MEMPHIS, Tenn. - He was given a season-long award Tuesday, but Josh Carlton nevertheless saved his best for last with the UConn men’s basketball team.
Over the Huskies’ last three games, Carlton averaged 19 points and 8.7 rebounds while connecting on 81.5 percent of his shots.
That’s part of the reason he was named co-winner of the American Conference’s most improved player award Tuesday. The sophomore from Winterville, North Carolina, shared the award with Temple’s Nate Pierre-Louis.
Carlton averaged 9.1 points and a team-high 6.0 rebounds, up from 4.4 points and 3.7 rebounds as a freshman. His averages jumped to 10.2 points and 7.4 rebounds in league play this season.
He led the American in blocked shots and was fifth in rebounding.
South Florida coach Brian Gregory, whose Bulls take on UConn Thursday in the American tournament’s first round, has been impressed with Carlton.
“Josh Carlton is playing great right now. Last three games he’s been off the charts,” Gregory said.
In other awards given out by the league Tuesday, South Florida’s Laquincy Rideau was honored as defensive player of the year, Houston’s DeJon Jarreau was named sixth man of the year, and Houston’s Galen Robinson was given the sportsmanship award.
All of the awards are based on votes by the league’s head coaches.