Let me say first of all that I love ESPN3. I missed today's game, but I was able to watch the entire contest just a couple of hours later. I purposefully did not check the score, so when I sat down to watch the game on my computer, it was almost like watching it live. The network is not perfect, but it's pretty close.
Which leads me to the real point of my post. The Dawgs were very impressive today. Not perfect, but almost.
Travis Leslie displayed his usual acrobatics. He finished the game with 17 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists, with just one turnover. He was also 1 for 1 from behind the arc, which is a very encouraging sign. Dustin Ware was controlled and poised. He scored 9 points with 4 rebounds and 6 assists. A perfect 3 of 3 from the field, all from 3-point range, and zero turnovers.
We got enough from Barnes and Price. Trey Thompkins was effective from the perimeter and on the block, going 6 of 11 from the field, 2 of 3 from behind the arc, for 15 points and 7 rebounds. And Gerald Robinson showed great speed on offense and defense. He had 17 points on 7 of 12 shooting. He also notched 5 assists, 5 rebounds and 3 steals. Robinson was my player of the game.
We even got a few contributions from Thornton off the bench. Congratulations are due him for getting 7 points and 9 rebounds, 4 on the offensive glass.
From an overall team perspective, we beat MSU by 20, doubled them up in rebounds, and had almost three times as many assists. UGA posted four players in double figures, two others who scored 9 points a piece, and one guy who had 7.
On defense, we took them out of what they wanted to do, and turned them into an isolation offensive team, with others trying to spot up for long three's.
Great total team effort. If I had to complain about something, I would point to free throws and turnovers. We went 11 for 21 from the charity stripe. Fifty percent free throw shooting will get us beat.
We had 13 turnovers. Not a huge number, but of those, Chris Barnes had 3, Jeremy Price 2, and Thompkins 4. We need for our big men in the high-low action to fake the ball once in the opposite direction and then feed the post. As it stands, they telegraph their passes, giving the defensive player a chance to anticipate and make an early move to steal or deflect the ball. A former coach used to tell us to "grab the ball with two hands and get your butt down." The point was that with our knees bent and center of balance over our feet, we could make an effective fake or use a bounce or chest pass to get it to the open player.
Good game for the Dawgs. We're 14 and 4 overall, 3 and 2 in the SEC.