Mandell Thomas posted his third straight game with 16 or more points this past Saturday against VCU, good enough for his first Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Week award. (Photo courtesy of Fordham University)
Tom Pecora's midseason decision to change his starting backcourt continues to reap positive benefits for Fordham's third-year coach as the Rams have become more competitive since inserting Mandell Thomas into the lineup over Jermaine Myers, as the freshman was honored this morning with his first Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Week award.
Thomas, whose 16 points this past Saturday in a losing effort to VCU followed consecutive 17-point outings against Rhode Island and Saint Joseph's in each of Fordham's two prior contests, becomes the first Ram to win this honor since Bryan Smith captured it a year ago. Thomas may be averaging just 7.5 points per game this season, but since being reintroduced to the starting lineup on December 29th against Georgia Tech, he has scored in double figures over seven of Fordham's last nine games and is averaging 10.3 points per game as a starter and 12.4 in Atlantic 10 play, (along with over five rebounds per contest in the A-10) compared to just 3.8 points per contest coming off the bench.
Thomas' first game since winning the award will come Wednesday night when the Rams welcome a resurgent Saint Louis squad into Rose Hill for an 8pm tipoff that can be seen on the CBS Sports Network, the first of three Fordham games to be broadcast on the outlet.