Saturday, February 20, 2010

Dawgs Whip Tide

In the end, it was the Trey and Travis show yet again. Georgia's terrific two-some led the Dawgs to a come-back victory over Coach Anthony Grant and the Alabama Crimson Tide.

The outcome of this contest was anything but certain. The Dawgs missed a few from the line early in the first half, which kept Alabama in the game. UGA looked to be on their way to another second half collapse when they found themselves down by 13 after leading by 1 at half-time.

Credit Alabama's defense. Anthony Grant wanted some player other than Dustin Ware to bring the ball up the floor. The scheme almost worked, too. The Dawgs started to turn the ball over against Alabama's full court press. But Thompkins and Leslie kept up their own pressure, hitting buckets around the basket and getting to the free throw line.

Thompkins finished with a huge 21 points and 17 rebounds. He may become a 20-20 guy before the year is out. Leslie scored 16 points with 7 boards and 5 assists. His follow jam off of a Ricky McPhee missed three will probably make ESPN Sports Center's top plays tonight.

Dustin Ware didn't score much, but when he did, it was huge. Ware hit a clutch three late in the game, and followed it up by stretching out Georgia's lead from the free throw line.

I was very proud of Chris Barnes. I've been waiting for him to have a really solid outing, and he achieved that and more-- a perfect 4 of 4 from the field, and 2 of 3 from the line. He ended the game with 10 points and 5 boards.

Congrats to Coach Fox and the Dawgs. We're 12 and 13, 4 and 8 in the SEC. Maybe we can carry some of our good play on through these next few games and beyond to the SEC Tournament.

Josh Langford Leads Lee

Had an incredible game on all fronts. Scored 23 points, with 8 boards, 4 assists, 3 steals and 2 blocks. Devin Langford notched 16 points.

Lee Over Butler

Mike Mercer's Second Chance

He sounds grateful, as well he should. Heath took a big chance on Mercer and it has worked out for both USF and Mercer, as the article states.


Still wonder how Georgia basketball would have turned out if Mercer had been able to stay focused while he was in Athens.

At any rate, perhaps Mercer can use his criminal justice degree to help others who would legitimately benefit from a second or third chance.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Not Surprised, Not Disappointed

I don't have high expectations for the hoops Dawgs on the road. Getting a win against #20 Tennessee with most of their key players back in the line-up was a tall order for the Dawgs.

Not being surprised does not mean that I liked what I saw from the team. UT pretty much outplayed us at every position.

Of particular concern was the fact that Tennessee doubled our output at the normal scoring positions. UT's shooting guard and small forward combined for 25 points and 13 rebounds. UGA's had 13 and 6. Even worse, their two point guards had 18 points, and ours had 2. We're not going to win with that kind of production.

Trey Thompkins played a good game, scoring 25 points with 10 rebounds. I thought Thompkins would score 40, but Coach Fox pulled him out of the game-- I thought at an inopportune time. I always like riding the hot hand, so I probably would have kept Thompkins in. I know that Thompkins played 35 minutes and Fox has to be careful not to wear out his star player. My point is more about timing. After sitting on the bench for a spell, Thompkins came back in. He was rested, but the magic was gone. He didn't score for the remainder of the game.

I also do not like line-ups with no shooters. Georgia had a decent lead, but when we went to our second unit, the wheels fell off. I'd rather keep at least one scoring threat on the floor at all times. We're not deep enough to do otherwise.

We're 11 and 13 on the year, 3 and 8 in the SEC. Let's learn from last night's game and get ready to play Alabama on Saturday.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Ray Donaldson and Nat Hudson Inducted into Rome Sports Hall of Fame

Ray Donaldson and Nat Hudson, two stars from the offensive lines at UGA, were inducted into the Rome Sports Hall of Fame this past week.

Raymond Canute Donaldson was born on May 18, 1958. He played football and baseball at East Rome High School, and was named to the all-state teams. He played at the center position for the Dawgs, making the All-American team.

Ray was selected by the Baltimore Colts with the 32nd pick of the 1980 NFL Draft, and went on to play 244 games over 17 years for the Colts, Seattle Seahawks and Dallas Cowboys. Donaldson was selected for the Pro Bowl six times. Ray also played in Super Bowl XXX for the Dallas Cowboys. Donaldson was the first African-American center to play in the NFL. Ray was inducted into the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame in 2006.

Nathaniel Lamar Hudson was born October 11, 1957. Nat played in high school for West Rome, before going to Georgia and starring at offensive guard for the team that led UGA to the national championship. It was Nat Hudson that threw the crucial block that allowed Buck Belue to scramble and find Lindsay Scott over the middle in the epic game against Florida.

Hudson was selected by the New Orleans Saints as pick #139 in the 1981 NFL draft. Nat played for the Saints, Baltimore Colts, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Congrats to Ray and Nat!

UT Game will be much Tougher

than the one played in Athens. Chism has had an injury, but I fully expect him to be back in action tonight. Brian Williams has been reinstated, and he's had a couple of weeks to get his timing back.

Goins and Maze, the two point guard types that Bruce Pearl has at his disposal will likely be on the court at the same time. Pearl has had more time to understand and prepare to defend the triangle offense. And the Volunteers will be at home.

It will be critical for the Dawgs to start the game well. If Tennessee gets quick turnovers and their team runs out to a 12 to 2 lead, our young Bulldawgs squad may have a difficult time recovering in front of a hostile crowd.

UT will probably win this one, but I'm hoping that the Dawgs find a way to beat Tennessee at their place.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Mike Mercer and South Florida Struggle from Behind the Arc

Mike Mercer has scored on some highlight-reel style dunks lately. However, he is just 1 of 17 from three-point range in Big East play.

South Florida is 5 and 7 in the conference, and for Stan Heath's team to make it into the NCAA Tournament, they'll have to hit at least a few from long range, and hope to go on some kind of streak. As it stands, the team is shooting just 22 percent from behind the arc.

Mercer's problem, in my opinion, is that he has gone back to his old shooting style. Coach Felton gave Mercer a drill in which he had to shoot the ball with one hand, over and over, until he could make baskets from the foul line and beyond. Mercer accepted the instruction, and in one game in the Dominican Republic, Mercer shot 8 three-pointers, if memory serves me.

Unfortunately, the lessons from the drill didn't stick. From what I could see on ESPN 360, Mercer has reverted to his high school shooting form, a Vern Fleming type knuckle ball, shot from across his body. Mercer shoots it with lots of arc, but not nearly enough accuracy.

Good to see that his knees are holding up. If he can get them to full strength again and square his elbow to shoot the ball, he might be able to continue playing basketball after his eligibility at the college level ends later this year.

Bruce Pearl Re-Loading for Georgia?

Bruce Pearl has brought all of his suspended players back in time to get the rust off for the contest against Georgia day after tomorrow.

Brian Williams is back on the court. Goins and Tatum had previously returned, and played against Georgia in Athens.

UT's front line will be much more stout with the return of Williams. Ajax will be back from a one-game suspension, so I guess it'll be time to let the big players play. Should be a great game.

Let's sweep UT!

Walker Recruitment Video

I saw on the link to the YouTube video on Herschel Walker's recruitment, and I wanted to have it here on the Blog.

Didn't know that Herschel had a little basketball game.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Ernie Johnson, Sr., to be inducted into Georgia Sports Hall of Fame

Ernie Johnson, Jr., UGA grad, will be participating in the ceremony.

Thought the attached was a great feature from, and I wanted to share it with any readers of the Blog who may not have seen it.