Your Georgetown Hoyas (8-15, 1-11) had another forgettable home performance on the afternoon of Saturday, February 10th against the dominant No. 1/1 UConn Huskies (22-2, 12-1), 89-64. It would have been nice to have seen Georgetown hang with the top-rated team for 20+ minutes, but the game was over rather quickly and not even the best second-half efforts would be noteworthy. Ed Cooley said, “Everybody in the organization really needs to take a deep dive into what our purpose is.” He’s not wrong, but Georgetown fans have heard plenty of promises of the past few years without any results.
“Everybody in the organization really needs to take a deep dive into what our purpose is”— Philadelphia Hoyas (@PhillyHoyas) February 11, 2024
Mission: “…We aspire for our coaches and student-athletes to exemplify the excellence and integrity of the Georgetown community.
Integrity” https://t.co/fvBAV3pTqo pic.twitter.com/4veuAyDpRg
The Hoyas will travel to Omaha to face the #17 Creighton Bluejays (17-7, 8-5 BIG EAST) at 8:30PM EST on Tuesday, Feb. 13th (FS1) who are coming off a win at Xavier 78-71 and February losses at Providence (91-87 OT) and at home against Butler (99-98). They’re ranked, they’re hungry, they’re home, they have a $1 beer pregame promotion. Good luck.
Georgetown lost to Creighton in early January, 77-60, before beating DePaul and then starting this 8-game losing streak. Fans thought that 17-point home deficit to Creighton was a bad loss before these past few games saw new lows.
Worse than the outcomes of those games, Georgetown needs to do some soul searching to find some competitiveness. The Hoyas have performed better on the road than home recently but the embarrassing efforts are not helping to lay a foundation for the re-build that folks in and around the Georgetown program are expecting.
Dan Hurley had a huddle on Saturday where he talked about his standards and referenced the lack of quality in Georgetown’s defense. That’s gotta hurt the pride of Georgetown supporters everywhere—perhaps not worse than the 3-48 conference record over the past three years.
Danny Hurley in the huddle: “against a defense of this caliber, it should all look easy.”— Big East Bar Room (@BigEastBarroom) February 10, 2024
Dan Hurley: saying the quiet part out loud about Georgetown’s defense
The question is, well, what is the Georgetown Men’s Basketball Team’s purpose? Based on the above-mentioned Athletics mission and what Cooley has been preaching (yes, definitely preaching) this year, this humble lunch blog contributor would offer these three ideas as focus for Georgetown student-athletes and the folks supporting them:
- Help student-athletes grow and develop as men and women for others.
- Give the energy, effort, and enthusiasm that makes the Georgetown students, alumni, and community proud.
- Practice discipline, be prepared, bring a positive attitude, and display good character.
There’s definitely more to it, but it also is pretty simple.
Many of the readers here are Georgetown alumni and probably roll their eyes at the coach-speak or the corporate seminar quips, but sometimes 20-year-olds may need to re-hear this type of stuff. Frankly, it’s not something I would have focused on too much until we saw such a dearth of emotion from the prior coaching regime. Motivating young adults in this day and age is delicate. Energy and effort is not something to take for granted.
It takes little-to-no skill to show up on-time each day, with an abundance of energy and a positive attitude, ready to give 110% effort and eager to listen to the coaches.
Regardless of the wins or losses this year, Cooley was hired to teach Georgetown to improve physicality and defense. Through 23 games, we haven’t seen more than a few minutes of it here or there.
We don’t have to wait until next year to evaluate Cooley and this Georgetown team. Whether the roster (a) has enough or (b) is talented enough means absolutely nothing when fans see drooped shoulders, hangdog faces, and defensive apathy.
Earlier in the year Cooley told me he wasn't really into analytics but his eye confirms what the numbers say on Georgetown's defense:— Bobby Bancroft (@BobbyBancroft) February 10, 2024
"We got to take some pride in our defense. Right now let's call it what it is our defense is absolutely atrocious."
Showing concern for Georgetown’s lack of progress is not being a bad fan. It’s not time to call for his job or to harass him (it never is), but Cooley is indeed ultimately accountable if this team goes 2-18 (or worse). Again, I don’t think this is anything with which Cooley would not agree.
The problem moves to “what can Cooley do to convince top talent to come to Georgetown” and that’s easy: (1) retain the talent on your roster, (2) make sure your top recruiting class shows up on June 1st, (3) use your prior relationships (and NIL) to fill in the roster gaps with high-effort, high-IQ experienced players, and (4) trust in your mission, ability to teach, and team chemistry to build each year.
A little success can go a long way for attitude and confidence. Knocking off two or three of these last 8 opponents will make a world of difference building into March and beyond. Fight hard Tuesday to carry some momentum into the last seven games.
Also, Cooley, please start your best defensive lineup to set the tone. It’s easy to point fingers at the two fifth-year players as defensive liabilities where no leader on that end of the floor has emerged, but they started the year injured and have struggled more than a bit recently.
Georgetown Head Coach Ed Cooley had a much different view of the game, and said, “There’s not one damn thing we’ll take from this that I feel good about, not one thing.”
Georgetown never led, and the game was last tied at 2-2 early in the first half. The Huskies led for all but 37 seconds of the contest.
Cooley went on to say “Energy, effort, and attitude, that’s what it starts with, and we were F- on every part of today’s game.”
The lone bright spot for Georgetown was Dontrez Styles, as the junior led the Hoyas with 23 points. Styles was the only consistent source of offense for Georgetown in the first half, with 17 of the hosts’ 28 points. The Kingston, N.C. native had a tougher second half and battled foul trouble after picking up three fouls before halftime.
The most damning statement about the uninspired play of Georgetown came during a timeout huddle when a TV microphone picked up the words of UConn coach Dan Hurley.
“Against a defense of this caliber, it should all look easy,” Hurley told his team.
Georgetown’s defense, characterized as “atrocious” by Cooley, surrendered 61.1 percent field-goal shooting by UConn. The Hoyas were outscored in points in the paint 48-24.
“You got the No. 1 team in the country in your building, on national television,” Cooley said. “I’m not saying we have to be the most talented team. But I’ll be damned if you can’t be the most hungry team, if you can’t have effort, energy and enthusiasm.”
“There’s a lot of reflection that has to go on. This is our third home game in a row where we’re supported at a really high level, so I want to thank our crowd for coming. I’m disappointed we’re not delivering on our end from an execution standpoint, from a communication standpoint, from a physical standpoint … Our last three games here we have not played well. Everyone in the organization really has to take a deep dive into what our purpose is. I tell our guys all the time, ‘You’ve gotta give to the game’. When you don’t give to the game, it’s never going to pay you back. If anything, the energy we showed today and displayed today was not very good. We have a quick turnaround as we go to Creighton in the next 48 hours. We’ve gotta figure this out in a quick way … I want to make sure that our guys continue to fight, continue to battle, and it’s my job to make sure that we get our guys organized.” - Head Coach Ed Cooley
Let’s be very clear, there’s nothing quiet about how much Georgetown sucks. It’s talked about daily .. and it should be. This was a once-proud program. I’ve seen them make Final Fours. I’ve seen them collapse in the first round as a popular title winner pick. Titus talked about it on his show and he’s 100% right. Cooley can lean into the villain thing as much as he wants, but it only works if you actually win. So yeah we should be mocking him all the time for yelling at students that he’s rich as shit while blowing another game.
Fucking hilarious to see Hurley lose his mind though and the scorebug pop up and show 72-47. Disgusting! Foot on the gass, foot up their ass.
For most of Saturday’s bout, they looked like a team that could become the first repeat national champions since Florida in 2006-07, even if it came against Georgetown, which has won a mere three Big East games over the past three seasons.
Alex Karaban scored 17 points in the first half and finished with 25, just a point shy of his career-high set twice, most recently on Jan. 14 in Hartford against ... Georgetown. Karaban also hit some key, late-game 3-pointers to led UConn to a 68-62 win over the Hoyas last season in D.C.
“I don’t know why it’s Georgetown,” he said, with a smirk. “But, if I can have a good game against anybody, I’ll take it.”
Dontrez Styles led a mostly one-dimensional Georgetown (8-15, 1-11) offense with 23 points. Supreme Cook added 12 points for the Hoyas, while Jayden Epps, who entered Saturday fourth in the Big East with 18.3 points per game, managed four on 2-of-8 shooting.
Georgetown made 23 of 58 shots from the floor (39.7 percent) and lost its eighth straight game.
“What helped us coming into this game was that Georgetown gave us a hard game at home, we ended up winning by double figures but it was seven, it was eight, it was nine,” UConn coach Dan Hurley said. “The one thing that did give us comfort was that Georgetown’s played better on the road than they have at home. And part of that is the challenge of Ed (Cooley) getting the atmosphere. You win at home because you’ve got a great atmosphere; the atmosphere makes it tough on the opponent to play well.”
Cam Spencer, a native of close-by Davidsonville, Maryland, finished with 10 points, six rebounds and seven assists with a number of friends and family members present...
Saturday was the Hoyas’ third consecutive home loss by at least 20 points.
The announced crowd of 13,040 pretty clearly favored UConn. There was a large section behind the Huskies’ bench and others spread throughout the 20,000-seat NBA arena, mixed amongst Hoyas fans who didn’t get much to cheer for. It was also probably the only place UConn will travel to this year and not hear any boo-birds during player introductions.
No. 17 Creighton (17-7, 8-5 BIG EAST) is back home on Tuesday, Feb. 13, when it welcomes Georgetown (8-15, 1-11 BIG EAST) to the Midwest.
Tip-off at CHI Health Center Omaha (17,352) in Omaha, Neb., is set for 7:30 p.m.
Creighton senior Baylor Scheierman will be honored prior to tip-off in recognition of him surpassing 2,000 career points on Feb. 7 at Providence.
The game is Creighton’s annual Fan Appreciation Night, which includes $1 beverages at the Bud Bar atop the North end zone from 6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.