By: Tim Andrzejewski (firstname.lastname@example.org)
HOUSTON, Texas — Marcus Evans has been named the National Freshman of the Week by CBSSports.com and the Wayman Tisdale National Freshman of the Week by the United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) for his performances last week against Florida Atlantic and FIU.
He has now picked up five awards this week and three national awards. He was named the College Sports Madness High-Major National Player of the Week, as well as CSM’s Conference USA Player of the Week and Conference USA Freshman of the Week.
Along with being named the National Freshman of the Week, Evans joined the top 10 watch list for the Wayman Tisdale Award, given to the National Freshman of the Year.
Evans led Rice to a sweep of Florida Atlantic and FIU. Evans averaged 29.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.5 steals and 3.0 assists. He shot 61.8% (21-of-34) from the field, 55.6% (6-of-9) from three and 92.3% (12-of-13) from the free throw line.
The freshman opened the week by recording 29 points, including 19 in the second half, in a 90-85 victory over Florida Atlantic. He recorded four rebounds, three assists and two steals while connecting on 10-of-17 from the field, 2-of-3 from three and a perfect 7-of-7 from the line. Midway through the second half, Evans scored nine of 11 points to turn a four-point deficit into a three-point lead. He then made all four free throws with less than a minute to play and Rice leading by two to seal the victory. With his performance, Evans became just the 20th player in school history and just the 12th freshman in Conference USA history record 500 points in a season.
Two days later, the Chesapeake, Va., native recorded his second 30-point game of the season, scoring 30 points in an 86-70 victory over FIU. He scored 18 points in the first half to help stake Rice to an 18-point halftime lead, its largest of the season. He had a career-high six steals, five rebounds, three assists and a block. Evans connected on 10-of-17 from the floor, three-of-six from three and five-of-six from the charity stripe.
With 553 points, Evans is seventh in Conference USA history among freshman for points in a season. It is also the 12th most points in a season in Rice history. His 57 steals also set a new Rice freshman record.