Player of the Week: Malcolm Delaney, Virginia Tech
The last full week of January always means two things: the NFL gets pushed to the back-burner for the first time in over five months and, more importantly, college basketball is about to enter its stretch run. The pretenders and contenders are starting to separate themselves, and conference play is really heating up. This week was arguably the most significant of the season thus far, as the favorites in several conferences are starting to assert themselves, and the No. 1 team in the country lost yet again. With all the excitement and outstanding games, there was an abundance of standout individuals.
Across the college basketball landscape, there were great individual performances that deserve to be honored. Of course, Blake Griffin of Oklahoma furthered his case for Player of the Week with 47 points and 35 rebounds in two games, while Stephen Curry of Davidson tried to keep case by averaging 31.5 points and six assists in his two games. Duke’s Gerald Henderson helped lead the Blue Devils to the top spot in the rankings by averaging 19 points, 7.5 rebounds, four assists and 3.5 steals per game in two games. Jeff Adrien of Connecticut played a major role in the Huskies’ stopping Notre Dame’s 45-game home-court winning streak, not to mention beating Villanova, by averaging 12 points and 16.5 rebounds. West Virginia’s Da’Sean Butler averaged 24 points and seven rebounds as the Mountaineers won at Georgetown but lost to Pittsburgh. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Iowa State’s Craig Brackins, who dropped 42 points and 14 rebounds in a losing effort against Kansas. Don’t forget Oregon State’s Roland Schaftenaar, who averaged 20 points per game in the Beavers’ historic week. However, the best week belonged to Malcolm Delaney of Virginia Tech.
The Hokies started off the season slow, going 5-4 in their first nine games, including losses to Seton Hall and Georgia. The four losses were by a total of eight points. Since then, though, Virginia Tech has rattled off nine wins in its last ten games, capped off by a phenomenal two-game stretch this week, led by Delaney. The Hokies went into Winston-Salem and knocked off top-ranked Wake Forest, then followed that up with a road win at Miami (Fl). Delaney was the catalyst, scoring 21 points and grabbing eight rebounds against Wake, and dropping 29 in the overtime win against the Hurricanes. The 6-3 sophomore guard averaged 25 points, six rebounds, 2.5 assists and 2.5 steals overall for the week. He also helped rid the Hokies of their late-game woes, by knocking down 16 free-throws in the two games. On the season, he is averaging 16.9 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game.
- Blake Griffin, Oklahoma
- Roland Schaftenaar, Oregon State
- Isaiah Thomas, Washington (41 points in wins over USC and UCLA)
How could you leave out Jamelle Cornley from Penn State? He single-handedly willed his team back into the game, with highlight reel plays, keeping tournament hopes alive in Happy Valley.ReplyDelete
Cornley certainly had a great week, but PSU beat Michigan and Iowa at home...I feel like everyone I mentioned had better weeks overall in terms of significance and production.ReplyDelete
Just thought he deserved a mention...Not to mention he was named Big Ten Player of the week for the first time in his career.ReplyDelete
There were some stellar performances by the other players, but of the ones I witnessed, no one carried their team in the way he did. Either way, was just hoping he'd get a mention ;)