RICHMOND, Va. – There's a different sense of urgency when it comes to seniors in collegiate sports. For the majority of them, it will be their final meaningful games that they will ever play, except for the always competitive Three-Legged Race at the company picnic.

That sense of urgency was on display last Friday at the Verizon Wireless Arena at the Stuart C. Siegel Center. That's when senior Joey Rodriguez of the Virginia Commonwealth University set a single-game school record with 17 assists to lead the Rams to a 101-86 win over UNC Greensboro in the season-opener.

Rodriguez's outstanding performance on Friday earned him the first Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Week honor of the 2010-11 campaign.

"It was one of the most impressive displays of running a team and getting teammates involved that I've ever seen since I've started coaching," Head Coach Shaka Smart commented.

Along with his assists, the Merritt Island, Fla. native poured in 22 points on 8-of-15 shooting, while tallying four steals and three rebounds on the night.

"Phenomenal is the only way to describe," Classmate Brandon Rozzell said. "He showed how much he can control the game, not turning it over, finding guys, knocking down shots, defending… just a great, great performance."

It was Rodriguez's first weekly conference honor since January 18th of last season.

The Black & Gold open play in the 2010 Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off tonight at 9:30 against Big South foe Winthrop on the campus of Wake Forest University.