Atlantic Sun Conference men's basketball championship history

The Atlantic Sun Conference, also known as the ASUN Conference, holds an annual men’s basketball tournament with the winner getting an automatic bid to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

The conference features nine teams, including Florida Gulf Coast, Jacksonville University, Kennesaw State, Liberty, Lipscomb, NJIT, North Alabama, North Florida and Stetson.

The ASUN Conference tournament begins March 3 and continues on March 5 and 8. The championship will begin March 8. The 2020 championship is the conference’s 41st.

The conference was initially called the Trans America Athletic Conference from 1978 to 2001.

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Here are the past winners of the ASUN Championship.

2019: LIBERTY

Liberty won the 2019 ASun title. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Liberty won the 2019 ASun title. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Liberty defeated Lipscomb, 74-68, in the 2019 championship game. Scottie James was named the tournament’s MVP.

2018: LIPSCOMB

Lipscomb defeated Florida Gulf Coast, 108-96, in the highest-scoring championship game in conference history. Lipscomb’s Garrison Matthews was named the MVP of the tournament.

2017: FLORIDA GULF COAST

Florida Gulf Coast repeated as ASUN champions, defeating North Florida 77-61. Brandon Goodwin was named the MVP.

2016: FLORIDA GULF COAST

Florida Gulf Coast got back to the NCAA Tournament in 2016. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Florida Gulf Coast got back to the NCAA Tournament in 2016. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Florida Gulf Coast won their first title since 2013. They defeated Stetson 80-78 in overtime to advance to the NCAA Tournament. Marc-Eddy Norelia was named MVP.

2015: NORTH FLORIDA

North Florida captured their lone ASUN title in 2015. They defeated USC Update, 63-57. Demarcus Daniels was named MVP.

2014: MERCER

Mercer won their first conference title since 1985. The Bears got revenge on Florida Gulf Coast, 68-60, to win the conference. Langston Hall was named MVP.

2013: FLORIDA GULF COAST

Florida Gulf Coast won their first ASUN title over Mercer in 2013. Brett Comer was named MVP.

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2012: BELMONT

Belmont, led by MVP Kerron Johnson, defeated Florida Gulf Coast, 83-69, to win their fifth ASUN title in seven years.

2011: BELMONT

Belmont had an easy final against North Florida in 2011. The Bruins won the game, 87-46. Mick Hedgepeth was named the MVP.

2010: EAST TENNESSEE STATE

East Tennessee State defeated Mercer, 72-66. Micah Williams was named MVP. It was the second straight ASUN title for the Buccaneers.

2009: EAST TENNESSEE STATE

East Tennessee State defeated Jacksonville, 85-68. Kevin Tiggs was named MVP.

2008: BELMONT

Justin Hare would lead the Bruins to a third straight ASUN tile. Belmont defeated Jacksonville, 79-61. Hare was named MVP for the second straight year.

2007: BELMONT

Belmont won again in 2007. They defeated East Tennessee State, 94-67, to advance to the NCAA Tournament. Justin Hare was the MVP of that tournament.

2006: BELMONT

Belmont won the first of a three-peat in 2006. The Bruins beat Jacksonville, 79-61. Shane Dansby was the MVP.

2005: CENTRAL FLORIDA

In the following season, the Knights defeated Gardner-Webb, 60-55. Gary Johnson was the MVP for Central Florida during that tournament.

2004: CENTRAL FLORIDA

Central Florida won their first of a back-to-back title run in 2004. The Knights defeated Troy State, 60-55. Dexter Lyons won MVP.

2003: TROY STATE

Troy State won their first Atlantic Sun title in 2003. The team defeated Central Florida, 80-59. Ben Fletcher was the MVP.

2002: FLORIDA ATLANTIC

Florida Atlantic won the first ASUN title. It was the first year after the name switch from the Trans American Atlantic Conference to the Atlantic Sun Conference. The Owls defeated Georgia State, 76-75. Thomas Terrell was named MVP.

2001: GEORGIA STATE

Georgia State won their first conference title since 1992. The Panthers defeated Troy State, 79-55, in 2001. Thomas Terrell was named MVP.

2000: SAMFORD

Samford became the latest team to win back-to-back titles in 2000, defeating Central Florida again 81-68. Marc Salyers won the MVP award and became the first player to accomplish the feat.

1999: SAMFORD

Samford won their first conference  title in 1999 over Central Florida, 89-61. Marc Salyers was named MVP.

1998: COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON

Charleston won again in 1998. The team defeated Florida International, 72-63, with Sedric Webber winning the MVP.

1997: COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON

College of Charleston went on a back-to-back run starting in 1997. They defeated Florida International, 83-73. Anthony Johnson was named MVP.

1996: CENTRAL FLORIDA

Central Florida won their second title in three years, defeating Mercer in the title game. The Knights won the game, 86-77. Harry Kennedy was named the MVP.

1995: FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL

Florida International defeated Mercer, 68-57, for their first conference title. James Mazyck was named MVP.

1994: CENTRAL FLORIDA

Central Florida made the NCAA Tournament with a conference title. The Knights defeated Stetson, 70-67. Victor Saxton won the MVP.

1993: NO TOURNAMENT CHAMP

1992: GEORGIA SOUTHERN

Georgia Southern nixed any chance of a Georgia State repeat in 1992. They won 95-82 in that game. Charlton Young was named MVP.

1991: GEORGIA STATE

Georgia State captured its first conference title in 1991. The Panthers got the better of Little Rock, 80-60. Chris Collier was named MVP.

1990: LITTLE ROCK

Little Rock went back-to-back in 1990 – again with a defeat of Centenary. The Trojans won 105-95 in that contest. Derrick Owens was named MVP.

1989: LITTLE ROCK

Little Rock went on a bit of a run starting in 1989. They defeated Centenary again in the conference title game, 100-72. Jeff Cummings was named MVP.

1988: TEXAS-SAN ANTONIO

Texas San-Antonio defeated Georgia Southern, 76-69, to win their first Trans American Athletic Conference title. Frank Hampton was named MVP.

1987: GEORGIA SOUTHERN

Georgia Southern won its second Trans America Athletic Conference title in a low-scoring affair against Stetson, 49-46. Jeff Sanders was named the MVP.

1986: LITTLE ROCK

Having lost in two conference championship games, Little Rock finally won one. The Trojans defeated Centenary, 85-63. Michael Clarke was named MVP.

1985: MERCER

Mercer joined Northeast Louisiana as the only two-time conference winners in 1985. Mercer defeated Little Rock, 105-96, in that game. It was the first time 100 or more points were scored in the conference title game. Sam Mitchell was named MVP of that tournament.

1984: HOUSTON BAPTIST

Houston Baptist finally broke through and won the Trans America Athletic Conference in 1984. They defeated Samford, 81-76. Craig Beard, of Samford, won the MVP. He was the first to win the award on the losing team.

1983: GEORGIA SOUTHERN

Georgia Southern narrowly defeated Little Lock, 68-67, in 1983, to make the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history. Jim Lampley was named MVP of that tournament.

1982: NORTHEAST LOUISIANA

Northeast Louisiana became the first two-time winner of the tournament. They defeated Centenary, 98-85. Donald Wilson was named the MVP.

1981: MERCER

Mercer picked up the win in 1981. The Bears defeated Houston Baptist, 72-67. Tony Gattis was named MVP of that tournament.

1980: CENTENARY

Centenary edged Northeast Louisiana in the second iteration of the Trans America Athletic Conference championship, 79-77. George Lett was named the MVP.

1979: NORTHEAST LOUISIANA

Northeast Louisiana, now known as Louisiana-Monroe, defeated Mercer 90-69 in the first-ever conference championship game. Calvin Natt was named the tournament’s MVP.