April 5, 2002
Notre Dame, Ind. - Chris Thomas (Indianapolis, Ind.) earned his second freshman-of-the-year accolade as the Notre Dame point guard was named the Freshman of the Year by Basketball News. Senior captain Ryan Humphrey (Tulsa, Okla.) also earned All-America recognition from the publication as a second-team selection.
Thomas, the 2002 BIG EAST Rookie of the Year, also picked up freshman-of-the-honors from Basketball Times. In addition, he was named to The Sporting News All-Freshman Team and was a a third-team all-BIG EAST selection as the team's second-leading scorer this season as he averaged 15.6 points per game. He set Notre Dame single-season marks for assists (252), steals (72) and steals per game (2.18). He also tied the single-season assist average record (7.64), sharing that honor with Jackie Meehan. Thomas recorded the first triple double in Notre Dame basketball history when he scored 24 points, dished off 11 assists and made 11 steals in his first collegiate outing on Nov. 16, 2001 against New Hampshire. He scored in double figures in 24 games during the season and registered seven double doubles. The six-time BIG EAST rookie-of-the-week honoree also scored 20-plus points in nine games and led the Irish in scoring on nine occasions.
Humphrey, a first-team all-BIG EAST honoree, led Notre Dame in scoring and rebounding in 2001-02 as he averaged 18.9 points and 10.9 rebounds. He scored in double figures in 30 of the 31 games he played and netted 20-plus points on 13 occasions. The 2002 Notre Dame National Monogram Club MVP registered 22 double-doubles with 11 of those coming in the final 11 games of the season. He set the Notre Dame single-season blocked shots mark with 87 and his two-year career average of 2.81 blocked shots per game established a new Irish career record. He played in 60 career games and finished with 997 points (16.6) and 597 rebounds (9.95).