So Javon McCrea had an average week but because Buffalo beat Akron he got the player of the week award.
BUFFALO, NY UB Athletics) – For the second time this season, Javon McCrea was named the Mid-American Conference East Division Player of the Week on Monday by the conference. The junior forward averaged 29 points, 10.5 rebounds, six blocked shots and 2.5 steals in games against Kent State and Akron.
In Buffalo’s 83-81 overtime loss at Kent State, McCrea nearly posted UB’s first ever triple-double. He finished with 32 points, 15 rebounds a career-best eight blocked shots. Seven of his rebounds were offensive, resulting in 10 second-chance points.
There has been jawing among MAC fans that McCrea should not be in the running for player of the year. Talk has focused around DJ Cooper, Zeke Marshall, and a hand full of other Akron/ Ohio players. But lets just see where McCrea Stands against these guys!
The fact is this! Javon McCrea is not only the most complete player in the MAC, he is the most complete player by a country mile!
What you want data? I can do that!
Here it is the big list of every MAC player who is top ten in any major category. The last three columns are where I apply my ranking methodology.
Javon McCrea is ranked top ten in four categories. Only McCrea, Chris Evans, and Zeke Marshall are this versatile. But McCrea is far more dominant in all four categories. He is ranked second in Points per game, third in field goal percentage, third in rebounds per game and second in shots blocked.
That is an average rank of 2.5 points across the four areas he is ranked. Assigning a rank of 1 to be ten points, 2 to be 9 points, and so on this give McCrea an average "score" of 7.5 points. Multiply that by four, the number of events he scores in, and Javon brings home 34 points.
Evans is his closes completion, four events scores and an average score of 4.5. That wins him the silver
DJ Cooper is highly ranked in three events, but invisible elsewhere. The strong ranking is enough to put him over Zeke Marshall who scores a Bronze.
In case you're wondering about team scores -
There are two arguments made against McCrea. The first is that UB is having a bad year. By "bad year" I think they mean tied for 5th in the conference having beating two of the teams ahead of them head to head. That argument fails because it's the player of the year, not the team of the year. Team of the year gets a shiny trophy and a dance card. But hey we just beat the best team in the MAC so anything is possible right?
UB is a young team that lost the bulk of their contributors last season. Robinson, Filzen, and Watt would have been hard to replace for Any MAC team. Then on top of the we lose Oldham in the early part of the year while already missing Weir.
Through all of that UB has played most of the MAC incredibly close and given as good as we have gotten. For a huge part of the year that was 100% Javon McCrea. Now that Watson and Regan are coming alive in a big way UB is suddenly a damn scary team. A team that is a last second overtime shot away from sitting alone as the 4th seed.
The other argument is that McCrea has inflated numbers because of the lack of production around him. The problem there is that as others have started to step up McCrea has not fallen off, one bit. If anything it has allowed McCrea to widen his game. Playing harder in the paint on defense and starting to be able to work in a jumper that he could not pull off when other teams only had to worry about him.
Can there be any doubt McCrea is the best overall player in the MAC and easily the most important to his team? By what other measure should a conference player of the year be chosen?