2001 Sun Belt Conference Football Season
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2001 Sun Belt Conference Football Season
2001 Sun Belt Conference football season
SunBeltConference 100.png
LeagueNCAA Division I FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision)
Sportfootball
DurationAugust 23, 2001 - December 1, 2001
Number of teams7
2002 NFL Draft
Top draft pickKendall Newson (Middle Tennessee)
Picked byJacksonville Jaguars, 222nd overall
Regular season
Season championsMiddle Tennessee & North Texas
Runners-upNew Mexico State
Season MVPWes Counts
Top scorerDwone Hicks (144 points)
Football seasons
2002 ->
2001 Sun Belt Conference football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
Middle Tennessee +   5 1         8 3  
North Texas +   5 1         5 7  
New Mexico State   4 2         5 7  
Louisiana-Lafayette   2 4         3 8  
Arkansas State   2 4         2 9  
Louisiana-Monroe   2 4         2 9  
Idaho   1 5         1 10  
  • + – Conference co-champions

The 2001 Sun Belt Conference football season was the inaugural college football season for the Sun Belt Conference. During the 2001 season, seven schools competed in Sun Belt football: Arkansas State, Idaho, Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe, Middle Tennessee, New Mexico State and North Texas.[1]

The conference title was won by Middle Tennessee and North Texas.

Coaches

Note: Stats shown are before the beginning of the season

Team Head Coach Years at School Overall Record Record at School Sun Belt Record
Arkansas State Joe Hollis 4 15-39-1 11-34 0-0
Idaho Tom Cable 1 5-6 5-6 0-0
Louisiana-Lafayette Jerry Baldwin 2 3-19 3-19 0-0
Louisiana-Monroe Bobby Keasler 2 84-50-2 6-16 0-0
Middle Tennessee Andy McCollum 2 9-13 9-13 0-0
New Mexico State Tony Samuel 4 14-30 14-30 0-0
North Texas Darrell Dickey 3 8-25 8-25 0-0

Sun Belt vs. BCS AQ Conference matchups

Date Visitor Home Conference Score Notes
August 30 Idaho Washington State Pac-10 L 7-36
August 30 Middle Tennessee Vanderbilt SEC W 37-28
September 1 Arkansas State Georgia SEC L 17-45
September 1 New Mexico State Texas Big 12 L 7-41
September 8 Arkansas State Baylor Big 12 L 3-24
September 8 Idaho Arizona Pac-10 L 29-36
September 8 Louisiana-Monroe Florida SEC L 6-55
September 8 Oregon State New Mexico State Pac-10 L 22-27
September 8 Louisiana-Lafayette Minnesota Big Ten L 14-44
September 8 North Texas Oklahoma Big 12 L 10-37
September 22 Idaho Washington Pac-10 L 3-53
September 22 New Mexico State Kansas State Big 12 L 0-64
September 22 Texas Tech North Texas Big 12 L 14-42 Neutral Site Game at Texas Stadium
October 20 Ole Miss Arkansas State SEC L 17-35
October 6 Louisiana-Lafayette Arizona State Pac-10 L 27-63
October 20 Middle Tennessee Ole Miss SEC L 17-45
November 10 Middle Tennessee LSU SEC L 14-30

Regular season

Index to colors and formatting
Sun Belt member won
Sun Belt member lost
Sun Belt teams in bold

Start times for non-conference games are local for the Sun Belt team; for conference games, starting times are local for the home team. The following list are the teams in their respective time zones: Arkansas State, Louisiana-Monroe, Louisiana-Lafayette, Middle Tennessee, North Texas are located in the Central Time Zone; New Mexico State is in the Mountain Time Zone and Idaho is in the Pacific Time Zone.

Rankings reflect that of the USA Today Coaches poll for that week until week eight when the BCS poll will be used.

Week 1

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
August 23 New Mexico State Louisville Papa John's Cardinal Stadium o Louisville, Kentucky L 24-45 38,129
  • Open Week: Arkansas State, Idaho, Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe, Middle Tennessee, North Texas

Week 2

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
August 30 Idaho Washington State Martin Stadium o Pullman, Washington L 7-36 31,097
August 30 Middle Tennessee Vanderbilt Vanderbilt Stadium o Nashville, Tennessee W 37-28 39,885
September 1 Arkansas State Georgia Sanford Stadium o Athens, Georgia L 17-45 86,520
September 1 Nicholls State Louisiana-Lafayette Cajun Field o Lafayette, Louisiana W 20-0
September 1 Sam Houston State Louisiana-Monroe Malone Stadium o Monroe, Louisiana L 9-20
September 1 New Mexico State #5 Texas Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium o Austin, Texas L 7-41 82,856
September 1 TCU North Texas Fouts Field o Denton, Texas L 5-19 22,837

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Dwone Hicks Middle Tennessee Jykine Bradley Middle Tennessee Jonathan Knott Louisiana-Lafayette

Week 3

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
September 8 Arkansas State Baylor Floyd Casey Stadium o Waco, Texas L 3-24 28,953
September 8 Idaho Arizona Arizona Stadium o Tucson, Arizona L 29-36 44,250
September 8 Louisiana-Lafayette Minnesota H. H. H. Metrodome o Minneapolis W 14-44 35,089
September 8 Louisiana-Monroe #2 Florida Ben Hill Griffin Stadium o Gainesville, Florida L 6-55 85,011
September 8 Troy Middle Tennessee Johnny "Red" Floyd Stadium o Murfreesboro, Tennessee W 54-17
September 8 #22 Oregon State New Mexico State Aggie Memorial Stadium o Las Cruces, New Mexico L 22-27 27,238
September 8 North Texas #3 Oklahoma Oklahoma Memorial Stadium o Norman, Oklahoma L 10-37 74,930

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
John Welsh Idaho Siddeeq Shabazz New Mexico State James Hickenbotham Arkansas State

Week 4

All games scheduled for Week 4 were postponed or canceled as a result of the September 11 attacks.

Week 5

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
September 22 Jacksonville State Arkansas State Indian Stadium o Jonesboro, Arkansas L 28-31
September 22 Idaho #13 Washington Huskie Stadium o Seattle, WA L 3-53 70,145
September 22 Southern Miss Louisiana-Lafayette Cajun Field o Lafayette, Louisiana L 10-35 14,132
September 22 Middle Tennessee Louisiana-Monroe Malone Stadium o Monroe, Louisiana MTSU 38-20
September 22 New Mexico State #12 Kansas State KSU Stadium o Manhattan, Kansas L 0-64 49,229
September 22 Texas Tech North Texas Texas Stadium o Irving, Texas L 14-42 20,852

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Wes Counts Middle Tennessee Scotty Brown Middle Tennessee Robert Billings Middle Tennessee

Week 6

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
September 29 Idaho Boise State Martin Stadium o Pullman, Washington L 13-45 20,359
September 22 Middle Tennessee Louisiana-Lafayette Cajun Field o Lafayette, Louisiana MSTU 26-9
September 22 New Mexico State Louisiana-Monroe Malone Stadium o Monroe, Louisiana NMSU 31-0
September 22 North Texas South Florida Raymond James Stadium o Tampa, Florida L 10-28 25,156
  • Open Week: Arkansas State

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Reshard Lee Middle Tennessee Scotty Brown (2) Middle Tennessee Robert Billings (2) Middle Tennessee

Week 7

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
October 6 Arkansas State Ole Miss Vaught-Hemingway Stadium o Oxford, Mississippi L 17-35
October 6 Idaho Middle Tennessee Johnny "Red" Floyd Stadium o Murfreesboro, Tennessee MTSU 70-58
October 6 Louisiana-Lafayette Arizona State Sun Devil Stadium o Tempe, Arizona L 27-63 38,118
October 6 North Texas Louisiana-Monroe Malone Stadium o Monroe, Louisiana ULM 19-17
October 6 New Mexico State Tulsa Skelly Stadium o Tulsa, Oklahoma W 24-7 17,211

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Wes Counts (2) Middle Tennessee Tony Lukins New Mexico State Tony Lukins New Mexico State

Week 8

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
October 13 Arkansas State Louisiana-Lafayette Cajun Field o Lafayette, Louisiana ASU 26-20
October 13 Idaho New Mexico State Aggie Memorial Stadium o Las Cruces, New Mexico NMSU 46-39
October 13 Middle Tennessee North Texas Fouts Field o Denton, Texas UNT 24-21
  • Open Week: Louisiana-Monroe

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Kevin Galbreath North Texas Chris Jones Arkansas State Josh Hill North Texas

Week 9

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
October 20 Arkansas State North Texas Fouts Field o Denton, Texas UNT 45-0
October 20 Louisiana-Lafayette Idaho Martin Stadium o Pullman, Washington ULL 54-37
October 20 Louisiana-Monroe UCF Florida Citrus Bowl o Orlando, Florida L 6-38 23,001
October 20 Middle Tennessee Ole Miss Vaught-Hemingway Stadium o Oxford, Mississippi L 17-45
  • Open Week: New Mexico State

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Jon Van Cleave Louisiana-Lafayette Brad Kassell North Texas Josh Hill (2) North Texas

Week 10

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
October 27 Idaho Arkansas State Indian Stadium o Jonesboro, Arkansas ASU 34-31
October 27 Louisiana-Monroe Louisiana-Lafayette Cajun Field o Lafayette, Louisiana ULL 17-12
October 27 New Mexico State Middle Tennessee Johnny "Red" Floyd Stadium o Murfreesboro, Tennessee MTSU 39-35
  • Open Week: North Texas

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Kendall Newson Middle Tennessee Les Echols Arkansas State Jason Hickenbotham Arkansas State

Week 11

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
November 3 Louisiana-Monroe Idaho Kibbie Dome o Moscow, Idaho UI 42-38
November 3 Arkansas State Middle Tennessee Johnny "Red" Floyd Stadium o Murfreesboro, Tennessee MTSU 54-6
November 3 North Texas New Mexico State Aggie Memorial Stadium o Las Cruces, New Mexico UNT 22-20
  • Open Week: Louisiana-Lafayette

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
John Welsh (2) Idaho Brad Kassell (2) North Texas Jason Ball (3) North Texas

Week 12

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
November 10 Arkansas State New Mexico State Aggie Memorial Stadium o Las Cruces, New Mexico NMSU 28-17
November 10 Troy State Louisiana-Monroe Malone Stadium o Monroe, Louisiana L 44-12
November 10 Louisiana-Lafayette North Texas Fouts Field o Denton, Texas UNT 42-17
November 10 Middle Tennessee LSU Tiger Stadium o Baton Rouge, Louisiana L 30-14 88,249
  • Open Week: Idaho

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Scott Hall North Texas Tony Lukins (2) New Mexico State Ty Jackson North Texas

Week 13

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
November 17 Louisiana-Monroe Arkansas State Indian Stadium o Jonesboro, Arkansas ULM 16-7
November 17 North Texas Idaho Kibbie Dome o Moscow, Idaho UNT 50-27
November 17 New Mexico State Louisiana-Lafayette Cajun Field o Lafayette, Louisiana NMSU 49-46
November 17 Connecticut Middle Tennessee Johnny "Red" Floyd Stadium o Murfreesboro, Tennessee W 38-14 13,017

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Patrick Cobbs North Texas Scotty Brown (3) Middle Tennessee Dario Aguiniga New Mexico State

Week 14

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
November 22 Nicholls State Arkansas State Indian Stadium o Jonesboro, Arkansas L 28-22
November 24 Idaho Montana Washington-Grizzly Stadium o Missoula, Montana L 33-27 2OT 18,056
November 24 Louisiana-Lafayette UCF Citrus Bowl o Orlando, Florida L 31-0 12,264
November 24 New Mexico State New Mexico University Stadium o Albuquerque, New Mexico L 53-0

Week 15

Date Visiting team Home team Site Result Attendance
December 1 Louisiana-Monroe Cincinnati Nippert Stadium o Cincinnati L 42-10 15,047
December 1 North Texas Troy State Veterans Memorial Stadium o Troy, Alabama L 18-16
  • Open Week: Arkansas State, Idaho, Louisiana-Lafayette, Middle Tennessee, New Mexico State

Players of the Week

Offensive Defensive Special teams
Player Team Player Team Player Team
Anthony Tenner Idaho Cody Spencer North Texas No canditates

Bowl games

In 2001, the Sun Belt Conference placed one team in bowl games through their tie-ins: 5-6 North Texas, who became the first team to play in a bowl game with a losing record.[2] Middle Tennessee was also bowl-eligible but did not receive a bowl invitation.

Note: All times are local

Bowl Date SBC team (Record) Opponent (Record) Site TV Result Attendance
New Orleans Bowl December 18 North Texas (5-6) Colorado State (6-5) Louisiana Superdome o New Orleans ESPN2 L 45-20 27,004

Players of the Year

2001 Sun Belt Player of the Year awards[3]

Award Player School
Player of the Year Wes Counts Middle Tennessee
Offensive Player of the Year Dwone Hicks Middle Tennessee
Defensive Player of the Year Brad Kassell North Texas
Freshman of the Year Ja'Mel Branch North Texas
Newcomer of the Year Kevin Galbreath North Texas
Coach of the Year Darrell Dickey North Texas

All-Conference Players

Coaches All-Conference Selections[3]

References

  1. ^ "2014 Sun Belt Football Media Guide". Sun Belt Conference. Retrieved 2014.
  2. ^ Steve Peloquin (August 21, 2013). "N.O. Bowl, Sun Belt Conference Agree To Extension". www.espn1420.com. Retrieved 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Counts Tabbed Player of Year Hicks; Offensive Choice". www.goblueraiders.com. Middle Tennessee Media Relations. December 4, 2001. Archived from the original on January 5, 2017. Retrieved 2017.

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