RTC Big East Microsite Week in ReviewPosted by Dan Lyons on November 26th, 2013
Happy holidays everyone! Feast Week is upon us, and the Big East has been performing pretty well across the board so far this season. There appears to be a lot of parity in the conference, and a few surprise teams like Xavier and Providence look like they may be real contenders this season. Let’s jump into the previous week of action.
- 10.) DePaul (3-2), LW (10): DePaul looks like it might be a solid step up from where it has been the last few seasons, but last night’s game against Wichita State shows there’s still a lot of opportunities for improvement.
- 9.) Seton Hall (4-2), LW (8): The Pirates have a penchant for close games. Four of their six games have been decided by single figures, including both of their losses: a 77-74 double-overtime heartbreaker to Mercer, and an 86-85 loss to Oklahoma.
- T-7.) Butler (4-0), LW (9): Butler is still undefeated by the narrowest of margins, winning an overtime thriller against Vanderbilt and a one-point game against Ball State last week. Khyle Marshall and Kellen Dunham are keeping the Butler offense afloat, each by averaging 15.8 points per game.
- T-7.) St. John’s (3-1), LW (5): Phil Greene IV had a big week for the Johnnies, scoring 16 and 22 points in tight wins over Bucknell and Monmouth, respectively. Greene’s contributions in the backcourt have been very important for a St. John’s team that is struggling to score.
- 6.) Providence (6-1), LW (6): The Friars had as good of a week as anyone, winning three games over solid competition before dropping last night’s Paradise Jam championship to Maryland. The frontcourt combination of Kadeem Batts, LaDontae Henton and Tyler Harris has been as effective as any in the league in the early part of the season.
- 5) Marquette (3-2), LW (2): Before last night’s 77-point explosion against Arizona State (still a loss), the Marquette scoring problems had continued. The Golden Eagles are averaging 58.3 PPG to opponents not named Grambling, and their effective field goal and three-point percentages are among the worst in the nation at this early point.
- 4.) Xavier (5-0), LW (7): Miami (OH) did a nice job against Semaj Christon, holding the star guard to just 13 points on 3-of-11 shooting. The Musketeers got a nice lift, though, from Dee Davis, who scored 15 and dished out five assists, and forward James Farr who scored 11 points in 16 minutes off the bench.
- 3.) Villanova (4-0), LW (4): Depth was an issue for Villanova in its 84-80 win against Delaware this week. The Wildcats’ bench only scored seven points in 44 minutes. Luckily for Jay Wright, JayVaughn Pinkston, Ryan Arcidiacono and James Bell continue to play very good basketball.
- 2.) Georgetown (3-2), LW (3): A loss to Northeastern in the opening round of the Puerto Rico Tip-Off could have sent the Hoyas on a downward spiral, but wins over Kansas State and #10 VCU made for an impressive rebound weekend. D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera has emerged as the team’s top option, leading the team in scoring in every game after an anemic five-point outing against Oregon in South Korea.
- 1.) Creighton (5-0), LW (1): Doug McDermott is really good — just ask Tulsa. McDermott went off for 33 points and 15 rebounds against the Golden Hurricane in Creighton’s lone game last week. The Bluejays will face an undefeated Arizona State squad on Thursday night in the first round of the Wooden Legacy tournament in Fullerton, California.
Player(s) of the Week
Tie: Doug McDermott and D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera – Fellow Big East microsite writer George Hershey went with McDermott for a second straight week, while I give the nod here to Smith-Rivera. McDermott continues to dominate every game in which he plays, and his 33-point, 15-rebound game against Toledo was no different. Smith-Rivera, though, was the only Georgetown player with a pulse against Northeastern, and he took out his frustrations for that loss subsequently on Kansas State and VCU. Most expected Markel Starks to become the leader of the Hoyas this season, but Smith-Rivera looks like the most dynamic player on the team so far.
Freshman of the Week
Jaren Sina – This wasn’t a banner week for Big East freshman. Seton Hall’s Sina probably had the best game of any rookie in the conference, scoring 13 points in a close win over Virginia Tech on Saturday.
All-Conference Team of the Week
- Doug McDermott – Another week, another huge statistical output for the conference’s best player.
- D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera – DSR was the only one who could find the bottom of the net in the loss to Northeastern, scoring 14 points before exploding for 51 points over the next two games in Puerto Rico.
- Khyle Marshall – Marshall had a huge game against Vanderbilt, scoring a very efficient 26 points on 15 shots against the ‘Dores.
- JayVaughn Pinkston – Pinkston continues to develop as one of the conference’s best forwards, and continued this effort with a 26-point game against Delaware.
- Brandon Young – Young and Cleveland Melvin continue to put up great lines as they push DePaul out of the basement. In a win over Milwaukee, Young had a great overall performance, scoring 19 points, grabbing seven rebounds, and doling out six assists.