It was an eventful Monday for the Murray State Racers as Ja Morant racked up more weekly honors and the Racers received votes in a national poll. Morant was voted the Ohio Valley Conference men’s basketball Player of the Week Monday for the fifth time this season for the week of Jan. 7-13.
The sophomore from Dalzell, S.C. was a unanimous selection in a vote by the league’s sports information directors.
He started the week with a monster game at UT Martin (Jan. 10) with 26 points and 18 assists. Morant’s game set the MSU single-game assist record as he surpassed the 1997 mark of 16 assists by MSU’s Chad Townsend (vs Eastern Illinois) Morant was just two off the OVC assist record of 20 by Middle Tennessee’s James Johnson in 1986 (Vs Freed-Hardeman).
After a 17 point/14 assist game at Southeast Missouri (Jan. 12), Morant averaged 21.5 points per game and 16 assists for the week. Morant is the No. 1 player in the nation in assist rate at 56.4 percent.
With a fifth weekly honor, Morant ties Cameron Payne (2013-15), Isaac Spencer (1997-01), Lamont Sleets 1979-84 and Glen Green (1979-83) for sixth place all-time in total OVC Player of the Week awards. Isaiah Canaan (2009-13) and Marcus Brown (1992-96) each set the bar for the Racers with 10 career honors each. Popeye Jones (1988-92) and Jeff Martin (1986-89) each had seven and Frank Allen (1989-93) was honored six times.
The Racers travel north this week looking to improve on their 4-0 start in OVC play. MSU (13-2) plays Thursday at Eastern Illinois in a 7 p.m. tip at Lantz Arena in Charleston and Saturday at SIUE in the Vadalabene Center in Edwardsville, Ill.
When the Associated Press Top-25 Poll was released Monday, the Racers learned they were getting votes for the first time this season and for the first time since 2015. With nine total points in the votes, the Racers are No. 36 in the country this week. The Racers received two votes for 23rd place and three votes for 25th place.
2018-19 OVC PLAYERS OF THE WEEKPLAYERNov. 12 Nick Mayo, Eastern KentuckyNov. 19 Terry Taylor, Austin PeayNov. 26 Ja Morant, Murray StateDec. 3 Ja Morant, Murray StateDec. 10 Nick Mayo, Eastern KentuckyDec. 17 Terry Taylor, APSU & Kevin McClain, BelmontDec. 26 Ja Morant, Murray StateDec. 31 Mack Smith, Eastern IllinoisJan. 7 Ja Morant, Murray StateJan. 14 Ja Morant, Murray State
NEWCOMERNov. 12 Donte Fitzpatrick-Dorsey, Tennessee StateNov. 19 Skyler Hogan, Southeast MissouriNov. 26 Josiah Wallace, Eastern IllinoisDec. 3 Quintin Dove, UT MartinDec. 10 Skyler Hogan, Southeast MissouriDec. 17 Donte Fitzpatrick-Dorsey, Tennessee StateDec. 26 Kelvin Robinson, Eastern KentuckyDec. 31 Shareef Smith, Eastern Illinois & Quintin Dove, UT MartinJan. 7 Josiah Wallace, Eastern IllinoisJan. 14 Jabari McGhee, Austin Peay
FRESHMANNov. 12 Tevin Brown, Murray StateNov. 19 Nick Muszynski, BelmontNov. 26 Jomaru Brown, EKU & Hunter Vick, TTUDec. 3 Jr. Clay, Tennessee TechDec. 10 Nick Muszynski, BelmontDec. 17 Tevin Brown, Murray StateDec. 26 Tevin Brown, Murray StateDec. 31 Cam Burrell, Eastern IllinoisJan. 7 KJ Williams, MUR & Cameron Williams, SIUEJan. 14 Nick Muszynski, Belmont
Associate AD – Media Relations
Murray State University