Player of the Week
Seth Curry – Duke
As well as Mason Plumlee has played, Duke is still very much perimeter oriented. Curry is the team’s best perimeter threat and when he gets going, it is hard to stop him. Just ask the Wolfpack who allowed Curry to get into a rhythm last week in what was arguably the team’s best first half performance of the season. Since throwing up a goose egg in January against the ‘Canes, Curry has been in a groove ever since. He is averaging 21.5 points over his last four games and finally looks like he has gotten past his mysterious early season leg injury that is still preventing him from practicing on a regular basis with the team. He had a key three point play against upset minded Boston College on Sunday that kept Duke within two games of Miami in the ACC standings. If Curry continues his stellar play of late, the Blue Devils will have one of the most deadly inside/outside combo’s in the country heading into March.
Joe Harris – Virginia
The Cavaliers have surprised some people this season. After losing games early to George Mason, Delaware and Old Dominion, the fact that they are sitting at 7-3 all alone in third place in the ACC is a bit of a shock. Harris is the team’s leading scorer and one of the best 3 point shooters in the conference. He’s shooting 47% from distance on the season which is good enough for second in the conference and 15th in the nation. While he is a very good shooter, he has the ability to drive the ball as well. He isn’t the quickest or most athletic guy in the world but he uses his size and strength to get to the bucket and draw contact. He abused NC State’s T.J. Warren on multiple occasions and is playing his way into All-ACC consideration.
Michael Snaer – Florida State
Snaer hasn’t necessarily been lighting the nets on fire lately but he has become the ACC’s version of Kyra Sedgwick. The senior guard has now hit 3 game winning shots this season. He hit 3’s against Clemson and Maryland and added to it by making a last second layup against Georgia Tech this past week. The ‘Noles sit at 13-10 on the season including 5-5 in ACC play. This wasn’t the season that most fans were expecting after an ACC Tournament title a season ago but one bright spot has been Snaer’s play and the ice water running through his veins when the game is on the line.
Rodney Purvis – NC State
NC State has had a rough go of it lately. The team got a much needed W against Clemson on Sunday but until that game, the Pack had dropped 5 of their last 7 games and were taking a nosedive in the ACC standings. Part of their struggles can be attributed to an injured Lorenzo Brown and some can be attributed to two last second tip-ins in games where the Wolfpack had the lead. The rest has to do with the funk that Purvis has been in. All freshman go through rough patches during conference play and Rodney has been no different. He was held scoreless against the Tigers on Sunday and played a season low 20 minutes. He looks lost at times, especially on offense as he is the fifth option on a team full of veterans. He was so ineffective on Sunday that Mark Gottfried had him on the bench to start the second half in favor of the Tyler Lewis/Lorenzo Brown tandem that hadn’t been used all season until that game. Purvis, like so many other freshman, just has to find his way and continue to do the little things that help his team win. He is one of the most talented freshman in the country and will undoubtedly bounce back from this.
Top 5 Point Guards
1. Erick Green, Virginia Tech
The nation’s leading scorer at 25.2 ppg has been given the green light to take any and all shots and has been very "assertive". He’s putting the ball in the basket with solid efficiency at 47% from the floor, 37 % from 3 and 82 % from the FT line. He’s better at scoring than facilitating but as the team’s primary ball handler he qulaifies as a PG. Unfortunately the team is really struggling at 2-9 in Conference.
2. Shane Larkin, Miami
The sophomore lacks supreme potential but has become a lethal scorer and distributor. His maturity this year has been the difference for the Canes who have a perfect 10-0 record including blow out wins against the Conference’s two biggest heavyweights UNC and Duke. Averaging 13 ppg and 4.2 assists to 2.1 turnovers, the son af baseball HOFer Barry Larkin has been the conference’s biggest surprise. Despite being younger than Green and Brown, a case could be made for Larkin at number one.
Came into the season as many scout’s choice as the top PG prospect in the nation. He struggled mightily early on in the year. But he has been better as the season has progressed. He’s talented, and has athleticism and experience and his game appears to be rounding into form at the right time. Brown’s 3 point shot has been AWOL for much of the year at 34%. He’s third on the team in scoring at 12.5 ppg and has an excellent 6.7 to 3.2 A/TO ratio.
4. Quinn Cook, Duke
While still an underclassman and earning his stripes, Cook has become a solid decision maker and a calming influence on the Duke squad. He may not have huge upside, but he’s a four year guy who plays a solid team game. This is a team with a number of quality shooters, but the loss of Ryan Kelly will be a difficult blow for the team to overcome if he’s not able to return for the tourney.
5. Codi Miller-McIntyre, Wake Forest
Picking a fifth PG from the ACC was no easy task, CMM makes it by default. Though just a freshman, McIntyre is third on the team in scoring at 8.5 per game. His scoring numbers have been on the rise. His A/TO ratio could use some work at 2.5 to 2, but it should see improvement over time since he’s just a freshman.
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