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Georgetown Basketball: May 1999 News Archive

Improving Home Attendance 5/31/99

As reported on the site last month, Georgetown's home attendance dropped to just 8,750 per home game last season. The June 7th edition of the NCAA News lists this average as 52nd among NCAA schools, down from 40th last season.

The optimist might say that 8,750 customers a game to see last year's team wasn't bad, but the simple fact is that we need to do better. Local fans unaffiliated with Georgetown will back a winner--but when a .500 Georgetown team is playing a sub-.500 Boston College team at noon and the game's on local TV, we shouldn't expect much from the walk-up crowd.

The real point of focus should be among local alumni. There are over 25,000 alumni (nearly one-quarter of all Hoya alumni worldwide) within an hour of the Hilltop, and this is the group that should be reached about purchasing tickets.

Whatever their reasons for not attending in the past, this would be the year to reach out to these alumni and get them on board. It would be better to work more closely with the D.C. alumni club to draw more of the "lost generation" of fans back to the Blue and Gray.

Why the "lost generation"? Put another way, there have been over 18,000 undergraduates who have received their Georgetown degrees since the 1984 championship season. How many are going to the games today?

Among private schools, Georgetown's attendance ranked 15th. Maybe we can take a lead from St. Louis University, a fellow Jesuit school which averaged 15,142 a game despite having only a 14-15 season.

Capital Centre To Meet Wrecking Ball 5/26/99

The Washington Post is reporting that the Capital Centre (aka US Airways Arena) will be torn down to make way for a retail complex in Landover. When built in 1974, the arena was said to be "state of the art", but no more. With the move to MCI Center by the Wizards, Capitals, Hoyas, etc. and the lack of ongoing sports events that require a second arena in the city, the area will instead be turned over to shopping and a movie complex.

Post: Taylor To Transfer 5/22/99

Buried at the bottom of the Washington Post story involving Frank Gagliano's retirement from the helm of the Georgetown track program is this Washington Post link confirming that freshman Willie Taylor will be allowed to transfer. The transfer was not posted at GUHoyas.com.

Taylor came to Georgetown as a mystery recruit of sorts, and leaves that way. He saw action in five of the first six games last season, but played a total of only 23 minutes in the final 20 games. Taylor's 13 game Hoya career is the shortest for any scholarship player in over 20 years.

D.C. Recruit May Go South(ern) 5/16/99

The Midsouth-Hoops.com site reported this past weekend that that 6-6 forward Derrick Payne has sent a letter of intent to attend Southern University. A link was forwarded by Mid-South to this story in the Baton Rouge Advocate.

Payne, the D.C.-area standout from Coolidge HS, is ranked #50 in ESPN's national survey. Payne was said to be favoring Georgetown throughout the process but had not qualified academically, according to reports. Still, he was preparing to prep at Maine Central Institute if that was what it takes to wear Georgetown blue and gray.

"I always wanted to play for John Thompson, but heís not there anymore. Thatís okay. Iíll play for Coach Esherick. Heís a good coach, too," Payne told Big East Briefs early last month.

Thompson "Up Close" 5/10/99

John Thompson was featured on ESPN's "Up Close" interview program Tuesday afternoon. The coach was outgoing and talkative during the show, which included its share of lively comments. In response to some "what's next" questions at the end of the show, Thompson that he wasn't going to coach in Las Vegas, and didn't think the Washington Wizards wanted him as its general manager.

Here's a link to a Sunday Washington Post story on Thompson and his busy life after coaching.

Hence Off The Fence 5/10/99

Big East Briefs reported reporting that a potential eighth recruit, 6-5 DeMarcus Hence from Memphis, TN will not be considering Georgetown, signing with SE Missouri State.

Where the scholarship would have come from for Hence is anyone's guess--Georgetown has commitments for all its scholarships this fall and a verbal commitment has been reported (but not confirmed by Georgetown) from Memphis guard Reynardo Curry (listed anywhere from 5-9 to 6-0).

NBA: Iverson Leads On The Court, Williams Off The Court 5/6/99

From the NBA: Allen Iverson's 33 points Wednesday led the 76ers to their first playoff berth since 1991, outpointing Detroit 105-100 in OT. The finale allowed Iverson to claim the NBA scoring title at 26.7 ppg, the first 76er since Wilt Chamberlain (1965-66) to lead the league in scoring.

Shaquille O'Neal (26.3 ppg) needed 40 points in Wednesday's season finale to overtake Iverson, but shot 5 for 13 and finished with 18. "I felt winning this game was more important than getting a scoring title," O'Neal said.

Wednesday's games marked an unusual convergence when eight of the ten Hoyas in the NBA played against each other's team on the same night:

  • Philadelphia (Iverson) vs. Detroit (Reid, Williams)
  • Miami (Mourning) vs. New York (Ewing, Wingate)
  • Washington (White) vs. Atlanta (Mutombo)

And here's a link to a after-school program started by Jerome Williams (C'96). Recommended reading.

Hoyas' Depth Chart 5/4/99

So what's the recruiting picture look like right now? Here's the "depth chart" as it looks with the reported signees to date:

    Class of 2000
    Rhese Gibson
    Jameel Watkins (grad school)

    Class of 2001
    Nat Burton
    Ruben Boumtje-Boumtje¹
    Anthony Perry¹
    Lee Scruggs
    ¹ Three yrs. eligibility remaining

    Class of 2002
    Kevin Braswell
    Willie Taylor

    Class of 2003
    Wesley Wilson
    Courtland Freeman
    Demetrius Hunter
    Victor Samnick
    Jason Burns
    Reynardo Curry (verbal)

    Class of 2004 (next year's seniors)
    Derrick Payne (verbal)
    Michael Sweetney (verbal)
    Two scholarships open

Hoyas Adding Seventh Signee? 5/1/99

Big East Briefs and Recruiting Beat's online columns have each reported that Georgetown has received a verbal commitment from 6-0 guard Reynardo Curry from Memphis, TN.

Curry averaged 21 ppg in leading Memphis East HS to a 29-5 record his senior season. According to Mid-South Hoops.com, Curry has qualifying grades and SAT scores.

Curry would provide immediate help at the point...but are there any scholarships available? With six openings and seven possible letters of intent, it would seem that Georgetown's plate is full. Before speculation goes too far, suffice it to say that the basketball office knows exactly what its scholarship situation is, and the rest of us will have to wait and see.

Remember, a verbal commitment is not binding on either party, but it does signal to other schools that a prospect has made a choice. Georgetown does not comment on verbal commitments unless (and until) a national letter of intent has been signed.


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