The season is over for the Georgetown Hoyas after a 21-game losing streak that left Patrick Ewing’s squad completely winless against BIG EAST teams. With statements from Georgetown Athletics and Ewing himself last week affirming support and expectations of returning, respectively, one might think that speculation would cease. That is not the case as every fan and his or her mother are reading tea leaves and interpreting quotes in the effort to determine whether Ewing will continue as coach of the Hoyas in 2022-23.
Ewing: "I know we will be better next year"— Voice Sports (@GUVoiceSports) March 10, 2022
The numbers are objectively horrendous and the case has been made time and time again that turning this Georgetown program around towards success would be much easier and quicker without Patrick Ewing leading it. What changes could they possibly make to go from worst to first?
Still, there are those who think Ewing should continue as coach. The argument—like one made by many fans still hoping to see Coach Pat on the sidelines next year and beyond—appears to be based in his historic connection to the program and his legacy at Georgetown. The risk to that is further tarnishing and undermining the legacy he and John Thompson created.
Can Georgetown and Ewing use what’s left of that nostalgia to ask for patience for another year? Is everyone aware of the fan-alienating, legacy brand-hurting consequences of a one-more-year experiment? If you are aware, and you do care about the school and the program, I’m not sure how you can say that Ewing deserves one last chance.
Here are the links:
“In life you’re going to have bumps in the road,” he said. “This year is my bump in the road. … I think my guys have handled it with class. I think I’ve handled it with class. I think our better years are ahead of us.”
This being Ewing’s fifth year, not his first, the numbers would likely get him fired at nearly every other Division I school in the country. He is 6-25 on the year and 68-84 for his career, with one winning season, one shocking Big East Tournament title (last March), one appearance in the NCAAs (a blowout loss to Colorado), and one appearance in the NIT (a loss to Harvard). Ewing’s program is, well, hard to characterize as a program. The Big Fella hasn’t recruited enough talented big fellas and smaller fellas, and he hasn’t kept enough of those he did sign from transferring out.
So this has to be it, right? Georgetown AD Lee Reed has to meet with Ewing and tell him that a change is in the best interests of all involved, correct?
No, it doesn’t have to be that way.
ON WHAT HIS MESSAGE AFTER THE GAME WAS
“We told them that even though the outcome wasn’t what we would have liked, we still had opportunities, just like you said, once again. We just weren’t able to overcome them. So still have to be proud of them, proud of the effort, and we just got to regroup.” ...
ON HOLDING SETON HALL TO 57 POINTS
“If you look at every game, pretty much every game we’ve played, we had opportunities to win, even our last Seton Hall game — not just this one, the one before that — we missed a layup, missed 11 or 12 layups. We made them and make our free throws, we win.
“Hey, look, like I said, I’m proud of them. I’m proud of the fight. I’m disappointed that we didn’t have the year I would have liked. But you still have to be proud of the fight that we gave. We could have easily let go of the rope and called it a night. But we never did that.”
ON WHAT NEXT STEPS ARE
“It’s been a rough year. Can’t do anything rash. Just gotta take a few days, regroup, think about what we want to do and then start the process.”
How did Georgetown — Georgetown! — finish 0-19 in the league with program legend Patrick Ewing as its coach?
The figures looked even weirder as the Hoyas hung with Seton Hall in the first round of the Big East Tournament on Wednesday night. Maybe being back in Madison Square Garden in March transformed Ewing’s squad; last season’s team made a shocking four-in-four run to the tourney title.
Whatever the motivation, the Hoyas were poised to spring a mad March upset in 2022. They led by as many as 10 in the first half. They were up 50-46 with five minutes to play.
And then . . . The Hoyas managed just three more points the rest of the way. They were down by two with the ball and 15.6 seconds to play, only to turn it over as they tried to get it into the hands of an open 3-point shooter. From there, Seton Hall grinded its way to a 57-53 decision and a date with UConn in the tournament quarterfinals Thursday night.
I hope Patrick Ewing coaches Georgetown forever.— Kenny Ducey (@KennyDucey) March 10, 2022
“I don’t care if they have to fire him or if he chooses to resign or retire, but Patrick Ewing cannot be the head basketball coach at Georgetown University this fall,” one fan tweeted.
“They are afraid to fire Ewing,” tweeted another Hoyas fan. “St. John’s had the same issue with Mullin a few years back, but he stepped down. High school kids don’t remember Ewing as a player. If his name was Patrick Erving, he would have been fired.”
The horrendous end of the season comes a year after Ewing’s Hoyas went on a miraculous conference tournament championship run to earn an NCAA bid — its first since 2015. But after starting the season 6-4, the Hoyas dropped 21 straight games — 13 of which by 11 or fewer points. The 25 losses are the most in a single season in program history.
Georgetown ended it season by losing 21 straight games -- going 0-19 in the Big East to set a new league record for futility-- with their last win coming Dec. 15. https://t.co/8QHkqhyhyj— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) March 10, 2022
For most of this year, Jamir Harris has been the forgotten man. A lightly used transfer from American who wasn’t able to carve out a role for himself.
But lately, he has become invaluable.
His 3-pointer with 40.3 seconds left early Thursday morning enabled Seton Hall to avoid disaster. It gave the Pirates the lead and they held on to avoid an early exit from the Big East Tournament in an ugly 57-53 victory over No. 11 Georgetown.
“To be able to knock down that shot for my teammates, my brothers, there’s no better feeling than that,” said Harris, a North Brunswick, N.J., native. “To hear the crowd go crazy for us, be so excited for me to hit that shot, it means the world to me.”
Georgetown’s season ended Wednesday night in a 57-53 loss to Seton Hall in the Big East tournament. https://t.co/by5XkDH4iI— Post Sports (@PostSports) March 10, 2022
Prior history predicted a competitive game though expectations for this roster were as low as could get. Ewing said earlier in the week that the one thing he learned about his team though all the losses was that they would continue to fight. The Hoyas certainly fought and had to do so without starting point guard Dante Harris for most of the game after he injured his right leg midway through the first half.
The second half saw multiple lead changes as the two teams went back and forth in a gritty game that wasn’t pretty, but had the fans in the Garden on their feet...
Mohammed took over for a stretch. He scored six straight points and Georgetown went on a 13-0 run to take a nine-point lead. All of those good feelings disappeared soon after when Harris, the 2021 Big East tournament most outstanding player, collapsed in the lane after twisting his ankle at the 11:39 mark of the first half. He immediately went to the locker room, helped off by trainers and not putting any weight on his right foot. He did not return.
Harris’s replacement, freshman Tyler Beard scored five points during a 9-2 stretch that gave Georgetown its biggest lead at 27-17. The problem was the Hoyas couldn’t close the half with any momentum. Seton Hall finished on a 7-0 run that included two shot clock violations by Georgetown that had Ewing coming all the way on the court to scream at Carey to shoot the ball after he passed it late in both instances.