Monday, January 23, 2017

MAAC Monday: Midseason awards, stat leaders, power rankings

This week marks the halfway point of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference season, so before refreshing stat leaders and power rankings, the opening segment will focus on those who have outshined their competition through the first half of the season. As always, any and all statistics reflected within MAAC Monday were gleaned from the individual stat pages of each school's website.

Player of the Year: Justin Robinson, Monmouth (18.2 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 5.2 APG, 1.8 SPG, 40% FG, 82% FT, 38% 3-pt FG)
Up until last week, Fairfield's Tyler Nelson and Iona's Jordan Washington would have been the top two choices here, but the Stags' five-game losing streak coupled with Monmouth's resurgence to gain some much-needed separation in a parity-laden MAAC gives Robinson the nod, as does the senior point guard's take-charge leadership as the Hawks have rebounded from a three-game losing streak with wins in each of their last six. The idea behind this award is usually to reward winning and the players most integral to winning, and Robinson has proven his junior year breakout was not an aberration as he has guided Monmouth to the top of the conference standings while also chasing the program's all-time Division I scoring record, a milestone he is 33 points away from. Expect him to take care of that no later than Monmouth's game at Marist one week from tonight.

Rookie of the Year: Mikey Dixon, Quinnipiac (16.6 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 2.6 APG, 48% FG, 87% FT, 41% 3-pt FG)
This is another honor that, for most of the first half, belonged to Rider's Stevie Jordan, but since being inserted into the starting lineup by Tom Moore, Dixon has found another gear, emerging as the leading scorer on a Bobcats team part of a five-way tie for third place in the MAAC standings despite being picked tenth in the preseason poll. Along with fellow freshman Peter Kiss, Dixon has given Quinnipiac new life in a backcourt that was initially a major question mark going into the season, with Giovanni McLean transferring and James Ford graduating. His 29-point outburst against Iona, which included several clutch three-point shots to lift the Bobcats into an upset victory against the reigning league champions at the TD Bank Sports Center, is only a harbinger of things to come as he continues to project a bright future in Hamden.

Sixth Man of the Year: Jerry Johnson Jr., Fairfield (11.0 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 1.4 APG, 38% FG, 80% FT, 32% 3-pt FG)
With most of the standout performers in the MAAC coming from the starting five, or having started ten or more games so far this season, (the criteria that eliminated Iona's David Laury from consideration three years ago) Johnson has been the best reserve from this year's crop since returning from an ankle injury that cost him the first four games of the season for the Stags. The sophomore from Memphis has recently earned his way into the starting lineup, but has spent his second season providing the same spark that Maurice Barrow; a two-time recipient of this award at the end of the regular season in both 2012-13 and 2013-14, contributed to Sydney Johnson's rotation.

Defensive Player of the Year: Chazz Patterson, Saint Peter's
John Dunne has been adamant about his senior guard meriting greater consideration for an honor usually reserved for forwards due to their enhanced shot blocking abilities, but as the bigs of the MAAC have not put together gaudy numbers on the defensive end, Patterson has consistently risen to the forefront of the Peacocks' efforts this season. The conference leader with 1.9 steals per game, the Browns Mills, New Jersey native has been the unsung hero and largest presence in a Saint Peter's unit that yields a minuscule 62.4 points per game in conference play, and one that is especially adept at taking opposing teams out of their element with their suffocating man-to-man techniques. Although their four-game league win streak came to a halt Saturday at the hands of Niagara, Patterson has been extremely integral in the Peacocks' 6-3 start to MAAC play and second-place standing, and that should not be changing anytime soon.

Coach of the Year: Reggie Witherspoon, Canisius
The easy pick here would be King Rice, since his Monmouth team is leading the league by a game-and-a-half. However, the Hawks were expected to be in this position. So too was Saint Peter's, picked fourth in the preseason and currently second. What Witherspoon has done in Buffalo with the shortest adjustment time of any coach in the nation has been nothing short of impressive, maybe even bordering on miraculous if you are one for hyperbole. Since replacing Jim Baron at the end of May, the former head man at Buffalo has turned the already potent Golden Griffin offense into an even more formidable attack, getting breakout seasons thus far from both Kassius Robertson and Jermaine Crumpton, easing the pressure on senior forward Phil Valenti. In addition, Kiefer Douse has put together a deceptively strong campaign as a fourth scorer who could easily be the focal point for any other team in the conference, illustrating just how vital the Griffs' depth can be. Freshman Isaiah Reese has also blossomed, proving that the new coach has struck gold with his own players in addition to the incumbents he inherited from Baron.

Midseason All-MAAC First Team (in alphabetical order)
Brett Bisping, Siena (13.0 PPG, 9.2 RPG, 1.3 APG, 1.3 SPG, 52% FG, 72% FT, 39% 3-pt FG)
Kassius Robertson, Canisius (18.1 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 2.3 APG, 46% FG, 80% FT, 44% 3-pt FG)
Justin Robinson, Monmouth 
(18.2 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 5.2 APG, 1.8 SPG, 40% FG, 82% FT, 38% 3-pt FG)
Kahlil Thomas, Rider (13.8 PPG, 9.5 RPG, 1.1 APG, 1.0 BPG, 1.1 SPG, 53% FG, 57% FT)
Jordan Washington, Iona (18.6 PPG, 7.6 RPG, 58% FG, 69% FT)

Midseason All-MAAC Second Team (in alphabetical order)

Jermaine Crumpton, Canisius (17.1 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 1.3 APG, 53% FG, 72% FT, 44% 3-pt FG)
Tyler Nelson, Fairfield (19.0 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 2.8 APG, 1.3 SPG, 43% FG, 87% FT, 38% 3-pt FG)
Micah Seaborn, Monmouth (15.3 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 2.2 APG, 1.2 SPG, 38% FG, 81% FT, 34% 3-pt FG)
Quadir Welton, Saint Peter's (12.7 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 1.9 APG, 46% FG, 60% FT)
Marquis Wright, Siena (14.7 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 4.3 APG, 1.0 SPG, 39% FG, 70% FT, 35% 3-pt FG)

Midseason All-MAAC Third Team (in alphabetical order)
Chris Brady, Monmouth (9.8 PPG, 6.4 RPG, 1.5 BPG, 59% FG. 77% FT)
Mikey Dixon, Quinnipiac 
(16.6 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 2.6 APG, 48% FG, 87% FT, 41% 3-pt FG)
Matt Scott, Niagara (17.1 PPG, 6.6 RPG, 3.3 APG, 1.3 SPG, 43% FG, 73% FT, 39% 3-pt FG)
Zavier Turner, Manhattan (16.3 PPG, 2.7 APG, 3.5 APG, 1.0 SPG, 41% FG, 90% FT, 49% 3-pt FG)
Trevis Wyche, Saint Peter's (11.1 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 3.5 APG, 1.7 SPG, 40% FG, 77% FT, 36% 3-pt FG)

Midseason All-MAAC Honorable Mentions (in alphabetical order)
Kahlil Dukes, Niagara (16.0 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 3.8 APG, 44% FG, 93% FT, 44% 3-pt FG)
Khallid Hart, Marist (17.5 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 2.7 APG, 1.3 SPG, 46% FG, 77% FT, 36% 3-pt FG)
Lavon Long, Siena (12.1 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 2.6 APG, 1.0 SPG, 50% FG, 73% FT, 44% 3-pt FG)

Jon Severe, Iona (11.4 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 1.9 APG, 48% FG, 83% FT, 44% 3-pt FG)
Zane Waterman, Manhattan (14.1 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 52% FG, 77% FT, 42% 3-pt FG)

Midseason MAAC All-Rookie Team (in alphabetical order)
E.J. Crawford, Iona (9.5 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 1.3 APG, 44% FG, 75% FT, 42% 3-pt FG)
Mikey Dixon, Quinnipiac (16.6 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 2.6 APG, 48% FG, 87% FT, 41% 3-pt FG)
Stevie Jordan, Rider (12.4 PPG, 3.8 RPG, 5.6 APG, 1.2 SPG, 47% FG, 67% FT, 30% 3-pt FG)
Peter Kiss, Quinnipiac (12.3 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 1.9 APG, 1.2 SPG, 41% FG, 72% FT, 30% 3-pt FG)
Isaiah Reese, Canisius (8.2 PPG, 3.8 RPG, 3.3 APG, 1.4 SPG, 46% FG, 79% FT, 33% 3-pt FG)

Scoring Leaders
1) Tyler Nelson, Fairfield (19.0 PPG)
2) Jordan Washington, Iona (18.6)

3) Justin Robinson, Monmouth (18.2)
4) Kassius Robertson, Canisius (18.1)
5) Khallid Hart, Marist (17.5)
6) Matt Scott, Niagara (17.1)
7) Jermaine Crumpton, Canisius (17.1)
8) Mikey Dixon, Quinnipiac (16.6)
9) Zavier Turner, Manhattan (16.3)
10) Kahlil Dukes, Niagara (16.0)

Rebounding Leaders
1) Amadou Sidibe, Fairfield (10.4 RPG)
2) Kahlil Thomas, Rider (9.5)
3) Brett Bisping, Siena (9.2)
4) Quadir Welton, Saint Peter's (7.9)
5) Jordan Washington, Iona (7.6)
6) Dominic Robb, Niagara (7.0)
7) Zane Waterman, Manhattan (7.0)
8) Matt Scott, Niagara (6.6)
9) Norville Carey, Rider (6.4)
10) Chris Brady, Monmouth (6.4)

Assist Leaders
1) Stevie Jordan, Rider (5.6 APG)
2) Rickey McGill, Iona (5.4)
3) Justin Robinson, Monmouth (5.2)
4) Marquis Wright, Siena (4.3)
5) Jerome Segura, Fairfield (4.1)
6) Malik Johnson, Canisius (4.0)
7) Kahlil Dukes, Niagara (3.8)
8) Zavier Turner, Manhattan (3.5)
9) Trevis Wyche, Saint Peter's (3.5)
10) Isaiah Reese, Canisius (3.3)

Field Goal Percentage Leaders
1) Chris Brady, Monmouth (.586)
2) Jordan Washington, Iona (.584)
3) Amadou Sidibe, Fairfield (.573)
4) Kahlil Thomas, Rider (.529)
5) Jermaine Crumpton, Canisius (.528)
6) Brett Bisping, Siena (.517)
7) Zane Waterman, Manhattan (.516)
8) Javion Ogunyemi, Siena (.508)
9) Lavon Long, Siena (.503)
10) Kiefer Douse, Canisius (.500)

Free Throw Percentage Leaders
1) Kahlil Dukes, Niagara (.930)
2) Zavier Turner, Manhattan (.897)
3) Mikey Dixon, Quinnipiac (.870)
4) Tyler Nelson, Fairfield (.870)
5) Rickey McGill, Iona (.830)
6) Justin Robinson, Monmouth (.824)
7) Micah Seaborn, Monmouth (.805)
T-8) Kassius Robertson, Canisius (.800)
T-8) Phil Valenti, Canisius (.800)
10) Zane Waterman, Manhattan (.772)

Three-Point Field Goal Percentage Leaders
1) Zavier Turner, Manhattan (.448)
2) Je'lon Hornbeak, Monmouth (.444)
3) Kahlil Dukes, Niagara (.443)
4) Jon Severe, Iona (.443)
5) Kassius Robertson, Canisius (.439)
6) Jermaine Crumpton, Canisius (.437)

7) Schadrac Casimir, Iona (.424)
8) E.J. Crawford, Iona (.423)
9) Zane Waterman, Manhattan (.415)
10) Mikey Dixon, Quinnipiac (.413)

Power Rankings
1) Monmouth (16-5, 8-2 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Sunday 1/22 vs. Fairfield (W 91-49)
Next Game: Friday 1/27 vs. Quinnipiac, 7 p.m.

2) Saint Peter's (10-9, 6-3 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Saturday 1/21 vs. Niagara (L 57-55)
Next Game: Monday 1/23 vs. Rider, 7 p.m.

3) Iona (12-8, 5-4 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Friday 1/20 vs. Fairfield (W 96-89)
Next Game: Monday 1/23 vs. Quinnipiac, 7 p.m.

4) Siena (9-12, 6-4 MAAC)
Last Week: 6
Last Game: Sunday 1/22 at Manhattan (W 81-68)
Next Game: Friday 1/27 vs. Iona, 7 p.m.

5) Canisius (12-8, 5-4 MAAC)
Last Week: 2
Last Game: Friday 1/20 at Quinnipiac (L 95-90)
Next Game: Monday 1/23 at Niagara, 7 p.m.

6) Rider (12-8, 5-4 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Saturday 1/21 vs. Marist (W 84-66)
Next Game: Monday 1/23 at Saint Peter's, 7 p.m.

7) Quinnipiac (8-11, 5-4 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Friday 1/20 vs. Canisius (W 95-90)
Next Game: Monday 1/23 at Iona, 7 p.m.

8) Fairfield (8-10, 3-6 MAAC)
Last Week: 7
Last Game: Sunday 1/22 at Monmouth (L 91-49)
Next Game: Saturday 1/28 vs. Marist, 1 p.m.

9) Marist (6-14, 3-6 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Saturday 1/21 at Rider (L 84-66)
Next Game: Thursday 1/26 vs. Saint Peter's, 7:30 p.m.

10) Niagara (6-14, 3-6 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Saturday 1/21 at Saint Peter's (W 57-55)
Next Game: Monday 1/23 vs. Canisius, 7 p.m.

11) Manhattan (7-14, 2-8 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Sunday 1/22 vs. Siena (L 81-68)
Next Game: Thursday 1/26 at Niagara, 7 p.m.


  1. Waterman has better numbers than many of your 1, 2, and 3 team picks. Alas because his team has a lesser record you lower his personal rating ? ?

    1. The rationale behind all these honors is traditionally to reward winning. Doesn't make it right to downgrade Waterman, who is having an excellent junior season, but that was the basis there.