Otterbein University Men, 2002 NCAA Division III National Champions
Otterbein put an appropriate ending to a superb 2001-2002 basketball season by winning the NCAA Division III men’s national championship. The Cardinals, who won both the Ohio Athletic Conference regular season and tournament titles, rode the strong performances of seniors Jeff Gibbs and Kevin Shay to win five tournament games. Otterbein claimed the school’s first national title by defeating Carthage (Wisconsin), 70-66, in a semifinal and Elizabethtown (Pennsylvania), 102-83, in the championship game in Salem, Virginia. Gibbs, the NABC Division III Player of the Year, collected his 30th double-double of the season with 25 points and 25 rebounds in the final. Senior shooting guard Kevin Shaw scored 29 points. Gibbs averaged 27 points and 16.6 rebounds in the five games and was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. It was Coach Dick Reynolds’ third trip to the Final Four.