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Courtesy: CAA
Northeastern's Joel Smith

CAA Men's Basketball Weekly Report - Feb. 11

Courtesy: CAA
          Release: 02/11/2013
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PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Joel Smith • Northeastern
Sr., G, 6-4, 180 - Leander, Texas/Leander

Smith averaged 23.0 points and 5.0 rebounds to lead Northeastern to a pair of road wins last week. The senior guard scored a game-high 19 points as the Huskies rallied from a 10-point second-half deficit to defeat Hofstra 62-57 last Wednesday. He followed with a game-high 27 points, five rebounds and three assists as NU edged Old Dominion 79-74 in overtime last Saturday. For the week, Smith shot 56% from the floor, including 7-of-16 from 3-point range, and made 13-of-16 at the FT line.

ROOKIE OF THE WEEK:
Jerome Hairston • Towson
Fr., G, 6-3, 190 - Cheyenne, Wyo./Christ School

Hairston averaged 17.3 points from the point guard spot during Towson's 3-0 week. The freshman tallied a career-high 18 points in an 81-68 victory over UNCW, had 17 points and three assists in an 85-65 triumph against Delaware and went a career-best 5-of-6 from 3-point range and poured in 17 points as the Tigers won 90-82 in overtime at Georgia State. For the week, Hairston shot 45% from the floor, 44% from three and 80% from the free throw line.

CONFERENCE NOTES:

Northeastern Maintains Top Spot In CAA Standings: Northeastern owns a 2.5-game lead atop the CAA standings after wins at Hofstra (62-57) and Old Dominion (79-74/ot) last week. Nine of the Huskies' 12 CAA games have been decided by seven points or less and they are 8-1 in those contests. Northeastern is 6-0 on the road in CAA play with victories over the top three teams in the league's preseason poll (Drexel, Delaware and George Mason) as well at second-place Towson. The Huskies travel to William & Mary on Monday.

Northeastern's CAA Start Among Best In League History: Northeastern's 11-1 record in CAA play is its best ever, topping the 2008-09 squad which got off to a 10-1 start. The Huskies opened CAA play with an 8-0 mark, which was tied for the 5th-best start in conference history. VCU (2006-07) and Richmond (1985-86) both started 11-0, while James Madison started 9-0 in 1990-91 and 1991-92. Old Dominion in 2004-05 and Richmond in 1988-89 also opened 8-0.

Tight Battle For Second: While Northeastern holds a 2.5-game lead atop the CAA standings, the next six teams in the league race are separated by only 2.5 games. Towson, which is on a four-game winning streak, sits second at 9-4. Delaware, which has won four of its last five, is third at 7-4. James Madison, which has won five of seven, is next at 8-5, followed by George Mason (7-5), Georgia State (7-6) and Drexel (6-6).

Road Warriors: Road teams went 6-6 in CAA play last week, continuing a season-long trend. Home teams are just 35-31 (53%) in league action for the year. Six of the CAA's 11 teams have better conference marks on the road than at home, including four of the top five teams in the standings (Northeastern, Towson, Delaware and George Mason).

Towson's Turnaround: Towson has won four straight CAA games for the first time ever and its nine conference victories are the most since joining the CAA in 2001-02. The Tigers are two games above .500 overall this late in the season for the first time since 1995-96 and have won 10 games away from home for the first time since 1993-94.

Parity Around The CAA: Nine of the CAA's 11 teams won at least one game and nine teams suffered at least one loss last week. Only Towson (4) and Northeastern (3) have current winning streaks of more than one game and no teams have lost more than two in a row.

Three CAA Players Among Nation's Top 13 In Rebounding: Towson junior Jerrelle Benimon ranked fourth in the nation in rebounding (11.4 rpg), Delaware senior Jamelle Hagins ranked 12th (10.4 rpg) and UNCW senior Keith Rendleman was 13th (10.3 rpg) through games of Feb. 10. In other categories, Delaware's Devon Saddler was 18th (19.4 ppg) and W&M's Marcus Thornton was 41st (18.2 ppg) in scoring. W&M's Tim Rusthoven was 35th (55.0%) and Benimon was 50th (53%) in FG percentage. Thornton was also 22nd in 3-pointers per game (2.9) and 30th in 3-point FG% (41.7%). NU's Joel Smith was 27th in 3-point FG percentage (41.8%) and 40th in FT percentage (86.5%). GSU's James Vincent was 25th (2.5 bpg) and Hagins was 37th (2.3 bpg) in blocked shots.

Towson's Benimon Leads Nation In Double-Doubles: Towson junior Jerrelle Benimon is tied with Bucknell's Mike Muscala for the national lead in double-doubles with 17. Benimon has posted nine double-doubles in his last 12 games. UNCW senior Keith Rendleman recorded double-doubles in all three games last week and ranks 6th nationally with 14 while Delaware senior Jamelle Hagins is 12th with 12 double-doubles. Eight other CAA players have multiple double-doubles: ODU's DeShawn Painter (7), JMU's Rayshawn Goins (6), William & Mary's Tim Rusthoven (5), Towson's Bilal Dixon (3), Hofstra's Stephen Nwaukoni (3), Northeastern's Quincy Ford (2), NU's Reggie Spencer (2) and UNCW's Cedrick Williams (2).

ODU Terminates Taylor: Old Dominion terminated head coach Blaine Taylor last Tuesday afternoon and named Jim Corrigan as interim head coach for the remainder of the season. Taylor was the winningest coach in ODU history, compiling a 239-144 record over 12 seasons. He guided the Monarchs to post-season play in each of the past eight seasons, including four trips to the NCAA Tournament, and won three CAA championships.

Rendleman, Hagins Moving Up CAA Rebounding Chart: UNCW senior Keith Rendleman and Delaware senior Jamelle Hagins have moved into the top 10 on the CAA's career rebounding list. Rendleman has 987 career rebounds and ranks 8th, while Hagins has 974 career boards and ranks 9th. Hagins is the all-time leading rebounder at UD and Rendleman is second on UNCW's career chart. A complete list is included on page 6 of the release.

NU's Lee Among Finalists For Senior CLASS Award: Northeastern guard Jonathan Lee is one of 10 finalists for the Senior CLASS Award, which honors student-athletes who excel on and off the court. Honorees must have noteworthy accomplishments in community, classroom, character and competition. Lee was a third-team All-CAA selection last season after leading the Huskies in scoring (14.5 ppg) and assists (3.5 apg).

UD's Saddler, Hagins Moving Up Career Lists: Delaware guard Devon Saddler has the second-most career points (1,480) of any junior in Division I, trailing only Creighton's Doug McDermott. Saddler, who is averaging a league-best 19.4 ppg this season, ranks seventh on UD's all-time scoring list. Blue Hens' forward Jamelle Hagins became UD's all-time leader in rebounds on Jan. 16 and ranks 7th among all active Div. I players with 974 career boards. He also owns the UD record and ranks 6th in CAA history with 267 career blocked shots.

Youth Movement: There are only eight seniors among the top 30 scorers in the CAA through games of Feb. 10. Northeastern's Joel Smith and UNCW's Keith Rendleman are the only seniors among the top 10. The top 30 also includes 12 juniors, seven sophomores and three freshmen.

Freshmen Among Steals Leaders: ODU guard Keenan Palmore leads the CAA with 1.9 steals per game and is among four freshmen among the league's top 15 in steals. GSU's R.J. Hunter ranks 4th (1.8 spg), JMU's Andre Nation is 7th (1.5 spg) and Northeastern's David Walker is 12th (1.3 spg).

Delaware Ranked 9th Nationally In Free Throw Shooting: Delaware was ranked 9th in the nation in free throw percentage at 76.4% according to the latest NCAA stats through games of Feb. 10. In other team categories, Towson was 38th (39%) in FG percentage defense, 28th in rebound margin (+6.0 rpg) and 15th in blocked shots (5.4 bpg). William & Mary was 24th (29.4%) and Hofstra was 49th (30.8%) in 3-point FG% defense. Northeastern ranked 15th (75.4%) and Drexel was 38th (73.8%) in free throw percentage. James Madison was 44th (11.8 tpg) and Georgia State was 49th (11.8 tpg) in fewest turnovers per game.

Delaware

• Lost 85-65 at Towson but topped Mason 79-72 to end a 10-game losing streak in Fairfax. Have won 4 of their last 5 games overall.

• Junior Devon Saddler scored a team-high 20 points at TU and 22 points at Mason. Saddler, who leads the CAA with 19.4 ppg, has scored double digits in 30 straight games and has tallied 20+ points 10 times. He's 7th on UD's all-time scoring list.

• Guard Jarvis Threatt posted his first career double-double (20 points/10 career-high rebounds) at Mason. He's scored double digits in 11 of his last 14 games.

• Jamelle Hagins, who has 12 double-doubles this season, owns the UD career records for rebounds (974) and blocks (267).

• Senior Josh Brinkley matched a season high with 17 points at Mason on 6-7 FG shooting.

• Delaware was 25-of-30 (83.3%) at the FT line at Mason and ranks 9th nationally in FT percentage at 76.4% for the season.

Drexel

• Split a pair of home games last week, falling 78-66 to Old Dominion before defeating James Madison 60-48. Drexel is 2-4 at home, but 4-2 on the road in CAA play.

• Junior Frantz Massenat netted 17 points vs. ODU and 14 vs. JMU to go over 1,000 points for his career. He's scored double figures in 11 of his last 12 games. Massenat ranks 8th in career assists (376) at Drexel.

• Senior Derrick Thomas hit 5 threes and tallied a season-high 18 points vs. ODU and added 13 points vs. JMU. Thomas is averaging 14.0 ppg over his last four games.

• Damion Lee, who ranks 7th in the CAA in scoring (16.8 ppg), is averaging just 5.3 ppg over his last 3 games since his 16-game double-digit scoring streak ended on Feb. 2.

• Daryl McCoy grabbed a team-high 9 rebounds vs. JMU and has 7 games with double-digit caroms. McCoy ranks 8th all-time in rebounds at DU (797).

• Drexel limited JMU to just 12 first-half points and 38.3% FG shooting in the game.

George Mason

• Went 1-1 last week with an 85-74 win at ODU but a 79-72 home loss to Delaware.

• Junior Jonathan Arledge scored a career-high 21 points at ODU and posted his first double-double (15 points/11 rebounds) vs. UD. Arledge is averaging 17.3 ppg and 7.3 rpg over the past four games.

• Sherrod Wright averaged just 10.5 ppg last week but grabbed a team-high 9 rebounds at ODU. Wright has scored 20 or more points a league-high 11 times this season, with 10 coming in the past 16 games.

• Wright has been Mason's top scorer in 18 of 24 games. He ranks among the CAA's top 10 in scoring, FG% and FT%.

• Junior Bryon Allen contributed 10 points and a season-high 8 assists at ODU and had 12 points and 8 assists against Delaware.

• Sophomore Erik Copes recorded his first double-double (career-high 13 points/10 rebounds) vs. Delaware.

Georgia State

• Fell 76-72 at UNCW and 90-82 in OT to Towson last week.

• Freshman R.J. Hunter hit 6-of-7 threes and scored a team-high 26 points at UNCW. He's scored double figures 20 times and has 11 20-point outings. Hunter is averaging 26.5 ppg over his past four games.

• Manny Atkins tied a career high with 26 pts vs Towson. Atkins, who tops the CAA in 3-pt FG% (43.2%), has scored double digits in 20 of his last 22 games with six 20+ point efforts. He's shooting 83.3% at the line.

• Devonta White averaged 20.5 ppg last week, including a season-high 22 points vs. Towson. He's reached double digits in 21 straight games. White ranks among the CAA's top five in assists and steals.

• GSU was 9-of-17 from 3-point range at UNCW and has drained 44 treys over the past four games.

• James Vincent tops the CAA with 65 blocked shots, which is the 3rd-best season total in GSU history. He has 127 career blocks.

Hofstra

• Fell 62-57 to Northeastern but ended a 7-game slide and a 16-game road losing streak by winning 65-56 at UNCW.

• Junior Stephen Nwaukoni posted double-doubles vs. NU (11 points/13 rebounds) and UNCW (12 points/10 rebounds). He has 3 double-doubles this season.

• Stevie Mejia tallied a team-high 18 points at UNCW and scored 11 vs. NU. Mejia ranks 3rd in the CAA in assists (4.0 apg), 3rd in steals (1.8 spg) and has scored double digits 15 times.

• Senior David Imes had 8 points and 9 rebounds at UNCW and is averaging 10.5 ppg and 7.5 rpg over his last 4 games. Imes went over 500 rebounds (513) for his career.

• Sophomore Taran Buie scored 10 points vs. NU and UNCW and has 16 double-digit efforts in the past 19 games.

• Freshman Jordan Allen made 7 steals at UNCW, falling one shy of a school record. It was the most by a Pride player since 2004.

James Madison

• Went 1-1 last week, beating W&M 81-71 but losing 60-48 at Drexel. JMU was won five of its last seven games.

• Devon Moore averaged 13.5 ppg and 8.0 apg last week, including a double-double vs. W&M with 17 points and a career high-tying 12 assists. Moore is just the 2nd JMU player with three seasons with 100+ assists.

• A.J. Davis came off the bench to score a season-high 27 points in 25 minutes vs. W&M. He was 7-of-9 from 3-point range and had 23 points in the 2nd half.

• Freshman Charles Cooke averaged 11.5 ppg and 7.0 rpg last week. He had a career-high 16 points at Drexel and a career-high 8 rebounds vs. W&M.

• Rayshawn Goins missed the W&M game with a foot injury but had 11 points at DU. He's hit double digits in 14 of 16 games.

• JMU had a 25-0 advantage in points off turnovers in the win over W&M.

UNCW

• Went 1-2 last week, winning 76-72 over Georgia State but suffering losses to Towson (81-68) and Hofstra (65-56).

• Keith Rendleman posted double-doubles vs. TU (19 pts/12 reb), GSU (15 pts/10 reb) and Hofstra (13 pts/10 reb) and has 14 for the season. He also has 15 straight games with double-digit points. He ranks 8th on the CAA's all-time rebounds list (987) and is 6th on UNCW's all-time points list (1,380).

• Chris Dixon scored 12 points vs. GSU and has 7 double-digit efforts in his last 9 games. Dixon is averaging 15.2 ppg over his last nine games.

• Freshman Craig Ponder scored a team-high 17 points vs. GSU and is averaging 12.7 ppg over his last four contests.

• Cedrick Williams averaged 13.5 ppg and 5.5 rpg against GSU and Hofstra.

• UNCW had 5 players score in double figures for the first time this season vs. GSU.

Northeastern

• Rallied from a 10-point deficit to beat Hofstra 62-57 and edged ODU 79-74 in OT. Off to best CAA start ever with an 11-1 mark.

• Joel Smith netted a game-high 27 points at ODU and 19 points vs. HU. He has scored double figures in 9 straight games. Smith ranks 2nd in the CAA in threes (2.5 pg), 2nd in 3-pt FG% (41.8%), 1st in FT% (86.5%) and 5th in scoring (17.0 ppg).

• Jonathan Lee tallied 19 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists at ODU. He's averaging 13.3 ppg. 4.7 rpg and 4.3 apg in 15 games since returning from a preseason foot injury.

• Quincy Ford averaged 14.0 ppg and 7.0 rpg last week. Ford has tallied double figures in eight of his last 10 games.

• Freshman David Walker had 11 points and 4 assists at ODU. He has just 15 turnovers in 406 minutes of action in CAA play.

• Northeastern is shooting 46.9% from the floor, 41.9% from three and 78.1% from the FT line during CAA play, all of which lead the league.

Old Dominion

• Snapped a 10-game losing streak with a 78-66 victory at Drexel in interim coach Jim Corrigan's first game but fell 79-74 in OT to Northeastern on Saturday.

• DeShawn Painter tallied a team-high 15 points at Drexel and posted his 7th double-double (15 points/career-high 16 rebounds) vs. NU. He's averaging 15.8 ppg and 9.8 rpg over his last 5 games.

• Dimitri Batten scored a career-high 25 points vs. NU and had 15 points at DU. He's averaging 14.6 ppg over his last five games.

• Richard Ross added 14 points and 6 rebounds at DU and is averaging 11.8 ppg and 6.0 rpg over his last 5 games. Ross ranks 4th in the CAA with 38 blocks this season.

• Keenan Palmore averaged 9.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg and 3.0 apg last week. He leads the CAA in steals (1.9spg) and is 6th in assists (3.1 apg).

• ODU shot 65.2% from the floor in the 2nd half at Drexel, but was just 1-of-26 from 3-point range vs. NU.

Towson

• Have won four in a row after home victories over UNCW (81-68) and Delaware (85-65) and a road victory at GSU (90-82 in ot).

• Jerrelle Benimon posted double-doubles vs. UNCW (20pts/12reb) and UD (21pts/12reb) and leads the nation with 17 for the year. He has eight games with 20+ points.

• Rafriel Guthrie averaged 14.3 ppg last week, including a career-high 23 points and a career-best 6 assists at GSU.

• Junior Marcus Damas averaged 14.0 ppg last week. He's scored double figures in 12 of his last 15 games.

• Freshman guard Jerome Hairston tallied a career-high 18 points vs. UNCW and had 17 vs. UD and GSU. He's 2nd among all CAA freshmen in scoring with 9.8 ppg.

• Towson shot better than 50% and scored over 80 points in all three games last week.

• Towson is above .500 after 26 games for the first time since 1995-96 and has won 4 straight CAA games for the first time ever.

William & Mary

• Lost 81-71 at James Madison last Wednesday. Dropped to 0-6 on the road in CAA play.

• Marcus Thornton hit 5-of-8 threes and scored a team-high 22 points at JMU. Thornton, who has tallied double digits in 24 straight games, leads the league with 2.9 treys made per game.

• Tim Rusthoven tallied 11 points and 9 rebounds at JMU. He's averaging 17.0 ppg and 9.4 rpg and has four double-doubles over the past seven games.

• Senior Matt Rum is just the 10th player in W&M history to compile 200 assists and 100 3-pointers in a career.

• Brandon Britt added 10 points at JMU and is averaging 13.5 ppg in his last 2 games.

• W&M shot 53.2% from the floor at JMU. The Tribe was also 14-of-27 from 3-point range, which tied the 5th-most treys in school history. W&M is averaging 9.7 threes made over the last three contests.

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