Johnson, Alie-Cox earn all-conference honors, Tillman snubbed

VCU junior Mo Alie-Cox took home three all-conference awards today including Third Team, All-Defensive and All-Academic honors.
VCU junior Mo Alie-Cox took home three all-conference awards today including Third Team, All-Defensive and All-Academic honors.

The Atlantic 10 preps for this week’s conference championship in Brooklyn but before tipping it up Wednesday night, released this year’s winners for the all-conference awards.

As anticipated, VCU leading scorer Melvin Johnson earned A-10 first-team honors. The senior guard set a VCU record for career three-pointers this season and leads the Rams with 18 points per game this season.

Johnson was joined by Mo Alie-Cox as an all-Atlantic 10 selection, Alie-Cox earning Third Team, All-Defensive and All-Academic inclusions.

Big Mo is averaging a career-high 10.2 points as a junior, grabbing 5.1 rebounds per game and has matched a career-best blocks per game at 1.9 a night.

Below is the complete list of winners.

Player of the Year: DeAndre’ Bembry, Saint Joseph’s
Rookie of the Year: Joseph Chartouny, Fordham
Defensive Player of the Year: Hassan Martin, Rhode Island
Chris Daniels Most Improved Player: Isaiah Miles, Saint Joseph’s
Co-Sixth Man of the Year: Jabarie Hinds, Massachusetts; Denzel Gregg, St. Bonaventure
Coach of the Year: Mark Schmidt, St. Bonaventure


Jack Gibbs (Davidson)
Charles Cooke (Dayton)
Jaylen Adams (St. Bonaventure)
DeAndre’ Bembry (Saint Joseph’s)
Melvin Johnson (VCU)


Dyshawn Pierre (Dayton)
Tyler Cavanaugh (George Washington)
Patricio Garino (George Washington)
Isaiah Miles (Saint Joseph’s)
Marcus Posley (St. Bonaventure)


Micah Mason (Duquesne)
Ryan Rhoomes (Fordham)
T.J. Cline (Richmond)
Terry Allen (Richmond)
Mo Alie-Cox (VCU)


Christian Sengfelder (Fordham)
Tyler Cavanaugh (George Washington)
Patricio Garino (George Washington)
Alex Mitola (George Washington)
Mike Crawford (Saint Louis)
Mo Alie-Cox (VCU)

There was a tie for the last All-Academic Team spot.


Charles Cooke (Dayton)
Patricio Garino (George Washington)
Mo Alie-Cox (VCU)
Hassan Martin (Rhode Island)
DeAndre’ Bembry (Saint Joseph’s)


Joseph Chartouny (Fordham)
Otis Livingston (George Mason)
Lamarr Kimble (Saint Joseph’s)
Jermaine Bishop (Saint Louis)
Khwan Fore (Richmond)


I don’t have a ton of complaints about this year’s awards with such a talented group of players to somehow narrow down. The one I couldn’t disagree more with however is this year’s 6th-man of the year award.

For the A-10 to split the award yet somehow not hand one of those to VCU sophomore Justin Tillman is an egregious error in my eyes. And I think below will offer some very obvious reasons why I’m correct.

My beef with Hinds – Jabarie Hinds winning the 6th Man of the Year award while averaging the third most minutes on UMass’ team is puzzling to me. Hinds made a nice step forward from last season but at 29.2 minutes per contest, again, third on the Minutemen’s team, I just don’t see how he qualifies for the award…at all. The VCU equivalent would be like giving JeQuan Lewis that same award.

My beef with Gregg – Again, Gregg checks in at fifth in minutes (23.5) on St. Bonaventure’s team, which would seem to disqualify him from winning an award where he’s supposed to be outside of the top-five. While on the court the junior forward averaged 9.4 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.3 blocks while hitting 47.2% of his attempts. Solid numbers but not compared to the next guy.

Why Tillman deserved it – For starters, his minutes should qualify him for the award. Tillman averaged 17 minutes per contest this season, exactly sixth on this year’s VCU team. You know, like a sixth man should. He averaged 7.6 points and 6.3 rebounds in those minutes, very good, but when you look at his production per minute (you know, because he’s not playing top-five minutes) it’s even more impressive. Tillman led the Atlantic 10 in offensive rating during conference play at an eye-popping 136.6. For comparative purposes this year’s A-10 Player of the Year, DeAndre Bembry, checked in at 111.8 in A-10 games. Last year’s A-10 Player of the Year, Tyler Kalinoski, posted a 127.5 o-rating. You see what I’m getting at? Tillman’s number beats both but weren’t enough to somehow grab him even this season’s Sixth Man of the Year Award. Tragic. His 59.9% field goal percentage on the season ranked second to only Fordham’s Ryan Rhoomes, but Tillman was even better in A-10 play, leading the conference at 72.7% (72.7%!!!!) from the field. At just 6’7 he’s the conference’s second best rebounder behind 6’11 Shevon Thompson, ranking second in offensive rebound percentage and third in defensive rebound percentage (Thompson ranks No.1 in both) and was No.2 in the A-10 in turnover rate, meaning once that ball hit his hands, odds are it stayed there or went through the net. Tillman deserved the award.

A two-time graduate of VCU (School of the Arts '07, Center for Sport Leadership '10), Mat is a co-founder of VCU Ram Nation and a longtime fan as the ...