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Game Preview: Jacksonville at Georgetown

NCAA Basketball: Bryant at Georgetown Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Game 1: Jacksonville Dolphins (0-1) at Georgetown Hoyas

Series: Hoyas lead 2-1, last played in 2008

Where/When: Capital One Arena, Sunday noon

TV: FSN (MASN2 in the DC area)

KenPom: Georgetown 85-66, 96 percent

Line: N/A

Well, here we are again. The long offseason is finally over and college basketball season is back.

There’s an excitement level around Georgetown Basketball that we haven’t seen in a few years but it’s not driven by Final Four expectations or even a realistic shot at a conference crown. Instead the buzz is all about Patrick Ewing’s return to the Hilltop. You have to look no further than this year’s media guide to figure that out. Pictures of Coach Ewing occupy both the front and back covers while a pretty cool collage of his playing career takes up the insider front cover.

That’s OK. That’s where the program is right now. But with the games starting it’s time to figure out what a Patrick Ewing coached team is all about.

For Starters: I think Coach Ewing will throw out a starting lineup for the opener that consists of Mulmore, Mosely, Pickett, Derrickson, and Govan. Maybe we’ll see Johnson in there but I can also see his value off the bench.

Top Frosh: Jamorko Pickett is wearing No. 1 this season and it sounds like he’s also the top player in the Hoyas freshman class right now. This is what Ewing had to say about the newcomers the day before the season opener: “With our team we’re going to count on some of them. Especially Jamorko. We’re going to need his shooting, his ability to put the ball on the floor, his ability to make passes, make plays. Antwan Walker, his ability to rebound the basketball, his ability to run the floor. Blair is also another one. He can play multiple positions. He can shoot, he can pass.”

Grad Impact: Georgetown finally got into the emerging grad transfer market and hit an absolute home run with Rodney Pryor last season. Pryor put up one of the better statistical seasons in recent memory in his lone season with the Hoyas. This year’s grad transfer is Trey Dickerson from South Dakota. Dickerson started every game for a 22-12 Coyotes team, averaging 10 points per game and hit 33 percent of his threes. That said, Ewing’s assessment of Dickerson heading into the season opener was a bit of an eyebrow raiser for those expecting anything near what Pryor provided.

Said Ewing: “He’s still a work in progress. I’m on him a lot because I told him I brought you here for a reason and you have to live it up to that expectation. We’ll see what happens. The year has just started and it’s a long year. We’ll see how it goes and how many minutes he’ll play.”

Last Time Out: Georgetown lost to St. John’s in the first round of the BIG EAST Tournament. The Hoyas lost the last six games of the 2016-17 season.

Scouting Jacksonville: Not much went right for the Dolphins in their season opener at UAB on Friday night. Jacksonville lost 96-67 in a game that got away from them early. On Saturday afternoon Ewing said that the Dolphins would play four smaller players and try and shoot a lot of threes. Such is the general scouting report for most college teams these days, particularly mid-majors.

Jacksonville was outrebounded 41-26, went just 9 for 30 from deep, and only attempted 15 free throws – making just six.

The lone bright spot was 6-foot-2 freshman guard JD Notae who had 18 points and made five 3-pointers.

Reason to be cynical: Just try and push back these feelings for another day. Enjoy the opening game of the Coach Ewing era.

Reason to be delusional: Hey, that’s Patrick Ewing on the sidelines!

Prediction: Georgetown 72, Jacksonville 59