Louisville W Kentucky Basketball

Western Kentucky center Charles Bassey (23) plays against Louisville during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Friday, Nov. 29, 2019, in Nashville, Tenn. Louisville won 71-54. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski)

After averaging a double-double in two neutral-site games, including one against the nation’s new top team, Western Kentucky sophomore center Charles Bassey was named Conference USA Men's Basketball Player of the Week on Monday.

This is the first Player of the Week award for the 6-foot-11, 230-pound sophomore from Lagos, Nigeria. The 2019 C-USA Defensive Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year was named Freshman of the Week a record-tying 10 times last season, but never earned the top player nod.

Bassey averaged 19 points and 10.5 rebounds across WKU’s 69-64 victory over Fordham and 71-54 loss to then-No. 2 Louisville, which moved up to No. 1 in the country Monday.

He scored a game-high 24 points with 12 rebounds against Fordham to close the U.S. Virgin Islands Paradise Jam, netting 10 of 10 free throws.

On Saturday, he finished with 14 points and nine rebounds against Louisville while battling the Cardinals’ premier big man Steven Enoch. 

Bassey – a preseason watch list candidate for the Naismith Trophy and Wooden Award – made 12 of 12 free throws overall during the week and added two assists, two steals and two blocks.

As of Monday, he was one of just two players in the country with at least 124 points, 77 rebounds, 12 blocks and eight steals this season.

This is the second weekly award of the season for the Hilltoppers. Guard Jordan Rawls was named Freshman of the Week on Nov. 25.


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