A-10 Men's Basketball Notebook, Jan. 24, 2010

This is the Atlantic 10 Conference's men's basketball notebook for the week ending Saturday, January 23, 2010. St. Bonaventure's Andrew Nicholson is the Player of the Week. The Rookie of the Week is Chris Braswell of Charlotte.


PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Andrew Nicholson - St. Bonaventure
Sophomore, Forward, 6-9, 225 lbs.
Mississauga, Ontario/Father Michael Goetz Secondary HS

Nicholson averaged 27.5 points, seven rebounds and 3.5 blocks over two contests...shot 21-of-37 from the field and 13-for-16 from the line...scored a game-high 26 points and added seven rebounds and five blocks on Jan. 20 as St. Bonaventure earned a 70-69 victory at Massachusetts...tied his career high with 29 points - including 20 in the second half - in the Bonnies' 70-69 loss at Duquesne on Jan. 23...marked his fifth 20-point effort of the year...earns his second A-10 Player of the Week honor this season.

ROOKIE OF THE WEEK

Chris Braswell - Charlotte
Freshman, Forward, 6-8, 235 lbs.
Capitol Heights, Md./Hargrave Military Academy (Va.)

Braswell averaged 15.3 points and 10.3 rebounds in leading Charlotte to three victories on the week...scored 16 points and grabbed eight boards on Jan. 17 as the 49ers edged Saint Louis, 63-61 (OT)...had nine points and 10 rebounds in Charlotte's 71-59 win at Richmond on Jan. 20...notched his team-leading sixth double-double of the season on Jan. 23 with 21 points and 13 boards as visiting Charlotte edged La Salle, 84-82...marked his ninth double-digit rebounding performance on the year...tabbed the A-10 Rookie of the Week for a league-best third time.


Atlantic 10 Men's Basketball Notebook
January 24, 2010

WEEKLY HONOR ROLL

  • Charlotte junior forward Shamari Spears averaged 19.3 points and 7.7 rebounds in leading the 49ers to three victories on the week
  • Junior forward Chris Wright of Dayton scored a career-high 28 points at Saint Joseph's on Jan. 23 and averaged 21 points and 8.5 boards on the week
  • Duquesne junior forward Damian Saunders averaged 18 points and 10 rebounds over two contests
  • Freshman forward Chris Gaston averaged 13 points and 8.5 rebounds on the week and registered his 11th double-double of the year versus Temple on Jan. 23
  • George Washington freshman guard Lasan Kromah averaged 10.5 points, 3.5 rebounds and two assists over two contests
  • Senior guard Rodney Green scored a career-best 32 points versus Charlotte on Jan. 23 and averaged 23.5 points and 5.5 assists on the week. Freshman teammate Aaric Murray averaged 15.5 points and 6.5 boards over two games
  • Rhode Island senior guard Keith Cothran averaged 17.5 points, 3.5 rebounds and three steals over two games
  • Saint Joseph's senior guard Garrett Williamson averaged 13.5 points, four rebounds and three assists in leading the Hawks to a pair of victories, while freshman guard Justin Crosgile averaged 11.5 points and two assists
  • Freshman forward Cody Ellis of Saint Louis averaged 12.5 points and 7.5 boards over two contests
  • Xavier sophomore guard Jordan Crawford registered his first career double-double with 21 points and 12 rebounds in the Musketeers' 72-61 win over URI on Jan. 23 and averaged 19.5 points and 7.5 rebounds on the week.

LATE GAME HEROICS

If you attempted to beat the traffic and left La Salle, St. Joe's or Duquesne before the final horn on Jan. 23, you missed plenty of excitement. A quick recap:

  • Junior An'Juan Wilderness hit a runner in the lane as time expired to give Charlotte an 84-82 win at La Salle. After going 0-8 on the road in A-10 play last season, the 49ers improved to 2-1 this year.
  • Senior Garrett Williamson preserved Saint Joseph's 60-59 win over Dayton with a block of Rob Lowery's driving layup with four seconds remaining.
  • Melquan Bolding nailed a three-pointer from the corner with 3.4 seconds remaining as Duquesne edged visiting St. Bonaventure, 70-69.

HOME SUPREMACY

Three-time defending A-10 champion Xavier boasts a 27-game home-winning streak in A-10 action after turning aside Rhode Island on Jan. 23, 72-61. Temple holds the record with 34 consecutive home wins in Conference play (Dec. 10, 1987 - Feb. 19, 1991), while UMass won 24 straight home league contests from Jan. 15, 1992, to Feb. 14, 1995.

DOUBLE TALK

Duquesne's Damian Saunders notched his 15th double-double of the season and 22nd of his career with 21 points and 11 rebounds in the Dukes' 75-67 loss at Rhode Island on Jan. 20. The junior forward's 15 double-doubles are the most by a Duquesne player in a season since Bruce Atkins had 16 in 1981-82. Saunders has pulled down at least 15 rebounds eight times this season, while his career high for rebounds entering the year was 14 boards.

AWESOME AUSSIE

After arriving in St. Louis from Australia in early January upon gaining eligibility by the NCAA, freshman forward Cody Ellis is averaging 12.3 points and 7.8 rebounds over four games in leading SLU to three victories. His 14-point, 11-rebound performance at Duquesne on Jan. 13 marked the first time a SLU freshman notched a double-double by his second game since Matt Baniak (20 points and 12 rebounds) against East Carolina on Nov. 18, 1997.

FRIENDLY CONFINES

Dayton won its 30th consecutive home game - a program record - as a result of its 66-51 victory over George Washington on Jan. 16. The current streak began on Mar. 8, 2008, with a win over St. Joe's. The Flyers' 30-game streak is the third-longest active streak in the nation. UD earned its 500th win in the 40-year history of the University of Dayton Arena on Dec. 29 in a 74-60 victory over Boston University. Xavier has a record of 130-17 (.884) all-time at Cintas Center, its on-campus home arena, and boasts a 19-game home winning streak after turning aside Rhode Island on Jan. 23, 72-61. The Musketeers' 19-game home-winning streak marks their longest since the building opened for the 2000-01 season.

20-20 SHOOTING

In its last two games - wins over Xavier (Jan. 20) and Fordham (Jan. 23) - Temple has knocked down a blistering 29-of-43 shots in the second half. TU was 13-of-19 after intermission versus XU and 16-of-24 at Fordham.

POINT PRESENCE

Rhode Island junior point guard Marquis Jones has dished out 22 assists and committed just two turnovers thru the Rams' first five games in A-10 play. For the season, Jones boasts 87 assists and 26 turnovers.

ELITE TERRITORY

Senior guard Ricky Harris scored 15 points in Massachusetts' 71-45 loss at Baylor on Jan. 23 and ranks seventh on the school's all-time scoring list with 1,656 points. On Nov. 18, Harris scored 26 points to move past both Julius Erving (1,370) and Marcus Camby (1,387) and boasts 241 three-point field goals for his career.

GLASS CLEANER

Temple junior forward Lavoy Allen pulled down 14 rebounds in the Owls' 76-64 win over Massachusetts on Jan. 16, his 29th performance with double-digit rebounds since the start of the 2008-09 season. Allen (10.6 ppg., 9.8 rpg.) seeks to become the first TU player to average a double-double since Ollie Johnson in 1970-71. Johnson is also last Owl to average double figures in rebounds.

CONFERENCE CORNER

Entering play on Jan. 25, the A-10 has been ranked in the top 7 of the conference RPI (collegeRPI.com) the entire season and its 120-71 (.628) overall non-league record is on pace to be the fifth-highest winning percentage in non-conference action in A-10 history. 44 of the league's 120 victories have come on the road or on neutral courts and the A-10 is also the top-rated conference in Strength of Schedule according to RealTime RPI.

RARE AIR

Sophomore Jordan Crawford of Xavier leads the A-10 in scoring at 19.1 ppg. thru the Musketeers' first 19 contests. XU has not had its leading scorer average 17 or more points since National Player of the Year David West averaged 20.1 ppg. as a senior in 2002-03.

EXPLORING NEW HEIGHTS

Rodney Green of La Salle notched his 26th career 20-point outing and ninth of the season on Jan. 23 with a career-high 32 points in the Explorers' 84-82 loss to Charlotte.

START ME UP

Dayton senior Kurt Huelsman has started every game in his career, a span of 119 consecutive starts. That marks the longest active streak in the Atlantic 10. Nate Green holds the all-time program record with 133 games played and Mark Ashman shares the UD record for starts.

SHOT CLOCK SNIPPETS...

  • Prior to this season, 47 different A-10 teams opened league play at 4-0. Of those 47 teams, 44 advanced to postseason play, with 30 of the 44 earning NCAA berths. Temple and Xavier this season are the 48th and 49th different teams to begin A-10 play with at least four consecutive victories.
  • Charlotte is 5-4 on the road this season, including a 2-1 road mark in A-10 contests. Last year, Charlotte was 2-10 on the road and 0-8 in A-10 road games. Moreover, the 49ers have won consecutive road games in league play for the first time since 2005-06.
  • For his career, junior Damian Saunders of Duquesne has more blocks (184), assists (169) and steals (167) than turnovers (158). Saunders leads the nation with 15 double doubles and is averaging 41.8 minutes in A-10 play.
  • Xavier has sold out its last two A-10 home games - Rhode Island and Dayton - and has sold out 14 of its last 15 A-10 home games dating back to the 2007-08 season.
  • The A-10 boast five teams in the top 40 of the RPI and six in the top 50.
  • Temple is tied for second nationally with six road victories in non-conference action, while GW and Rhode Island rank seventh in the country with five non-league road wins apiece.
  • The A-10 boasts 17 wins over BCS opponents in non-conference play this season, which is tied for the fifth-highest total among Division I conferences. The Big 12 leads with 28 victories, followed by the SEC (25), ACC (24), Big Ten (18), A-10 (17), Big East (17) and WCC (14).

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