Game 8: Georgetown Hoyas (4-3) vs Brown Bears (3-5)
Series: Hoyas lead 2-0, last meeting in the 1970-71 season
Where/When: Verizon Center, Monday 7 PM
It's been a so far, so good situation for Georgetown which has won the first three games of a seven game home stand. There's nothing quite like beating Syracuse at home, especially when you lead by double digits for most of game like the Hoyas this past weekend but it's only December so there's no time to sit around and celebrate for too long.
Luckily for the Hoyas they get right back at it nearly 48 hours later albeit it against an opponent that doesn't figure to provide much resistance in the form of the Bears from Brown.
Even though Coach John Thompson III came to the Hilltop via the Ivy League, he hasn't made an effort to put many of their schools on his schedules. In fact this is just the second time in his now 12th season that the Hoyas will go against Ivy competition.
Back in the winter of 2009 Georgetown defeated Harvard two days before Christmas. Chris Wright's 34 points remain the most scored by any player in the JT3 era.
Here's some basic info on Brown:
Last time out: After starting the season 1-5, Brown has actually racked up back-to-back wins with the their most victory coming against our friends at Bryant. The Bears took care of the Bulldogs 76-68 on Saturday.
RPI: The news here isn't great. It looks like best case scenario Brown will be in the 220's. What we really need to root for is for the Bears to stay on the good side of 300. They don't always do that.
Who to watch for: Senior forward Cedric Kuakumensah averages a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds per game. Kuakamensah has been a great rebounder for the Bears from Day One by always averaging at least seven per season. He's also a force defensively by averaging nearly three blocks per game over his four years.
Junior guard Tavon Blackmon comes in averaging 10.5 points per game and 4.4 assists. This game will be something of a homecoming for Blackmon as he hails from Upper Marlboro. JR Hobbie is Brown's 3-point threat. The junior guard takes over six a game and shoots 43 percent. He's consistent as he's hit at least 40 percent of his long range shots in each of his previous two seasons.
Ok let's talk about the Hoyas.
Shake off the Rust: This might be a great opportunity to leave Paul White on the court and get over the rust or whatever his problems might be. JT3 has been reluctant to give the sophomore many minutes since returning from a hip injury. It should also be a game in which Kaleb Johnson's minutes go back up along with Jessie Govan and Trey Mourning.
Full Strength: Obviously Georgetown won't be able to play with the intensity of a 40 minute clash with Syracuse but it is important that the Hoyas come out and put this game away early. As we know all too well around these parts, if you give the underdog a chance to believe...
Protect the Ball: If there's one area that the Hoyas could work on is protecting the ball. We saw some ugly turnovers against Syracuse both against the Orange late game press and within the half-court offense. DSR had four of the Hoyas 14 turnovers on Saturday. Derrickson, Copeland, and Reggie Cameron each had two. Does Paul White help out with breaking the press? Should they use Kaleb Johnson more? This glorified scrimmage should provide an opportunity to work on some of those things.
Reason to be delusional: Georgetown has gone from the best 1-3 team in the country to the best 4-3 team in the country in a little over a week. People are starting to pick up on the fact that this team isn't just Isaac Copeland and DSR. Bradley Hayes is a force down low, Marcus Derrickson can kill you from deep and on the glass, and this team has depth.
Reason to be cynical: You're worried nobody is going to show up against Brown on a Monday night in which the Redskins are hosting the Cowboys. You might be right.
Final Thoughts: Hoyas keep on winning at home as we've gone over the halfway point in this seven game home stand.