Well with the Big East and Georgetown Media Days, respectively, in the rear-view and the first game less than five days away, there are a boatload of season previews and interviews floating, including an Big East Shootaround preview planned for Monday. Here are some links to some news and commentary:
Nice review of the freshmen... But after a full year at helm of his alma mater, the Georgetown Hoyas head coach has compiled the Big East’s third-highest rated incoming class, featuring two guards and two big men, to add depth to a Hoyas team that will look to capitalize on the conference’s changing power dynamics.
Andy Katz recently said, “This league will be better than last season when it had 6 teams in the NCAA Tournament, and featured Georgetown finishing at “number 6 ... Yes, I got the Hoyas going to the NCAA Tournament.” Listen to his analysis. Did you get goosebumps too?
Among those 13 defeats, though, were six games which were decided by seven points or less with four of those losses coming in overtime. Govan thinks with some defensive tightening this season, particularly at the end of games, it can be a very different season for the Hoyas this time around.
“The biggest thing is closing out games this year,” Govan said. “Last year we had a lot of games that came down to three points or five points and in some of those games we couldn’t control ourselves with turnovers and offensive rebounds and things like that. This year the biggest thing will be closing out games and closing out possessions.”
“As a coach you can’t go out there and make these bold predictions,” said Ewing, whose team was picked seventh in the BIG EAST Coaches’ Preseason poll. “For us I don’t think that would be very smart. But it’s all about getting better, hopefully doing better in the BIG EAST Tournament and making the NCAAs. But we’re taking it one step at a time.”
When asked about goals for the season, Trey Mourning says he really wants some sort of trophy. Not just to win a game, but to win hardware, as they haven’t since he’s been there. #Hoyas pic.twitter.com/IBH3nF7k8Z— The Team 980 (@team980) October 30, 2018
As much as X’s and O’s are important, the Hoyas needed a cultural facelift. The perception of the Hoyas playing a style that not only kept them close in games but also kept their opponent close wasn’t selling well enough in today’s college basketball landscape.
That starts with recruiting. It was something Ewing was asked time and time upon his arrival. Bringing in a solid recruiting class led by James Akinjo has quieted those who were concerned about Ewing as a pitchman. With the NBA being as young as it is, Ewing should be comfortable dealing with 18-19-year-old prospects. Not only can he sell his own NBA experience but he can sell the fact that he was an NBA coach, not just a big man coach. This shows in the NBA-style offense he’s running which has the guards play a prominent role.
Big East Shootaround’s John Fanta made the trip down to DC to chat with Ewing and a couple upperclassmen. With Fanta’s posts of the photographs on last Monday, the newest Fox Sports play-by-play commentator has indicated these interviews will be part of a season preview show this Monday. Other Hoya-friends are echoing speculation about the chair size:
I can’t imagine how big that chair is https://t.co/FU6o6lJou5— George Barnette (@BracketvilleUSA) October 29, 2018
It looks like Fanta had some quality Hoya time with recent New York-travelers Jessie Govan and Jagan Mosely, as well as a broad-shouldered graduate student known to the world as Trey Mourning.
Talking to @GeorgetownHoops players, they all had the same expectation - making @marchmadness.— John Fanta (@John_Fanta) October 29, 2018
“I came back for my senior year because I didn’t want to end my career without an NCAA Tournament appearance. We pushed all offseason long to take a big step forward.” - @JGovan15 pic.twitter.com/D4o7mTbxHP
The focus of the team appears to be making it to the Big Dance, but they will certainly talk about Govan’s unanimous nomination to the All-Big East First Team. We will have to wait and hear Fanta’s thoughts, but it’s hard to believe he is not impressed with every visit!
Good Morning from @Georgetown!— John Fanta (@John_Fanta) October 29, 2018
There’s nothing quite like the first steps you take into the Thompson Center on campus here. The John Thompson Jr. statue greets you. #HoyaSaxa #BIGEASThoops pic.twitter.com/DKXmqZCoMo
Fanta recently had an opportunity to chat with James Akinjo and Mac McClung when they visited NYC for the Big East Freshman Fundamentals event.
For what it’s worth, Ava Wallace of the Washington Post had given us a glimpse of the enormity of the chairs over the summer...
Georgetown got new, Patrick Ewing-sized chairs. 50% for the head coach’s comfort, 50% to make reporters feel small pic.twitter.com/WEaYDgP15W— Ava Wallace (@avarwallace) July 9, 2018
Lastly, some recruiting news:
According to a report from Rivals analyst Corey Evans, the five-star big man will announce his college commitment on Nov. 8 at 5:30 p.m. Central, when he’ll choose between a final group featuring the Texas Longhorns, UCLA Bruins, Stanford Cardinal, and the Georgetown Hoyas... As it currently stands, Texas is considered the favorite for Baker’s services, per his Crystal Ball, with nine of his 10 projections picking the Longhorns... However, if Baker, too, elects to take his talents to Texas, it would cause a bit of a conundrum from a scholarship standpoint...
Delusion Train? 5-Star Class of ‘19 PG Cole Anthony Lists Georgetown in Top 6 https://t.co/T5PMrhxSgH— Casual Hoya (@CasualHoya) October 30, 2018
Happy Halloween. Happy November.