Fox’s Hounds Come Up Short
Well I can’t be upset about this game. I really can’t.
Or for that matter, any game the bulldogs are in against a top 25 team. Looking at our lineup and the way we play the game I’m trying to figure out how we play with any team in the SEC. We have one “dominant” player in Trey Tompkins and one flashy player in Travis Leslie but besides that not really anything SEC caliber. (I use dominant in quotations because he is dominant by Georgia standards, he would just be another starter on every other top 25 teams.) Ricky McPhee can shoot if he is open. Dustin Ware lacks the size to be a dominant point guard at this stage of his game. Albert, Jeremy and the gang show signs of light at times but really are average players. As we saw tonight, we don’t really have a player to turn to when we need a bucket to keep us in the game. I cannot blame Ware for the three that he shot in the final seconds. He came open and had to shoot the ball. Hopefully, over the course of this season we can develop two or three players to go to when we need points. Right now, we lack that threat.
I feel like this is just a sign of things to come for THIS season. We are going to be in a lot of games this year but when it comes down to it we wont win many of them. Thats not to say we wont win any, but we won win many. Not this year. If these guys continue to fight and struggle through the season and don’t give up, we will be better for it next year. This year has been full of progress. The team I saw at the exhibition at the start of the season is completely different from the team that I saw tonight. While there are no moral victories it is encouraging to see improvement.
The main reason for all of this improvement. Mark Fox. What he has done in this program in a short time is more than Felton did in all of his years. Every game that Felton coached it appeared that he was relying on the talent of his players against the talent of the others. There didn’t seem to be any plan. No adjustments. No nothing. And as a result, we lost the majority of the games we played because our talent was worse than the other teams. Now I know people will say, “What about the SEC run?” Well in my opinion we just happened to get hot at the right time and surprised a lot of people. Coming back to this season, as I have already said before, we don’t have much talent but yet we are playing (and sometimes beating) top 25 teams. Fox has these guys playing hard and playing until the final horn sounds. They try to run an offense but the triangle is not necessarily easy to pick up and I don’t think we have the players to fit it. Yet.
Which leads me to my next point. The win over Georgia Tech was a positive step. It shows that, of this moment, we are the top team in the state. Also, in reality, we are one or two players short of putting together a winning team. I know that if I was a high school prospect I would be interested in having an instant impact on a decent team. If I were Fox, I would preach to recruits that they could be those one or two players we need to be a complete team. That sounds like a pretty good option to me. Come in and have an immediate impact in the SEC. Where do I sign?
So, if you are looking for an SEC championship this year, you are probably in the wrong place. However, that is not to say I wont continue to support my Dawgs and you should too. The turnout was pretty great tonight and the crowd, at times had an impact. Dont bash the Dawgs for a close loss to the #23 team in the nation. Instead continue to show your support and hope that they can prove me wrong and make a run this year. I write this article to say that I am proud of the progress that the dawgs have made this season and am proud to see them fight with little result thus far. The players need a year to develop and progress and I truly feel that next year might be our year to prove to the nation that Georgia can compete on the court.
Until next time, “You stay classy Classic City.”