RICHMOND, Va. – For months, ESPN bombarded everyone with talk of Tim Tebow's late game heroics and his incredible leadership.
Those are the exact traits that junior Darius Theus of the VCU Basketball team put on display this past week in the Rams' two victories. For his clutch play, Theus was named Colonial Athletic Association Co-Player of the Week, making him the fifth different Ram to earn weekly conference accolades this season.
"Darius is a very tough kid, both physically and mentally," Head Coach Shaka Smart said. "He's done a great job maturing from last year to this year and that happens when you're playing 35-40 minutes a night instead of just 12-13. He's really become our leader and that's what we as coaches look for out of our point guard spot."
The Portsmouth, Va. native averaged 13.5 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.5 assists in VCU's home victories over William & Mary and Old Dominion last week. More than his number was his clutch play. In the final five minutes of those two wins, Theus went a perfect 5-for-5 from the field and scored 15 points to help secure the victory for the Black & Gold.
On Thursday against the Tribe, Theus hit a huge three-pointer toward the end of regulation that helped send the game to overtime, where he again would strike with the game-winning layup with less than 10 seconds remaining. It was his second game-winning layup this year as he also played the hero role in an overtime win at Akron on Dec. 29.
Against the hated Monarchs on Saturday, Theus poured in 12 of his career-high 15 points in the second half to help put away ODU and push the Rams to 6-2 in conference play with wins in 12 of their past 14 contests.
On the year, Theus is tied for the league lead in assists per game with 4.7 per night, while leading the league in assist-to-turnover ratio at 1.7.
Theus and the Rams will return to action later this evening when they host the Pride of Hofstra in the final game of a three-game homestand. The game will be televised on The Comcast Network with tip time set for 7:03 p.m.