No surprise to an avid fan of the Wildcats, but Villanova freshman Josh Hart is impressing observers across the Big East and the nation. He recently found himself listed among the top-10 best freshmen, according to ESPN's Jeff Goodman, coming in at number-10 overall. This week, he was named to the Big East's weekly honor roll, earning Big East Rookie of the Week, after the Wildcats went on the road to collect wins against Seton Hall and St. John's.
Hart was also named the league's top rookie last week, while Creighton's Doug McDermott also repeated as Player of the Week. Both teams sit at 4-0 in the Big East standings.
Hart scored 11 points in Newark, NJ and another 14 points at Madison Square Garden for an average of 12.5 points over the last week. He grabbed five rebounds in both games and shot an impressive 58.3 percent from the floor. Averaging 9.9 points per game in 22.6 minutes this season, Hart has scored in double-digits in each of the Wildcats' contests since the December 15th meeting with La Salle at the Pavilion.
Villanova forward JayVaughn Pinkston was also recognized by the conference on its weekly Honor Roll. Pinkston averaged 16 points and 8 rebounds in the New York-metro road trip. He had a 17-point output against the Pirates and added 15 against the Red Storm, while grabbing 16 rebounds between the two efforts.
The full list of weekly honors follows:
BIG EAST PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Doug McDermott, F, Creighton
McDermott averaged 27.0 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists in wins over DePaul and Xavier. He scored 35 points in a 95-89 victory over Xavier on Sunday. Earlier in the week, he posted 19 points, five rebounds and four assists at DePaul in an 81-62 win. McDermott leads the BIG EAST in scoring with a 25.0 average.
BIG EAST ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
Josh Hart, G, Villanova
Hart averaged 12.5 points while helping the Wildcats to a 2-0 week. He had 14 points in a 74-67 win at St. John's. Hart scored 11 points in an 83-67 win at Seton Hall. He had five rebounds in both games and shot 58.3 percent from the field.
BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll
Cleveland Melvin, F, DePaul
Averaged 23.0 points and 7.0 boards in a 1-1 week. Had 30 points at Butler (99-94, 2ot).
D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera, G, Georgetown
Averaged 18.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists in a 1-1 week.
Bryce Cotton, G, Providence
Scored 20 points and dished seven assists in a 70-52 win over Georgetown (70-52).
JayVaughn Pinkston, F, Villanova
Averaged 16.0 points and 8.0 rebounds in wins at Seton Hall (83-67) and St. John's (74-67).
Semaj Christon, G, Xavier
Averaged 27.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists while shooting 18-of-27 from the floor and 5-of-6 from 3-point range in a 1-1 week.