Former Temple University Men’s Basketball coach Fran Dunphy received a standing ovation from the crowd as he approached the podium to be inducted into the Big 5 Hall of Fame on Monday.
“The relationships that you have with the players is pretty special. That’s the thing I’ll miss the most, not having a team that we don’t have a mission,” Dunphy said. “In all honesty I’m very grateful for my time at UPenn and Temple. What they have given me is way more than I have given back.”
On Monday night, the Big 5 awards banquet took place at The Palestra at Penn to honor the best players of the Big 5 from the 2018-19 season and the 2019 Big 5 Hall of Fame class.
“[The Palestra] grabbed me many years ago. I could never imagine at the tender age that I am that I would be sitting in that seat,” Dunphy said. “There is nothing like Philadelphia basketball. There is nothing like the Big 5.”
Dunphy, former women’s basketball player Kamesha Hairston and former athletic director Bill Bradshaw were all inducted into the Big 5 Hall of Fame. Dunphy spent the entirety of his speech thanking everyone who helped him reach the Hall of Fame, including Temple.
“Bill Bradshaw gave me the opportunity to go to Temple, Dunphy added. “And I set up sail to go somewhere else and see who I was. I am very grateful for that.”
Dunphy was also awarded as the Men’s Basketball Big Five coach of the year. The Owls finished 23-10 and made the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2016.
“I hope the theme is coming out that it is all about the people,” Dunphy said. “It was not about the games. Sure, we wanted to win every single one of them but it was about the people.”
Current and former players from Temple men’s and women’s basketball won numerous Big Five awards.
Former Guard Shizz Alston Jr. won three awards including the award for highest free throw percentage, Big 5 leading scorer and he was named to the First Team All-Big 5.
Junior guard Nate Pierre-Louis was named the Big Five most improved player of the year and named to the Second Team All-Big 5, as well as senior guard Quinton Rose. Junior forward De’Vondre Perry won the scholarly athlete of the year award to round out the awards for the men’s team.
Four different players from the Women’s basketball team won awards on Monday night. Former guard Allyia Butts and junior forward Mia Davis were named to the First Team All-Big 5 team.
Sophomore guard Marissa Mackins won the Big 5 rookie of the year award and Junior guard Emani Mayo won the scholarly athlete of the year award.