|School Name:||Southern Illinois University|
|Head coach:||Chris Lowery|
The Southern Illinois Salukis basketball team represents Southern Illinois University Carbondale in Carbondale, Illinois. The Salukis compete in the Missouri Valley Conference. The Salukis are currently coached by Chris Lowery who led the team to the NCAA tournament in 2004 thru 2007. Lowery was the youngest head coach in the NCAA tournament in 2004 thru 2007. In 2008 the Salukis finished the regular season at 17-14 and advanced to the NIT, where they defeated Oklahoma State University before falling to Arizona State University in the second round.
Prior to joining the NCAA, the Salukis competed in the NAIA men's basketball level. Appearing 5 times, with a combined tournament record of 8 wins and 5 loses. Most notable tournament appearances came in 1945 in which the Salukis finished 4th, and then the following year in the 1946 tournament, the Salukis won the whole thing. The Salukis would not place again in the following 3 tournament appearances in 1947, 1948, 1960.
In 1967, SIU, led by guard Walt Frazier who went on to be named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History, won the National Invitation Tournament. At the time, the tournament was considered much more prestigious than it is today. The Salukis were members of the College Division, the equivalent of Division II, and were therefore ineligible to compete for the NCAA Tournament.
In 2006-2007 year, the Salukis reached their highest position in the AP Coaches Poll and the ESPN/USA Today Poll with a position of #11, before dropping to #14 after losing the MVC to Creighton prior to entering the NCAA tournament.
After achieving success at SIU, former coaches Bruce Weber and Matt Painter accepted head coaching positions at schools in the Big Ten. Weber took over at Illinois in 2003 and Painter - an alumnus of and former basketball player at Purdue University - accepted the Boilermakers' offer to become top assistant and designated successor to Gene Keady in 2004, becoming head coach in March 2006.
In 2009, the Salukis lost long time assistant coach to the head coach ranks. Coach Rodney Watson, following 21 seasons as the backup in Carbondale, accepted the head coaching position at the University of Southern Indiana in Evansville, IN. In his first season with the Screamin Eagles, Watson has led his team to a 23-0 record at the NCAA Div II powerhouse, who he took over despite a one year post-season ban as part of the transgressions of the former coaching staff.
NCAA Tournament Results
|1977||First Round||Arizona||W, 81-77|
|Sweet Sixteen||Wake Forest||L, 86-81|
|1993||#14||First Round||#3 Duke||L, 105-70|
|1994||#11||First Round||#6 Minnesota||L, 74-60|
|1995||#10||First Round||#7 Syracuse||L, 96-92|
|2002||#11||First Round||#6 Texas Tech||W, 76-68|
|Second Round||#3 Georgia||W, 77-75|
|Sweet Sixteen||#2 Connecticut||L, 71-59|
|2003||#11||First Round||#6 Missouri||L, 72-71|
|2004||#9||First Round||#8 Alabama||L, 65-64|
|2005||#7||First Round||#10 St. Mary's||W, 65-56|
|Second Round||#2 Oklahoma State||L, 85-77|
|2006||#11||First Round||#6 West Virginia||L, 64-46|
|2007||#4||First Round||#13 Holy Cross||W, 61-51|
|Second Round||#5 Virginia Tech||W, 63-48|
|Sweet Sixteen||#1 Kansas||L, 61-58|
NCAA Tournament seeding history
<ref>tags exist, but no
<references/>tag was found