The Van Buren Boys

The Blogosphere's best source for the latest analysis and
commentary from the world of Georgetown Hoyas basketball.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Good Luck In Seattle Jeff

Jeff Green was selected as the fifth overall pick in last night's draft by the Boston Celtics, as part of a deal that sent Jeff to Seattle, where he joined the second overall pick, Kevin Durant. That dynamic duo should add some excitement to the Pacific Northwest for years to come.

Here is video of the selection.

And here is a collection of Jeff Green highlights. He will definitely be missed.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Gentelman's wager on the NBA Draft

I would like to solicit the feedback of my esteemed contributors.

A colleague from work and I entered into a friendly wager this afternoon regarding whether all three standouts from Florida (Brewer, Horford, and Noah) will be selected before or after Jeff Green is drafted tomorrow evening.

I said that there's no way ALL three Florida players would go before Jeff Green; my colleague disagreed.

I feel pretty confident with my stance.

Please weigh in with your thoughts.

Kenner League Preview

The Kenner League starts up again this weekend. Some of the VBBs will be in attendance at games thorought the summer to provide previews of the newcomers and updates on the development of upperclassmen. Here are the teams on which the Hoyas will be playing, according to (

The Tombs
Jonathan Wallace
Vernon Macklin
Nikita Mescheriakov
Chris Wright

Patrick Ewing, Jr.
Jeremiah Rivers
Austin Freeman
Omar Wattad

DaJaun Summers

Tyler Crawford
Jessie Sapp

Note that Roy Hibbert will not be involved. I assume that means that he will be participating in the 2007 Pan American Games. has also provided a link to a complete Kenner League schedule:

To get ready for the summer, here is my list of the top 5 things I want to see during Kenner League play:

(1) The development of Patrick Ewing, Jr. and DaJaun Summers. With Jeff Green's departure, these two are going to be key to the Hoyas going back to the Final Four. We'll be looking for the whole package--shooting, handle, rebounding, etc. They have some big shoes to fill.

(2) Jump shots. The Hoyas will need better perimeter shooting next year from their guards. Sapp and Rivers, in particular, were suspect in that department. They've have a few months now to shoot until their arms fall off. Let's see what the learning curve is like.

(3) The Burger Boys. Are Freeman and Wright going to be as good as billed? Both reportedly bring things to the table that we really need. Freeman could play the 3 spot and allow Summers to move to the 4 in the Jeff Green role. He is strong and has a great mid-range, which will be key for the offense--again, filling the Jeff Green spot. Wright can supposedly penetrate in a way that none of our current guards can. This will open up the perimeter shots and pull double-teams off of Big Roy.

(4) Ticket. Vernon Macklin came Georgetown as a top-ranked McDonald's All-American. When we saw him play in the Kenner League last year, we described him as "raw." He was indeed, although he showed significant improvement over the course of last season. His passing and footwork were good and he flashed a nice baby hook. Macklin's biggest liability was on defense, where he was regularly pushed out of position. Let's hope he spent the offseason in the weight room and added some significant muscle!

(5) Diamonds in the Rough? To go along with the two heralded guards, Geogetown will have two utter unkowns joining the team in Omar Wattad and Nikita Mescheriakov. What can these guys do that warranted Georgetown scholarships? Presumably, the coaching staff knows something that the recruiting gurus do not--this would not be shocking and it would not be the first time--Jonathan Wallace anyone.....

To further whet everyone's appetite, here is some video of Austin Freeman from Rivals.

Jeff Green Works Out With The Suns

The AP (via The Sporting News) is reporting that Jeff Green, along with Joakim Noah and Corey Brewer, worked out for the Phoenix Suns yesterday. Currently, the Suns have the 24th and 29th picks in the first round, as well as the 59th pick. There are rumors, however, that the Suns may be working on a trade to improve their draft position.

Suns GM, Steve Kerr, was impressed with what he saw from the three juniors. "I think that all three guys could play right away for almost every team in the NBA," Kerr said. "I don't know if any of the three would be starters on our team. I think we've got obviously one of the most talented starting groups in the NBA. But they're all different."

For the entire article, click here.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Dizdarevic and Izzo Try Their Luck Abroad

The Washington Post has a fascinating article this morning about Sead Dizdarevic and Kenny Izzo's pursuit of professional basketball careers abroad. With all of the hype surrounding Roy and Jeff, you sometimes forget about the other guys--especially guys like Kenny and Sed that labor in relative obscurity (even to the VBB). I am especially intrigued by Kenny. You have to admire the kid's tenacity. He walks on, never plays, and he still hasn't given up the dream of playing as a pro. It takes a special person to keep the faith in that kind of situation.

Anyway, the article is worth a read. Check it out.

Friday, June 22, 2007

The Belarusian Bear Speaks

The Frederick News Post has a good article about Nikita on their website. It sounds like he is a really good kid. He seems very excited to come to Georgetown (and who wouldn't). I hope that his basketball skills grow to match his enthusiasm.

Nikita's dream team
June 22, 2007
By Jason Barbato
News-Post Staff

Once his lengthy, Belarus name had been penned to basketballs, T-shirts and other items during a coed youth basketball camp in the St. John's-Catholic Prep gymnasium Wednesday, Nikita Mescheriakov delivered an inspirational speech to the awestruck third- through ninth-graders in attendance at the clinic.
"Everybody has a dream. I've got the chance to go to Georgetown, and that was my dream," Mescheriakov, the lanky, 6-foot-7 recent recipient of a full athletic scholarship from the powerful Hoyas basketball program, told the kids.

"I just keep working hard every day, and my dream came true," Nikita continued. "And the same can happen for you."

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Class of 2000

This is pretty far afield from Georgetown basketball, but since all of us graduated from Georgetown in 2000, I thought it was appopriate to recognize the accomplishments of some of our classmates. FishbowlDC is reporting that three of them are basically taking over at ABC News's politics division. Now, if they could only get Miles O'Brien (College '81) back on on the air after CNN pulled him and Soledad from American Morning, altering my a.m. television habits....

Davis, Travers, O'Keefe Step It Up At ABC News

ABC News today announced two Deputy Political Directors and an Senior Political Editor. Teddy Davis and Karen Travers will both serve as Deputy Political Directors and report to David Chalian who was promoted to ABC News Political Director in March 2007. Ed O'Keefe will serve as the Senior Political Editor of Teddy Davis is covering his third election cycle for ABC News. Before being promoted to Deputy Political Director, he covered the 2006 Democratic takeover of Congress and the 2004 re-election of President Bush. Throughout his time at the network, Mr. Davis has provided guidance on political coverage to ABC News' broadcasts, on-camera political analysis to ABC News' webcasts, and political writing to He also has been a regular contributor to The Note. A graduate of Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service, he earned his law degree from The Catholic University of America's Columbus School of Law.

Karen Travers joined ABC News in 2000. Before being promoted to Deputy Political Director, she was a White House producer since December 2004. Prior to the White House, she covered the Bush-Cheney 2004 campaign and was a researcher for Ted Koppel at Nightline. Ms. Travers graduated in 2000 from Georgetown University with a degree in American Government. She served as editor-in-chief of The Hoya. Ms. Travers earned a Masters' degree in Liberal Studies from Georgetown in 2003.

As Deputy Political Directors, Travers and Davis will provide editorial guidance and work with all ABC News platforms and correspondents on story development and reporting, as well as filing political content for ABC News Digital Media. Mr. Davis and Ms. Travers will also play a key role in planning for Vote 2008 coverage across the news division for the Iowa caucuses, New Hampshire primary, Super Tuesday, conventions, debates, and election night.

Ed O'Keefe joined ABC News in 2000. Prior to serving as's Senior Political Editor, he was a producer at "This Week with George Stephanopoulos" and "World News with Charles Gibson". He traveled as a reporter covering John Kerry's presidential campaign in 2003-2004 and, prior to that time, worked as a field producer on Capitol Hill. Mr. O'Keefe graduated from Georgetown University in 2000, studying Government, Psychology and English. As Senior Political Editor of Mr. O'Keefe will oversee all political content for and he will play a key role in planning for Vote 2008 coverage across the digital spectrum for the news division.

Fun fact: Davis, O'Keefe and Travers were all in the same class in college (Georgetown, 2000). The Hoyas are slowly taking over...

Recent Hoya Lawya Out As Wiz Prez

Female president O'Malley leaves Wizards

Marketing whiz Susan O'Malley, the first and only female president of an NBA franchise, is leaving the Washington Wizards. O'Malley has been president of the Wizards since 1991, earning a leaguewide reputation for creative promotions that helped draw new fans to a team that had been struggling at the gate. "Susan has been my right hand through the past 20 years and has helped guide the fortunes of our company," said Wizards owner Abe Pollin. "She has simply been fantastic in every way, from the moment she came here to the present, and I will always be thankful for her guidance and leadership."
. . . .

O'Malley also oversaw the business operations of the NHL's Washington Capitals for four years until Pollin sold the team in 1999. Her contract with the Wizards expires June 30, but she said she will remain an adviser with the team through the 10th anniversary celebration of the Verizon Center in December. O'Malley, 45, graduated from the law school at Georgetown University last month. She said she will take a vacation before deciding on her future plans. "Nobody believes me when I tell them I have no idea," O'Malley said. "It's going to be hard to find something that challenges me like this gig."

One interesting side note: O'Malley graduated from Georgetown Law this year along with Rebecca Grunfeld Hamilton, daughter of the Wizards' president of basketball operations Ernie Grunfeld, and Jessica Thorn, daughter of the New Jersey Nets' president Rod Thorn.

Georgetown Law Graduates Have NBA Flair
"It's pretty crazy," Grunfeld Hamilton said. "It's a huge accomplishment, so to be able to do it with people that you share a common bond with makes it even more special." It's pure coincidence that the NBA-connected trio ended up together, although Thorn and Grunfeld Hamilton had previously known each other for a few years. Of course, both were familiar with O'Malley, the marketing whiz who in 1991 became the first female president of an NBA franchise.

Luke Winn says GU is #1 Offseason Winner

From CNNSI: Georgetown Coach John Thompson III made an appearance at the NBA's Predraft Camp in early June to check on star forward Jeff Green, a physical-only invitee who was having second thoughts about entering the draft after his junior season, despite being a sure-fire lottery pick. Green's flirtation with returning -- and the Hoyas' shot at being a preseason No. 1 -- didn't pan out, but I remember Thompson having this casual exchange with an NBA scout outside the Milkhouse Gym:

Scout: "Congrats on getting Big Roy back, coach.
JTIII, grinning: "Thanks guys."
Scout: "That must have been some conversation."
JTIII: "Hey, he wanted to come back."

At that, the scout and his cohorts gave Thompson incredulous looks and laughed. They could not fathom the idea 7-foot center Roy Hibbert -- another likely lottery pick -- would pass up the draft for another year with the Hoyas. Yet that's exactly what had happened a few weeks earlier. Big Roy's return was the biggest gift received by any team in the nation this offseason. Now that Greg Oden, Aaron Gray and Spencer Hawes are gone to the NBA, no one is left to challenge Hibbert's supremacy as the college game's most dominant true center. With sophomore forward Dajuan Summers ready for a breakout year, and two McDonald's All-American guards, Austin Freeman and Chris Wright, on the way in, the Hoyas have to be considered a part of the national championship picture for a second-consecutive season -- even if Green is gone.

I thought this was interesting in light of Chad Ford's comments about Green on ESPNInsider: "I was told several teams in the top 12 worked the phones hard this morning to convince Green to stay in. "

Now, maybe I'm just a bit naive, but while I can understand slimy agents telling players to leave school, I'm a bit disappointed that NBA executives, who all have college degrees think that stuff is appropriate. It is one thing if you are guaranteeing a player you will take him but to lobby a kid to leave school because you think you might want to pick him seems pretty low. I best not hear that the Celtics were one of those teams. If so, Baby Doc should be riding some pine this year! Again, I'm not sure if it reflects poorly on the scouts or on the players with whom they are used to dealing, but some people do really love college and do really value getting an education and are willing to delay making a lot of money to do so. Shocking. I know.

It looks like Nikita is official

As reported here before, there were some hangups with Nikita's high school transcript that have evidently been cleared with the NCAA. Welcome to Georgetown, Nikita! We'll be courtside at Kenner League this summer to see you play.

St. John's forward Mescheriakov gets full ride from Georgetown
St. John's-Catholic Prep graduate Nikita Mescheriakov is headed to Georgetown University this fall to continue his basketball career. Mescheriakov, a 6-foot-7 forward for the Vikings, has received a full scholarship to play for the Hoyas, St. John' coach and athletic director Silas Cheung said. Georgetown won the Big East Conference championship and reached the Final Four last season under head coach John Thompson III. Mescheriakov averaged 14.4 points, 4.4 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 2.0 blocks per game for the Vikings. He shot better than 50 percent from the floor and 78 percent from the foul line. "Nikita understands the level of competition in the Big East," Cheung said.

Hoyas' Latest Recruit Is Finally Done
Until 4:31 this afternoon, when I got an email from St. John's assistant coach Donald R. Shopland Jr. announcing Mescheriakov was bound for Georgetown. Ok, good. Done, right? Well, no. First of all, is it "Mescheriakov" -- which I've used all year online and in print because that's how his older brother, Yegor, spelled his name when he played at George Washington. Or is it "Mescharakou" as Shopland writes? Second, what to do about a release from a coach I'm not familiar with who writes "advanced for release" at Thursday 6 a.m. What the heck is that about? Why would there be an embargo on using this info and should I agree to follow any embargo I didn't agree to? In any case, I think that Mescheriakov will turn out to be a good pickup for Georgetown. He might not make the immediate splash of Austin Freeman or Chris Wright, but Mescheriakov will be a solid player for years to come.

KG a Celtic?

According to this morning's Boston Herald, the Celtics are closing in on a trade that would bring Kevin Garnett to Boston in exchange for Al Jefferson, the Celtics' #5 pick in next week's draft, and likely a couple other players.

While it makes Boston relevant in the short term, I am going on the record now to state this is a bad deal.

Kevin Garnett has been the consummate professional but let's face it: he's 31 years old and hasn't even been able to lead his team to the playoffs over the last couple of seasons (admittedly in a very very deep Western Conference). Garnett has at most a couple of more good seasons before he starts to decline.

Al Jefferson, on the other hand, played like a beast last season and he's only 22! I would be shocked if he were not an all-NBA 1st, 2nd or 3rd team member by the time he's 25 (and pehrhaps earlier). He's well on his way to being a bona fide 20 point-10 rpg guy for many seasons to come.

Plus giving up the #5 pick in one of the deepest draft in recent years!

Boston will have so much money tied up in Pierce and Garnett that what you see is basically going to be what you get unless another veteran is willing to take a huge pay cut to play along side those two. This duo is not going to be enough to get it done and bring championship banner #17 home to Boston.

I am sick.

Source: C’s closer to KG deal
By Steve Bulpett
Boston Herald Sports Reporter
Thursday, June 21, 2007 - Updated: 04:49 AM EST

The process still is far from complete, but a league source indicated last night the Celtics [team stats] were moving closer to a deal for Minnesota star Kevin Garnett.
“There’s a good chance nothing happens,” the source cautioned, “but the talks seem to be ongoing. Neither side seems willing to drop this.”
It was further indicated that if such a deal goes down, it would indeed involve both Al Jefferson [stats] and the Celtics’ No. 5 overall pick in next week’s draft.
Celtics director of basketball operations Danny Ainge admitted earlier this week to the Herald that he had discussed a deal for Garnett with Timberwolves counterpart Kevin McHale. When reached last night, Ainge said he is not commenting on any trade rumors.

Reacting to the Herald story yesterday in Minneapolis, McHale said any trade talk involving Garnett so far has been just that - talk.
“Who knows what’s going to happen?” McHale said after the Wolves worked out college stars Jeff Green and Al Horford in preparation for next week’s draft. “But we’re not out there actively shopping Kevin Garnett around the NBA. I can tell you that much.”
The Celtics are said to still be mulling over the pros and cons of the deal. A plus is the opportunity to take a giant step in an Eastern Conference race that would appear to be fairly wide open next season. On the downside, the Celtics would be trading away a player nine years Garnett’s junior in Jefferson, who is coming off a breakout season just three years out of high school.
It is not yet known what other pieces would be involved in the deal to make it work financially, but one can assume Theo Ratliff [stats]’s expiring contract could be part of the mix.
Garnett can opt out of his contract after next season, meaning the Timberwolves run the risk of losing him without compensation if they don’t trade him before then and he tires of not playing on a competitive team. That has ramped up speculation that he could be on the move.
A key part of the transaction would be the Celts knowing Garnett wants to make the move.
Garnett, who turned 31 on May 19, is an eight-time All-NBA selection and a 10-time All-Star. He averaged 22.4 points, 12.8 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game for Minnesota last season.
Jefferson, a first-round pick by the C’s in 2004, averaged 16.0 points, 11.0 rebounds and 1.3 assists last season.
In the past, McHale has completely dismissed questions of Garnett’s availability, including after last season when he said emphatically, “We’re not going to trade Kevin Garnett.” Now, McHale is qualifying those remarks.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007 Analyzes Jeff Green's Decision provides some good analysis of Jeff Green's decision to leave the Hoyas (And before anyone thinks anything; I know I should move on...but I can't). It makes two good points.

First, it reiterrates the point made by The Washington Post about why this was a difficult decision for Jeff.

By all accounts, Green enjoyed college basketball and loved Georgetown. Hoyas coach John Thompson III told The Washington Post that Green’s affection for his school and his friends there made was the reason it was such a difficult decision.

That's the kind of sentiment that should make any Hoya pround.

Second, it notes that Georgetown is going to be just fine in its first post-Green season.

When the time, Green made his decision and did what was best for him.

He did it without hurting the Georgetown program and that’s the best part of the story. Sure, the Hoyas would be better off with this multi-dimensional player back in a Georgetown uniform. So would college basketball as a whole.

But Thompson had plenty of time to brace for Green’s departure, and Hibbert’s return certainly softens the blow. Eight of Georgetown’s top nine players return — including Jonathan Wallace, Jessie Sapp and DeJuan Summers — and recruits Austin Freeman and Chris Wright were considered two of the top high school guards in the country.

Georgetown will remain a Big East contender, with high hopes for a return to the Final Four, even without Green.

Let's hope that this turns out to be true!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Andy Katz on the Meaning of Green's Departure

Andy Katz provides an analysis at today of how yesteday's decisions about whether or not to stay in the NBA draft will affect teams next season. Of course, Jeff Green's decision to leave Georgetown was at the top of Andy's list. Here's his take on what Jeff's departure will mean for the Hoyas next season.

Georgetown: John Thompson III had already mentally prepared that he might lose Green, the Big East Player of the Year. Originally, when there was talk that both Green and center Roy Hibbert would bolt, Thompson III told that he could see the Hoyas going smaller and being quicker.

Now, the Hoyas will be a bit of a blend. They could go with a four-guard lineup with Hibbert since they will have a plethora of options with the return of Jonathan Wallace (who some would argue was this team's most important player at times), Jessie Sapp, Tyler Crawford and Jeremiah Rivers, let alone the addition of two heralded freshmen in Chris Wright and Austin Freeman. But don't discount the emergence of DaJuan Summers in a much more productive role and as well as Vernon Macklin and Patrick Ewing Jr., who is becoming one of the better glue guys in the Big East.

Sure, losing Green hurts the fluidity of the squad since he was the player that could be plugged into any spot -- whether it was passing, handling or scoring -- but the pieces are still in place for the Hoyas to be a major factor in the Big East and in contention for the national title. If the Hoyas can run their
system as well as they did last season, they'll be doing just fine even without Green.

To read Katz's analysis of the impact of all of yesterday's decisions, click here.

Gary Parrish's Preseason Top 25

Now that the dust is settled and we know who is staying and who is going, Gary Parrish of CBS Sportsline has compiled his list of the top 25 (and one) teams for next season. Unsurprisingly, he has Memphis in the number one slot. The Hoyas are at number 8. Gary notes, however, that he would have had the Hoyas in the one slot if Jeff had decided to stay at Georgetown. Oh well.

8. Georgetown: In the spirit of full disclosure, had Jeff Green rejoined Roy Hibbert at Georgetown, the Hoyas would've been atop these rankings.

Barker Davis on Green

By now everyone should know that I'm a big fan of Barker Davis and his coverage of Georgetown Hoyas basketball for The Washington Times. Here is his take on Jeff Green's exit from The Hilltop.

There's nothing special about the article; I just wanted to give Barker some props.

And if you're a masochist who needs to read 100 different articles about Jeff's departure, here are a few more:

The Washington Post

The Philadelphia Daily News

The AP (via


The Detroit Free Press

Monday, June 18, 2007

It's Official: Green is Gone

After much waffling on Mr. Green's part, he has made a final decision and is staying in the NBA draft. We would have loved him to return to GU but it is hard to argue with his decision, especially if he has been told that he will be at the high end of his projected draft status. (If the IPB is lucky, Jeff will be in Celtic green next year.) Jeff will go down as one of the all-time great Hoyas. He brought the program back to respectability in his first year; in his second he took the program back to where it belonged--in the March mix with a run to the Sweet 16; and as a junior, he brought the program back to the Final Four for the first time since 1985. My advice to Jeff at this stage is as follows: (1) don't let the NBA change you; continue to represent GU well, as you have for the past 3 years; (2) make sure you complete your college degree; (3) remember to give back to the alma mater; Coach and the players who follow you will need your support. Good Luck & God Speed!

Friday, June 15, 2007

Jeff Green-Boston Celtics Workout Details

Celtics work out Green
By Shira Springer, Globe Staff

Danny Ainge and Doc Rivers traveled to Washington D.C. today to watch Georgetown forward Jeff Green work out at McDonough Arena. The session started at 10 a.m. and lasted approximately an hour with Celtics’ assistant coach Armond Hill running the workout while Ainge and Rivers watched. The workout consisted of shooting from particular spots, rebounding and running the floor.

The Contract Situation: Still Unresolved

CBS Sportline is just as flabergasted as we all are about Georgetown's inability to get this done. I have a little more faith than he does that JTIII won't be sour over whatever the delay is . . . so long as there is a reasonable explanation for it (e.g., getting Board approval for a new practice facility). Also, we have to remember that DeGioia and JTII have been very close friends for decades. While I can see JTIII getting upset at the delay in the process, I'm sure he is more understanding than someone like Calipary would be.

Georgetown's indecision might lead to Dear John

It'll get done, eventually. Off the record, that's what everybody keeps telling me. Just wait. Don't worry. Calm my nerves, hold my horses -- or Hoyas, in this case -- and find something else to write about because the moment I make a big deal out of the strange situation surrounding John Thompson III's contract is the same moment he'll agree to a new contract, and I'll look silly for ever wasting words on the subject. Those folks might be right. But I'm tired of waiting around. And I'm guessing good old JT3 is too. So now is the time to ask: What's up at Georgetown?
. . . .

I know things take time, but this is silly. Though at least a dozen coaches have had their contracts extended this offseason -- everybody from Rick Pitino to Chris Lowery to Mike Brey to Larry Eustachy -- Thompson is still sitting right where he has long been, making $456,000 a year with just two years remaining on the contract. Granted, that's a nice salary for most of us. But in the wacky world of college basketball it's an embarrassingly low figure for a guy coming off a Sweet 16 in 2006 and Final Four in 2007, a salary that reportedly ranks 11th in the Big East.
. . . .

Now nobody is talking. But that actually says plenty. Because if everything is fine, wouldn't somebody say everything is fine? Hell, in this business people tend to insist everything is fine even when everything clearly isn't fine. So when you combine the silence with the fact that it has been more than two months since the season ended, it's safe to assume the contract negotiations between Georgetown and Thompson haven't gone as planned, meaning everything can't possibly be fine. Which is not to suggest the contract won't get done. Rest assured, it will get done. I'm quite certain of that.

But while operating in such an unrushed manner, Georgetown is likely, at least in some regard, souring its relationship with its coach, and a soured relationship can lead a man to irrational things. Remember last year when John Calipari nearly left Memphis for N.C. State, got on the plane and flew to Raleigh and everything? The reason that happened wasn't because he necessarily wanted to leave Memphis or go to N.C. State, but because Calipari felt Memphis was disrespecting him in contract negotiations that stalled after he led the Tigers to the Elite Eight. Ultimately, Calipari stayed at Memphis. This year, he went to another Elite Eight.
Two days later, he had a raise and extension. Credit athletic director R.C. Johnson for learning his lesson.

It's a lesson DeGioia, Muir and everybody else at Georgetown would be wise to review sometime soon. The school is in the middle of a perfect run under the perfect coach who in just three years has returned Georgetown to national prominence in a way Esherick never could after replacing Thompson's father (Hall of Famer John Thompson Jr.). Messing around with perfection while haggling over money -- or anything, really -- is a shortsighted way to operate in the current state of college athletics. Thompson deserved a raise after the 2006 NCAA Tournament. But he didn't get it. Thompson deserved a raise after the 2007 NCAA Tournament. But he still hasn't got it.

Perhaps there's a reasonable explanation for the lack of action, but I can't imagine what it could be. And if Georgetown doesn't alleviate this situation soon with a contract that makes a statement, the administration might find itself again negotiating after the 2008 NCAA Tournament, only it'll be with a new coach not named Thompson, and we all know how well that has worked for them in the past.

The Latest on Green

It sounds like he still hasn't made up his mind, per Mr. Katz:

Players' return to college would be big boost to teams

Georgetown coach John Thompson III told on Thursday that he is expecting to meet with Big East Player of the Year Jeff Green on Saturday, after Green talks with his family, to discuss his plans. . . . Thompson said he doesn't know which way Green is leaning. "There was a stretch where I thought he was definitely gone," Thompson said. "Then, more recently, there was a stretch when I thought he was coming back. I don't think he knows." Green worked out for Chicago, Milwaukee, Philadelphia and Boston at Georgetown. Sacramento, Minnesota and Charlotte are all waiting to work him out if he stays in the draft. "He's very methodical, like his coach in that regard, and I think he's going to really think this through," Thompson said. It's quite simple for Green: He's likely a Nos. 5-12 pick this year or next. So it comes down to whether he wants to get paid now or in a year, and whether he wants to help lead the Hoyas to a possible national title.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Recruiting Update

There have been a number of reports circulating on the recruiting front over the last couple of weeks. just released its updated top 100 ranking, so I figured this was as good a time as any to post an update here.

It seems that Broadus's departure has indeed led to the recruiting fallout many expected. Early targets like #6 Samardo Samuels (6'8, 240) and #10 David Ebanks (6'8, 185) are off the table. Samuels just committed to Louisville and Ebanks is deciding between Indiana, Rutgers and Miami. (Rutgers? . . . . Really?) Although we are still listed by #2 Ed Davis (6'8, 215), most think he's headed to UNC or UVA.

The new targets appear to be #1 Greg Monroe (6'9, 195), #20 Michael Dunigan (6'9, 240) and #39 J'mison Morgan (6'9, 265). Georgetown was the first school out of Monroe's mouth when he was asked about his leaders and the Hoyas do supposedly lead outright for Dunigan. Morgan has listed Kanas and GU as his top 2. Obviously, any of these guys were be a great pick-up. Keep your eye on Monroe. We're going to have to battle Duke, among others, but this kid is described as smart and unselfish. He would fit perfectly into the Jeff Green role in the Princetown offense.

In case you were wondering, Scout now ranks Henry Sims at #40, Chris Braswell at #47, and Jason Clark at #82. By the way, Braswell has reportedly left Dematha and is enrolled at Hargrave Military Academy, Vernon Macklin's alma mater. Chris basically spent all of last year riding pine do to academic issues and saw his national rank drop from top 10 to top 50. My guess is that a military academy is probably a good solution to get him on track in the classroom and on the court. Clark and Sims continue to impress and improve. Some observers think Clark (who was the only junior on the All-Met First Team) will be the stud of this class.

Hoyas are going to Memphis

Georgetown will play John Calipari's Tigers next year and for the following three years. Next year will be particularly interesting as both teams could be in the top 5. If Jeff Green returns to the Hoyas, this could ever be an early #1 vs. #2 match-up. We already got our revenge for 1982; will 1996 be next?

Georgetown added to U of M schedule
The University of Memphis is adding a home game with Georgetown, a potential preseason top-five team, and delaying its road game at Ole Miss for two years in a major shakeup of the 2007-08 schedule, according to a source close to the situation. Though the University of Memphis has not received the signed contracts, the deal is done, according to the source. The contracts will be for a four-year, home-and-home series with Georgetown, which went to the Final Four last season and will return star center Roy Hibbert and possibly Jeff Green, who is currently in the NBA Draft but is eligible to withdraw and return to school.,2844,MCA_25363_5585890,00.html

Update on Green from Katz

Any Katz keeps on top of the Jeff Green situation on his insider blog. This is the latest:

Georgetown's Jeff Green remains the most intriguing early entrants in the draft. At least one player on the Hoyas is under the impression that Green is staying in the draft, but an NBA team said it has been told that he's going back to the Hoyas, sources told Wednesday. Green will work out for the Boston Celtics brass Friday on campus.

I may be an optimist but, despite what one of his teammates believes, I think this is good news. It is far more important that the NBA teams that are evaluating him know where he stands than one of his teammates. My guess is that he and JTIII are keeping this pretty close to the vest, but are more likely to share with the NBA scouts who are watching him practice. Also, I think Katz worded this carefully. A team member is "under the impression" while a team "has been told." I guess we'll see soon enough!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Bucks Work Out With Green

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has a report on the Bucks' workout with Jeff Green on Tuesday. The quotes from the Bucks' officials, who have the 6th overall pick in the draft, are mainly generic. They note that Jeff can play either 3 or 4, and that they think he has the skill to be a solid defender in the NBA.

There are, however, two interesting nuggets in this article. First, the author notes that "Bucks general manager Larry Harris, director of player personnel Dave Babcock and coach Larry Krystkowiak traveled to Washington, D.C., on Tuesday to take a look at Georgetown junior forward Jeff Green, whose stock has been rising during the workout process." That is not a good remark if you really want Jeff to return to Georgetown. And I really want him to. Second, the author quotes the Bucks' director of player personnel, Dave Babcock, who explained that, "It's not set in stone that he's coming out. He really likes school, and they have a legitimate national championship contending team (for next season)." Though we've heard this many times before, I like that it's coming straight from a team official and that it was said as recently as yesterday. There is still hope.

For the entire article, click here:

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Jeff Green to Work Out for Boston Celtics This Friday

This morning's Boston Herald is reporting the Celtics will travel to Washington this Friday to work out Jeff Green. I've posted the blurb below for our readers. If the workout takes place, it will only be 72 hours from the deadline (June 18) for early entrants like Green to withdraw. If Jeff returns, looks like he's going to wait until the last minute to let us all know.

Going to Green
Ainge, coach Doc Rivers and the rest of the staff plan to watch Georgetown forward Jeff Green work out Friday in Washington.
Green, who has not hired an agent and is retaining the option of a return to college, is thus required under NCAA regulations to pay his own way to workouts. As a result, teams are coming to him.
Like Brandon Wright [of UNC], Green is conducting workouts without a partner, meaning general managers and scouts are traveling for the opportunity to watch him in shooting drills.
The same was true when the Celtics traveled to watch Yi Jianlian, the Chinese star, in Los Angeles. . . .

Friday, June 08, 2007

Updates On Jeff Green

It's a busy day at work today, so I don't have a lot of time to post. Nonetheless, I wanted to let everyone know about the flood of new information that is coming in on Jeff Green. It seems increasingly like Jeff may be returning to The Hilltop for his senior year (knock on wood).

First, The Boston Globe reports that the Boston Celtic's Danny Ainge believes that Jeff is "seriously considering" coming back to school.

"Different agents have different philosophies of this whole process," said Ainge. "We have some ideas of what we'd like to see in a workout and how we'd like to structure them, but the agents don't see things that way. We've got to go see Jeff Green, which is understandable. He's still very seriously considering going back to school and doesn't want to incur the expenses. Yi's agent doesn't think it's in his best interest to go against other players. Brandan Wright really doesn't want to go against other players. Julian Wright doesn't want to play against other players.

For the entire article (there isn't much more of interest in it unless your name is the IBP) can be found here.

Similarly, Andy Katz is reporting on his blog on that a number of NBA teams now believe that Jeff Green is coming back to finish school and will withdraw his name from consideration on the 18th.

For more, click here.

Let's all keep our fingers crossed.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

More on Green...From Today's Boston Herald

Celts begin auditions
By Steve Bulpett/ Celtics Notebook
Boston Herald Sports Reporter
Thursday, June 7, 2007 - Updated: 01:44 AM EST

The Celtics [team stats] will get down to more serious business today when they begin individual auditions for the No. 5 overall pick.
Florida’s Corey Brewer and Florida State’s Al Thornton will be put through their paces at the team’s Waltham facility, as the C’s proceed on the assumption they will still be holding the high pick in the June 28 draft.
The two are among six prospects the Celtics have currently identified as possibilities at 5. Brandan Wright, Jeff Green, Yi Jianlian and Al Horford are the others.
Green was originally scheduled to work out with today’s group, but in that he is retaining his right to go back to Georgetown (he still hasn’t hired an agent), he would have to pick up his own travel costs.

Celtics director of basketball operations Danny Ainge said last night that Green will be hosting his own workouts in D.C. next week, and the Celtics are expected to fly down to see him.
Ainge and the Celts crew returned home from Orlando last night after spending additional time working out players who figure to be in the mix later in the draft, if at all.
“You’ve got to look at everybody because you never know what your needs are going to be,” Ainge said.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Add the Sixers to the Mix

Following up on Diamond Mike's article a few days ago about Jeff Green's decision to make NBA teams come to him at Georgetown, rather than him traveling to them, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported this morning that the Sixers will also becoming to the Hilltop.

Interestingly, The Inquirer explains that the reason Jeff is working out for teams in D.C. is because he would have to reimburse teams for his travel expenses if he withdraws his name from the draft. I think that this is encouraging news.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Jeremiah as a Boston Scout

Following the horrific result that befell the Boston Celtics in the NBA Draft Lottery, The Boston Herald ran a story examining the potential players Boston may select with the no. 5 pick. Jeff Green is increasingly being mentioned and Celtic head coach Glenn "Doc" Rivers joked with a Herald reporter that the Celtics could hire Jeremiah as a scout. Rivers went on to say, “I don’t know what the rules are. I may not be able to talk to him [Jeremiah] now. He’ll probably be very happy with that.”

To read the full article, see

If Jeff Returns....

one crucial factor that has not been sufficiently explored or analyzed is the impact of Roy's decision on Jeff. As we all know, this is an extremely tight-knit group of young men. Roy's decision to return has likely increased the conflicting emotions Jeff is feeling about leaving his band of brothers and has to be animating to a large degree his hesitation about jumping to the NBA.

My point is that if Roy had decided to stay in the draft, I find it extremely unlikely these discussions about Jeff's return to Georgetown would even be occurring.

More props to Roy!

Roy Spotting

First off, apologies to our loyal readers for my absence of late. I have been under water at work and am only now emerging from the catastrophe that was the NBA Draft Lottery. More on that in another post.

A trusted source informed me earlier this evening that he spotted Roy hanging out at our infrequent contributor Johnny Shades' favorite Georgetown dining establishment, Old Glory. Glad to see the big guy was out having some post-finals fun. Well deserved.

More Indications That Green May Return

Any Katz has a report in his blog on Insider indicating that there is mounting evidence that Jeff Green may return to Georgetown to get his degree and a national championship. Jeff seems incredibly reluctant to head to the NBA--unlike most college players who are slated to be lottery picks. I know all the VBBoys have their fingers and toes crossed that he returns to the Hilltop.

Green schedules D.C. workouts
posted: Tuesday, June 5, 2007
Jeff Green's actions throughout the NBA draft process continue to indicate he might be closer to returning to Georgetown instead of being a certain lottery pick. Georgetown coach John Thompson III confirmed to that the Big East player of the year will conduct all his workouts at Georgetown instead of incurring any expenses going through NBA workouts at a team's practice facility.

Teaser: Green is working out for only Chicago, Boston, and Milwaukee. Also, "multiple NBA teams" are beginning to believe he will withdraw from the draft. My guess is that if he doesn't get a guarantee from any one of those, he's coming back.

Hibbert Invited to Try Out for Pan-American Games

The AP has reported that Roy Hibbert is one of 30 collegians that USA Basketball has invited to try out for the US team for July's Pan-American games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Best of luck to Roy. If he's going to trade in his Blue and Gray for any other colors, even on a temporary basis, I am glad that they will be Red, White, and Blue.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Congratulations to Coach Thompson

For the second straight year the Black Coaches Association has honored Coach John Thompson III with the Fritz Pollard Award, the association's accolade for the male coach of the year.

Now, if we can just get JTIII that new contract he deserves.

Friday, June 01, 2007

The Philadelphia Inquirer Also Reports Green May Return to Hoyas

In a similar vein to Andy Katz's story on, The Philadelphia Inquirer is also reporting that Jeff Green may forgo the NBA to return to the Hilltop.

"Things could change," Green told reporters yesterday during a break from the NBA's pre-draft camp. "Something could go wrong in the workout and persuade me to go back to school."

* * *

Green seems conflicted when talking about his possible return.

"We could come back and probably be a top-five team and have the opportunity to win a national championship," Green said. "That has been one of the things I have been looking at."

On the other hand, he would not have been invited to the pre-draft camp, along with the likes of Ohio State's Greg Oden and Texas' Kevin Durant, if the NBA did not value his talent.

"It's very encouraging that I have been invited here and it's one of the things that could possibly persuade me to stay in the draft and hire an agent," Green said. "Seeing how the NBA sees me as one of the top players in the draft, it's one of the things you have to look at in this process."

Of particular interest (to me anyway) in the Inquirer's coverage of this big Georgetown story is it's discussion of Jeff's physical presentation.

The 10 other players at the news conference wore shorts and polo shirts, but Green was attired in a dress shirt and tie.

"You have to present yourself well," Green said. "You are interviewing for a job, so you have to look nice."

All year long we've talked about the great image the Hoya players have presented under JTIII. They always show up to interviews, etc. in suits and ties. I'm glad to see that Jeff has taken this important life lesson to heart. In a day and age where NBA players seem resigned to the lowest common denominator in all things sartorial, Jeff, and the rest of the Hoyas, are a breath of fresh air.

Because a picture is worth a thousand words, here you go...

Jeff Green and the NBA -- Not a Done Deal?

Andy Katz has a great piece on today about Jeff Green and the NBA. According to Katz, and Green himself based on the quotes attributed to him, Hoyas fans still have hopes of seeing last year's Big East Player of the Year in Blue and Gray next season.

"I haven't made it final that I'm coming out yet, and I'm still going to take some time to make a decision," Green told

"I haven't signed with an agent yet and there's still a chance [to go back to the Hoyas]," Green said. "It just depends on how my workouts go. I just have to keep working hard and hopefully get the commitment that a team wants to draft me. If I don't get that commitment that a team is willing to take me in the lottery, then that will sway my decision to come back."

Green is projected to be a lottery pick with interest from Boston at No. 5 on down.

The reason this is newsworthy is that it was just last Wednesday, Green announced he was staying in the draft at a news conference where teammate Roy Hibbert said he would come back for his senior season.

Now, more than a week later, the headline on the Georgetown Web site still says: "Jeff Green to forego senior season for NBA, Roy Hibbert to stay at Georgetown."

The press release has a quote from Green that states, "I haven't hired an agent yet, but we are starting that process now. I love Georgetown, my friends, my team, coaches & but after a lot of examination I've come to the conclusion that this is what's best for me. I intend to get my degree eventually, but right now it's the NBA."

Green said Thursday that the only thing he was saying last week was, "I was keeping my name in the draft." And he qualified that by saying as in last week. As of this week, he still hasn't made up his mind on whether he's staying in the draft past the June 18 withdrawal date.

This is definitely big news!