MAC East Division Player of the Week
Dylan Frye, Bowling Green
Guard, Junior, Miami, Fla. (Mater Academy)
Dylan Frye, a junior guard, led Bowling Green to an upset win over No. 18 Buffalo on Friday (Feb. 1) night in front of a record-breaking crowd at the Stroh Center. Frye scored a season-high 25 points, while also adding two assists and two steals. Frye made a career-high 10 field goals in the victory, going 10-for-16 from the floor. The Miami native went 3-for-7 from downtown, connecting on his 150th-career triple in the process, while also marking the 43rd time in his career that he’s made multiple three-pointers in one game. Frye has now scored 20-plus points nine times across his career, including two 20-plus point efforts in 2018-19.
MAC Co-West Division Player of the Week
Larry Austin Jr., Central Michigan
Guard, Senior, Springfield, Ill. (Vanderbilt)
Senior guard Larry Austin Jr. had another standout week for Central Michigan, leading the Chippewas to a 2-0 record. Austin averaged 17.5 points, 8.5 rebounds, 6.0 assists and 1.5 steals per game, as CMU knocked off two in-state rivals. Versus Eastern Michigan on Tuesday, Austin totaled 13 points, seven assists, six rebounds and two steals in the 86-82 victory. Against Western Michigan on Saturday, he notched his fifth career double-double, posting a team-best 22 points and a game-high 11 rebounds to go along with five assists. Austin fueled a dominating second half performance by the Chippewas, scoring 13 of his 22 points and pulling down seven of his 11 rebounds in the game’s final 20 minutes. Austin has established himself as one of the MAC’s top players this season, ranking No. 1 in the conference in assists, No. 2 in steals, No. 5 in scoring and No. 19 in rebounding.
Nate Navigato, Toledo
Forward, Senior, Geneva, Ill. (Geneva)
Senior forward Nate Navigato tallied a team-high 17.0 points per game to go along with 5.5 rebounds per game to lead Toledo to a pair of road wins and sole possession of first place in the MAC’s West Division. Navigato also shot 56.5 percent from the field (13-of-23) and an impressive 50.0 percent (7-of-14) from three-point range. In the Rockets’ 66-63 win at Miami on Tuesday, Navigato poured in a team-high 20 points and grabbed eight rebounds and scored the game’s final five points. With Toledo trailing 63-61, Navigato buried a three with 1:06 to play before sealing the game on a driving layup with 17.7 seconds remaining. Navigato scored all 14 of his points in the second half in Toledo’s 69-55 win at Northern Illinois on Saturday. He also came through in a key moment for a second straight game after the Huskies had trimmed the Rockets’ 12-point halftime lead to 47-46 with 9:50 remaining. Navigato hit a three and then a jumper in the lane to push Toledo’s lead to 52-46 and ignite a game-deciding 18-2 spurt.
Jimond Ivey, Akron
Guard, Senior, Cleveland, Ohio (Glenville)
In Akron’s lone game of the week, senior Jimond Ivey led the Zips to a 65-53 win on the road over Ohio. Ivey scored a game-high 21 points and pulled down a team-best nine rebounds to give Akron its first true road win. He shot 47.1 percent (8-of-17) from the field which included a 33.3 percent (3-of-9) effort from deep and a perfect 2-of-2 performance from the charity stripe. Ivey added two steals, one assist and one blocked shot to the winning effort. The Zips improved to 13-8 overall and 5-3 in league play.
Dontay Caruthers, Buffalo
Guard, Senior, Rochester, NY
Senior Dontay Caruthers had the best offensive week of his career as he averaged 24.5 points per game during UB’s two contests this past week. On Tuesday, Caruthers had 21 points in an 83-59 win over Ball State as he was 8-of-10 from the floor, including 2-of-2 from three points range. In all, Caruthers missed just five combined shots over the two games, two coming from the free throw line and three coming from two point range. He was a perfect 5-of-5 from three point range. Caruthers then had a career high 28 points on Friday night at Bowling Green, while adding seven rebounds. He is now averaging 9.3 points per game this season and 11.4 points per game in MAC competition.
Paul Jackson, Eastern Michigan
Guard, R-Senior, Stone Mountain, Ga. (Martin Luther King Jr.)
Eastern Michigan was led by redshirt senior Paul Jackson on the week, who played all 40 minutes of both contests for the Eagles at Central Michigan and home against Miami. The redshirt senior poured in 18.5 points per game while also averaging 4.5 assists and just 2.5 turnovers in the two contests. Jackson’s performance included his third 20+-point performance of the season and first since putting up 20 against Drexel, Nov. 9. The Stone Mountain, Ga. native has upped his scoring average to 13.5 points per game and now needs 180 points to reach the 1,000 point club in his EMU career.
Antonio Williams, Kent State
Guard, Junior, Chicago, Ill.
Junior guard Antonio Williams gave Kent State its fifth conference win with his go-ahead shot in the 83-80 overtime win at Ball State. As the Flashes were down 80-79 with 12 seconds left, Williams went to work throwing up an off-balanced three, but aggressively chased down his own miss and put it in for the go-ahead score all in one motion. His clutch play would go on to be the No. 1 play in Sportscenters top 10 plays. In the win, Williams had eight points, six rebounds, and tied his career-high four steals. For the season, Williams is averaging 10.8 points per game and is shooting 47.9 percent from the field. He also leads the team with 25 steals.
Dante Thorpe, Northern Illinois
Guard, Senior, Washington, D.C. (Triton College)
Dante Thorpe averaged 19.5 points per game, shooting 66.7 percent from the field, including a perfect 100 percent (6-of-6) from three-point range, for the week for NIU. The senior from Washington, D.C., opened the week with 20 points and five rebounds in a victory over Ohio (Jan. 29), Thorpe was 5-of-6 from the floor against the Bobcats, including 4-of-4 from three, and 6-of-4 at the free-throw line. Thorpe then scored 19 points, on 7-of-12 shooting, including 2-of-2 from three, as well as 3-of-4 from the line against Toledo (Feb. 2). In conference play, Thorpe is averaging 17.4 points per game, shooting 58.6 percent from the field and 60 percent from three-point range.
?Jason Carter, Ohio
Forward, R-Sophomore, Johnstown, Ohio / Johnstown-Monroe
Jason Carter led the Bobcats this past week, averaging 16.5 points per game while shooting .448 form the field and .600 from the free throw line. He added 8.0 rebounds per game to go along with 1.0 blocks, 1.0 assists and 1.0 steals per game. On Jan. 29 at NIU, Carter scored 15 points, going 6-of-15 from the field and 3-of-4 from the free throw line, while grabbing six boards, dishing out one assists and recording one steal. On Feb. 2 against Akron, Carter led the Bobcats with 18 points and 10 boards while shooting 7-of-14 fro the field and 3-of-6 from the free throw line. He also registered one assists, one steal and two blocks.
Michael Flowers, Western Michigan
Guard, Sophomore, Southfield, Mich. (Southfield A&T)
After not playing a game in a week due to weather conditions, sophomore Michael Flowers showed no signs of rust at Central Michigan on Saturday, scoring a game-high 27 points on 8-of-15 shooting from the field. The sophomore guard also had four rebounds, three assists, one block and one steal in 33 minutes of action. Flowers’ 27-point performance marked the ninth time this season he has scored over 20 points and 16th time he has scored in double figures. With his performance, Flowers improved his scoring averaging from 15.6 to 16.1 which ranks 8th in the MAC.