BETHLEHEM, Pa. - The Lehigh men’s basketball team enjoyed a record-breaking season, capped off by its historic NCAA Tournament win over Duke, which was recently nominated for the ESPY “Best Upset.” Take a look back at the 2011-12 campaign with this season review.
Check out this compilation of team and individual records and accomplishments from a year that will go down in the record books.
• Shattered a school record with 27 wins (previous high was 22 in 2009-10).
• Tied a school record with 11 Patriot League victories, finishing 11-3 in league play.
• Went 12-1 at home.
• Won second Patriot League Championship in the last three years and third title overall.
• Advanced to fifth NCAA Tournament in school history.
• Became the first team to defeat Bucknell at Sojka Pavilion twice in the same season.
• In the regular season, the Mountain Hawks defeated Bucknell 56-53, marking their first win at Bucknell since 2008. It also snapped Bison streaks of: 20 straight wins over Patriot League foes, 17 in a row during league play, 15 straight league wins at home and 12 consecutive victories overall.
• Broke a seven-year run of #1 overall seeds winning the Patriot League Tournament. Became the first #2 seed to win since 2004-05 when second-seeded Bucknell won at top seed Holy Cross.
*Lehigh’s 27 wins tied for the most-ever overall victories in the Patriot League; the 2005-06 Bucknell Bison finished 27-5.
• Defeated Duke, 75-70, in the NCAA Second Round, earning Lehigh’s first-ever NCAA Tournament win.
• Became only the sixth-ever 15 seed to defeat a 2 seed. Was the only 15 seed to lead its ensuing game at the half, leading Xavier 37-33 after 20 minutes of play.
• Lehigh picked up the third-ever NCAA Tournament win by a Patriot League squad, becoming only the second team to win in the tournament (Bucknell had the other two in 2005 and 2006).
• Led the Patriot League in scoring average for a third straight season (75.7 points per game).
• Eclipsed 70 points in 30 of 35 games, including the first 19 (a school record for most consecutive 70+ point games). Lehigh also eclipsed 80 nine times and 90 on three occasions.
• The Mountain Hawks scored 81 points at eventual #1 NCAA Tournament seed Michigan State, tied for the highest scoring outburst against a stout Spartans’ defense which led the Big Ten in field goal percentage defense. Lehigh’s 82 points in the Patriot League Championship Game were also the most scored against Bucknell (the league’s top-ranked defense).
• Lehigh’s 6-2 record marked its best start after eight games since 1980-81 when it was 7-1. Lehigh also set a school record for most nonleague wins (12), while the Mountain Hawks posted their best-ever record through 16 games in program history (12-4).
• 21 of Lehigh’s 27 wins came by double digits.
• The Mountain Hawks didn’t lose a game by double figures until the NCAA Tournament against Xavier. Even then, Lehigh stood tied with 10:33 to play and didn’t fall behind by double digits until 14 seconds remaining.
• Mountain Hawks went a perfect 5-0 against the NEC.
• Lehigh defeated Fordham in December, giving the Mountain Hawks their first-ever win over an Atlantic 10 foe.
• The Mountain Hawks shot 76.8 percent from the free throw line, good for fifth in the nation.
• Lehigh posted a nine-game winning streak bridging the end of the regular season through the NCAA Tournament, which tied for the third-longest win streak in school history.
• Lehigh appeared on national TV 11 times - ESPNU, ESPN2, CBS (2) and CBS Sports Network (7).
• The Mountain Hawks were honored with an Academic Progress Rate Public Recognition Award, given each year to teams scoring in the top 10 percent in their respective sport with their APR.
• C.J. McCollum was named Patriot League Player of the Year for the second time in his career.
• McCollum was also named ECAC Player of the Year, marking his second major ECAC award after winning Rookie of the Year as a freshman. McCollum beat out players from the ACC, Big East and Atlantic 10 for the award.
• McCollum was also named an Associated Press Honorable Mention All-American for the second time.
• McCollum was a National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) First Team All-District selection for a third straight year.
• McCollum garnered Lute Olson All-America honors and was named a candidate for the prestigious Lou Henson Award given to the top mid-major player in the nation.
• McCollum skyrocketed up the record books; he’ll enter his senior season second in Lehigh history and third in Patriot League history with 2,074 career points.
• Gabe Knutson eclipsed 1,000 career points against Colgate while McCollum eclipsed 2,000 in the Patriot League Semifinals vs. American. Knutson and McCollum also eclipsed 500 career rebounds this season.
• Knutson was named an Academic All-Patriot League honoree for the second straight season.
• Six were named to the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll for posting spring semester GPAs over 3.20: John Adams (3.46), Stefan Cvrkalj (3.79), Anthony D’Orazio (3.85), Jordan Hamilton (3.47), C.J. McCollum (3.60) and Corey Schaefer (3.30).
Patriot League Preseason Player of the Year
Lou Henson Preseason All-American
Bob Cousy Award Candidate
Lou Henson Award Candidate
Patriot League Player of the Week
C.J. McCollum - 12/12, 1/3, 1/16, 1/30, 2/13, 2/20
ECAC Player of the Week
C.J. McCollum - 1/17, 2/14
Patriot League Honorable Mention
Holden Greiner - 12/27
C.J. McCollum - 11/14, 11/21, 12/5, 1/9, 1/23, 2/6
College Sports Madness Patriot League Player of the Week
Gabe Knutson - 12/5
C.J. McCollum - 1/2, 1/16, 1/30
CollegeHoops.net Mid-Major Player of Week
C.J. McCollum - 1/2
Patriot League Player of the Year
All-Patriot League Team
C.J. McCollum (First), Gabe Knutson (Second)
ECAC Player of the Year
AP Honorable Mention All-American
Lute Olson All-American
NABC First Team All-District
Academic All-Patriot League Team
Patriot League Academic Honor Roll
John Adams, Stefan Cvrkalj, Anthony D’Orazio, Jordan Hamilton, C.J. McCollum, Corey Schaefer