The Van Buren Boys

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Sunday, February 25, 2007

Hoya Freakin' Saxa

Okay, so it wasn't our best performance of the year. It maybe wasn't even a very good performance. But Georgetown found a way to win. Jeff Green put the team on his shoulders and carried them across the fininsh line. The energy in the Verizon Center was something I haven't experienced since the Duke game last year. It was LOUD in that place. We still have two more games before we take stock and get ready for the Big East Tourney, but this is clearly a national title contender we have on our hands here. I think we will be a contender again next year -- but unfortunately without Jeff, if he keeps playing like this.

Here is just some of the coverage:

Hoyas seem primed for title run
Georgetown is more than capable of winning the national championship. Not just because of the Hoyas' balanced offense, in which all five starters score at least 9 points a game and the team connects on 52.3 percent of field goal attempts, second best in the country. But also because of Georgetown's underrated defense. In a 63-51 victory over Pittsburgh, the Hoyas held an opponent to under 60 points for the 20th time this season.

Alone in first
Perhaps the ultimate measure of a team's greatness is whether it can show up with less than its best stuff against an elite opponent and still succeed. No. 12 Georgetown did exactly that yesterday against 10th-ranked Pittsburgh, overcoming a turnover-ridden first half and an atrocious performance on the boards to clip the Panthers 61-53 and claim sole possession of the Big East's top slot.

For Hoyas, an ugly win never looked so good
The long rebound was their game-long curse, eased only because of the rim-clanging efforts of the Panthers' perimeter shooters. "That just can't happen," Thompson said of the Panthers' offensive rebounding. But it did happen. And it happened with the Hoyas in a funk much of the game. And yet the Hoyas persevered, which possibly bodes well for them next month. Finding a way to win, when your best stuff is not at your disposal, will be the challenge before all the nation's leading teams next month.

Georgetown's Eleven
As 12th-ranked Georgetown has marched its way through the Big East, cutting down one opponent after another, its players have managed to stay even-keeled, almost businesslike. But as the final buzzer sounded on the Hoyas' 61-53 victory over No. 10 Pittsburgh yesterday afternoon, the facade cracked -- slightly. Jessie Sapp tossed the ball high into the air and then ran over to hug Jeff Green. Patrick Ewing Jr. stalked down the court, pulling at his jersey to emphasize the "Georgetown" written across the front. All the while, the 20,038 fans inside Verizon Center screamed and danced, celebrating the Hoyas' 11th straight victory, one that moved them a step closer to winning the Big East's regular season title.

The Grass Gets Greener
John Thompson III envisions Jeff Green posting up Syracuse on Monday night, backing his defender down, scoring a bucket from in close that will help clinch at least a share of the Big East championship and a record 12th straight win -- something even Pops never did at Georgetown. JT III's dilemma is that can envision Green, too. Going No. 10 to the Chicago Bulls in June.

Georgetown Tops Pitt and Grabs First Place in the Big East
But the 7-foot Gray moved well during warm-ups and entered the game with 14 minutes 55 seconds left in the first half, with both ankles heavily taped. He approached Hibbert, a fellow all-American contender. “As soon as he came out on the court, he was like, ‘I missed you, Big Roy,’ and I was like, ‘I missed you, too,’ ” Hibbert said. “It was a battle. I can’t wait to play against him again. But it turned out to be Georgetown versus Pittsburgh, and not Roy Hibbert versus Aaron Gray.”

1 comment:

Jester of Magellan said...

I was going to do a post on Mike Wise's piece in today's Post, The Grass Gets Greener, but Diamond Mike already captured it in his summary of coverage on yesterday's game. Still, I wanted to call attention to this important piece.

It seems, based on this article, that Jeff will seriously consider going pro after this season. We all knew this was a possibility, but the Hoyas recent success have started to make it closer to a reality. I find that the comments from Jeff's mom and dad are very telling. If they are encouraging him to leave I don't think that there is anyone who is going to get him to stay.