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Georgetown Basketball: December 2014 News Archive

Big East Season Openers 12/31/14

Georgetown is 21-14 all time in Big East openers. The Hoyas have opened against 15 of the 20 different Big East schools since 1979--it hasn't yet played Creighton or Butler in an opener, and never faced Cincinnati or Virginia Tech during their brief years in the conference. (And in 34 seasons, Georgetown and Syracuse never met in a season opener.)

Here are the openers by season. An [s] indicates a game that was sold out.

Date Score   OpponentSite Att.  
12/18/1979W5550  ProvidenceMcDonough Gym 4,418 [s]
1/7/1981L6068 atSt. John'sAlumni Hall 6,442 [s]
1/6/1982W7242 atSt. John's (#20)Madison Sq. Garden 19,951 [s]
1/8/1983L6776 atSt. John's (#7)Madison Sq. Garden 19,591 [s]
1/4/1984W8169 atConnecticutHartford Civic Ctr. 15,673 [s]
1/2/1985W8356  Seton HallCapital Centre 8,060  
1/2/1986L7680 atPittsburghCivic Arena 16,046 [s]
1/3/1987L6374  Seton HallCapital Centre 6,472  
1/2/1988W8278 atMiamiKnight Center 5,023  
1/3/1989L8684 atSeton Hall (#10)Meadowlands 19,761 [s]
1/2/1990W8353 atBoston CollegeConte Forum 8,674  
1/5/1991W7365  Seton HallCapital Centre 18,103  
1/4/1992L7375  VillanovaCapital Centre 8,943  
12/9/1992W8066  PittsburghCapital Centre 10,173  
12/4/1993L7576OT VillanovaUS Air Arena 10,308  
12/7/1994W7674  ProvidenceUS Air Arena 8,657  
12/2/1995W8380OTatWest VirginiaWVU Coliseum 15,193 [s]
12/2/1996W5551  Seton HallUS Air Arena 7,173  
12/3/1997L6973  VillanovaMCI Center 13,181  
12/8/1998L6268  RutgersMCI Center 8,307  
1/5/2000L4855 atProvidenceProvidence Civic Ctr. 9,156  
1/3/2001W9066 atWest VirginiaWVU Coliseum 5,100  
1/2/2002L7179  Miami (#21)MCI Center 6,589  
1/12/2003W8482OT West VirginiaMCI Center 8,945  
1/3/2004W6357  RutgersMCI Center 8,194  
1/5/2005W6764 atPittsburgh (#16)Petersen Center 11,425  
1/5/2006W7262  ProvidenceMCI Center 6,985  
1/6/2007W6648  Notre Dame (#17)Verizon Center 15,506  
1/5/2008W5846 atRutgersRutgers Ath. Ctr. 7,938  
1/3/2009L5470  Pittsburgh (#3)Verizon Center 19,397  
12/31/2009W6659  St. John'sVerizon Center 9,376  
12/28/2011W7168 atLouisville (#4)KFC Yum Center 22,517 [s]
12/29/2010L5569 atNotre Dame (#15)Purcell Pavilion 9,149 [s]
1/5/2013L4849 atMarquetteBradley Center 15,432  
12/31/2013W6154  DePaulVerizon Center 7,823
AP: #25 12/30/14

With its win Saturday, Georgetown is ranked #25 in the weekly Associated Press poll. The Hoyas are one of three Big East teams represented, including Villanova (6) and St. John's (15).

This is the first ranking for the Hoyas since the AP poll of March 18, 2013, where it ended the regular season ranked #8.

Big East Play Begins Wednesday 12/27/14 2:30 pm EST

The Big East season tips off Wednesday in the Fox Sports 1 quintuple header. How do the teams look heading into conference play?

  • Villanova (12-0, RPI 7): Ranked #7 nationally, the Wildcats have picked up big wins over Syracuse, Illinois, and VCU, with an average margin of victory of 18.7 points per game, leading the conference. Villanova hosts Butler at 2:30 pm Wednesday.
  • St. John's (11-1, RPI 13): The Redmen are off to its best start since the Walter Berry era, and like Villanova, own a win over Syracuse this season. The 17th ranked Redmen lead the conference in field goal defense, allowing just 36.3% of attempts. St. John's travels to Newark to meet Seton Hall at noon Wednesday.
  • Seton Hall (10-2, RPI 22) : The strong start from the Hall is tempered by an injury to freshman Isaiah Whitehead, which could keep the rookie of the year candidate out of action until the Pirates face Georgetown on Feb. 10. The Pirates rank second in the Big East in rebounding, but need to improve on free throws, with just 62% made to date.
  • Providence (10-3, RPI 29): The Friars have won four straight but has only one significant win to date (Notre Dame) and losses to Boston College and Brown. The Friars are ninth of ten Big East teams in scoring (70.6) and ninth in three point shooting (33.0%). Providence hosts Creighton at 7:30 pm Wednesday.
  • Butler (10-3, RPI 36): One of the early surprises of the conference, the Bulldogs' Battle 4 Atlantis wins over North Carolina and Georgetown proved they are capable of standing with any opponent. BU currently ranks first in the Big East in scoring defense, holding opponents under 57 points per game. Butler travels to Villanova at 2:30 pm Wednesday.
  • Xavier (9-3, RPI 56): The Cintas Center may be the toughest of the five venues for Wednesday's games, with 22 wins in its last 24 home games as a member of the Big East. The Musketeers lead the Big East in scoring (82.7 ppg), shooting (51.6%), and rebounding margin (+7.1 per game). X hosts Georgetown at 10:00 pm Wednesday.
  • Marquette (8-4, RPI 109): It's going to be a long road for the Warriors in 2014-15, with transfers and turnover bringing a lot of new faces to the MU lineup. Marquette was won four straight, none with an RPI above 175. The Warriors enter Big East play ranked last in rebounding. Marquette travels to DePaul Wednesday at 5:00 pm.
  • Creighton (9-4, RPI 126): An unexpected loss to North Texas has dampened what was a promising start for the Bluejays, who replace four starters from last year's team. Creighton travels to Providence at 7:30 pm Wednesday.
  • DePaul (6-7, RPI 272): Another season, another mess at DePaul, where the Blue Demons have dropped six straight and enter Big East play 9-57 in Oliver Purnell's four seasons at Lincoln Park. An early win over Stanford was the only highlight to date for a Blue Demon program that ranks last in points allowed among the ten Big East teams this season. Attendance at Allstate Arena this season is averaging 5,506 per game, though previous DePaul attendance figures have been exposed as somewhat fictional. DePaul hosts Marquette Wednesday at 5:00 pm.
New Year's Eve: Fox vs. ESPN 12/29/14

Wednesday's quintuple header is more than a Big East marathon but an effort by Fox Sports to make headway against the onslaught of ESPN bowl coverage, which will feature the Peach (TCU-Ole Miss), Fiesta (Boise-State-Arizona) and Orange (Mississippi State-Georgia Tech) bowls, which figure to overwhelm Fox's basketball coverage.

Last year's FS1 ratings were poor in head to head basketball matchups with ESPN2, which is only covering two games this Wednesday: UConn-Temple (1:00 pm) and South Florida-SMU at 5:00).

TimeGameNetworkRatingViewers TimeGameNetworkRatingViewers
1:00Ohio St.-PurdueESPN20.6902K 12:00St. Johns-XavierFS10.198K
3:00Indiana-IllinoisESPN20.71.04M 2:30Seton Hall-PCFS10.030K
5:30Louisville-USFESPN20.4492K 5:00DePaul-GeorgetownFS10.044K
7:00Memphis-UCFESPN20.2231K 7:30Villanova-ButlerFS10.1143K
9:30UConn-HoustonESPN20.2252K 10:00Marquette-CreightonFS10.1100K
Attack Of the Threes 12/29/14

Despite allowing 31 three point attempts against Indiana, the Hoyas held on to the win. Here's a list of the most threes made (and attempted) against Georgetown by an opponent:

Date3FGOpponentOutcome Date3FGAOpponentOutcome
2/10/0114 of 19ProvidencePC, 103-79 11/10/079 of 33William & MaryGU 68-53
1/27/0714 of 24CincinnatiGU, 82-67 12/27/1413 of 31IndianaGU, 91-87
3/18/1013 of 27OhioOU, 97-83 12/16/0013 of 30HowardGU 123-90
1/11/0013 of 30HowardGU 123-90 1/20/036 of 29RutgersGU 76-66
12/27/1413 of 31IndianaGU, 91-87  3/15/008 of 29VirginiaGU 115-111
Georgetown 91, Indiana 87 (OT) Updated 12/28/14

D'Vauntes Smith Rivera scored 22 points after halftime, rallying the Georgetown Hoyas from a 10-point halftime deficit to upset Indiana 91-87 at Madison Square garden saturday. The Hoyas rallied despite allowing 13 three pointers, the last of which forced an overtime period.

A frenetic pace opened the game, with more free throws than field goals. Much of the first five minutes of Georgetown's effort went through senior Mikael Hopkins, with three points, two rebounds, and two blocks. The Hoosiers started 1 for 7 from the field but stayed close on defense, and were beneficiaries of two Georgetown fouls on IU three point attempts, going 5 for 6 and taking a 9-8 lead at the 13:49 mark.

Georgetown's defensive lapses in transition have been a cause of concern all season, and Indiana took full advantage, connecting on three pointers on three consecutive possessions for an 18-12 lead at the 11:54 mark, with 14 of its 18 coming from three or the foul line. baskets by L.J. Peak and Mikael Hopkins closed the IU lead to one, but a James Blackmon three extended the Indiana lead back to four, 23-19.

Foul trouble haunted the Hoyas early. In a nine second span, the Hoyas gave up three fouls, including a second to Jabril Trawick and a second and third to Josh Smith.utilizing a smaller lineup that placed Paul White in the pivot, but the Hoyas' troubles were outside, not inside. A three by Kevin (Yogi) Ferrell extended the lead to five at the 5:02 mark, a three by James Blackmon Jr. extended it to eight with 1:53 to play, and a lay-up at the buzzer by Robert Johnson moved it to ten a the break, 40-30. A goaltend call with 22 seconds to play marked Georgetown's only points scored in the final 4:28 of the half, which saw Indiana hit seven threes at the break to just two for Georgetown.

The Hoyas had little to show on the halftime stat sheet. It missed four shots at layup range in the last two minutes to set them back much further than they needed to be, having held IU to 40 percent shooting. In foul trouble, centers Josh Smith and Mikael Hopkins combined for a total of two rebounds.

Both teams opened strong for the second half. D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera accounted for nine of the Hoyas' first 11 points, including three threes, but the Hoyas could not chip in to the Hoosiers' lead, thanks to good inside shooting and offensive rebounding which allowed IU to maintain control. Josh Smith, who did not start the second half, came off the bench at the 14:04 mark to score four points across a 9-0 Georgetown run that closed the margin to 51-50.

"I didn't want him to pick up an early third or fourth, so we decided to go with Hop to start the half," said Georgetown coach John Thompson III. "That decision was made knowing we were going to need Josh down the stretch."

"People have to pay attention to Josh," he said. "He is a very good passer. He can't be stopped down there, except when he stops himself. That opens up easier looks with his cuts, with his drives, his open shots for everyone else. He's a weapon that we have that you have to pay attention to, one man can't guard him. It's a matter of us playing off of that."

Following another Indiana three, Georgetown answered with a Paul White jumper at the 9:54 mark, followed by a steal and basket by Smith-Rivera. After an Indiana turnover, Aaron Bowen was left alone in the lane to give GU its first lead since the 13:22 mark of the first half, 56-54. A key number: just one Georgetown turnover in the first 12 minutes of the second half.

The teams traded baskets through the 6:31 mark, with Georgetown holding a 64-59 lead. Mikael Hopkins picked up his fourth foul and James Blackmon Jr. answered with IU's tenth three, 64-62. A Troy Williams dunk tied the score at the 5:09 mark, 64-64, and Georgetown answered right back with a basket from Bowen, 66-64.

2 for 7
D. Smith-Rivera
1st half

7 for 11
D. Smith-Rivera
after halftime

GU adv.,
points in paint

GU adv.,
bench points

7 for 13
IU 3-pt. shots,
1st half

6 for 13
IU 3-pt. shots,
2nd half

0 for 5
IU 3-pt. shots,

GU turnovers,
1st half

GU turnovers,
2nd half

Last time GU
won two OT
games in
same season

Lapses in transition followed the Hoyas on its next two series, as Ferrell was again open for a three, 67-66. A driving missed layup from L.J. Peak set up the Hoosiers in transition for an inside dunk by Troy Williams, a 10-2 run which gave Indiana a 69-66 lead.

Fouled on a three point attempt with 3:35 remaining, Jabril Trawick made two of three attempts to close to 69-68, but Georgetown's defense answered the call when it needed to, forcing turnovers on three consecutive IU possessions which resulted in baskets by Bowen, Smith, and Smith-Rivera to give Georgetown a 74-69 lead with 1:32 to play. A pair of free throws by Yogi Ferrell at the 1:27 mark was answered by a tough inside layup by Trawick with 1:03 remaining, 76-71.

IU needed help from outside and Yogi Ferrell delivered. Ferrell connected on a three at the 38 second mark, 76-74, and after Trawick made one of two at the line, sank a three with 11 seconds to tie the score, 77-77. With time on its side, a drive by L.J. Peak was blocked under the rim and the teams went into overtime.

Georgetown started the overtime with a flourish, scoring the first seven points of the period to lead 84-77 at the 3:27 mark. What the Hoyas taketh, they soon gaveth away, giving up inside turnovers on its next three possessions as IU closed to 86-83 with 1:16 to play. On its next possession, Smith came up big, feeding Bowen inside, 88-83. Indiana returned to the line, 88-85, but as the clock ran down, DSR rang up his 28th and 29th points of the game, a fade away jumper with 27 seconds remaining, 90-85. The Hoyas' season-long woes at the free throw line were in evidence down the stretch, missing three of four, but the outcome would not be threatened thereafter. With a 13 for 26 mark from three point range in regulation, the Hoosiers were 0 for 5 in the overtime from behind the arc.

Smith-Rivera finished with 29 points. Aaron Bowen had a career high 22 points, followed by 14 from Josh Smith and 12 from Jabril Trawick. The Indiana backcourt of Ferrell and Blackmon combined for 49 of its 87 points. And while the game may have seemed another non-conference game, it really mattered to a pair of kids from Indianapolis.

"It's big," said Smith-Rivera. "My freshman year we lost to them. Me and coach talked about that all week coming into the game so it's personal for me, Aaron (Bowen) and all the guys involved with that game so we wanted to come out with a win this time...I've grown up with Yogi since kindergarten, I've known him forever and we've always been great friends. There's always been a rivalry but I'm winning right now."

Here's the Georgetown half of the box score:

            MIN   2FG   3FG   FT  REB  A  PF  PTS
Smith-Rivera 42   4-11  5-7   6-9   2   4  2   29
Peak         38   3-9   0-2   1-3   5   1  3    7
Trawick      34   3-6   1-1   3-5   7   2  2   12
Hopkins      17   2-3   0-0   1-2   1   1  4    5
Smith        26   6-10  0-0   2-2   6   3  4   14
Campbell      3   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   1  0    0
Copeland     10   0-1   0-0   0-0   1   0  0    0
White        20   1-5   0-0   0-2   7   2  2    2
Bowen        35   9-11  1-2   1-3   4   2  3   22
Team Rebounds                       2
DNP: Cameron, Allen, Williams, Mourning, Hayes
TOTALS      225  28-56  7-12 14-26 35  16 20   91

Additional coverage follows below:

Crean: MSG Game A Big Deal 12/28/14

Saturday's game marked the seventh game for Indiana at Madison Square garden since 2000, and IU coach Tom Crean took a moment in the post-game news conference to refelect on it.

"We were honored to be asked," said Crean. [MSG] called to see if we would be interested, we had a couple different options on teams (opponents) and Georgetown was chosen...Jim Calhoun had 33 guys that played at least five years in the NBA, they made over a billion dollars and the whole deal, and he knew exactly how many games he played in The Garden. He coached 82 times in The Garden. That is one of the great coaches of all time, in my book he's as good as it gets, and he knew exactly how many times he's been in The Garden. I told our team that a couple of times: It doesn't matter what you do in your career, he's coached everywhere, won national championships, when you're in a place like this you know it and I think that puts it into perspective."

"We have guys who may never get to play in here again. It's a great thing. The east coast is obviously huge part for Indiana when it comes to alums. The New York Metropolitan area is second to Chicago, when you remove the state of Indiana. We have the third largest alumni base in the country. It's an honor to be here and it gives a chance for our east coast kids to spend some time with the family."

Women's Basketball Remains Underreported 12/26/14

Four coaches in three years. The top recruit from each of the last two seasons transferred out. The worst start in school history. If this were men's basketball, the coverage level would be enormous, yet for Georgetown women's basketball, there has been little or no serious coverage of the team and its poor start to date.

"What about the defection of 2014 Big East Freshman of the Year from Georgetown to Connecticut?" asks Andy Arnold at Examiner.com. "Natalie Butler is sitting the year out per NCAA regulations, but the Hoyas are just 2-10 without Butler and do not show signs of progress with conference play about to kick in. That is a sports story."

Natalie Butler was the second major departure in as many years for the Hoyas. Top recruit Shayla Cooper quit the team two games into the 2013-14 season and transferred to Ohio State, where she will become eligible to play Monday versus West Virginia.

The Hoyas dropped its ninth straight game this past week, and enter Big East play next week at Creighton (7-5).

Georgetown 81, NC-Charlotte 78 12/19/14

Eighteen points from freshman L.J. Peak, including two free throws with 7.5 seconds left, kept the Hoyas apart from an upset at the hands of UNC-Charlotte, 81-78. The Hoyas nearly lost a 15 point lead midway in the second half, with one field goal over the final 6:15 of play.

Both halves followed parallel paths. Georgetown got up to early leads, lacked a clear direction when it could have put the 49ers away, and faced a resolute comeback in the final minutes. In the first half, the Hoyas hit four of their first five shots and carried a 12-2 run into an eight point lead, 16-8, at the opening TV time out. The lead grew to ten at the 12:04 mark on back to back baskets by Jabril Trawick, and grew to 14 with 3:32 to play before halftime, 38-24, as two Charlotte starters were sidelined with foul trouble. In the final three minutes, Georgetown gave the ball over three straight times on turnovers and the 49ers scored the final seven points of the half, closing to 38-31 at the break. Owning a 21-14 rebounding edge, the Hoyas should have been leading by more, but a 0-4 mark from the field and four turnvoers in the final three minutes of the half kept the 49ers in range.

The second half started much like the first--an 11-2 run in the first three minutes of the half pushed the Georgetown lead to 14 and while the 49ers contained to struggle, a lack of focus prevented georgetown from blowing the game wide open, missing four of five shots in some sequences and picking up fouls of its own.

The georgetown lead crested at 60-44 with 12:432 to play. Charlotte answered with a pair of three pointers to start to work into the lead, but threes by Aaron Bowen and Paul White answered the charge. Georgetown still led by double digits with 9:06 to play, but began to suffer on both ends of the court--missing five straight shots while getting beat on transition baskets to see UNCC close to seven, 70-63.

Up seven with 4:48 to play, the Hoyas missed three close-in attempts in rapid fashion, and when UNCC's Braxton Ogubueze answered with a three to close to 76-72 at the four minute mark, the game was back on. Jabril Trawick made one of two free throws, but the 49ers struck on the next play when L.J. Peak left Ogubueze alone for another three and a lead cut to 77-75. Three more close-in attempts failed, and the 49ers closed the lead to one at the foul line following D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera's fifth foul at the 1:59 mark.

On its next series, Georgetown turned the ball on a shot clock violation, on its next, Ogubueze missed a three and Aaron bowen was fouled at the 0:25 mark. Bowen made both free throws to bump the lead to 79-76, but UNCC's Keyshawn Woods drove inside for a layup at the nine second mark, 79-78. Peak was quickly fouled and added two more free throws, while the 49ers' final attempt was short and Georgetown escaped with the win.

Charlotte, which opened the game 2-10 from three, made six of its next nine in the second half.

"They got too many open looks," said Georgetown coach john Thompson III. "Our goal was to not let them get threes and they got threes. We need to work on it, we to listen, we need the reps, we need to talk about it, we need to watch film, we need to practice against it. You come away with a win; great, but our defensive execution was not where it needs to be.",/P>

Peak led all scorers with 18 points, but the Georgetown front line remained ineffective in key stretches of the game. Joshua Smith and Mikael Hopkins accounted for only eight points and five rebounds after halftime, while the team as a whole shot just 37 percent after the break, including missing 15 of its final 18 shots over the last ten minutes of the half. The game was won at the line, where GU was 14-15 in the second half compared to 15-21 for Charlotte.

Georgetown has a one week break before concluding out of conference play Dec. 27 at Madison Square Garden against Indiana, which defeated Butler 82-73 on Saturday.

Here's the Georgetown half of the box score.

            MIN   2FG   3FG   FT  REB  A  PF  PTS
Smith-Rivera 31   3-7   1-4   4-4   6   4  5   13
Peak         32   4-9   1-3   7-7   3   1  2   18
Trawick      28   2-5   1-4   4-5  10   3  3   11
Hopkins      21   1-3   0-0   0-2   2   0  4    2
Smith        21   4-7   0-0   4-6   6   1  4   12
Campbell      8   0-1   0-2   0-0   0   2  0    0
Cameron       6   0-0   1-2   0-0   1   0  1    3
Copeland     17   3-8   0-0   0-0   4   1  0    6
White        16   1-4   1-1   0-2   1   2  1    5
Bowen        17   2-5   1-1   4-4   4   1  3   11
Hayes         3   0-0   0-0   0-0   2   0  0    0
Team Rebounds                       4
DNP: Allen, Williams, Mourning
TOTALS      200  20-36  6-17 23-30 43  15 23   81
Georgetown-Charlotte: The Last Meeting 12/19/14

Prior to Saturday's game, the two schools have met just once, at the dawn of this web site.

The March 14, 1997 game in the first round of the NCAA's came in the first season of our coverage, and the game recap was not archived. This link to USA Today provides a recap on UNC-Charlotte's stunning 79-67 win, Georgetown's first NCAA opening round loss in 16 years.

The Hoyas, who rallied to win nine of its final 10 games and earn a #10 seed to the NCAA tournament, but had little momentum in this game. From a 9-8 lead in the opening minutes of the first half, the Hoyas were held to one field goal in the next seven minutes as the 49ers outscored the G-men 23-4 to carry an 18 point lead with 7:31 left, a 14 point lead at the half, and kept the Hoyas no closer than seven thereafter.

Sean Colson led the 49ers with 24 points, 17 after halftime. Defended at every turn, sophomore All-American Victor Page shot just 7 for 23 in the game, with little of the spark which had led the Hoyas all season.

"We had a game plan in place, and any time you've got a game plan, you've got to have someone to come out and execute it, and the players did just that," said UNCC coach Melvin Watkins. "We wanted to make sure Page, every time he touched the ball, had a tough shot, and we thought we did a pretty good job there. Secondly, we thought we did a pretty good job on the boards, and more importantly, we think we did a pretty good job of handling their pressure."

"We were very tentative," said Georgetown coach John Thompson. "A lot of that has to do with how they played against us. Once we cut things in the second half they answered them very well. They're poised, they shot the ball well ... I feel we lost to a team that beat us today. We had to work very hard to get here. We did not take anything for granted. We're not hanging our heads, we're certainly disappointed. But in the same token we felt that they executed well and did some things to hurt us at the times that they had to."

In hindsight, the game marked a beginning of the end of the John Thompson era. It was coach Thompson's final NCAA appearance, and his last 20 game season. Over his final two seasons Thompson's record was just 23-21.

It was also the final college games for Georgetown's backcourt. Following midterms a week later, Page quit school to seek the NBA, failing to be drafted and embarking on a tragic run of bad choices and bad luck. The 39 year old Page is currently serving a 10 year sentence in Maryland for a felony assault case from 2013.

Page's teammate, Ed Sheffey, was kicked off the team in August 1997 following an arrest just before the start of his sophomore season. Transferring to New Mexico Junior College, Sheffey was critically injured in a car crash on his first day in school, and never played college basketball thereafter. Sheffey died this past August at the age of 36.

Here's the Georgetown half of that 1997 box score:

             MIN   2FG   3FG   FT  REB  A  PF  PTS
Sheffey       29   0-1   2-5   0-0   5  5   3    6
Page          34  3-12   4-11  2-2   2  2   4   20
Dia           38   4-6   0-0   3-4   8  4   3   11
Aw            28  6-10   0-0   4-5   9  0   5   16
White         20   1-4   0-0   2-2   1  0   4    4
Touomou       12   0-0   0-0   0-0   2  0   2    0
Jackson       20   3-3   0-0   2-4   3  0   4    8
Gaughan        1   0-1   0-0   0-0   3  0   0    0
Long           8   0-3   0-1   0-0   0  0   1    0
Nichols        1   0-1   0-0   0-0   0  0   1    0
Owinje         1   1-1   0-1   0-0   0  0   0    2
Watkins        5   0-0   0-0   0-0   1  0   0    0
Jones          3   0-0   0-0   0-0   1  0   0    0
Team Rebounds:                       1
DNP: Gibson
TOTALS         200 18-42 6-18 13-17 35 11  27   67
What's A Player Worth? 12/19/14

How much was Markel Starks worth to Georgetown University last season? How about Nate Lubick? What about Moses Ayegba?

Austin sportswriter Cork Gaines took the revenue figures for NCAA basketball programs in 2013-14 and weighed them against a 49 percent revenue distribution common in the NBA to measure the revenue per scholarship athlete per Business Insider.com. For example, splitting Louisville's record $40 million in revenue across 13 scholarship athletes equated to over $1.5 million per player, or what he called the "Fair Market Value Index".

While this may be a comical exercise, note that the undercurrent of interest in subsidizing college football and basketball athletes can't be overlooked. Some would look at figures like this to raise the discussion level about what players are really worth to these schools.

Georgetown 76, Radford 49 12/13/14 2:10 pm EST

The Radford Highlanders opened its game with Georgetown shooting 4 for 6 from the field. It was all downhill from there.

From a 9-9 tie, the Highlanders proceeded to miss 22 of its next 26 shots over a 20 minute period, easing Georgetown into a comfortable 76-49 win at Verizon Center Saturday.

Georgetown's offense was ragged early in the game, and received a wake-up call of sorts when Josh Smith committed two fouls four minutes into the game.Georgetown got a spark from senior Aaron Bowen, who scored six of the team's next eight points to build a six point lead midway through the half. The Highlanders saw center Brandon Holcomb pick up three first half fouls, and with it, relied on outside shooting which was nowhere to be found, missing 13 of its final 16 shots of the half before a basket at the buzzer closed the Georgetown lead to 29-18.

Radford opened the second half with a thud, missing its first ten shots as the Hoyas pulled away for good. Jabril Trawick opened with a three, followed by a pair of baskets each from Josh Smith and Paul White. A 360 degree dunk from Aaron Bowen and a White three extended the lead to 30, 50-20, before the Highlanders scored its first field goal of the half. Utilizing a four freshman lineup for large portions of the second half, the Hoyas led by as many as 33, 74-41, before clearing the bench.

Aaron Bowen led all scorers with 16 points, a career high, on 8-9 shooting. D'Vauntes-Smith Rivera continued his shooting slump, missing his first eight shots and settling for a 1-9 effort from the field.

            MIN   2FG   3FG   FT  REB  A  PF  PTS
Smith-Rivera 28   0-4   1-5   6-6   4   5  0    9
Peak         19   2-5   0-3   2-2   2   0  0    6
Trawick      22   1-1   2-2   0-0   4   7  2    8
Hopkins      21   1-2   0-0   3-4   5   3  3    5
Smith        13   2-4   0-0   2-4   6   0  3    6
Campbell     16   0-0   1-3   0-0   0   1  2    3
Cameron      12   1-1   1-2   0-0   1   1  0    5
Copeland     12   2-3   0-0   0-0   0   0  1    4
Allen         3   0-0   0-1   0-0   0   0  0    0
White        20   2-4   2-3   2-2   3   1  1   12
Williams      2   0-2   0-1   0-0   1   0  0    0
Bowen        20   8-9   0-0   0-1   4   1  2   16
Mourning      2   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0  1    0
Hayes        10   1-1   0-0   0-1   3   0  1    2
Team Rebounds                       6
TOTALS      200  20-36  7-20 15-20 39  19 16   76
Radford's Guarantee: $85K 12/12/14

It's a number Georgetown never talks about: what it pays schools for December non-conference games with no return date. But according to the Roanoke Times, Radford talked about it.

"Radford will reap $85,000 from Georgetown," writes the Times. "But it did not get any money from [Virginia] Tech because that game was actually the first part of a two-for-one deal."

A 2013 article outlined how Michigan paid its guarantee games.

"Holy Cross received $85,000, 75 complimentary tickets, and 11 hotel rooms and one suite for two nights in a local hotel courtesy of U-M for its efforts," it wrote, while "Coppin State didn't receive garner lodging or transportation compensation. The Golden Eagles were handed $92,000 and the customary 75 comped tickets, then sent packing."

Pre-Game Shirts Draw Attention 12/11/14

Wednesday's pre-game with Kansas drew as much national attention as the game itself, after the Georgetown team ended pre-game warm-ups in t-shirts that read "I Can't Breathe", a reference to the death of New York resident Eric Garner in police custody on July 17, 2014. The case was no-billed by a grand jury on Dec. 3.

"We've been, as a group, talking about this for a while," said coach John Thompson III in post-game remarks. "I thought they wanted to do it the other day, but I thought it was important before they jump out there that we talk as a group and understand what's going on, what does it mean and why do you want to wear the shirt?"

"The reasons why every individual wanted to wear it are all over the place, too, which is probably pretty consistent with the emotions across the country. Everyone does not respond the same way, but I think the group wanted to put ourselves in a position to be part of a process to help where there is positive change opposed to just negative reactions. When we were in the Bahamas we sat in a room together and watch the Ferguson decision and had our first conversations starting that night. It's something they wanted to do and after talking with them and understanding and making sure they understood the importance of what it means as opposed to let's just do this, I agreed."

"It was a variety of reasons why we wanted to wear the shirts," said junior D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera. "It was quite a few families who lost a loved one this year with the Michael Brown case and Trayvon Martin also. We really wanted to represent those families that all lost someone. It wasn't just this one scenario that a lot of people walked for that one case. I just thought that we wanted to represent the families and send our condolences that way."

"I didn't know about it until after the game," said Kansas coach Bill Self. "It's a pretty strong stance and I think it's pretty good. Certainly it shows a lot of solidarity amongst their unit, I don't see anything negative about it at all."

Addditional quotes follow in this link to CSN Washington.com.

Kansas 75, Georgetown 70 Updated 12/11/14

The Georgetown Hoyas battled back from a 13 point first half deficit but stumbled late in a 75-70 loss to #10 Kansas, before an announced crowd of 14,164 at Verizon Center.

The Hoyas got off to a slow start and it followed them through much of the first half. Four turnovers in the first four minutes saw Georgetown trail 7-2 before a basket and an assist by D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera brought the Hoyas back to 7-6 with 14:22 in the half. For the next 9:26 of the half, the Hoyas combined for just two field goals, failing to adjust to Kansas' defense and giving up turnovers that stretched the KU lead to as many as 13 at 28-15 with 6:22 to play. Fighting back at the foul line, the Hoyas then went on an 11-1 run, led by an L.J. Peak three at the 3:45 mark and a driving Peak layup two minutes later that gave the Hoyas a brief lead of its own at 30-29. A late basket by Kansas' Frank Mason gave the Jayhawks a 34-32 lead at the break, a sloppy half where the teams combined for 20 turnovers.

Amidst a poor shooting effort from D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera (2-7 FG at the break) and an equally ineffective Mikael Hopkins (1-3), Georgetown looked to Smith and Peak to carry the load in a second half where neither team could establish an advantage. Smith and Peak helped tie the score at 39 in the first four minutes of the second half, but any gains the Hoyas were getting inside were negated by defensive lapses which played into the hands of Kansas guard Brannen Greene, whose there point shooting proved the difference in the game.

Down three with 13:41 remaining, Greene sank a long three to rally the Jayhawks and tied the score at 44. Following a missed Peak layup, Peak was out of position when Greene was open from outside, 48-47. After Paul White missed from outside, Greene was again left open and again stung the Hoyas, 51-47, as Greene scored 12 of the Jayhawks' 16 second half points to date.

Georgetown's defense took a step up in the second half and, Greene excepted, had Kansas in check. On the other end of the court, Josh Smith continued to dominate inside, tying the score at 51 midway in the half until the Jayhawks rang up seven straight from the free throw line, 58-51. The Hoyas answered with seven of its own, and with 6:11 to play the score was tied at 61.

A pair of mistakes hurt the Hoyas late in this one. With 5:10 to play, down two, Mikael Hopkins missed the front end of a one and one, which was converted by Kansas' Perry Ellis for a four point swing and a 65-61 KU lead. At the 3:46 mark, with the Hoyas holding the Jayhawks scoreless on its next two possessions, Smith missed another one and one.

Kansas opened a 68-63 lead on Greene's fifth three of the evening, but Georgetown didn't quit. A pair of free throws by Smith and a basket by Jabril Trawick (his first and only score of the evening) rallied the Hoyas to 68-67 with 1:43 to play. The defense kept KU in check but the offense was spent--over its next four possession, DSR missed a three, Smith lost the ball over the backboard, Isaac Copeland missed a three, and L.J. Peak missed a three, allowing Kansas to go five for six from the line and take the win.

D. Smith-Rivera

DSR 3-pt. shooting
pct. this season

Mikael Hopkins

Mikael Hopkins
2-pt. shooting
pct. this season

GU shooting,
last 6 mins.

KU bench
scoring adv.

KU free throws
second half

Combined turnovers

Josh Smith and L.J. Peak were the stars of the game for Georgetown, combining for 38 points. Mikael Hopkins had nine rebounds but was visibly ineffective on offense, while Smith-Rivera (3-15) and Jabril Trawick (1-2) were offensive liabilities on the evening. The Hoyas held the Kansas starters to a combined 11 for 34, but had no answer for Greene, who finished five for five from three point range and four for four from the foul line for a career high 19 points, 16 after halftime.

Coach John Thompson was clearly frustrated with the outcome but tried to remain upbeat.

"As I try to sit here and be positive, you hope that some of the mistakes that the young guys make, they won't make later in the year," he said.

Georgetown's 5-3 start is its slowest start in eight years, with a 1-3 record against teams ranked in the Top 25. While the last team to start 5-3 was the 2006-07 team that won the next 25 of 28 en route to the Final Four, there is much more work to be done on the 2014-15 team to even consider such heights. Georgetown's lack of consistent three point shooting and an inattention to defense are points of emphasis over its next two games heading into a meeting with Indiana on Dec. 27.

            MIN   2FG   3FG   FT  REB  A  PF  PTS
Smith-Rivera 36   3-10  0-5   4-4  10   6  3   10
Peak         35   3-7   3-5   3-5   1   0  1   18
Trawick      27   1-2   0-0   0-2   6   2  3    2
Hopkins      26   1-5   0-0   2-3   9   4  5    4
Smith        27   8-13  0-0   4-6   5   1  4   20
Campbell     17   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0  0    0
Copeland     21   1-2   0-2   4-4   2   1  1    6
White        17   1-2   2-4   2-2   4   0  3   10
Bowen        16   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   1  0    0
DNP: Cameron, Allen, Williams, Mourning, Hayes
TOTALS      200  18-41  5-16 19-26 37  15 20   70
Georgetown 78, Towson 46 Updated 12/8/14

Senior Josh Smith scored seven early points and the Hoyas never looked back, walking over Towson 78-46 in the opener of Sunday's BB&T Classic.

Towson (7-2) did not have an outside shot and it was apparent early. Trailing 8-5 at the 14:34 mark, the Tigers managed only one field goal over the next six minutes and an 18-3 run by the Hoyas put the game out of reach. Consecutive baskets by D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera and consecutive threes by Paul White keyed the rally, which gave the Hoyas a 26-8 lead with 7;19 to play, as the Tigers missed on seven attempts from three point range and never closed to within 14 points the remainder of the game.

With ten different players seeing action in the first half, Georgetown took its largest halftime lead of the season at 40-17, holding the Tigers to five field goals, 9-0 from three point range, and forcing 10 turnovers. Things continued poorly for Towson after halftime, with turnovers on three of its next five possessions, and the hoyas pushed the lead to 30, 52-22, at the 14:46 mark.

Three point shooting, an early point of concern this season, was in evidence all afternoon for the Hoyas, with a season high 11 threes. Smith-Rivers, Aaron Bowen, and Isaac Copeland had two each, while Paul White had three. Reggie Cameron's three at the 7:11 mark put the Hoyas up 36 at the 7:11 mark, 68-33, and the benches began to empty.

"We felt coming in that they hadn't shot the 3 point shot very well, that we really needed to be packed in and make them make 3s, which they did," said Towson coach Pat Skerry. "It's just disappointing, I thought we played better. I thought really where they hurt us and exposed us, they're a good defensive club, and they exposed some lack of execution. That falls on me to get that better. It's disappointing we were excited and our guys were pumped up to be part of this. I thought we played better. But we didn't, and that's a credit to Georgetown."

Amongst the statistics, the effort of senior center Josh Smith stands out: 12 points, seven rebounds, three assists, and no foul trouble.

"Once we established [Smith] it becomes a lot easier to make 11-of-22 from three," said Georgetown coach John Thompson III.

Five Hoyas were in double figures, including D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera (16), Josh Smith (12), Jabril Trawick (11), Paul White (11), and Isaac Copeland (10).

            MIN   2FG   3FG   FT  REB  A  PF  PTS
Smith-Rivera 25   2-4   2-2   6-6   1   1  0   16
Peak         20   2-5   0-2   1-2   1   2  0    5
Trawick      21   4-6   1-1   0-0   2   3  3   11
Hopkins      18   1-2   0-0   0-0   4   3  1    2
Smith        21   4-5   0-0   4-4   7   3  3   12
Campbell     17   0-1   0-2   0-0   3   1  1    0
Cameron      14   0-0   1-2   0-0   0   0  1    3
Copeland     21   2-3   2-5   0-1   3   0  2   10
Allen         3   0-0   0-0   0-1   0   0  0    0
White        17   1-2   3-4   0-0   1   1  2   11
Williams      1   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0  0    0
Bowen        16   1-1   2-2   0-0   0   2  2    8
Mourning      5   0-0   0-2   0-0   1   2  2    0
Hayes         1   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0  0    0
Team Rebounds                       5
TOTALS      200  17-29 11-22 11-14 28  17 17   78
Big Ten Tournament Coming To MSG 12/8/14

As discussed this summer, the Big Ten Conference will announce Tuesday it will hold its 2018 men's basketball tournament at Madison Square Garden. But it's not what you think.

In an acknowledgement to the Big East's existing agreement with MSG that runs through 2026, the Big Ten will take its tournament to Manhattan Feb. 28-March 3, 2018, or one week earlier than the Big East tournament, which will remain at the Garden as planned. While it puts the Big Ten event alongside such earlier tournaments as the Big South, Atlantic Sun, and Horizon, it's a decision the conference was prepared to take to establish a foothold in the Northeast.

"In a perfect world, they'd rather have it a week later. But they also understand the advantages and are willing to do it," said Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany.

The Big Ten's move is not a preemptive strike against the Big East, but rather the Atlantic Coast Conference, which attempted a similar move to displace the Big East at MSG but which will play its 2018 tournament at Barclays Center instead, in the same week as the Big East.

Additional coverage follows below:

The Promoter 12/4/14

It's a curious irony that, in the 20 years since Franklin National Bank sponsored the first of what is now known as the BB&T Classic, the man most responsible for Georgetown not participating in the effort hasn't been mentioned much this week. And during Sunday's game, perhaps not at all.

In 1994, after an attempt at a Georgetown-Maryland series ran aground, Washington Post columnist John Feinstein set out to bring Georgetown and Maryland together in a two-day tournament. Georgetown, having a frosty relationship with the Post columnist dating back over a decade, declined.

"I have served on the board of the Children’s Charities Classic since it was formed in 1994, and my main responsibility has been persuading coaches to bring their teams to play," said Feinstein in a 2012 column. "When the event was conceived, the idea was to have Maryland and Georgetown co-host and bring in two national teams for a two-day tournament. That would mean Maryland and Georgetown might play on the second day. Williams instantly said yes to the idea. Thompson didn’t return a phone call from Bob Whitmore, the former Notre Dame star who is now a lawyer in town and a founding board member."

Feinstein took extra effort every year to remind anyone who would listen how "Georgetown didn't care about kids", a reference to tournament sponsor Children's Charities. But it wasn't Children Charities at the forefront of the Georgetown debate, it was the promoter of, as some suggested, the "John Feinstein Invitational". Even as attendance and local interest declined, Feinstein and Maryland coach Gary Williams remained at the forefront of the event, which became a one day doubleheader featuring Maryland and George Washington.

Following Gary Williams' retirement, new coach Mark Turgeon was never totally on board with the game, and following Maryland's move to the Big Ten this year, he promptly took advantage and withdrew from the tournament. (The Terrapins are playing Winthrop this weekend instead.) But to some surprise, the tournament received new life this fall when it was announced that Georgetown would take Maryland's place.

John Feinstein hasn't commented publicly on the game this week, and owing to the fact that he works for CBS Sports Radio and the game is on Fox Sports 1, it's likely he won't be a part of the broadcast. Will Feinstein bury the hatchet this weekend? Would he claim that "Maryland doesn't care about kids?" More than likely, he'll be at the Army-Navy game in Baltimore and leave it at that.

Distant Neighbors 12/4/14

From Comcast Sports, columnist Ben Standig asked coach John Thompson III if he would ever schedule a game with George Washington, who is also on Sunday's BB&T twinbill.

"I'm not opposed to playing them," Thompson said.

"Great opportunity at the BB&T this year but it didn't happen," said GW coach Mike Lonergan. "Great for the area, for college basketball, great for these teams [but] out of my control. I know everyone here wants it."

 Georgetown and George Washington have not met since Dec. 16, 1981, the 93rd game between the schools dating to 1907. Among Division I schools with at least 20 games versus the Hoyas, it is the fourth longest drought among former opponents, trailing St. Joseph's (33 games, last on January 8, 1980), Holy Cross (20 games, last on February 23, 1980), and LaSalle (24 games, last on December 30, 1980.)

Student For A Day 12/3/14

For over 30 years, it's been a visible problem at Georgetown home games over the Christmas holidays--with no students, the Verizon Center (and Capital Centre before that) can be a fairly dull place. The Georgetown athletic marketing department has come up with a new idea that is gaining followers...and customers.

The campaign is called "Student For a Day". Ticket buyers using a Living Social coupon can sit in the otherwise empty student sections for two home games over the Christmas break. Writes Washington Post: "People who buy those seats will get the 'We Are Georgetown' T-shirts that students wear. They'll get a cheer sheet from the student fan club with information on the opponents, and suggested chants. They'll get the lanyard and campus map a freshman student might use, and they’ll get a 'Student of Georgetown Basketball' degree from the school’s Jack the Bulldog mascot."

"A lot of schools just release those seats and sell them to the general public, and then you'll get people who will sit on their hands,” said Chris Grosse, director of marketing. "So I thought why don’t we create a package for people and kind of entice them to get loud and make some noise and relieve [sic] that whole college time, when they could act like that?"

"All schools try to fill their student sections with regular fans [during holiday breaks]; we wanted to give them a little bit more incentive to be a little bit louder and show some passion. If we can have all 150 people at those games, in those sections, dressed like Georgetown students, hopefully being loud and cheering on the Hoyas, I think that’s a success for us.”

It's also getting some interest at other schools. Auburn coach Bruce Pearl asked his Twitter followers: "Georgetown reveals unique experience to draw fans in absence of students. Great Idea! Should we try it AU?"

Zormelo: By The Numbers 12/2/14

From the weekend's Washington Post Magazine: a feature on Justin Zormelo (B'06), the former Georgetown basketball manager whose knowledge of statistics and basketball has led to his role as a personal trainer for a number of NBA all-stars.

"When you’re around NBA players of that caliber, they like to have people they trust,” said Roy Hibbert (C'08), who is working with Zormelo to improve his game. "To gain people’s trust like that is very important.”

Writes Kathy Orton of the Post; "By the next season, Zormelo had helped Durant improve not only in the quirky stats Zormelo devised but also in the NBA’s traditional measures. Durant, now 26, became only the seventh player in NBA history to shoot 40 percent from the three-point range, 50 percent from the field and 90 percent from the free throw line for the season. Last season, Durant, who was the second pick in the 2007 NBA draft, was voted MVP for the first time in his career. He gives some of the credit to Zormelo: “He’s a big part of what I’ve done these last few years.”


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