Syracuse Basketball: Carmelo Anthony top 15 performances in title season

Syracuse basketball, Carmelo Anthony (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)
Syracuse basketball, Carmelo Anthony (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images) /

Syracuse basketball legend Carmelo Anthony retired from the NBA a few days ago, after a stellar 19-year career that saw him finish in the top 10 on the league’s all-time scoring list. He’s also perhaps the most decorated player in the history of USA Basketball.

But this week’s decision by the 6-foot-8 forward, who is a surefire NBA Hall of Famer, got me all nostalgic about his one historic season on the Hill.

Unranked in the preseason top-25 polls ahead of the 2002-03 campaign, the Orange would fall in its season opener but not all that often afterward. Led by freshman sensation Carmelo Anthony, the ‘Cuse would go 30–5 overall and claim the program’s first and only NCAA championship.

In his only term in Central New York, Melo averaged 22.2 points, 10 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.6 steals per game. He was the national freshman of the year, a second-team All-American and the most outstanding player of the 2003 Final Four.

A reasonable case can be made that Anthony’s 2002-03 season is the best ever for a one-and-done collegiate player. Since he wore the number 15 for the Orange, I’m listing here the top 15 performances by Carmelo Anthony for the ‘Cuse, in chronological order.

Here are some of the best outings by Carmelo Anthony in a Syracuse basketball uniform.

Nov. 14, 2002
SU lost to Memphis, 70-63, in New York City
Anthony, in his college debut, had 27 points, 11 rebounds, 1 assist and 1 steal

Dec. 3, 2002
SU defeated Colgate, 98–68, at home
Anthony had 27 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 block and 4 steals

Feb. 3, 2003
SU defeated Georgetown, 88–80, at home
Anthony had 22 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists and 1 block

Feb. 8, 2003
SU defeated West Virginia, 94–80, on the road
Anthony had 29 points, 12 rebounds, 1 assist and 1 block

Feb. 10, 2003
SU lost to UConn, 75-61, on the road
Anthony had 29 points, 11 rebounds, 3 blocks and 3 steals

Feb. 15, 2003
SU defeated Notre Dame, 82–80, at home
Anthony had 26 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals

Feb. 18, 2003
SU defeated St. John’s, 66–60, at home
Anthony had 21 points, 13 rebounds, 2 blocks and 1 steal

Feb. 23, 2003
SU defeated Michigan State, 76–75, on the road
Anthony had 25 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists and 1 block

Feb. 26, 2003
SU defeated West Virginia, 89–51, at home
Anthony had 24 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists and 3 blocks

March 1, 2003
SU defeated Georgetown, 93–84 in overtime, on the road
Anthony had 30 points, 15 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 blocks and 1 steal

March 9, 2003
SU defeated Rutgers, 83–74, at home
Anthony had 30 points, 14 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 steals

March 14, 2003
SU lost to Connecticut, 80-67, in the Big East Tournament Semifinals in New York City
Anthony had 29 points, 15 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 block and 1 steal

March 30, 2003
SU defeated Oklahoma, 63-47, in the NCAA Tournament’s Elite Eight in Albany, N.Y.
Anthony had 20 points, 10 rebounds, 1 assist and 2 steals

April 5, 2003
SU defeated Texas, 95-84, in the NCAA Tournament’s Final Four in New Orleans
Anthony had 33 points, 14 rebounds, 1 assist and 3 steals

April 7, 2003
SU defeated Kansas, 81-78, in the NCAA Tournament’s Championship Game in New Orleans
Anthony had 20 points, 10 rebounds, 7 assists and 1 steal

So what do you think? What did I get right, and what did I miss as it pertains to the top all-around performances by Carmelo Anthony in his lone season for Syracuse basketball?

Next. Syracuse Basketball: 4-star Kiyan Anthony details schools in most contact. dark