded after winning the AAU national tournament, they have won the NIT once, defeating Kentucky in 1947. In 1998, the Utes played in the NCAA championship game. Utah began play in 1908, finishing with a record of 3–8. However, by 1916, they had won their first national championship, winning the National AAU Tournament; the team would compete in the tournament two other times, in 1918 and 1919.
But it wasn't until 1927 that Utah began laying the foundation for what would become one of the winningest programs in college basketball. That began with the hiring of Vadal Peterson, who would become the winningest coach in Utah basketball history. Peterson would guide Utah to 6 conference and state championships and reached the ultimate prize in 1944, when the Utes won the national championship. Oddly enough, Utah had turned down a bid to the NCAA Tournament because they wanted to play in the NIT. Back the NIT was a far more prestigious tournament and drew the big time college basketball programs. However, after being bounced in the first round by Kentucky, Utah was given a second chance to play in the NCAA Tournament; the Arkansas Razorbacks were forced to withdraw after two of their players were badly injured in a car accident. Needing another team to take the Razorbacks' place, the NCAA invited Utah; the Utes accepted and went on to defeat Dartmouth 42–40. The legendary Arnie Ferrin was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player after scoring 28 points in the final two games.
Three years Peterson would lead Utah to the more prestigious NIT championship, as they defeated enough, Kentucky 49–45. Peterson would retire from Utah with a 385–230 record and is the only coach in Utah history to have won a national championship. After Peterson retired, Utah basketball was known as one of the strongest in the west; that tradition helped convince Kansas State head coach Jack Gardner to accept the job. Gardner had led the Wildcats to two Final Fours prior to accepting the job and during his 18 years at Utah, he built a legacy that many today feel is the strongest in Utah history. Jack Gardner was known for his quick offenses, where Utah got its name as the Runnin' Redskins; because of his radical offensive sets, the Utes were regarded as the team that helped usher in a new era of college basketball. By his second season, Gardner had the Utes in their first NCAA Tournament since the 1945 season and the Utes dominated their way to a conference championship. Finishing the year 24 -- 4, Utah was eliminated in the second round.
In Gardner's third season he once again guided the Utes to a conference championship and an NCAA tournament berth. That year the Utes climbed to 11th in the polls and made it to the Elite Eight, before bowing out to eventual champion San Francisco, led by future NBA legend and Hall of Famer Bill Russell; the Utes kept their postseason streak alive for Gardner's fourth and fifth seasons, making the NIT, they lost in the first round both years. In 1959, Utah again returned to the NCAA Tournament, before losing to Idaho State in the second round; the Utes would make the NCAA Tournament again in 1960, like in'59, were defeated in the second round, this time by USC. After getting eliminated in the second round in consecutive years, Jack Gardner and Utah made a run at the national championship in 1961; that year the Utes finished 23 -- 12 -- 2 in conference play. They were faced Loyola-California in the first round; the Utes won 91–75 and advanced to the Elite Eight, where they defeated Arizona State 88–80, to make the school's first Final Four in 17 years.
There they would face the eventual national champions Cincinnati Bearcats, losing 82–67. Though the season had ended short of the national championship, Utah had returned to the national stage and would prove to be a worthy national foe for years to come. A season after the 1961 Final Four ushered in great change for Utah athletics; the Utes, along with the Arizona, Arizona State, BYU, New Mexico, Wyoming decided to form the Western Athletic Conference. The competitive conference made it far more difficult for the Utes to win, as Gardner struggled in the first three years of the conference's formation. During that span the Utes would go 12–14, 19–9 and 17–9. However, by 1966 Utah was once again ready to make a national splash, after cruising to a conference championship and the program's first tournament berth since the 1961 season during that season. Utah faced Pacific in the semifinals. After a easy 83–74 victory over the Tigers, Utah advanced to the Elite Eight where they would face the Oregon State Beavers.
In a competitive game, the Utes came out on top, defeating the Beavers 70–64 to once again advance to the Final Four. This was a historical achievement for Jack Gardner, because it made him the first, only, coach to guide two different teams to two Final Fours, but it was the cultural significance of this Final Four that would have far reaching historical impact and change the game
Western Kentucky Hilltoppers basketball
The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers men's basketball team is the men's basketball team that represents Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Kentucky. The Hilltoppers compete in Conference USA; the team's most recent appearance in the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament was in 2013. Rick Stansbury was announced as the team's current head coach on March 28, 2016; the men's basketball program has the 16th most victories in the history of the NCAA and has attained the eighth best winning percentage in NCAA history. The school made an NCAA Final Four appearance in 1971, vacated, has made four NIT Final Four appearances, including three in the early days of the NIT when it was on par with the NCAA tournament; the program has won numerous Ohio Valley Conference championships and was competitive in its previous conference, the Sun Belt Conference finishing near the top of the conference and competing for the conference championship. In 2014, the Hilltoppers joined Conference USA following conference realignment.
Street & Smith's publication "100 Greatest Programs", ranked WKU #31. WKU has had 30 All Americans and 56 Hilltoppers have played professionally following their collegiate careers. BOLD indicates lead the NCAA in victories. NCT – National Campus Tournament NAIA – National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics NIT – National Invitation Tournament NCAA – National Collegiate Athletic Association WKU has appeared in 39 national postseason tournaments and in four national final fours. Additionally, the Hilltoppers were scheduled to appear in the 1938 NAIA Tournament, but the team declined to participate after winning the SIAA tournament; the school has a policy of only accepting invitations to the NCAA or NIT tournaments, which precludes participation in other tournaments such as the CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament and College Basketball Invitational. The Hilltoppers have appeared in the NCAA Tournament 23 times, their combined record is 19–24. Their appearance in the 1971 NCAA Tournament and third place finish were vacated by the NCAA due to a player, Jim McDaniels, having signed a professional contract and accepted money during the season.
* Vacated by the NCAA The Hilltoppers have appeared in the National Invitation Tournament 14 times. When the NIT first started, it was considered the premiere college basketball tournament and remained on par with the NCAA Tournament through the mid 1950s, until the NCAA began giving automatic bids to conference champions in 1956. Western Kentucky's first eight appearances occurred during this early period, including their 2nd place finish in 1942, 3rd place in 1948, 4th place in 1954. WKU made the NIT Final Four in 2018, their combined record is 12–15. The Hilltoppers appeared in the only National Campus Basketball Tournament, their record is 0–1. The E. A. Diddle Arena is a 7,326-seat multi-purpose arena in Bowling Green, United States; the arena, built in 1963 is named after legendary WKU men's coach and Basketball Hall of Famer Edgar "E. A." Diddle. Rick Stansbury - Head Coach Mark Hsu - Assistant Coach Nakita Johnson - Assistant Coach Talvis Franklin - Director of Basketball Operations Bob Hubbard - Academic Coordinator Martin Cross - Associate Director of Basketball Operations Erien Watson - Program Manager 42 – Carlisle Towery 42 – John Oldham 41 – Tom Marshall 45 – Bobby Rascoe 35 – Darel Carrier 22 – Clem Haskins 44 – Jim McDaniels 32 – Courtney Lee E. A. Diddle – Coach Wes Strader – Radio voiceNote: The first jerseys retired in honor of Hilltopper basketball greats were hung in E.
A. Diddle Arena during the 1999–2000 season. Though the jerseys are retired current and future players can and do use the numbers of the players whose jerseys are retired. List of teams with the most victories in NCAA Division I men's college basketball 2011–12 WKU Hilltoppers Media Guide Official website
2002 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament
The 2002 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament involved 65 schools playing in single-elimination play to determine the national champion of men's NCAA Division I college basketball. It began on March 12, 2002, ended with the championship game on April 1 in Atlanta at the Georgia Dome. A total of 64 games were played; this was the first year that the tournament used the so-called "pod" system, in which the eight first- and second-round sites are distributed around the four regionals. Teams were assigned to first round spots; the top seeds at each site were: Sacramento: Oregon, USC Albuquerque: Arizona, Ohio State Dallas: Oklahoma, Mississippi State St. Louis: Kansas, Kentucky Chicago: Georgia, Illinois Pittsburgh: Cincinnati, Pittsburgh Washington, D. C.: Maryland, Connecticut Greenville: Duke, Alabama The Final Four consisted of Maryland, making their second consecutive appearance, making their first appearance since 1993, making their first appearance since 1992, Oklahoma, making their first appearance since their national runner-up finish in 1988.
Maryland defeated Indiana 64-52 in the championship game to win their first national championship. Juan Dixon of Maryland was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player. For the second straight tournament, the Elite Eight featured at least one double-digit seed. South Region tenth-seed Kent State and West Region twelfth-seed Missouri played in their respective regional finals, with Kent State losing to Indiana and Missouri losing to Oklahoma; this marked the first time since 1987 that no team from the states of North Carolina nor Kentucky reached the Final Four. The following are the sites selected to host each round of the 2002 tournament: March 12 University of Dayton Arena, Ohio March 14 and 16 ARCO Arena, California BI-LO Center, South Carolina Edward Jones Dome, St. Louis, Missouri University Arena, New Mexico March 15 and 17 American Airlines Center, Dallas MCI Center, Washington, D. C. Mellon Arena, Pittsburgh United Center, Chicago March 21 and 23 South Regional, Rupp Arena, Kentucky West Regional, Compaq Center at San Jose, San Jose, California March 22 and 24 East Regional, Carrier Dome, New York Midwest Regional, Kohl Center, Wisconsin March 30 and April 1 Georgia Dome, Atlanta For the second time, Atlanta was the host city of the Final Four, with the Georgia Dome becoming the 33rd host venue.
The Georgia Dome currently holds the distinction of being the most recent Final Four venue to close and be demolished, as it did so in 2017 after the opening of Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which will host the Final Four in 2020. The tournament included two new host cities; the American Airlines Center in Dallas, which opened in 2001, replaced Reunion Arena as the city's primary winter sports venue. The Kohl Center on the campus of the University of Wisconsin brought the tournament back to Wisconsin's capital city for the first time since 1969, although it has not returned since, and the city of Greenville, South Carolina's Bi-Lo Center hosted for the first time in 2002. The 2002 tournament was the last time. At Georgia Dome, Atlanta March 30, 2002 Maryland 97, Kansas 88For the second straight year the Maryland Terrapins earned a bid to the Final Four; this time they would take advantage of their trip. After falling behind 13-2 to the Kansas Jayhawks to begin the game, Maryland stormed to a 44-37 lead at halftime.
They expanded their lead to 83-63, with 6:11 left in the game. Roy Williams' Kansas squad did not quit and closed the gap to 4 with under a minute remaining, but the Terps survived to advance to the championship, 97-88. Maryland senior Juan Dixon led the contest in scoring with 33. Indiana 73, Oklahoma 64Mike Davis's Indiana Hoosiers continued their Cinderella ride in the NCAA Tournament by defeating another higher ranked team, the Oklahoma Sooners. Oklahoma led most of the first half, took a 34-30 lead into halftime. However, with the score 60-60 late in the 2nd half Indiana broke ahead for good with an easy bucket from Jeff Newton, who led the Hoosiers with 19 points; the Hoosiers outscored the Sooners by 13 in the 2nd half and advanced to the championship game with a 73-64 victory. Oklahoma was coached by Kelvin Sampson, who in his career would succeed Davis as IU head coach. April 1, 2002 Maryland 64, Indiana 52The Maryland Terrapins completed the task they set out to do one year earlier by defeating the Indiana Hoosiers 64-52.
Maryland led the entire game except for a brief point with 9:52 left in the basketball game when Indiana took a 44-42 lead. Maryland answered the Hoosier run and ended the game with a 22-8 run to bring home the school's first and coach Gary Williams' only men's basketball National Champion
Rice Owls men's basketball
The Rice Owls men's basketball program is the intercollegiate men's basketball program of Rice University. The program is classified in the NCAA's Division I, the team competes in Conference USA, they participated in the Southwest Conference and the Western Athletic Conference. The Owls play their home games in Tudor Fieldhouse, which they have called home since 1950. Known as Rice Gymnasium, it was renamed in honor of Rice alum Bobby Tudor, who spearheaded the 2008 renovation of the facility with a multimillion-dollar donation; the court is designated "Autry Court" in memory of Mrs. James L. Autry, her husband James Lockhart Autry was a descendant of Micajah Autry, a hero of the Battle of the Alamo. Her daughter, Mrs. Edward W. Kelley, made a generous donation to the gymnasium building fund in honor of her late mother, an ardent supporter of Rice; the Owls have appeared in four NCAA Tournaments. Their combined record is 2–5; the Owls have appeared in five National Invitation Tournaments. Their combined record is 1–6.
The Owls have appeared in one CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament. Their record is 2–1; the Owls have appeared in one College Basketball Invitational. Their record is 1–1. Morris Almond Ken Austin Bill Closs Brock Gillespie Mike Harris Bill Henry Bob Kinney Ricky Pierce Brent Scott Mike Wilks Rice University has retired six jerseys. Official website
Charlotte 49ers men's basketball
The Charlotte 49ers men's basketball team represents the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in NCAA Division I basketball. The 49ers are charter members of Conference USA. Charlotte returned to C-USA in 2013 after leaving in 2005 to join the Atlantic 10 Conference; the 49ers have played in the Sun Belt Conference and were a member of the Metro Conference, which merged with the Great Midwest Conference to form Conference USA. The basketball team has spent the better part of its history in the shadow of the state's four Atlantic Coast Conference teams. However, the 49ers have carved out a niche of their own, making 11 appearances in the NCAA Tournament. In their first appearance, in 1977, they advanced all the way to the Final Four—at the time, the deepest run for a first-time tournament participant, they have earned regular and post-season championships in three different conferences. The 49ers' current head coach is Ron Sanchez, who took over on March 20, 2018 after interim head coach Houston Fancher was let go.
The 49ers play their home games in Dale F. Halton Arena, an on-campus facility that seats 9,105. UNC Charlotte first fielded an intercollegiate basketball program in 1965. Chancellor Bonnie Cone appointed Harvey Murphy a physical education instructor and head of the physical education program at the university, as the first head coach in school history. Murphy coached the 49ers in the NAIA as a member of the Dixie Conference from 1965 through 1970, winning the conference in 1969 and 1970. Bill Foster was hired to succeed Harvey Murphy after the 1969–1970 season as the 49ers moved from the NAIA to Division I as an independent. Foster notched two twenty win seasons in 1973–1974 and 1974–1975 before moving on to coach at Clemson. Foster's lasting legacy on the program was bringing in two of the most notable players on the team which would advance to the 1977 Final Four: Cedric Maxwell and Melvin Watkins. After Bill Foster left for Clemson, Lee Rose was hired as the head coach in 1975. Rose inherited a team coming off of two twenty win seasons and led them to the NIT championship game in his first year.
The following season the 49ers became a charter member of the Sun Belt Conference. In their first year in the Sun Belt, the 49ers tallied what is still the best season in school history, they swept the regular season and tournament titles, earning the program's first NCAA Tournament berth. The ensuing NCAA tournament run is still one of the most successful for a first-time participant. After beating Central Michigan in the first round 91–86, the 49ers dispatched Syracuse 81–59 to advance to the Elite Eight; the 49ers took out favored Michigan by a score of 75–68 to advance to the program's first and only Final Four—the first time that a first-time participant had advanced that far. Charlotte would fall to eventual champions Marquette in the national semifinals 51–49, their final record was 28–5, still a school record for wins in a season. Despite the loss of the two leaders of the Final Four team from the previous season, Lee Rose guided the 49ers to a fifth consecutive twenty win season in 1977–1978.
Rose would leave to coach at Purdue for the 1978–1979 season. Rose's.800 winning percentage at Charlotte remains the highest in school history. Following Rose's departure, Mike Pratt, an assistant under Rose at Charlotte, was named the head coach for the 1978–1979 season. In his first and only head coaching job, Pratt could not maintain the success of the program under Rose, compiling a 56–52 record over four seasons with no postseason appearances; the best year under Pratt was the 1978–1979 season in which the 49ers earned a 16–11 record and a second place Sun Belt finish. Pratt was dismissed following the 1981–1982 season. Following Pratt's dismissal, the 49ers hired Hal Wissel as head basketball coach. Wissel was a successful coach at many levels, but his tenure would be the least successful in the Charlotte's history at the Division 1 level. After three seasons and a 22–62 record, Wissel was dismissed following the 1984–1985 season. Following Wissel's dismissal, Jeff Mullins was hired as both head basketball coach and athletic director.
Mullins guided the 49ers through multiple conference changes and kicked off the most successful, sustained run in school history. Mullins inherited a last place Sun Belt team and things didn't improve in his first season with an 8–20 record. However, in just his second year he guided the 49ers back above.500 for the first time in five seasons, leading them to an 18–14 record in 1986–1987. Led by Sun Belt Player of the Year Byron Dinkins, Mullins coached the 49ers to the Sun Belt regular season and post-season championships and the program's first NCAA Tournament berth since their Final Four run. Seeded 13th, the 49ers lost to 4th seed BYU in the first round of the Southeast Regional by a score of 98–92; the following season the 49ers earned an NIT berth. In their final two seasons in the Sun Belt, Mullins led the 49ers to a 30–28 record with no postseason appearances. Prior to the 1992–1993 season the 49ers moved to the Metro Conference. In their four seasons in the Metro Conference, the 49ers never finished lower than 4th in the standings, won one regular season conference title, one post-season conference title.
The success was rewarded with two NCAA Tournament berths, in 1992 and 1995, losing in the first round both times. After the 1994–1995 season, the 49ers joined Conference USA. In what would be Mullins' last season, Charlotte went 14–15 in 1995–1996, finishing tied for 6th in the league. Mullins retired following that season as the all-time winningest coach in school history with 182 wins and had more postseason appearances than all previous coaches combined. Former on-the-court star and longtime ass