Two point guards dished out seven assists each and took one step closer to joining the all-time Big East greats and getting their team into March Madness Tuesday with monster games and big wins over ranked teams.
The Value Add All-Conference teams were posted by Breitbart Sports last week, and both D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera (Georgetown) and Kris Dunn (Providence) made the Big East squad. Smith-Rivera led the Hoyas to a stunning upset at No. 5 Xavier Tuesday night, solidifying his spot among the Big East’s top five players.
If the season ended today, Smith-Rivera would be the first player to ever rank as one of the Big East’s top five players in three seasons.
In fact, last year he was the third Georgetown player to accomplish the feat twice, with Roy Hibbert and Greg Monroe doing it first. If the season ended today, Kris Dunn (Providence) would become only the third non-Hoya to accomplish the feat, joining DeJuan Blair (Pittsburgh) and Bryce Cotton (Providence).
The Friars started hot in surging into the Top 10, but as teams started to double- and triple-team Dunn, the Friars were upset by Marquette and Seton Hall at home and trailed Butler in a match-up of top 20 teams. However, Dunn hit key shots late including banking in a three-pointer to deliver a 71-68 win over Butler.
The Hoyas appeared out of the NCAA tournament despite some close losses against top teams such as Maryland, but Smith-Rivera’s four three-pointers and 20 points gave the Hoyas their first road win over a top five team in five years, 81-72.
The following are the only Big East players to rank in the Top Five in the Big East more than once, and where they ranked nationally that year and how many points they were worth to a team.
Kemba Walker of UConn was the No. 2 player in the country in 2011, but in 2010 he had the misfortune of ranking 44th nationally in the year that the Big East had 8 top 50 players—including a player noone had heard of who Value Add ranked as the top player in the conference—Jimmy Butler.
|Player in Big East Top 5||Year||Nat’l Rank||Team||Conf||Class||Value Add|
|Blair, DeJuan||2008||40||Pittsburgh||6-foot-7||1 Fr||6.44|
|Blair, DeJuan||2009||3||Pittsburgh||6-foot-7||2 So||10.01|
|Cotton, Bryce||2013||11||Providence||6-foot-1||3 Jr||8.18|
|Cotton, Bryce||2014||49||Providence||6-foot-1||4 Sr||6.52|
|Dunn, Kris 3||2015||104||Providence||6-foot-3||2 So||7.33|
|Dunn, Kris 3||2016||34||Providence||6-foot-4||3 Jr||7.51*|
|Hibbert, Roy||2007||2||Georgetown||7-foot-2||3 Jr||9.02|
|Hibbert, Roy||2008||19||Georgetown||7-foot-2||4 Sr||7.26|
|Monroe, Greg||2009||20||Georgetown||6-foot-11||1 Fr||7.53|
|Monroe, Greg||2010||16||Georgetown||6-foot-11||2 So||7.17|
|Smith-Rivera, D’Vauntes 4||2014||46||Georgetown||6-foot-3||2 So||6.55|
|Smith-Rivera, D’Vauntes 4||2015||57||Georgetown||6-foot-3||3 Jr||8.2|
|Smith-Rivera, D’Vauntes 4||2016||48||Georgetown||6-foot-3||4 Sr||7.02*|