10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
This exclusive prize is awarded to players who have shown extraordinary commitment not only to the game itself, but to Connacht, his team-mates and to the greater community.
Connacht team manager Tim Allnutt said: "Mike (McCarthy) has shown exceptional character within the squad, he has consistently performed at the highest level on the pitch and is very deserving of this award.
"Having been involved in all of the team's matches so far this season he has shown his ability to play at the highest intensity week in, week out and is an integral part of the squad off the field as well."
Speaking about the award, McCarthy commented: "I'm delighted to receive this award, there's a great buzz around the team at the moment and with so many great players in the squad, it's a real honour to be chosen as the Player of the Month."