Thursday, Feb. 22
*SOUTH DAKOTA at SOUTH DAKOTA STATE 8 p.m. (ESPN3/MidcoSN)
*NORTH DAKOTA STATE at WESTERN ILLINOIS 8 p.m.
*ORAL ROBERTS at OMAHA 8 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 24
*NORTH DAKOTA STATE at OMAHA 2 p.m.
*SOUTH DAKOTA STATE at FORT WAYNE 7 p.m.
*DENVER at WESTERN ILLINOIS 8 p.m.
Saturday, March 3-Tuesday, March 6
Summit League Basketball Championships (Sioux Falls, S.D.)
All times Eastern
* Summit League game
THE SUMMIT LEAGUE PODCAST (NEXT EPISODE - FEB. 28/Tournament Preview)
The Summit League Podcast is a bi-weekly, five-episode series airing through the remainder of the basketball season. Host Matt Pocket brings listeners closer to the coaches, players and analysts with interviews providing in-depth information and entertaining stories from topics both on the court and off. To listen, visit thesummitleague.org/podcast
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
JOHN KONCHAR, FORT WAYNE
Jr. // G // West Chicago, Ill.
Received his fifth career Player of the Week award and first of the season ... Averaged 17.5 points, 8.0 rebounds, 7.0 assists and 2.5 blocks in a pair of wins ... Scored 19 points with eight rebounds, six assists and a career-high five blocked shots vs. Western Illinois ... Had 16 points, eight rebounds, eight assists and one steal at North Dakota State ... Shot 65.2 percent from the field and 50.0 percent from beyond the arc for the week
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Date Name (Pos.) School
Nov. 13 Bryson Scott Fort Wayne
Nov. 20 Mike Daum South Dakota State
Nov. 27 Tyson Ward North Dakota State
Dec. 4 Bryson Scott Fort Wayne
Dec. 11 Paul Miller North Dakota State
Dec. 18 Mike Daum South Dakota State
Emmanuel Nzekwesi Oral Roberts
Dec. 26 Mike Daum South Dakota State
Jan. 2 Emmanuel Nzekwesi Oral Roberts
Jan. 8 Mike Daum South Dakota State
Jan. 16 Mike Daum South Dakota State
Jan. 23 David Jenkins South Dakota State
Jan. 30 Paul Miller North Dakota State
Feb. 5 Mike Daum South Dakota State
Feb. 12 Zach Jackson Omaha
Feb. 19 John Konchar Fort Wayne
RANK AND FILE
The Summit League's (Feb. 20) position in national ranking metrics:
Sagarin Ratings 15
RPI (rpiratings.com) 16
As of Feb. 20, South Dakota State's 19-game home court win streak is the nation's longest active in D-I
ARE YOU BEING WATCHED?
Three different Summit Leaguers dot a trio of national award watch lists, including both the National Player of the Year and Mid-Major Player of the Year awards. A summary:
OSCAR ROBERTSON TROPHY (NATIONAL POY)
Mike Daum, South Dakota State
*One of 14 players and two from mid-majors listed
CITIZEN NAISMITH TROPHY (NATIONAL POY)
Mike Daum, South Dakota State
*One of 30 players and two from mid-majors listed
LOU HENSON AWARD (MID-MAJOR POY)
Mike Daum, South Dakota State
John Konchar, Fort Wayne
Matt Mooney, South Dakota
*40 total players listed, Summit won honor in 2010
KARL MALONE AWARD (NATION'S TOP PF)
Mike Daum, South Dakota State
*Presented by Naismith Basketball HOF, 1 of 21 listed
IN A CLASS BY THEMSELVES
North Dakota State's A.J. Jacobson and Oral Roberts' Albert Owens, were named to the list of 30 Senior Class Award candidates. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition. Ten finalists will be announced in February. For more, visit seniorCLASSaward.com.
South Dakota State's Mike Daum continues to put up video game numbers. Since 2010, Daum leads ALL NCAA Division I players with NINE 30-point performances (surpassing former Creighton star Doug McDermott) and EIGHT 35-point double-doubles (five more than any other player). Additionally, Daum also leads the national during that span with THREE 35-point, 15-rebound games.
The Summit League was No. 12 in the Jan. 3 RPI rankings (RPIratings.com) as it seeks a seventh consecutive season with a top-20 finish. That position also marked the league's best since ending the 2015-16 campaign at No. 12.
PACE THE NATION
The Summit League currently (Feb. 20) is among the nation's top five in a trio of KenPom.com statistical measures, ranking 1st in Turnover% (15.9), 2nd in FT% (74.8), and 4th in Efficiency (107.5). Last season, the Summit topped six categories, including all three shooting measures (FG%, 3P%, FT%) and efficiency, turnover pct., and tempo.
With a 20-point road win at Indiana on Dec. 18, Fort Wayne became the first Summit League team since 2011, and third overall, to defeat the same "power five" opponent in consecutive. The Mastodon victory margin was the largest against a Big Ten opponent since 1994.
B1G STAGE, B1G WINS
The Summit League has defeated Big Ten opponents in three consecutive seasons, dating back to the 2015-16 campaign. With South Dakota State's Nov. 21 victory over Iowa and Fort Wayne's Dec. 18 rout at Indiana, The Summit League notched multiple B1G victories for the second straight year.
HE STOLE WHAT?
Oral Roberts' R.J. Fuqua totaled a school-record nine steals, tied for the NCAA season-high to date and fourth-most in Summit League history, in the season-opening victory.
BEST MID-MAJOR TOURNAMENT ATTENDANCE
The 2017 Summit League's Men's Basketball Tournament ranked seventh overall, best among traditional mid-major leagues, and increased its regular season average and ranking in the NCAA's 2017 attendance report. With an average attendance of 9,978 fans per session at its 2017 tournament, The Summit League's figure was best among the 22 traditional mid-major conferences. Overall, The Summit League moved up one spot from the previous year and trailed only the Big Ten, ACC, SEC, Big 12, Big East, and Pac-12.
TAKING ON THE BLUEBLOODS
A number of traditional powers and prominent teams are on The Summit League schedule this season. Eight games against preseason top-16 teams, including No. 1 and four of the top five, occurred during a five-week stretch from Nov. 13-Dec. 21. Below is a list of the big names and big games (with preseason AP ranking).
Nov. 13: North Dakota State at (10) USC
Nov. 17: Omaha at (16) Louisville
South Dakota State at (4) Kansas
Nov. 22: Fort Wayne at (5) Kentucky
Dec. 2: South Dakota at (1) Duke
Dec. 5: South Dakota State at (7) Wichita State
Dec. 18: Omaha at (4) Kansas
North Dakota State at (3) Arizona
Dec. 19: South Dakota at (21) UCLA
Dec. 21: Oral Roberts at (15) Minnesota
The Summit League announced the addition of the University of North Dakota as its 10th member last season. The Fighting Hawks will begin league play across 17 league-sponsored sports in 2018-19.
Oral Roberts achieved a "doubles" in its Dec. 16 win at FGCU. The Golden Eagles notched their second consecutive win against Mid-Majors Top-25 squads, besting the No. 12 Eagles after topping No. 12 Missouri State. Individually, ORU had a pair of players record double-doubles in the same game (Emmanuel Nzekwesi 's 24 pts/11 reb and Javan White's 25 pts/11 reb) for the first time since 2012-13.
RISE OF THE SUMMIT
As the college basketball world's best-kept secret the past few seasons, The Summit League has enjoyed historic levels of achievement that place it firmly among the top mid-majors ...
> RPI GAINS
• Reached highest position (No. 12 as recently as Jan. 3) since end of '15-16
• Owns nation's best RPI gain (+8) from 2010-17
• Achieved 6 consecutive top 20 league RPI finishes ('12-17)
• Finished '15-16 at record-high No. 12 in RPI after peaking at No. 8 in Dec.
• Occupied 3rd-best mid-major RPI and had 8 of 9 teams in top 200 in '15-16
> MEASURING UP AGAINST ITS PEERS
• Owns a .574 winning pct. vs. mid-majors since 2010-11 season
• 8 consecutive years ('10-17) with .500+ winning pct. vs. mid-majors
• .716 win clip vs. mid-majors in '15-16 was a record by nearly 100 pct points
• Defeated multiple Big Ten teams in consecutive seasons (2016-17, '17-18)
• Has two top-10 ranked teams (No. 3 & 6) in current Mid-Major Top 25
• Currently No. 15 in Sagarin after all-time best No. 15 in final '16-17 ratings
• Led the nation in six statistical metrics in '16-17, according to KenPom.com
• Record two different teams received votes in national polls in '15-16
• Advanced teams in national postseason tournaments in 3 of past 4 seasons
• Won games across each of 4 tourneys (NCAA, NIT, CIT, CBI) over past 4 years
• Sent all-time high four teams to postseason 4 straight years ('12-15)
Everyone loves a success story and The Summit League Basketball Championships in Sioux Falls, called "March's best-kept secret" by USA Today in 2014, is one of the best in college basketball. Take a look at some of the numbers generated at what has become one of the nation's premier tournaments:
• Ranked 8th nationally with 9,165 fans per session in 2016 after placing 9th previous year
• Set 11 attendance marks in 2015 and broke 10 of those again in 2016
• Drew league record 11,235 fans at 2017 men's semifinal session
• Set league championship game attendance record with 10,188 in 2016
• Eclipsed previous all-time attendance record by 30% at new arena in 2015
• 4th highest mid-major tournament attendance average in '14
• 4th best net gain in tournament attendance average over past 5 years ('11-15)
• Played league-record 9th consecutive tourney in Sioux Falls in '17
• Exercised contract option to remain in Sioux Falls through 2022
• Average combined M/W total attendance in Sioux Falls era is 42,384 (5,298 per session)
• Top 3, and 4 of top 6, men's tournament figures have come in Sioux Falls
• Record run of 14 straight years in Sioux Falls ('09-22) tops previous high of 5
SIOUX FALLS ATTENDANCE FIGURES
2009-14 at Sioux Falls Arena
2015-pres. at Denny Sanford Premier Center
Session Avg High Champ Game Total
2009 4,421 5,986 3,804 17,682
2010 3,574 6,285 3,122 14,294
2011 4,483 6,436 2,105 17,931
2012 5,606 6,614 6,526 22,423
2013 5,928 6,704 6,544 23,710
2014 5,208 6,769 4,263 20,832
2015 8,903 10,153 9,033 35,612
2016 9,165 10,306 10,188 36,661
2017 9,978 11,235 9,441 39,912
WHAT'S IN A NAME?
The Summit League features the NCAA's most unique collection of one-of-a-kind nicknames among its member institutions. Within U.S. college athletics, three names are exclusively held by Summit League schools: Mastodons (Fort Wayne), Jackrabbits (South Dakota State) and Leathernecks (Western Illinois). In addition, the name Coyotes (South Dakota) is unique to NCAA Division I.
IN THE NBA
2008 #SummitMBB POY
Nate Wolters (South Dakota State)
2013 #SummitMBB POY
IN THE NBA G LEAGUE
Jalen Bradley (Oral Roberts)
Sioux Falls Skyforce
Taylor Braun (North Dakota State)
Salt Lake City Stars
2014 #SummitMBB POY
Tra-Deon Hollins (Omaha)
Fort Wayne Mad Ants