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November 10, 2010

UGA Basketball Update



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.
Playing rotation once Trey returns based on what I'm hearing:
5 - Price then Barnes
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

Other tidbits:
  • 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.
That's what I'm hearing.

PWD

6 comments:

stick jackson said...

Agree on the recruiting, PWD. There's Nick Marshall, too -- although Richt's record in honoring commitments to let guys play another sport isn't quite as good as his record against Florida.

It's going to take a year like we are all hoping for on the court -- as in say, Sweet 16 -- coupled with high school players seeing Try and Travis go in the first round as a result of how Fox has developed their games to really knock the lid off on recruiting.

That all should happen.

NCT said...

"they don't want to walk into a snake pit and get beat."

Stegeman as an intimidating venue will continue to improve. That makes me thrilled.

BCSAV said...

I said before practice started that Price was the key to this team. He was so good at times his Freshman year. Hopefully he will live up to what we all thought he could be. I also think Brantley will be a good contributor and go off every now and then shooting the ball.

PWD- off topic but any idea what time the Georgia-Ga Tech game will be? It looks like LSU-Arkansas will get the 3:30 slot. Please don't tell me another nooner.

VAdawg said...

Ware is going to start over Gerald? I am really surprised to hear that; seems like Fox was always talking about how much the team needed Gerald last year.

Regardless, getting depth a the 1 spot is HUGE. That hurt as last year bad. Plus, Ware has developed into a pretty solid 3 point shooter. I wouldn't be surprised to see Ware and and Robinson on the floor at the same time a decent amount with Ware at the the two spot.

Really wish we could have landed one of the Milton kids-- especially Royal. But still, we're in a good spot for this class. Getting Kentavious is HUGE. Not only is he one of the best players in the nation, he is the best player in the state. We will need to get our fair share of the in-state studs to have continued success, and this is a great start. Dixon is a solid addition, he has great size and potential, but he will need a few years to develop. I don't know a thing about the JUCO kid, but 7'1" is a good place to start.

The next class will be really big. There will be a bunch of holes to fill, and the talent in 2012 Georgia class is great. PWD is right; we need at least three of those guys. I want the Nolte bad, but apparently so does Coach K.

Overall, I am unbelievably excited about what Coach Fox is doing. I think we have ourselves a helluva coach and a really solid squad. Now if we could just get the damn bubble letters of the uniforms... who's with me?

Paul Westerdawg said...

BCSav

The start times are a mystery as we are clearly requesting noon games at this point.

So who knows. I thought night game but we'll see.

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget about the spring signing period. If we have a big season, there will be some kids out there in the spring. It's doubtful that Marcus Thornton will fall into our lap again, but there will be talent out there.

All Price has ever needed to do is get into good shape. That has been the only thing keeping his confidence down and leading to his self-sabotaging. Hopefully he is ready to go. In this day, it is very rare for a team to have as much quality depth in the frontcourt as the Dawgs do.

Thornton will be starting by January. Hopefully, Leslie has improved his jumper enough to play some 2. Love the ability of this team to go small (Ware, Robinson, Leslie, Thornton, Trey) or massive (Ware, Leslie, Trey, Barnes, Price). If Brantley can shoot the ball, this will be a really fun team to watch, and Fox will be able to do a lot of different things with them.

Pretty exciting.

 
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