Rodriguez Tabbed Phillips 66 Big 12 co-Player of the Week
MANHATTAN, Kan. – Sophomore Angel Rodriguez earned Phillips 66 Big 12 co-Player of the Week honors for the first time in his career on Monday after helping Kansas State split a pair of games last week.
Rodriguez, who shared the weekly honor with Kansas’ Jeff Withey, becomes the second Wildcat to earn the Big 12’s Player of the Week accolade, joining Rodney McGruder who has won the weekly honor four times this season (Dec. 10 and 24, Jan. 7 and 21). The five overall weekly awards are the most by any Big 12 school this season.
Rodriguez averaged 19.5 points on 48.1 percent shooting (13-of-27), including 42.9 percent (6-of-14) from 3-point range, to go with 8.0 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 3.0 steals in 34.5 minutes per game in helping K-State split games with No. 14/13 Kansas (62-83) and Baylor (81-61) last week. He has now scored in double figures in seven of the last nine games, including four consecutive games.
Rodriguez opened the week with a 17-point effort in a road loss at No. 14/13 Kansas on Feb. 11, as he connected on 6-of-12 field goals, including 3-of-6 from 3-point range, with six assists, three steals and two rebounds in 31 minutes of action. He followed with his second 20-point outing in three games in a home win over Baylor, as he collected his first career double-double with career-highs in points (22) and assists (10). He became the first Wildcat with 10 assists in a game since Denis Clemente dished out 10 in a win over Oklahoma State on March 11, 2010, while his 10 dimes tie for the seven-most ever in a conference game. He went 7-of-15 from the field against the Bears, including 3-of-8 from beyond the arc, to go with five rebounds and three steals in 38 minutes. He was also the primary defender on Baylor’s Pierre Jackson, who scored just seven points on 2-of-8 shooting, including 1-of-7 from 3-point range, with five turnovers.
Rodriguez ranks first or second in six categories, including first in assists (115) and steals (33) and second in scoring (10.7 ppg.) and double-digit scoring games (14). He has helped the Wildcats rank first in the Big 12 in both assist-to-turnover ratio (1.4) and turnover margin (+3.0), while he places in the league’s Top 20 in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.4, 1st), assists (5.0, 4th), steals (1.4, 7th) and scoring (20th).
The 13th-ranked Wildcats (20-5, 9-3 Big 12) remain in a three-way tie for first place in the Big 12 standings heading into tonight’s Big Monday match-up with former head coach Bob Huggins and his West Virginia Mountaineers (13-12, 6-6 Big 12) at Bramlage Coliseum at 8 pm. It will mark Huggins’ first trip to Manhattan since leaving K-State after the 2006-07 season to return to his alma mater, while it will be the Mountaineers’ first-ever trip to K-State.
Withey Named Big 12 Player of the Week for Second Time in 2012-13
Kansas’ senior center earns Big 12 Player of the Week for the third time in his career
IRVING, Texas - Kansas senior Jeff Withey became the conference’s all-time blocked shots leader Saturday and has been named Phillip 66 co-Big 12 Player of the Week, earning the honor for games Feb. 11-17, in a vote of a media panel which covers the league, the conference office announced Monday.
Withey, who shares this week’s honor with Kansas State’s Angel Rodriguez, posted 16.0 points and 10.5 rebounds per game as the Jayhawks recorded wins over then-No. 10 K-State and Texas. The San Diego, Calif., center shot 47.6 percent from the field and made 80 percent of his free throws while blocking seven shots and grabbing three steals. He had double-doubles in both games, finishing with 17 points and 10 boards versus the Wildcats and following that performance up with 15 points and 10 rebounds against UT. Withey’s two double-doubles were his eighth and nine of the year.
In the Texas game, Withey became the Big 12 career leader in blocked shots with his 265th rejection, passing Chris Mihm of Texas who had 264 blocks from 1998-2000. In the Kansas State contest, Withey became Kansas’ all-time blocked shots leader, passing Greg Ostertag who had 258 from 1992-95.
Withey is the first Jayhawk to be named Big 12 Player of the Week for the second time this season and has received the honor three times in his career. Other KU players who have received the accolade in 2012-13 are Travis Releford and Ben McLemore.
Kansas (21-4, 9-3) will play at Oklahoma State (19-5, 9-3) in a battle for first place in the Big 12 race on Wednesday, Feb. 20, at 8 p.m. (Central) on ESPN2. KU and OSU are tied with Kansas State (20-5, 9-3) atop the league standings.