Co-PLAYERS OF THE WEEK: The two Marcuses
Marcus Smart played his way to the top of our Player of the Year Power Rankings after he put together one of the most dominating two-way performances that we’ve seen this season. Smart went for 39 points and four assists along with five steals and two blocks, leading the Cowboys to a 101-80 win over then-No. 11 Memphis. He was terrific.
But he may not have been the best Marcus in the country this past week, as North Carolina’s Marcus Paige put on a show at Mohegan Sun this weekend. He had 26 points in a win over Richmond on Saturday and followed that up with a career-high 32 points in an impressive win over then-No. 3 Louisville. North Carolina has their issues, but Paige looks like he could be ready to step into that starring role.
They were good, too:
- Kyle Anderson and Jordan Adams, UCLA: Anderson averaged 15.0 points, 11.0 boards and 9.0 assists and Adams scored 52 points in a 2-0 week for the Bruins.
- Jahii Carson, Arizona State: Carson led ASU to a 2-0 week, highlighted by 40 points and seven assists in a win over UNLV.
- Troy Huff, North Dakota: Averaging 34.5 points, 9.5 boards and 3.0 steals will get you recognized, even if a loss to Wisconsin is included.
- Jeremy Ingram, N.C. Central: Ingram averaged 31.3 points in a 3-0 week that included a 29-point performance in a win over N.C. State
- Alex Kirk, New Mexico: The Lobos finished in third place in the Charleston Classic, but it wasn’t Kirk’s fault. He averaged 21.3 points, 12.0 boards and 4.3 blocks.
- Cady Lalanne, UMass: Has Lalanne become UMass’ best player? He averaged 17.0 points, 11.7 boards and 3.0 blocks as they won the Charleston Classic.
- Shabazz Napier, UConn: UConn won the 2K Sports Classic. Napier went for 27 points and hit every clutch shot in the title game win over Indiana.
TEAM OF THE WEEK: UMass Minutemen
Is UMass the best team in the Atlantic 10 right now? They very well may be, especially after watching VCU struggle their way through the Puerto Rico Tip-Off. Perhaps the best sign for UMass is that their star point guard Chaz Williams may not actually be the best player on the team right now. That honor goes to double-double machine Cady Lalanne.
They were good, too:
- North Carolina: The Tar Heels bounced back from a loss to Belmont by winning the Hall of Fame Tip-Off Classic, including a win over No. 3 Louisville.
- Charlotte: The 49ers came out of nowhere to win Puerto Rico Tip-Off at the buzzer against No. 24 Michigan in the title game.
- Florida State: So maybe we need to pay attention to the Seminoles this season? They blew out VCU and nearly knocked off Michigan before beating Northeastern.
- Providence: The Friars are now sitting at 6-0 after advancing to the final of the Paradise Jam in the Virgin Islands.
- UConn: UConn swept Boston College and Indiana to win the 2K Sports Classic.
- Iowa State: After winning against Michigan at home last Sunday, the Cyclones went to Utah and knocked off BYU in one of the toughest home environments in the country.
- NCCU: Three wins, including one in overtime at N.C. State? Impressive.