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The Professors: Grading The Georgetown Hoyas Basketball Experience

Nearly all Georgetown students, alums, and members of the educated fan community share a common primal urge: the insatiable desire to be arbitrarily judged via meaningless quanta. Because THE GLOBAL PHENOMENON never misses a chance to give the people what they want, WarmUpEwing and SirHoya have been locked in the basement of the Casual Compound, PLEASE HELP cheerfully asked to do a weekly feature that brings our sound judgment to various aspects of Georgetown fandom, and track how they are doing over the course of the season. None of the following have been curved unless they have been.

It is a well-documented fact that we do not have a frothing sea of rabid fans to give us a home court advantage every game. This is due to the relatively small size of our student body, lack of having thirteen home games against Duke every season, very important midterms, and that firm thing you really should not miss because it is, like you, so vital to the ongoing health of the practice. Opinions vary, but the bottom line is that everyone enjoys your presence when you come around. All that being said, we have seen several great exploits in past seasons that bring an otherwise tepid crowd to a near-boil, one of which featured prominently this week. Let's break ‘er down:

Students - Strong turnout for the opener against Duquesne, less so for the Liberty clash. Oddly enough, the noise level was roughly the same. This was partially understandable as Georgetown had about a combined two minutes of offensive pace for both contests. The kids did get all rowdy when the Dukes made it close(!?) down the stretch, though. Point deduction for the "F*CK DUQUESNE" chant that was going around in the 2nd half. We all got it, their fans were annoying (see below), but simply appending "F*CK" to [opponent] does not a clever or inspiring chant just wind up seeming so angry. Points added back for the stirring "NA NA HEY HEY KISS HIM GOODBYE" (actual song title!) chorus that the students got going towards the end. That can be a devastatingly effective chant in the waning moments of a game.


Alums and such - Normally, we will also have an "others" subsection for when prominent outsiders like Billy/Wendy/Alec/Kevin/Jules/Kirby/Leslie (or Nancy Pelosi-maybe) show up, but for now we will just deal with the rest of the crowd as a group. This week marked the advent of the Stonewalls, who are single-mindedly dedicated to turning the hallowed Section 118 into a European socialist soccer-style ultras territory (next time with added ultraviolence and bottles to the face!) It is an outstanding idea and a boon to humanity. The banner was unfurled on Sunday and the scarves were out in force for both shows. (We trust that Teddy continues to enjoy his scarf, and has thus far avoided soiling it). All young alum sections showed some solid and consistent chanting through some occasionally awkward play by the young Hoyas. The closing stages of the Liberty game also saw steady mentoring of the student section by young alums in the art AND SCIENCE of transcourt Hoya Saxa chants.

After a long summer of looking at photos of headbands, your esteemed Professors were among the many who were excited to return to the plush pleasure dome that is the Verizon Center. Imagine our dismay when we discovered that NOT ONLY did the Papa John's stand outside of Section 118 stop selling Molson tallboys, but they still had it up on the menu to turn the screw! Listen, if we want to pay eight bucks for an aluminum bottle of watery InBev products at a sporting event, we can just go to the derelict that is RFK. $9.50 for an Old Dominion is similarly unappealing. Slight points deductions for taking away the only thing that gets us through thirty game minutes of head shaking at Markel Starks.

MAJOR POINTS ADDED for the otherwise great service and staff at the Booth. A possible nightmare-lines scenario with the new tickets seemed to be well managed (we won't dock the VC points because of Georgetown's odd decision to go plastic). Also, it was good to see that the place was running close to full service on a Sunday/Wednesday combo against two weaker opponents. But most important of all: the handling of the false Duquesne Fan Exodus/Invasion Movement. Sometime around halftime of Sunday's game, a *gasp* vacant section in the lower bowl was taken over by a bunch of red-shirted inebriates, who then had the audacity to launch their drunken tirades at our young heroes. Team Verizon to the rescue! Within minutes of when the enemy decided to "go loud" they were promptly shipped back up to their lofty cage in the 400's. In recent years, we have only seen positive interactions between Hoya fans the security at our home arena. Great stuff for both sides (and excellent preparation for the Battle of F Street on March 9).

Home opener got off to a shaky start with audio issues during the national anthem. Jack showed early season rustiness on Sunday, perhaps thrown by premature revelation of the box, and the not-terribly-hated opponent plastered all over his target. (Was back on form by Wednesday, however!) Cheerleader grades will spike when they eventually roll out their inevitable take on Gangnam Style. Across the board, then, "room for improvement".

4) BLOG:
This is the post where we give bad grades for the new format. We know it is not of your choosing, but it still looks like you just spent a lot of money on a Hummer, and the rage of an angry mob needs its target. There's not even an easily-accessible sidebar with a blogroll for us to visit our friends at Nunes (FREE WARMUPEWING, DAMMIT) and AE. This is also the post where we give good marks for the appearance of OvertheHilltop as a regular contributor. People who spend way too much time reading about the Hoyas online already know OTH from his old blog. Good hire.

In case Casualties and friends of the Phenomenon need to read about Georgetown basketball, have no fear! There are now approximately 14 game-to-game features for your reading pleasure, plus links to recruiting websites, other basketball-related content, and sometimes Hoyatalk. Bonus points for the return of lordnick in the role he was made for: the rocking DJ of music videos that topped the charts long before current Georgetown students were born. And finally (despite all the challenges presented by Sandy) Hoya Saxual's rousing naval gif was easily the best thing about our pit-stop in Florida this time last week. The bar is set high and early!

Well, that was an unfortunate first for a Casual Gamewatch. But forget what happened (or didn't happen) on the court - a gloriously large and enthusiastic crowd came out for the semi-season opener at the Horse. Many thanks to our friends at the DC Alumni Club for showing up strong! Hope to see you next week and beyond! (And we promise that sometimes, our gamewatches even have a complete game to watch...)

DAJUAN SUMMERS! (Polite applause, mild grumbling, snarky references to his orange shirt and abundant free time for college hoops viewing.)