(Click Read More for details on these players and other nominees . . . )
CJ Massinburg, Buffalo
Guard, Junior, Dallas, TX/South Oak Cliff
CJ Massinburg led the Bulls in scoring in both games this past week against two Big 4 rivals as the junior guard from Dallas, TX averaged 23.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 3.0 assists in the two games. Massinburg began the week with 25 in a 106-87 win at Niagara as he went 8-for-10 from the floor and 4-for-6 from three-point range against the Purple Eagles, while also leading the team with eight rebounds. On Saturday, Massinburg added 21 points against St. Bonaventure as he also pulled down eight rebounds for the second straight game. He went 6-of-13 from the floor, hitting three triples in the contest. Massinburg is currently third in the league in scoring at 19.9 and has scored over 20 points in four of seven games this year.
MAC Men’s Basketball West Division Player of the Week
Thomas Wilder, Western Michigan University
Guard, Senior, Montgomery, Ill.
Wilder had a game-high 16 points (10 coming in the second half) at Saint Louis. The victory helped WMU earn its first "true" non-conference road win since 2014. Against Saint Louis, also had two rebounds, two steals and three assists in 32 minutes. Against Oakland, who is ranked Non.15 in the latest College Insider Mid-Major Top 25 poll, Wilder scored a team-high 24 points while shooting 50 percent (8-of-16) from the floor. Against Oakland, Wilder posted five steals, four assists and three rebounds while also connecting on three three-pointers. With the stat-line against Oakland, Wilder became the first WMU player in school history to have 1,500 career points, 300 rebounds and 300 assists. Wilder has scored in double digits in every game this season and has led the Broncos in scoring in every game. The senior guard has also scored at least 10 points in 27 consecutive games, ranking as the 6th longest streak in the NCAA. Within the MAC, Wilder ranks second in scoring (19.8), ninth in assists (4.1) and second in steals (3.0). In two games against Saint Louis and Oakland, Wilder went 5-of-12 from beyond the three-point line.
Nike Sibande, Miami
Guard, Freshman, Indianapolis, Ind. (Crispus Attucks)
Sibande led an inspired Miami offense to two victories this past week. In the RedHawks record-breaking 123-40 win over Midway, he scored 19 points on 7-for-9 shooting and also had four rebounds, an assist, two steals and two blocks. In helping Miami defeat Western Illinois on Saturday, Sibande had a team-high 16 points to go with five rebounds, two assists and three steals in 41 minutes of action. He hit 65 percent (13-for-20) of the shots he took, including 50.0 percent (5-for-10) of his three-pointers.
Adonis De La Rosa, Kent State
Center, Junior, Bronx, N.Y.
Adonis De La Rosa kept up his breakout season and helped Kent State go 2-0, despite not having preseason All-MAC honoree Jaylin Walker. He led the team with 17.5 points per game, coming on 53 percent shooting. He earned his way to the line consistently, shooting 17 for 19 there. He also brought down 8.5 rebounds per game. Against Norfolk State on the road, the Flashes picked up a double-double from De La Rosa, who posted team-bests of 19 points and 10 rebounds. He shot just 3-for-7 from the floor, but went 13-for-14 from the foul line, both career highs. At home against Cleveland State, he scored 16 points on 6-for-10 shooting and recorded team-bests of seven rebounds and three assists, the latter a new career-high.
Dylan Frye, Bowling Green State University
Guard, Sophomore, Miami, Fla. (Mater Academy)
Sophomore guard Dylan Frye led the BGSU men’s basketball team to a 2-0 week, as the Falcons beat San Jose State and then went on the road to knock off Norfolk State. For the week, Frye, who shot 50.0 percent (7-of-14) from downtown, averaged 18.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists, and 2.0 steals. He went 11-of-23 (47.8 percent) from the field for the week. Frye ended his week with a career night at Norfolk State, as he scored a career-high 28 points on 9-of-13 shooting, including a lethal 5-of-7 mark from three-point territory. His five triples tied a career high. On the night, Frye also posted five rebounds, two assists and one steal. To open the week, Frye registered a balanced stat line of nine points, six rebounds, four assists and three steals versus San Jose State. On the season, Frye is shooting 45.6 percent from downtown, and is averaging 16.8 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.6 assists.
Mike Laster, Ohio University
Guard Senior Detroit, Mich. (Cass Technical)
Hot shooting by senior guard Mike Laster (Detroit, Mich.) helped the Ohio men's basketball team (4-3) split a pair of home games at the Convocation Center last week. Laster shot 58.1 percent (18-of-31) from the field and averaged a team-high 20.5 points (41 points) over the two contests. He also averaged 2.0 rebounds (four rebounds), 1.0 assists (two assists), 1.0 steals (two assisted) and 0.5 blocks (one block). Laster had a game-high 23 points in a 93-88 setback to Iona last Tuesday (Nov. 28), making 10 of his 19 shots while totaling four rebounds, a block and a steal in 36 minutes of action. He posted his third-straight contest with at least 20 points, becoming the first Bobcat to achieve such a feat since the 2015-16 campaign. Laster then went 8-of-12 from the field with a pair of threes to finish with a game-high 18 points as Ohio recorded its most lopsided victory in 16 years and held an opponent under 40 points for the first time since 1973, rolling to a commanding 80-37 victory over Coppin State last Friday (Dec. 1). He also tallied two assists and a steal in 27 minutes of action.
Tahjai Teague, Ball State
Forward, Sophomore, Indianapolis, Ind. (Pike)
Tahjai Teague led Ball State to a pair of wins last week, averaging 15.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game. The sophomore logged 16 points, nine rebounds and three blocks in Tuesday’s 81-57 victory over Oakland City. He went for 14 points, seven boards and two blocks in Saturday’s 83-64 win over IUPUI. Teague finished strong at the rim, throwing down six dunks over the two games. He made 13 of his 17 shots for the week to raise his season field goal percentage to .660, the second-best of any MAC player. He also ranks among the top 10 in the league in steals (1.6, sixth), rebounds (7.6, seventh) and blocks (1.0, ninth) per game.
David DiLeo, Central Michigan
Forward, Sophomore, Iowa City, Iowa (New Hampton School [N.H.])
Sophomore forward David DiLeo led Central Michigan to a fifth-straight win, scoring a game-high 19 points, as the Chippewas knocked off visiting Jackson State, 70-63. DiLeo shot 60% from the field, 50% from the 3-point line and 100% from the free throw line in the win. In addition to his point total, his fourth game of the season in double figures, DiLeo pulled down five rebounds and had two steals. Through seven games, DiLeo leads CMU in rebounding (6.9 rpg) and is second on the team in scoring (12.6 ppg) and steals (6).
James Thompson IV, Eastern Michigan
Center, Junior, Baton Rouge, La. (Parkview Baptist)
Thompson had a dominate performance in the Eagles' three-point overtime loss at the hands of North Florida, Nov. 29. The Baton Rouge, La. native scored a season-high 29 points and pulled down a season-best 15 boards in 41 minutes of play. The center was 12-of-17 (.706) from the floor and connected on five-of-six from the charity stripe (.833). The junior added a steal and two blocks in the game as well.