Dec. 19, 2013
The Southern Illinois University athletic department announced its All-Century Men's Basketball Team Thursday, and current Tennessee assistant coach Kent Williams was among the 25 players named to the squad.
Williams is in his third season on staff with the Volunteers.
"I'm honored to have been selected and to be mentioned amongst so many Saluki greats," Williams said Thursday. "Seeing the names on the list reminds everyone of the rich tradition and success that SIU has had over the years. Honoring these 25 players and four coaches is a great way to celebrate SIU's 100th year."
A native of Mt. Vernon, Ill., Williams graduated from SIU in 2003 after an outstanding four-year playing career under head coach Bruce Weber (now the head coach at Kansas State). Williams' 2,012 points at SIU from 2000-03 make him the Salukis' second-leading all-time scorer, and he finished his career ranked 13th on the Missouri Valley Conference all-time scoring chart.
He earned first-team All-MVC honors in each of his last two seasons at SIU after collecting second-team honors as a sophomore. He was the MVC Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2002 and 2003 and the MVC Freshman of the Year and Newcomer of the Year in 2000. Williams also was one of 50 players named to the MVC All-Centennial team, which was announced in 2007.
He is the only player in SIU history to lead the team in scoring four straight years, helping his team to the NCAA Tournament in 2002 and 2003, including a run to the 2002 NCAA Sweet Sixteen.
Following his graduation from SIU, Williams spent one season playing in the NBA D-League, leading the league in 3-pointers made and 3-point percentage.
The SIU All-Century Team, selected in conjunction with the Southern Illinoisan and sponsored by the SIU Credit Union, was selected via online fan voting. In addition to featuring 25 players, four coaches also were included. The team spans 100 years of Saluki basketball (1914-2013).
Honorees will be recognized at a dinner Feb. 7 in Carbondale, Ill., and will be introduced during halftime of SIU's Feb. 8 home game versus Missouri State. Tennessee hosts South Carolina that day.
In addition to Wednesday's All-Century Team inclusion, Williams also has been enshrined in three different halls of fame: Mt. Vernon Township High School Sports Hall of Fame (2005); Illinois Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame (2006); Southern Illinois University Department of Athletics Hall of Fame (2010).
To view the complete SIU All-Century Team, visit http://1tn.co/18BKqCf.