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Hustle Belt MAC Men's Basketball Player's of the Week: Week 15

Along the shores of Lake Erie there lives a hardwood haunt, a beast of the blocks, a rim-rattling monster, and they call him, "The Kraken".

As you can see Javon McCrea's tentacles allow him to beat opponents' outstretched arms to the basket.
As you can see Javon McCrea's tentacles allow him to beat opponents' outstretched arms to the basket.
Adam Hunger

EAST: Javon McCrea, Buffalo senior stat-monger

LW: Demetrius Treadwell, Akron senior forward

Welcome back to the Javon McCrea weekly awards show, where we honor the great performances of McCrea's past. This past week the man they call "The Kraken" did his usual dominating performance before his hometown crowd, then took his one-man act on the road and allowed the fine folks of Kent to witness his magic firsthand.

In 71 minutes over the past week McCrea managed to score 51 points, pull down 24 rebounds, make 15 free throws, dish nine assists, block four shots and win two games while securing his team's lead as the top show in the MAC East. It's all in a week's work for the Monster on Lake Erie.

Wednesday night McCrea was absolutely marvelous, shutting down Demetrius Treadwell and the rest of Akron's bigs in the Bull's thrilling 96-90 victory. He came within a pair of assists of recording the programs first triple-double, finishing with 20 points, 13 boards, eight dimes and three blocks. He was the difference-maker in a game that could have went either way down the stretch, and with the win Buffalo tied Akron for the top spot in the MAC East.

Then on Saturday, he pulled off an even more pleasing performance when he took over late in the first half. The Bulls found themselves in a nasty 19-7 deficit and on a one-way trip to the painfully embarrassing blowoutville. Then McCrea started doing McCrea things. He lit up KSU down the stretch of the first half, entering halftime with 16 points, and just three away from tying his school's career record.

Less than three minutes into the second half, McCrea had not only asserted himself as the top dog in the game, but as the king of the Bulls, at least on the hardwood, passing Rasaun Young as the All-Time leading scorer of the State University of New York at Buffalo Bulls. He went on to score 31 (while going 13-for-16 from the charity stripe), pulling down 11 rebounds and another hustle Belt MAC East Player of the Week award.

WEST: Braylon Rayson, Central Michigan freshman guard

LW: Da'Shonte Riley, EMU senior center

While there were plenty of outstanding individual performances in the West this week, and on teams far better than CMU's freshman guard, Braylon Rayson was clearly the MAC West Player of the Week. In two games this past week Rayson exploded as the leading scorer and key factor in both of the Chippewas wins. CMU entered last week having won just one MAC game, but after Rayson went off against Ball State on wednesday and NIU on Saturday, the Chips came away with a nice two-game winning streak and a trio of conference victories on the season.

Rayson entered the week averaging roughly nine points per game, but after shooting a combined 49 points on 56 percent from the field his average has increased by nearly two points a game. Rayson lit up Ball State in the third overtime of CMU's 101-95 win over the Cardinals. He scored 11 points in that third period of overtime, lifting CMU to the win and bringing his game total to 30. It didn't matter where he stood on the court Wednesday night, his shots were falling. Watching him it was clear that he was in a zone and there's nothing anyone could do to stop him that night.

He followed it up by scoring a team-high 19 and helping the Chips hold off a late comeback by NIU sunday afternoon. Rayson also shot a combined 50 percent (8-for-16) from three for the game and has become a dynamic piece in Keno Davis' offense. Rayson is the perfect compliment to point guard Chris Fowler and has the once terrible Chips buidling some momentum down the stretch.