November 12, 2007 11:23 am ET by Kyle Whelliston
One of the most common e-mails I received last year was the repeated question about where the Mid-Majority Baller of the Specified-Time-Period went. I can't even remember why I took a year off from doing it, it was always such a fun part of every Monday. It had become such an honor that school SID's would put it in press releases, and I got to shake the hands of some of the deserving winners. A couple even sounded honored to receive the title, but I'm sure they were just being kind.
So it's back, Jack. And it's one-man unanimous for our first selection: Kyle Hines is the first Mid-Majority Baller Of The Week of the 2007-08 season.
Hines was the Southern Conference's player of the year last season, and no stranger to the Whelliston hype machine (we take care of our namesakes, we do). But last Friday night, Mr. Hines exploded out of the 2007-08 gate for 25 points, nine rebounds and two blocks in an 83-74 win at the home of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. That, in case you've forgotten, is an ACC team. The Spartans took full control of a tight game after halftime, and the final point total matched Hines' shooting percentage -- he went 10-for-12. (The number was also two short of his wingspan: 85 flippin' inches.)
It was the latest in a series of big early-season performances for the 6-6 senior -- and torched Marshall for 38 to open the 2006-07 season and went 9-for-13 against Vanderbilt as a sophomore. Kyle is involved in lots of series, like his 51-game consecutive double-figure scoring streak. He could also close his college career with consecutive All-America nods, having been named to the 50-man Honorable Mention list during his junior season.
Kyle was recruited by former UNCG head man (and current Siena leader) Fran McCaffery and has become the main engine under current bench boss Mike Dement, averaging 20.1 points per ballgame last season. He's an undersized big, but forget the Barkley references: Cliff Ellis, a SoCon broadcaster before being named Coastal Carolina head coach this season, drew solid parallels between his game and that of Adrian Dantley. He's also considered a great and quotable man, as he has his own entry at ThinkExist. That's right, quotes about Elon games sharing database space with Shakespeare and Chaucer... it's a proud moment for mid-major philosophers everywhere. But if you want something a little more in-depth, bookmark or RSS his new blog at the NCAA's site. One entry (written before the GT game), and it's already better than The Big Lead.
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