Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Can this guy provide some scoring help?

Maybe. Just maybe. If the guy can go up to Chapel Hill and virtually outscore Tyler Hansbrough (he had 21 pts in 20 minutes, vs Hansbrough's 21 pts in 28 minutes), then he might just be able to give Georgia a spark off the bench.

Gardner Webb vs. UNC

Ricky McPhee must have played his best game ever. He was absolutely huge with 6 of 8 from the field, including 4 of 6 from downtown, and 5 of 5 from the free throw line. It looked like he would be the star of Gardner Webb's biggest victory of all time. But it was not to be. After McPhee hit a 3 with 11 seconds left, UNC won on a last second three-pointer.

Nonetheless, it was a big stage and McPhee responded with a big, big game. McPhee also played well in games against other high level opponents, scoring 22 against a Bobby Knight-coached Texas Tech squad, and 17 against Wisconsin.

After sitting out last year due to the NCAA's transfer rules, McPhee will be ready to play for the 2008/2009 season. What does he give the Dawgs?

Well, the 3-point line was moved back a foot this year. Just one foot doesn't seem like it's too much of a difference, but the new distance will have a significant impact on three-point shooting percentages.

Georgia is pretty confident in its rotation of big men. Albert Jackson played well in the SEC Tournament. Chris Barnes should be healthy again and ready to contribute big minutes. Jeremy Price is a big, skilled power forward. And Howard Thompkins will be ready to compete.

However, the team needs guards that can advance the ball against pressure, play good defense, and shoot the ball well, including at the new distance for the arc. Terrance Woodbury has some ability from the mid-range out to the three-point line, but in my opinion, the designated sniper role falls to Dustin Ware, Troy Brewer, Ebuka Anyaorah and Ricky McPhee.

I hope McPhee is training hard and expanding his game. If he shows anything like the game he took up to North Carolina, he might just get his opportunity to shine again.

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