Tennessee coach Bruce Pearl announced Monday that Allan Houston will have his number, 20, retired on March 6, when UT hosts the Kentucky Wildcats.

Houston played for the Volunteers from 1990-93 and is the school's all-time leading scorer with 2,801 points. The mark ranks second in SEC history, behind only LSU's Pete Maravich.

Houston was a two-time All-American and a four-time All-SEC First Team selection.

"Allan represents everything the term 'student-athlete' is supposed to represent," UT athletics director Mike Hamilton said. "He was a very good student, campus leader and tremendously successful on the court. We are thrilled to have his number hang in the rafters at Thompson-Boling Arena as a tribute to who he was and is today."

Houston came to Knoxville from Louisville, Ky., where he was a McDonald's All-American. He was coached at Tennessee by his father, Wade, who was the first African-American coach in SEC history.

"I think it will mean much more than the number," Houston said. "I think it will mean the name. Your name means a lot.

"For me, to have that name hung up in Thompson-Boling (Arena) means so much more than just any records. It means character, the lineage and the legacy. That's why this is going to be really, really emotional, real special to me."

Pearl has developed a friendship with Houston since taking over as UT's coach in 2005 and believes it's what Houston is off the court that sets him apart from others.

"You can aspire to be the kind of player Allan Houston was," Pearl said. "But that pales in comparison to the kind of person he is."

Houston's 806 points during his sophomore year is the UT single-season scoring record. He was named the MVP of the 1991 SEC Tournament and led the league in scoring his senior season, averaging 22.3 points per game.

Houston said he enjoyed the college experience at UT, and his favorite memories were beating the likes of Arkansas, LSU and Kentucky, as well as being able to play in Kentucky's Rupp Arena.

Houston graduated from UT in 1993 with a degree in African-American Studies. He created the Wade Houston Scholarships for minority undergraduate students in 2003 to honor his father.

"He provides a tremendous example of how it's supposed to be done," Pearl said. "Allan is much like Peyton Manning in that, as a student-athlete, as a professional athlete at the highest level, as an Olympian who represented our country and as a philanthropist and community servant, you're hard-pressed to find anyone better."

Following his career at Tennessee, Houston was selected 11th overall in the 1993 NBA Draft by the Detroit Pistons. He played 12 years in the NBA, most notably with the New York Knicks, where he was a two-time All-Star in 2000 and 2001.

He was also a member of the gold-winning 2000 U.S.A Olympic Team, starting in four of the team's seven games.

Houston currently works in the Knicks' front office as the assistant general manager.

Hamilton informed Houston of the decision to retire his number earlier this season when the Vols were in New York for the Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off.

Houston will be the third basketball Vol to have his number retired, joining Bernard King (1975-77) and Ernie Grunfeld (1974-77).

"Just to be in their company is truly special, because they brought a lot of excitement during that time," Houston said. "They brought a lot of memories, and they carried a powerful legacy and tradition ... For me to be able to sustain the legacy of (Tennessee) basketball with them is really a special feeling."