So far, the teams in the A10 have all played about six games, giving us a good glimpse into how this season is going to shape out. It also gives us a look at some of the individual performances, both good and bad. Here are my awards for the 1/3rd point of the conference season.
*Note: all statistic are for the entire 2015-16 season, and are accurate as of January 20th, 2016.
The Workhorse Award:
This first award goes to La Salle’s Johnnie Shuler who leads the conference in percent of minutes played, having been on the court 96.2% of the time for La Salle this season. This mark is not only the highest in the country, but it is the second highest in the whole nation. The sophomore guard from Washington, D.C. has turned his high amount of minutes played into success, as he is averaging 10.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 3.2 assists for the Explorers.
The Swat Team Award:
This award goes to the player in the A10 that has the highest block percentage, and that is Dayton’s Steve McElvene. Block percentage measures the percentage of opponents 2 point shots are blocked while the player in question is on the court. For McElvene, a 6’11” freshman from Indiana, that means blocking 11.2% of opponents two point attempts. This is good for first place in the conference, but also for 14th nationally.
The Second Chance Award:
The second chance award goes to the player who is generating the most second chance opportunities for his team by grabbing the highest percentage of offensive boards. That would go to 6’11” Jamaican forward Shevon Thompson, who plays for George Mason. The senior is grabbing 16.9% of opponents missed shots, which is good for top 10 nationally.
The Sniper Award:
The Sniper Award goes to the player with the best 3 point percentage. The caveats here are that the player has to play at least 40% of the team’s minutes and averages at least two shots per game. This way, someone who is 2/3 on the season can’t claim the title, which goes to George Washington senior Patricio Garino. The Argentinian sharp-shooter has hit on 46% of his threes, including going 8/16 so far in conference play.
The Dime Dropper Award:
This award goes to the player who has the best assist rate, and it goes to Davidson guard Jack Gibbs. Gibbs has done it all for the Wildcats this year, and distributing the rock to his teammates has definitely been in his repertoire. He is averaging 5.3 assists per game, and boasts a 33.6% assist rate.
The Go-To Guy Award:
Jack Gibbs is going to have to reorganize some things in his closet after winning all of these awards. Being the prolific scorer that he is, along with the main facilitator of the offense, he wins the go-to guy award for using the highest percentage of his team’s possessions, at 34.7%. He has used them well too, en route to 25.7 points per game.
The Pickpocket Award:
VCU’s Doug Brooks is known as one of the best defenders in the conference, and the statistics sure back that up. He wins the award easily, with a 5.99 steal percentage, averaging almost two steals per game for the Rams. This is the 4th best steal percentage in the nation, as Brooks has elevated himself this year to become one of the best defenders in the country. His quicks hands were on display in VCU’s most recent game against Duquesne, when Brooks accumulated 5 steals in a Rams win.
As for more important awards such as offensive, defensive, and overall conference player of the year, only time will tell. It is impossible to predict what will happen, but it is important to recognize the above players for their accomplishments. Another informative update will be coming at the 2/3rds mark in 6 games.