Tigers guard named American player of the week

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MEMPHIS, Tenn-University of Memphis junior guard Markel Crawford has been named the American Athletic Conference Player of the Week for the first time in his career after averaging 21.5 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, while shooting 74 percent from the field and 86 percent from long range against UConn and Tulane.

Sophomore forward Dedric Lawson was named to the Honor Roll during the same time span after averaging 19.5 points, 10.5 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 3.0 blocked shots, and 2.0 steals per game.

Crawford made 17-of-23 (73.9%) of his shots from the field, 6-of-7 (85.7%) from long range, and 3-for-3 from the charity stripe over the two games. In the first game of the week, a nine-point win over UConn, he hit 9-of-12 shots from the field, and his only three-point attempt. He set a season-high with eight rebounds, while also dishing out two assists and picking up two steals against the Huskies. Against Tulane he hit 8-of-11 shots from the field, and a career-high five three-point baskets on six attempts. He also dished out three assists and pulled down a rebound and added a steal.

For the season Crawford is averaging 15.4 points per game and 4.9 rebounds per game while shooting 54 percent (89-of-164) from the field, 40 percent (23-of-58) from long range, and 80 percent (45-of-56) from the charity stripe.

Lawson’s two double-doubles gives him 13 on the season, which is tied for second-highest total in the country, and 30 for his career, which is one away from tying Lorenzen Wright for eighth on the career list. In the opener against UConn, he scored 15 points with 11 rebounds, and six assists and three steals. He hit 6-of-15 shots against the Huskies, and 3-of-5 free throws. In the week finale at Tulane, he hit 9-of-16 shots from the field, and 2-of-4 from long range. He also pulled down 10 rebounds, while blocking five shots, dishing out three assists, and picking up two steals.

Lawson is one of three players in the country to average over 20 points (20.4) and 10 rebounds (11.1) per game, and he also leads the team with 44 blocked shots, and is second in assists (63) and tied for second in steals (21).

The Tigers return to action on Wednesday, January 11 when the team travels to Tulsa, Oklahoma, to take on the Golden Hurricane in a 7 p.m. tip-off on ESPNews.