Georgetown Basketball: May 2005 News Archive
The Big East is a month away from unprecedented expansion, and some have called it an unworkable solution. Those who have been there from the start disagree.
"It was a league that when it was started, everybody said it couldn't succeed," said Syracuse's Jim Boeheim said in this link to the Connecticut Post. "Then when we expanded, they said it wouldn't work. When we expanded it again, it wouldn't work. Now we're expanding for the fourth major time, and they're still saying it won't work. Well, I absolutely believe it's going to work. I think it will continue to be one of the best leagues in the country."
We're actually starting over again, to some degree," said Connecticut coach Jim Calhoun. "The basketball created the football conference. And, quite frankly, the basketball end is top-heavy now."
One of the conference's newest teams is already making plans for a new arena.
The University of Louisville is investigating new facilities despite the fact that it has doubled its revenue at Freedom Hall. The school generates $17 million a year for men's basketball there, up from $8.5 million just four years ago.
"It's a whole new game when you get a new facility," said senior associate athletic director Kevin Miller. "It can't stay status quo. Our expenses aren't going to stay status quo."
Additional coverage follows in this link to the Louisville Courier-Journal.
Officer elections for the Hoya Hoop Club are online this month. Please visit this link to vote on the slate of officers to take office July 1.
The Big East conference has announced the home and away pairings for the 2005-06 women's basketball season.
Under the women's setup, teams play seven teams once at home, seven teams once on the road, and one team home and away. Georgetown's home and away pairing will be with Cincinnati. The men's pairings, still to be announced, will be five teams once at home, five teams once on the road, three teams home and away, and two conference teams will not be on the schedule at all.
The Hoyas' home and away opponents are below, with 2004-05 records in parentheses. Georgetown finished 12-16 (7-9 Big East) in 2004-05.
Georgetown's Class of 2005 will go their separate ways following last weekend's Commencement, but the Department of Athletics wants them to stay together as fans.
A special young alumni section adjacent to the visitors bench has been set up in section 121 at MCI center per this release from GUHoyas.com. Alumni will be eligible to purchase discounted tickets and the initial membership gift is waived to join the Hoop Club.
Brandon Bowman is one of 108 early entry candidates to the 2005 NBA draft, according to this link to ESPN.com. Including college seniors, as many as 200 prospects will be vying for 30 first round picks which are guaranteed salaries in the league, while second round picks are not guaranteed.
College players who have not signed with an agent have until June 21 to withdraw from the draft and retain their eligibility.
A previous article from the Seattle Times suggested Georgetown would meet UCLA in the John Wooden Classic on Dec. 10. This is not the case, as the 2005-06 UCLA schedule now lists Nevada as its opponent in that doubleheader.
Freshman Cornelio Guibunda and sophomore Ray Reed will transfer from Georgetown, according to a release posted Saturday afternoon at GUHoyas.com.
"Both Ray and Cornelio are fine young men. We support and wish them all the best as they move on," said Coach Thompson in a very brief statement. No mention for the transfers were given.
Ray Reed played two years at Georgetown, averaging 3.1 ppg in 58 games and appearing in 31 of 32 games this past season. The 6-0 guard scored a career high 14 points as a freshman versus Coastal Carolina, and is one of four California players recruited by former head coach Craig Esherick in a two year period from 2001-2003.
Cornelio Guibunda's brief tenure was a sharp contrast to the potential which his high school career offered. The 6-9 Guibunda, originally from Mozambique, averaged 25 points, 14 rebounds and 8 blocks a game for the King and Low-Heywood Thomas School in Stamford, CT, and was Georgetown's first recruit from the state of Connecticut since 1963. At the Hilltop, however, Guibunda played only seven minutes all season, none in conference play.
Wednesday's Torrance (CA) Daily Breeze reports that Ray Reed is considering Cal State-Fullerton and Oregon State as transfer possibilities.
Links to Sunday coverage in the city's dailies follows below.
After a week of local scorn and national ridicule, Marquette University trustees have dropped its short-lived nickname, the Gold, and embarked on a new nickname process chosen by the MU community...as long as the top choice isn't on the ballot.
Despite the the university's own surveys which showed that 92% of alumni and 62% of students identified with "Warriors", the school's nickname from 1954 through 1994, the school's president will not allow Warriors to be an eligible name.
In a bow to political correctness, Warriors are personae non grata in the new search. "We must not knowingly act in a way that others will believe, based on their experience, to be an attack on their dignity as fellow human beings,” said Marquette president Robert Wild, S.J. in this link to the Marquette Tribune.
The term "warrior" is French in origin and not specific to American Indians, i.e., Joan of Arc was a warrior, too.
The school had egg on its face from the moment Gold was announced, equally offending fans of the pro and anti-Warrior factions. Newspaper columnists had a field day with Gold jokes, and various mascots cropped up on the Internet, including "Bricky", a creature made up of gold bars.
The Internet proved the Marquette trustees' nemesis in its effort to make the Gold nickname a fait accompli, as numerous Marquette web sites kept the national alumni community informed over the collective indigestion engendered over the name change.
"Is it not ironic that the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel editorial applauded the decision of Gold...they are old media," wrote the Marquette Hoops Blog. "The heat to change Gold, however, came from new media and new communications mediums. Without it, this never would have happened. Instantly thousands of alumni were able to communicate and provide feedback directly to the decision makers."
Marquette will have a new nickname in place when it formally joins the Big East conference July 1.
Links and additional coverage follows below.
Some schedule talk in the news this week, where the Connecticut Post reports a three year deal between Georgetown and Fairfield. Georgetown will host Fairfield in 2005-06 and 2007-08, with the Stags hosting the Hoyas in 2006-07. Fairfield was 15-15 in the MAAC last year with an RPI of 170.
The Hoyas are also among five teams being considered for the 70th annual All-College Classic in Oklahoma City, reports KOCO-TV. Illinois, Wisconsin, Georgia Tech and West Virginia are also under consideration as possible opponents for Oklahoma and Oklahoma State in the one-day doubleheader on Dec. 22.
The Lawrence Journal-World is reporting in Tuesday's editions that a 6-4 guard is Georgetown's first verbal commitment for the class of 2006.
Jeremiah Rivers, a junior from Winter Park, FL, has committed to Georgetown over Kansas, Georgia Tech, and a number of other schools, reports the paper. Rivers averaged 14.8 points and 5.7 assists per game as a junior, and is the son of former Marquette guard Glenn [Doc] Rivers.
Rivers' high school coach commented that "He felt he fit in there; he felt comfortable with [John Thompson III] and the players," in this link to the Washington Post. "He likes the upward momentum around the program and wants to be a part of it."
Georgetown officials cannot comment on recruits until letters of intent are signed, which will not be until at least November. Georgetown has two scholarships open for the Class of 2006.
An effort is underway to renovate the Georgetown Alumni House at 36th and O streets. The house's library space will be dedicated to books written by alumni, and a committee has been formed to identify and procure such books.
If you are a Georgetown alumnus/a that would like to donate a copy of your previously published work, please send a copy of the book to GU c/o Monica Moody Moore at 2115 Wisconsin Avenue, 5th floor, Washington, DC 20007.The University will confirm receipt of the books as long as the sender provides contact information, and it will be acknowledged with a gift receipt.
A Georgetown University senior is seeking to raise support for a benefit concert for soldiers killed and injured while fighting in Iraq.
Jim Goranson (B'06) is a defensive lineman on the Georgetown football team, who has lost two of his high school classmates to combat in Iraq, while his brother, L.Cpl. Michael Goranson, was seriously injured in combat and is now recovering. Goranson is helping organize two benefit concerts in his home town of Elk Grove Village, IL on May 13-14 to raise funds for the Wounded Warrior Project, which assists soldiers admitted to Walter Reed Hospital in Bethesda, MD. Additional proceeds from the concerts will also be donated to build a memorial in Elk Grove Village to honor those who have fallen in Iraq.
“I went to school with two of these three heroes and I would feel ashamed if I did not honor them in some way," Goranson said. "It is our duty to help commemorate and aide these brave soldiers who have given their lives for our freedoms and the freedoms of those around the world.”
For more information on how to help support this effort, or for directions to the concerts if you live in the Chicago area, e-mail Jim at email@example.com.
The Seattle Times is reporting that Georgetown will be one of four teams invited to play in the John Wooden Classic in Anaheim, CA next season.
The report suggests Georgetown will meet UCLA in one half of the Dec. 10 doubleheader, with New Mexico and Washington rounding out the field. No confirmation of the pairings is expected before this week.
Previous media reports have linked Georgetown to road games at San Jose State, Michigan, and Illinois next season.
Elections for the student leadership of Hoya Blue have brought new leadership and new ideas for 2005-06. Kurt Muhlbauer (C'07) and Tom Ryan (C'06) were elected president and treasurer per a press release distributed to HoyaSaxa.com Thursday.
"We are obviously pleased by the turnout tonight, and I take pride that the election brought out people who have never attended a basketball game or Hoya Blue meeting before," Ryan said. A pair of expected opponents failed to attend the general meeting, giving Muhlbauer and Ryan the victory.
"I'll appoint a board composed of the most dedicated, creative, die-hard fans who will give everything they have in order to make this a success," Muhlbauer said.
Hoya Blue was founded in 1997 to support all sports at Georgetown, but had limited its activities in past years largely to men's basketball. The new leaders plan to extend the student group's reach to all teams next fall.
St. John's fans can rest easy today. They no longer possess the worst nickname in the Big East conference.
The Marquette University board of directors angered a significant portion of its alumni base Wednesday by changing the school's official nickname to "Gold", rejecting the university's own surveys which showed that 92% of alumni and 62% of students identified with "Warriors", the school's nickname from 1954 through 1994. (Previous Marquette teams were known as the "Hilltoppers" prior to 1954.)
"The Board of Trustees voted not to reinstate the Warriors athletics nickname stating that as a Catholic, Jesuit university, it would hold itself to the highest possible standards of its mission, which include recognizing and appreciating the dignity of every person," read a University release.
From initial reactions, Marquette fans are both outraged and embarrassed by the change.
"Personally, I think it’s the first time since before 9/11 that the entire university can agree on one thing, and that’s how ridiculous this decision is,” said junior Brian Collar in this link from the Marquette Tribune, calling the decision "a public relations disaster".
"It wasn't clear what shape Marquette's new mascot would take, but a couple of options would be a ripe lemon or an egg fried sunny side up," wrote an amused Journal-Sentinel columnist Dale Hofmann. A Journal-Sentinel online poll collected over 12,000 responses by early Thursday, with 92% in opposition.
"We weren't crazy that they left the Warriors behind," an alumna told the Associated Press, "but I can't say [Gold] is better. It just doesn't seem like anything. You can't sink your teeth into a color."
Marquette University formally joins the conference July 1.
Links and additional coverage follows below.
For the record, HoyaSaxa.com will continue to use the phrase "Marquette Warriors", just as St. John's teams are still called the Redmen and Syracuse the Orangemen--these are nicknames for these schools' athletic teams which are still accepted by its fan base and in common use. Conversely, schools like Stanford and Oklahoma State are referred to as the Cardinal and the Cowboys because their former names (Indians, Aggies) are no longer in active use.
Political correctness has its limits in college sports. Put another way, if Providence College ever changes the name "Friars" to some gender-neutral term like the "Religious", they'll still be the Friars on this site.
The Atlantic Coast Conference will settle a two year lawsuit with a $5 million payment to the Big East Conference and four conference schools, reports the Hartford Courant.
Georgetown University was not among the litigants.
The state of Connecticut and four Big East schools filed suit against the ACC in June 2003, citing "a backroom conspiracy, born in secrecy, founded on greed, and carried out through calculated deceit" in seeking three Big East schools to join its league. Additional legal action followed when Boston College challenged an increase in the exit fee from $1 million to $5 million prior to its departure this summer.
According to the report, the Big East will receive an extra $1 million for BC's exit plus $1 million each to four schools who were litigants: Connecticut, Rutgers, Pittsburgh, and West Virginia.
"The University of Connecticut is pleased that this litigation has been concluded," said a university statement cited in the article. "When this legal case began, the newly upgraded UConn football program was about to join a Big East Conference whose composition was uncertain and whose position in the BCS was in jeopardy. Two years later, after hard work on many fronts, the UConn football program is successful and is a member of a Big East Conference that is strong, stable and vibrant, and retains a secure position in the BCS."
The ties that bind four Georgetown alumni are the subject of a column by J.A. Adande in the Los Angeles Times.
"At this point in my life, this is very satisfying for me," said former coach John Thompson Jr., who coached Patrick Ewing, Dikembe Mutombo, Alonzo Mourning, and Othella Harrington at Georgetown. All are still active in the NBA playoffs. "It's certainly satisfying as a teacher to see your pupils succeed. I can't take full credit for their accomplishments, but I share in it."
I think it has to do with our work ethic," Mutombo said. "I think that's something you get when you go to Georgetown. You might not make pro, but the work ethic you get from the institution can help you and guide you and help you succeed in a lot of places. I'm proud to see all of my alumni, my friends are doing so well, from basketball to off the court."
"Hard work, preparation, determination, resilience, tenacity, you could throw all of that in there," said Mourning. "Every Georgetown player who has played in this league has portrayed that."
Former Georgetown forward Ronnie Highsmith (C'88) is featured in this article from Hotel Online, noting a career which has now taken him to the post of general manager of a Las Vegas hotel.
"Coach Thompson gave me a lot of good advice," Highsmith told the newspaper. "He said you have to prove your worth on any job. You can't come out here expecting to be an executive right away because people don't know you. They don't know anything about you, so you have to start at the bottom. If you're willing to do that, the opportunities will come."
"The nice thing about being general manager at a property like this is that you can meet with each and every employee," Highsmith continued. "Coming from the loading dock [where he started in 1989], I never forgot where I came from. I like to eat in the employee dining room because that shows respect. If you show respect to the employees, they'll respect you."
The New York Times published an article Sunday on the growing pains faced by the Conference in its growth to 16 teams.
"We're in this together because our presidents said this is what we want to do," said commissioner Michael Tranghese. "It's unwieldy. It's going to be difficult. But that doesn't matter. Our job, and my job in particular, is to make it work...We're rebranding. We've invited new people, new schools. We've restructured ourselves and our office. Those are not signs of a conference planning on breaking up."
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