The Missouri Valley Conference enters its final two weeks of regular season play, and Wichita State continues to hold onto first place with a 1-game lead over second-place Creighton. The Shockers open the week with a game at Indiana State on Tuesday (ESPN3) at 6 pm CT. The Ramada Worldwide BracketBusters series highlights league play on Saturday, Feb. 23.
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The league players of the week are Doug McDermott of Creighton and Malcolm Armstead of Wichita State
- Led by Wichita State (33) and Creighton (43), the MVC has four top-70 teams in the RPI for the first time since 2008 [Indiana State-61 and UNI-70 also are in the Top 70.] The MVC has had four or more teams in the Top 70 of the RPI on Selection Sunday six previous seasons and earned multiple NCAA bids in five of those years: (1999-3 teams); (2000-2); (2005-3); (2006-4); (2007-2)
- Creighton's Doug McDermott has scored more points than any player in the NCAA in the past two seasons (1,420). Nate Wolters of SDSU is second with 1,313.
- Illinois State's Jackie Carmichael needs 5 points to become the 76th player in MVC history to reach 1,500 career points. He needs 14 rebounds to become just the 28th MVC player with 900 caroms. Only six previous players in MVC history have scored 1,500 career points and added 900 career rebounds.
- A total of 25 teams in the nation have posted 7 victories since Jan. 20, and the MVC has two of those teams. Illinois State and UNI are both 7-2 in that span. Two of UNI's wins, notably, have been against top-25 teams (Creighton and Wichita State). The Panthers have a 5-game win streak entering this week.
- BracketBuster foes Utah State (9th, 96-10) and Saint Mary's (8th, 88-9) are among the nation's top 10 teams for homecourt win percentage during the past 5 seasons. Creighton (27th) and Wichita State (48th) are in the Top 50 and represent the MVC.
- Only 72 teams in the NCAA are .500 or better on the road this season. The MVC has 3 on the list as Creighton (6-4), Wichita State (6-4) and Illinois State (5-5) are .500 or better in road games.
- Since 1996-97, only four players in the NCAA have made 200 or more career treys with fewer than 10 games started. It is believed Ethan Wragge is the only MVC player with 200+ treys and fewer than 10 starts (Wragge started 7 games as a freshman).
- Patrick Beilein, West Virginia (242 3FG, 128 games, 2 starts), 2002-06
- Ben Rushing, Eastern Kentucky (210 3FG, 98 games, 8 starts), 2001-05
- Ethan Wragge, Creighton (208 3FG, 105 games, 7 starts), 2009-present
- Chris Fouch, Drexel (203 3FG, 96 games, 8 starts), 2009-present
- With 4,061 total minutes, Colt Ryan ranks No. 10 in MVC history for minutes played. Hersey Hawkins of Bradley holds the league's record with 4,731 total minutes. Next up for Ryan is ISU's Osiris Eldridge (4,099 minutes).
- Bradley guards Dyricus Simms-Edwards (78) and Walt Lemon Jr. (58) have combined for 136 steals. The league record for combined steals by teammates is 155, set by Paul Pressey (96) and Mike Anderson (59) of Tulsa during the 1980-81 season.
- A total of 27 teams have 21+ wins this season, but just 8 leagues have multiple teams with 21+ victories. The MVC joins the A-10 (2), ACC (2), Big East (2), Big Ten (3), Mountain West (2), Pac-12 (2) and WCC (2). Of those 8 leagues, every team with 21+ wins is ranked in one or both of the Top 25 polls, except Creighton, Saint Mary's and Wichita State.