Tulane sophomore point guard Jonathan Stark was named the American Athletic Conference’s Player of the Week on Monday.
Stark helped propel the Green Wave through a pair of road wins to open conference play, knocking off East Carolina on Dec. 31 and perennial powerhouse Memphis on Jan. 3. It was Tulane’s first win over the Tigers since 2000, snapping a 22-game losing streak in the series.
Inside FedEx Forum, Stark dominated the team he grew up admiring, scoring 24 points, dishing four assists, pulling down four rebounds without committing a single turnover in 36 minutes. He also nabbed four steals and helped hold Memphis’ starting guards to just nine points, despite fellow standout guard Louis Dabney missing nearly the entire game due to an ankle injury.
“All I asked him to do was stay aggressive, and he put together one of the most impressive stat lines I’ve ever seen, especially considering he loses his backcourt-mate,” Tulane coach Ed Conroy said. “He never once looked around for help or for someone else to bring the ball up. He was aggressive and he wanted it so badly all night long. What more could I ask for?”
It capped a week in which Stark averaged 23 points and did it efficiently. He shot 57 percent from the field (17-of-30) and 64 percent from 3-point range (7-of-11) in the two wins and is now averaging 13.2 points per game for the season.
He is the first Tulane basketball player to win an American Athletic Conference award since the Green Wave joined the league this year.