As a sophomore at Syracuse University (1954), Brown was the second-leading rusher on the team. As a junior, he rushed for 666 yards (5.2 per carry). In his senior year in 1956, Brown was a consensus first-team All-American. He finished fifth in the Heisman Trophy voting and set school records for highest season rush average (6.2) and most rushing touchdowns in a single game (6). He ran for 986 yards—third-most in the country despite Syracuse playing only eight games—and scored 14 touchdowns. In the regular-season finale, a 61–7 rout of Colgate, he rushed for 197 yards, scored six touchdowns, and kicked seven extra points for a school-record 43 points. Then in the Cotton Bowl, he rushed for 132 yards, scored three touchdowns, and kicked three extra points, but a blocked extra point after Syracuse’s third touchdown was the difference as TCU won 28–27.
Perhaps more impressive was his success as a multisport athlete. In addition to his football accomplishments, he excelled in basketball, track, and especially lacrosse. As a sophomore, he was the second-leading scorer for the basketball team (15 ppg) and earned a letter on the track team. In 1955, he finished in fifth place in the Nation Championship decathlon. In his junior year, he averaged 11.3 points in basketball and was named a second-team All-American in lacrosse. His senior year, he was named a first-team All-American in lacrosse (43 goals in 10 games to rank second in scoring nationally). He is in the Lacrosse Hall of Fame. The Carrier Dome has an 800 square-foot tapestry depicting Brown in football and lacrosse uniforms with the words “Greatest Player Ever.”
The 2002–03 Syracuse Orangemen basketball team represented Syracuse University in NCAA men’s basketball competition in the 2002–03 Division I season. The head coach was Jim Boeheim, serving for his 27th year. The team played its home games at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, New York. The team finished with a 30–5 (13–3) record while capturing its first modern-era NCAA Championship.
The team had just one senior, guard Kueth Duany. He was joined in the starting lineup by forwards Hakim Warrick (sophomore), Carmelo Anthony (freshman), center Craig Forth (sophomore), and guard Gerry McNamara (freshman). Other key contributors included guards Josh Pace (sophomore) and Billy Edelin (freshman), and center Jeremy McNeil (junior).
In 1931, a Native American warrior known as Nathan March aka: “Saltine Warrior” became the athletic mascot. The name derived from an article describing an archaeological dig on campus allegedly uncovering the artifacts of a Native American warrior. The warrior was called the “Saltine Warrior” because of the abundant salt deposits in the Syracuse, New York area. The article was later revealed to be a hoax, but the mascot remained for next four decades.
In the mid-1950s, the father of a Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity brother owned a cheerleading camp. He made a Saltine Warrior costume for his son to wear at Syracuse football games. Thus began a nearly forty-year tradition of Lambda Chi brothers serving as the university’s mascot.
In 1978, the Saltine Warrior was banned by the university as part of the national movement to eliminate Native American motifs, becoming one of the first colleges to do so. The mascot briefly morphed into a Roman warrior, but was eventually replaced unofficially in 1982 by a giant, cartoon-style Orange.
College Sports Established
Syracuse, New York
1973 – Present / NCAA Division 1
1921 – 1973 / University Division of the NCAA
1907 – 1921 / Athletic Association of the United States
2013 – Present / ACC
1979 – 2013 / Big East Conference
1889 – 1978 / Independent
Orange – Syracuse used to be known as the Orangemen prior to a Nike-led change in 2004. Syracuse officials made the switch from Orangemen to Orange in 2004 after two years of consulting with Nike regarding the school’s desire to re-brand its athletic teams.
Syracuse went Orange in 1890, becoming the first university to adopt only one official color. In the years prior, the school colors were a light pink and pea green, then light pink and blue. After a winning athletics meet with Hamilton College, Syracuse students wanted colors as bold as they were. They considered orange, with blue as a secondary color, but orange alone was not claimed by any other school, and thus, was Syracuse’s for the taking. It was adopted unanimously by a student committee, faculty, the Alumni Association, and Trustees, and remains Syracuse University’s official color to this day. Today, you’ll see students sporting orange year-round, but especially on game days when the whole Syracuse and Central New York community joins and displays their Orange pride.
Men’s Basketball 1
2003, 1926, 1918
Women’s Basketball 0