He wore #55 well. Perhaps that's the highest compliment I can give him. Or that he was the only player on JT3's Hoyas that was tough enough to play for Pops. Whichever accolade you prefer, the answer points to the same gritty kid from Philadelphia who wore Georgetown on his chest for four great years.
Jabril Trawick came to Georgetown as a fringe top-100 recruit, a guard that excelled neither in shooting or dribbling but could defend at a high level. On the surface, he looked like a bull in a china shop, lacking polish in an offensive system that requires it. Yet his demeanor was captivating, from the moment he stepped on the court for the first time freshman year. It was the same aura that followed him for four years.
Trawick got plenty of opportunity right out of the gate, logging double-digit minutes in 8 of his first 10 games. His first marquee game came in a showdown at No. 4 ranked Louisville. While Otto Porter - someone we often forget was in this same class - grabbed the headlines for the freshmen class with his 14 points and the same amount rebounds, Trawick had a quiet but steady game with 9 points on only 3 shots in front of a raucous away crowd. Minutes waned for Trawick as Big East play picked up, but Trawick remained a solid contributor on a solid team - exactly what you'd expect from a hard-nosed freshman.
Expectations elevated for his sophomore campaign, but his game did not rise as quickly. His minutes more than doubled in what was a memorable year for the Hoyas - for many reasons - but the efficiency was poor. Trawick shot just 40% from the field on a team that was offensively inept at times.
These were the most volatile times for Trawick: his toughness bordered on out-of-control, often leading to frustrating fouls. His attitude was admirable, but Hoya fans began to wonder if we would ever see more than just intangibles out of Jabril.
While his junior year was easily the most forgettable season for the Hoyas since the entire Eshrick era, it forced Trawick to add more to his game. While his handle did not increase the way I would have liked to see, Jabril converted more at the rim, and his shot selection dramatically improved. He eclipsed the 30% mark from beyond the arc and converted on more than half of his total shot attempts. Curiously, Trawick's free throw percentage dipped below 70% - a downward trend he failed to reverse in four years.
By the time his senior year rolled around, Trawick was an unquestioned leader of the Hoyas. He used the preceding summer to polish his offensive game and work on a pull up jump shot. The results were evident: Trawick averaged a career-high 9 points per game while hovering around the 50% mark from the field. More catching was his team-high 41% mark from beyond the arc.
Trawick notched double-digit point totals in four of his final five games, further confirming his emergence as a legitimate scoring option on a team that had plenty of them. He went out playing hard, just as he came in. That was never a question for Jabril. What was more impressive was his ability to become a very skilled basketball player in four years' time: enough so to get an invite to work out with the Pacers.
He may not have a future in the NBA, or he may be able to make his way into the D-League. I am hopeful that an NBA team would see Jabril as a defensive and athletic monster who is just competent enough offensively for someone to take a chance on him. Jabril's increased basketball IQ, something he developed through Georgetown, will serve him well in his basketball future. Tony Allen may be a reasonable comparison.
Given the plethora of Georgetown guards that landed in Europe, his future may also lie there. But wherever he goes and whatever he does, I feel confident in knowing that Jabril is the consummate Hoya. He was more than just a fan favorite; he was a coaches' favorite, a teammates' favorite, and a university's favorite. When Jabril teared up on Senior Day, I don't think he was the only one in Verizon Center.
I would like to end not with my conjecture about this senior class, but with what these now-graduates of Georgetown University have to say. A few days after the loss to Utah - these seniors final college basketball game - Jabril made his first social media appearance with this post:
Dear Georgetown, I'm so blessed & thankful to be able to say that I wore this jersey for 4 of the best years of my life! This was the ONLY place for me. The lil dirty youngin from The Pit about to graduate w/ an English degree from Georgetown University this May, big plans on the table! I love this place with all my heart, it changed my life.. This is for everybody who played a part of this, I love you and thank you.. Time to turn it up!! - Brill Clinton
#NextChapter #WayUp #Legend #AIWentHere#HoyaHomie #H4L #HoyaSaxa #BrothaHood #OFA#SHP #NWF #TeamTrawick #YaKnow