Some people believe that this season’s ACC Player Of The Year Award is a two-man race between Erick Green (Virginia Tech) and Mason Plumlee (Duke Blue Devils). Joe Harris (Virginia Cavaliers) etched his name into this discussion with his 36-point performance against Duke this past week. Although all of these players are well-deserving of this honor, Shane Larkin, the starting point guard for the Miami (FL) Hurricanes, has led his team to their best season in school history. At this moment, Miami has 23-5 overall record, which consists of a 14-2 record in the ACC.
Larkin happens to also be a finalist for the Bob Cousy Award, which is given to the nation’s top point guard. The sophomore guard from Orlando, Florida, has had a year stellar thus far. He averages 13.4 points and 4.3 assists per game. He leads the ACC in steals, averaging 2.1 a game. In addition, he is tied for fourth in place in the ACC with an assist-to-turnover ratio average of 2.0.
Some people believe that the individual who averages the most points in the conference should automatically be honored as the best player. Maintaining the highest scoring average is quite significant. If this is the case this season, then Virginia Tech’s Green will win the award. He deserves to win the award; however, Virginia Tech is ranked last in the ACC standings, sitting on 3-12 record. Having the ACC Player of the Year come from the worst team in the league is not politically correct; even if the player is having a great season. Not to take anything away from Green, but he does not have the same impact on his team compared to Larkin.
In Larkin’s case, he is a huge reason why Miami is the No. 1 ranked team in the ACC. Although he has two other teammates who average double figures in points (Durand Scott and Kenny Kadji), Larkin is the “heart and soul” of this team. He has played the most minutes for Miami this season. In addition, he has attempted and made the most field goals. It is safe to say that Larkin always has the ball in his hands. The great thing about his situation is that he is a sophomore. There has been no talk of him foregoing his last two seasons, so he can play basketball professionally.