The basketball season officially begins on Friday night in Athens as the Bulldogs face Mississippi Valley State. There are discounted tickets on sale via Georgiadogs.com. Some items of interest with the season on its way:
- Recruiting Rankings -- Rivals.com ranks the basketball signing class as #24 in the nation. Our peers in the SEC East are UK (#1), UT (#23) and UF (#25). It's nice to see us ranked, and in the mix vs. our direct competition.
- Georgia's 2011 Commitments -- Preseason I felt that if Georgia signed Kentavious Caldwell (best player in state), Tim Dixon (best true center in state) and two other players that this would be a good class. The hope was that one of those two players other would be Julian Royal (GT) or Nick Jacobs (Bama) and we'd go from "good to great." Obviously, that didn't happen. The addition of the raw 7'1" JUCO center will help some. The class is solid, but we're going to need more star power over the long term to make a consistent move towards the top of the SEC. Devin Langford (Wing) is still out there and considering the Bulldogs which would be a very solid addition. (Note: It appears that the LOIs for all existing commits are in)
- 2012 Recruiting -- Dan McDonald of UGASports.com has his recruiting 2012 hot board up. The Bulldogs are in the Top 3 for some of the true gems of the class including high profile in state players like Jordan Price (PG), Jordan Adams (SG), Evan Nolte (SF), Jamal Reid (SF) and Tony Parker (C). Evan Nolte's brother is on the team, and Reid's half-brother is Jeremy Price. Parker was HS teammates with Donte Williams. Both Jordans are Atlantic Celtics, and our success story with their AAU program is Trey Thompkins. Fox really needs to sign at least three of those kids as all represent areas of extreme need. Hopefully, he'll benefit from this group of kids seeing our 2010-2011 progress on the court.
4 - Trey then Barnes then Donte
3 - Travis then Connor then Thornton (til MT learns the scheme)
2 - Gerald then Travis then Brantley
1 - Ware then Gerald then Vincent
- Jeremy Price -- Fox told a recent booster gathering that Price is an emerging leader on the team. Those that have attended team banquets and practices since Fox's arrival will tell you that Price was Coach Fox's favorite subject of ball busting (both playful and otherwise), but that seems to be changing. For this team to meet it's true potential Price has to become a steady 12 points and 7 rebounds a night type performer.
- Chris Barnes -- Chris and Jeremy will graduate per Coach Fox, and Gerald Robinson is also on pace to graduate. This is pretty significant improvement for a program that once went 6 years with only 1 scholarship player getting a diploma during the Jirsa to Harrick transition phase.
- Scheduling -- Coach Fox said that in his first 2 years we will have played about 11 BCS opponents, but only 2 (Colorado and GT) in Athens. He is working with McGarity to try and fix that, but it's tough because everyone knows we beat GT, UT, Vandy and UF at home last year. Other coaches aren't stupid...they don't want to walk into a snake pit and get beat. So, it's tough getting things lined up.
- Stegeman -- I took a tour on Nov. 2nd, but I missed the exhibition game. Still, I can tell you that it looks absolutely incredible. It'll look even better once the graphics are finished on or before Nov. 18th.
- Ticket Sales -- As of 1 week ago, season ticket sales were up about 18% and contributions were up 30%. Also, the UK game sold out with only ~150 tickets going to non-donors (those with the pre-sale password). Since we have some UK fans who donate to UGA for SEC Tourney tickets, the Cats will get some tickets. However, it should be the fewest number of blue clad fans in Athens in a very, very long time. Five hundred UK fans is better than 1,500+ as we've seen in the past.