.
 
 
 

The Georgetown Hoyas held North Carolina A&T without a field goal for the first 8:16 of the first half, coasting to a 83-74 win Saturday at Capital One Arena.

Jessie Govan had 22 points and 15 rebounds in yet another walkover, which saw the Hoyas lead by 11 at the half and 18 in the second before NC A&T closed late. The win extends Georgetown's mark to 60 consecutive wins over MEAC opponents in as many games, dating to the 1976-77 season, and was A&T's third straight loss on the season.

The Georgetown half of the box score: 
 


            MIN   2FG   3FG   FT  REB  A  PF  PTS
Starters:
Mulmore      24   1-3   0-4   5-6   4   5  1    7
Johnson      29   3-5   1-2   1-2   5   2  1   10
Pickett      25   3-7   2-5   0-0   1   2  0   12
Derrickson   27   3-4   0-3   2-3   9   2  3    8
Govan        29   9-13  0-0   4-6  15   0  2   22
Reserves:
Blair        15   3-7   0-1   0-0   3   0  0    6
Mosely       19   3-6   0-2   2-2   3   3  2    8
Walker        9   0-0   0-0   2-2   0   1  1    2
Sodom         7   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0  2    0
Dickerson    16   2-4   1-2   1-2   2   4  4    8
Team Rebounds                       1
DNP: Hines, Muresan, Mourning
TOTALS      200  27-49  4-15 17-23 43  19 16   83
 
 
 
"We stayed around," remarked Howard coach Kevin Nickleberry.

Most of the prior entrants in Georgetown's soft-serve non-conference schedule have not been able to say as much.

Georgetown saw a 20 point second half lead dwindle to just five before moving past the Bison, 81-67, at a sparsely attended Capital One Arena of just 4,345 Thursday night. The run interrupted what was otherwise a rerun of much of the Hoyas' early game narratives, one which its talent overpowered smaller opponents and tended to mask deficiencies on defense and guard play.

The Hoyas never trailed in this one. Georgetown opened with a three pointer and led 13-4 at the first media time out. With no Howard defender taller than 6-7, Jessie Govan, had four rebounds and two assists in the first five minutes of play. After the Bison closed to seven at 27-20, the Hoyas answered with an 8-0 run to extended the lead to 15 at 35-20, and led by as many as 18 before a halftime score of 46-30, shooting 55 percent from the field and an even 6 for 12 from three point range.

Some early signs of trouble arrived early in the second half. Georgetown's three point shooting, accomplished with relative ease in the first half, began to fail as the Hoyas missed its first three attempts of the half. A run by the Bison to 12, 56-44, was countered by a 8-0 Georgetown run with just under 12 minutes to play, 64-44, and little suggested the outcome would deviate from the other late game exhibitions which have been common this season. But Howard didn't back down, even if Georgetown seemed to lose its intensity.

Key to the Bison efforts was its two best player, guard R.J. Cole and forward Charles Williams, both underclassmen. In a game where Howard struggled from outside, threes from Cole and Williams brought the Bison to 13 at the midpoint of the half, and Cameron Lewis added a three with 9:24 to play to make the game interesting, 65-55, with 9:24 to play.

A layup by Govan at the 8:29 mark ended an 0 for 8 scoring drought that saw its lead drop to 67-57. A Jamarko Pickett three with 6:03 to play appeared to steady the ship, much as the Hoyas did in the first half. But Howard's offensive tempo continued to test the Georgetown defense and the Hoyas were a step slow, allowing the Bison the confidence to continue its assault. The Bison closed to eight with 5:33 to play, 70-62, and a three pointer with 4:06 to play brought the Bison to five, 70-65. Georgetown's defense tightened, and the Bison missed five of its final six shots as the Hoyas picked up its seventh win this season.

Georgetown was led by 24 points and 16 rebounds from Jessie Govan, largely unopposed in the pivot. Strong efforts were also seen in a perfect 6 for 6 from the field and 18 points from Kaleb Johnson, and 16 from Marcus Derrickson. Guard play continued to be a work in progress, however, with guards Jonathan Mulmore and Trey Dickerson shooting a combined 2 of 13, with five turnovers. Georgetown shot just 37 percent for the second half and and allowed 55 percent from the field, a mirror image of the first half where Howard was 38 percent from the floor and allowed the Hoyas a 55 percent run.

Three Howard players, (Cole, Williams, and Cameron Lewis) combined for 56 of Howard's 67 points. The Bison outpaced the Hoyas by shooting percentage (46%-45%) and in threes (10 to 8), but the Hoyas held a 19 to 3 advantage at the foul line which proved the difference of the game.

The Georgetown half of the box score:


            MIN   2FG   3FG   FT  REB  A  PF  PTS
Starters:
Mulmore      32   1-5   1-4   4-4   2   2  2    9
Johnson      29   4-4   2-2   4-4   8   4  0   18
Pickett      31   1-4   2-6   0-0   1   3  1    8
Derrickson   37   3-5   2-4   4-4   9   4  1   16
Govan        35   9-14  0-1   6-10 16   2  1   24
Reserves:
Blair         9   0-0   1-3   1-1   1   1  0    4
Mosely       15   1-2   0-1   0-0   2   3  2    2
Walker        4   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0  0    0
Dickerson     8   0-3   0-1   0-0   1   2  1    0
Team Rebounds                       1
DNP: Hines, Sodom, Muresan, Mourning
TOTALS      200  19-37  8-22 19-23 41  21  8   81
 
 
 

Yahoo Sports columnist Jeff Eisenberg minces no words with his view of the Hoyas' 7-0 start.

"Only one of college basketball's eight remaining unbeaten teams unequivocally should be disregarded as a schedule-aided fraud," he writes.

"The new Big East has been one of college basketball's three or four strongest league's the past few years, but even that isn't enough to offset a schedule as laughable as this one in the eyes of the NCAA tournament selection committee. Playing a steady diet of MEAC teams also can't prepare Georgetown for Big East play, nor does it attract recruits who want to play on a big stage or fans who want to watch high-level basketball."

 
 

On this date, 66 years ago: the dedication of McDonough Gymnasium features the Hoyas' first on-campus game in 23 years, a 57-50 loss to Fordham.

McDonough is one of the nation's oldest Division I facilities that has never been renovated over its life span, one which Georgetown has steered past any groundswell of a return to on-campus basketball. In 2000, plans were leaked in the Washington Post for a $20 million renovation effort to dig down below the current foundation of the gymnasium, rotate the court to an east-west configuration, and provide as many as 7,000 seats for basketball and convocation use.

A 2000 press release noted that "The designs will include the addition of sky suites and a renovated press box, new locker and dressing rooms, new conference rooms, and box and VIP seating. Georgetown can accomplish this design by digging down through the slab upon which the gym is built and turning the floor perpendicular to its current setup. This is a significant cost savings for Georgetown in that the roof would not be removed at all. The convocation center will serve as a hub for athletic and academic endeavors at Georgetown."

"Most of the [men's basketball] games would be played in the Convocation Center which would be packed with Hoya students and fans and create a more improved and collegiate atmosphere at games. The convocation center would also eliminate the travel time of our players and students to and from MCI Center."

The proposal fell on deaf ears up the hill, which failed to advance any funds to begin the effort, which could have been completed as early as 2004. Of Georgetown's five home games to date this season, four had attendance figures which could have been housed within such a facility.

The gymnasium will see action on its anniversary as the women's team hosts Minnesota. The team is averaging just 316 per home game at McDonough to date this season, ninth among the ten Big East schools.

 

Georgetown received votes in the Associated Press weekly Top 25 basketball poll, which then became a story of its own.

Georgetown received four votes overall, short of the 90 votes that would have qualified for the top 25 but representing its first votes of any kind since the Hoyas received eight votes on Dec. 14, 2015. Georgetown's last appearance in the AP Top 25 was on March 14, 2015.

All four votes this week came from Doug Doughty, the veteran reporter for the Roanoke Times, who placed Georgetown 22nd in his poll and responded by social media to questions of why he made his pick: "They were 6-0. Schedule is weak but wasn't that impressed with other options," Doughty initially wrote.

"I'm not going to spend much time pointing out how ridiculous it is for Doug Doughty to rank Georgetown 22nd on his AP ballot this week," wrote Gary Parrish at CBS Sports.com, who then proceeded to do so. "To be clear, it's completely ridiculous considering Georgetown was picked to finish next-to-last in the Big East and has done nothing to show it might be better than that. The Hoyas haven't even played a top-200 KenPom team yet. Their best win is an 82-76 victory against a Richmond team that's 1-7. But whatever. I'm sure Doughty would argue 6-0 is 6-0 is 6-0. So if he wants to be the one person on the planet who thinks Georgetown's perfect record means something, I'll let him do it. He looks silly."

He later clarified with a Twitter post, below, which got its predictable share of criticism.