MAC Men's Basketball East Division Player of the Week
Shannon Evans, Buffalo, Guard
Sophomore, Suffolk, VA/Nasemond River
Evans averaged 16.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.5 steals per game this past week as the Bulls won a pair of road games at Eastern Michigan and Bowling Green. Evans was impressive from downtown as he shot 7-of-10 from three point range. In the win at Eastern Michigan, Evans had 14 points and six rebounds, while recording four steals on the defensive end. On Saturday, Evans scored 19 points, going 5-for-6 from three in a win over MAC East leading Bowling Green. Evans is second on the Bulls in scoring at 15.2 points per game and tied for the team lead with 113 assists.
MAC Men's Basketball West Division Player of the Week
Julius Brown, Toledo, Guard
Senior, Markham, IL/Hillcrest
Brown helped the Rockets extend their MAC road win streak to five games by averaging a team-high 20.0 ppg and 4.0 apg in victories at Akron and Western Michigan. Brown was extremely efficient from the field with a 57.7 field-goal percentage, including a 7-of-10 mark at Western Michigan, and a 50.0 performance from behind the three-point arc. Brown tallied 21 points and a season-high five rebounds against the Zips and registered the fourth game-winning shot of his Rocket career with a 15-foot fadeaway jumper with 1.7 seconds left to give UT a 68-66 win. Brown then directed the Rocket attack to a season-high 97 points to go along with a 60.0 team shooting mark at Western Michigan. The two-time all-conference honoree led UT with 19 points and six assists in the win that saw all five Rocket starters score in double figures.
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Antino Jackson, Akron, Guard
Forward, Houston, Texas/Cypress Springs High School
Jackson made the first two starts of his collegiate career last week, averaging 9.5 points, 2.5 assists, 2.0 steals and 1.5 rebounds per game while averaging 30.0 minutes per game. In his first collegiate start, he scored a career-high 14 points to go with three assists and two steals in a career-high 31 minutes. He scored 12 of his 14 points to help Akron rally from a nine-point deficit in the first half. Against Miami (Ohio), he posted five points, two assists, two steals and a rebound in 29 minutes. With the Zips trailing by one with less than a minute remaining in regulation, Jackson drove to the hoop and got the bucket and the foul. His and-1 gave Akron a two-point lead briefly, before the RedHawks tied the contest and sent it to overtime.
Bo Calhoun, Ball State, Forward
Junior, South Bend, Ind./Washington
Calhoun averaged 14.5 points and 7.0 rebounds in road games last week against a pair of MAC title contenders at Kent State and Central Michigan. Calhoun scored a career-high 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds Wednesday at Kent State to lead the Cardinals in both categories. He followed that performance with 11 points and six rebounds Saturday at Central Michigan. Calhoun scored in double figures for the eighth time in the past 10 games. He ranks third in the MAC during conference play with 8.0 rebounds per game.
Richaun Holmes, Bowling Green, Forward
Senior, Lockport, Ill./Lockport
Holmes extended his double digit scoring streak to 14 straight games last week versus Miami and Buffalo. He posted 21 points, 12 rebounds, five blocks and two steals on Wednesday night versus Miami in which he shot 77.8 percent from the floor overall. He then tallied 18 points, seven rebounds and five blocks once again on Saturday against Buffalo in which he shot 70 percent overall. Holmes, who now has 995 career points, averaged 18.0 points, 9.5 rebounds and 5.0 blocks on 73.7 percent shooting overall for the week. He also shot 60 percent from behind the three-point line on the week overall. Holmes increased his league leading blocks total to 71 on the season with 10 blocks last week overall.
Chris Fowler, Central Michigan, Guard
Junior, Southfield, Mich./Detroit Country Day
Fowler helped extend Central Michigan's winning streak to a MAC-best five games, leading the first place Chippewas to two wins last week with standout performances, including one that permanently etched his name in the program's record book. On Wednesday, Fowler guided CMU past Northern Illinois, scoring 10 points, his 20th game in double figures this season, to go along with 8 assists, 2 rebounds and 1 steal. On Saturday, in a 83-60 rout of Ball State, Fowler became Central Michigan's all-time assist leader in just his junior season. Early in the second half, he found teammate John Simons' in the corner for a 3-pointer, moving Fowler past Giordan Watson on the career assists list with 490. He also moved into 18th place in the MAC record book. In addition to his second consecutive 8-assist game, Fowler totaled 18 points, 2 rebounds and 2 steals. He made 5-of-5 free throws, contributing to CMU's perfect 13-for-13 foul shot performance versus the Cardinals. Fowler also played a role in CMU setting the single season program record for 3-pointers in a season, knocking down a buzzer-beating triple just before halftime and assisting on four others. A starter of all 86 games of his career, Fowler ranks No. 1 in the MAC in assists (6.1 apg), No. 4 in assist/turnover ratio (2.2), No. 5 in scoring (15.5 ppg), No. 6 in steals (1.6 spg) and No. 8 in field goal percentage (.515). Entering play this week, Fowler is 8 assists and 8 steals shy of becoming the first Chippewa to reach 1,000 points, 500 assists, 250 rebounds and 150 steals for a career.
Karrington Ward, Eastern Michigan, Forward
Senior, Lockport, Ill./Lockport
Ward continued his strong play while the Eagles picked up their first Mid-American Conference road victory this weekend. Ward averaged a double-double this week, posting 21 points and 10 rebounds per contest, while shooting a strong 44 percent from the floor to go along with a 41.7 three-point percentage and an 83.3 free throw percentage. In addition, the 6-foot-7 forward played great on the defensive end. The Lockport, Ill. native swatted a total of seven shots on the week while nabbing four steals, good for 3.5 and two per game, respectively.
Devareaux Manley, Kent State, Guard
Manley averaged 17.5 points and 3.5 rebounds per game in leading Kent State to a pair of victories and sole possession of first place in the Mid-American Conference East Division. Manley was the leading scorer in both games with 19 against Ball State on Wednesday and 16 at Ohio on Saturday as the Golden Flashes completed season sweeps over both schools. He made five 3-point field goals in both games and shot 47.6 percent (10-for-21) from the 3-point arc to move up to 7th in the country in 3-point field goals per game (3.26). Manley has made 88 3-pointers this season and is one away from tying Kent State's single-season record. He has made 211 for his career, which also ranks 2nd at Kent State. In addition to his offensive firepower, Manley played a key role in Kent State holding its two opponents to just 104 points, which is 30 points fewer than they combined to average coing into those games.
Eric Washington, Miami, Guard
Junior, Columbia, SC/Keenan
Washington was a key component to a pair of big RedHawk road wins last week as Miami extended its win streak to a season-long three games. He scored six of his points over the final 2:48 to help secure the win at then-MAC leader Bowling Green. Plagued by foul trouble that limited his first-half minutes, Washington helped Miami turn a nine-point deficit late in the first half against the Falcons to an 11-point win, which included four assists. Washington scored 21 points to lead all players in a big win at Akron that marked Miami's third road win of the season and second in as many games and also snapped an 11-game losing streak at James A. Rhodes Arena that dated back to the 2003 season. He helped Miami erase an 11-point first-half deficit and sunk a triple that ignited a 9-0 run to end the opening half to take a one-point lead into the locker room against the Zips. In a tight second half, Washington sunk a pair of free throws with 15 seconds to play in regulation to send the game into overtime where he went 4-for-4 from the free-throw line and assisted on Will Sullivan's go-ahead triple as MU outscored Akron 9-4 in the extra period for its second overtime win of the season. For the week, Washington averaged 14.5 ppg, 4.5 apg and 3.5 rpg while shooting 92.3 percent from the free-throw line.
David Brown, Western Michigan, Guard
Graduate Student, Roscoe, Ill. / Hononegah
Brown was consistently excellent for the Broncos in a pair of home games last week, reaching double-digits in each and scoring nearly 30 in the second as WMU notched a win over Ohio and fell to Toledo at University Arena. Brown averaged 20.5 points per game and shot 50.0 percent from the field in the two contests while also averaging 2.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists, and 1.5 steals per game. The sixth-year senior began the week with a 12-point effort against Ohio, knocking down 5-of-5 free throws and adding three field goals as the Broncos defeated the Bobcats 80-69. Brown was on fire in the game against the Rockets on Saturday, scoring 29 points on 8-of-13 (.615) shooting from the field and 5-of-10 (.500) from three-point range while also going 8-of-10 (.800) from the free throw line. Brown is averaging a team-best 18.0 points per game in conference play and has two of the three highest single-game scoring totals for the Broncos this year. He is shooting 42.7 percent from the field against MAC opponents and his average of 3.9 rebounds per game in conference play is fourth on the team and best among all Bronco guards.