March 29, 2002
ATLANTA — Hometown favorite Tony Akins of Georgia Tech outshot high-profile participants Dan Dickau of Gonzaga and Steve Logan of Cincinnati on Thursday night to win the long-distance portion of the Slam Dunk and Three-Point Championships.
Jannero Pargo of Arkansas missed his final two shots to preserve Akins’ 17-16 victory in the men’s final. Akins then beat Felicia Ragland of Oregon State, the women’s winner, 20-13 in the Battle of the Sexes Championship.
Brandon Dean of Arkansas and Rolan Roberts of Southern Illinois shared the dunk title.
“It was tiring but fun,” said Akins, second on Georgia Tech’s career 3-point list. “The second or third time around, you’re definitely getting tired. … I didn’t expect to win, but you start feeling good at the right moment and you win.”
Logan (11 points) and Dickau (a competition-low seven points) didn’t get past the first round. They were late arrivals from an award ceremony and barely had time to warm up.
“I was shut out all night,” Logan said. “I didn’t pull down any awards at the other thing, either. A complete shutout.”
Fans felt shut out in the dunk competition, booing when they learned there would be no tiebreaker for Dean and Roberts.
Dean was the early leader, playing to the crowd by pretending to pull a hamstring on the way in for his first dunk. But he ducked behind an advertising end board and pulled off his warmup jersey to reveal a Superman T-shirt. Then he brought the crowd to its feet with a two-handed 360-degree slam.
In the final round, Dean leaped over a ball cart for a one-handed jam.
“That’s the most important thing, to get the crowd into you,” Dean said. “I was just trying to do something different. Everybody’s seen all the same old dunks.”
Roberts came out of nowhere after early nonchalant efforts were just enough to get him into the final. But once there, he went all out. On his final dunk, he leaped over the 5-foot-11 Akins and caught Akins’ pass off the backboard on his way up to a rattling two-handed jam.