The UGA basketball squad wrapped up their tour in Italy, visiting the Roman Coliseum and playing their final game of the trip.
Coliseum Visit and Victory Over All-Star Italy
Hard to get much in the way of specifics from the footage of the last game, but here are some of my general impressions:
1) Georgiadogs.com has stepped up its game
Have to give the official site and the sports marketing department some props. Georgiadogs.com is much improved. I wanted to see more video, but I was impressed that we had any in the first place. The music was a nice touch. Gave a real feel of Italy.
Would be good to have box scores posted, if they exist.
2) Player Development
Tim Dixon got a chance to play major minutes. I don't think he will challenge for a starting slot, but he'll be needed at some point during the season. I'd like to see him put on 10 more pounds this year, and 10 or more next year. With his frame, he can do it, and the added muscle will improve his game.
Houston Kessler hit a long-range jumper during the last game. He's bound for a red-shirt year, according to Fox. If he hits the weights and the track so that he can really run the floor, he can be a contributor.
Saw that Sherrard Brantley hit a three. Looked like his footwork has improved. Hope that Fox is really working with him so that Brantley will put the ball on the floor and drive effectively.
Can really tell the difference in philosophy in the games. Tennessee beat All-Star Italy by close to 50 points, if memory serves me. Best I can tell, though, they were playing their starters for a good portion of the game. Mark Fox focused more on building the skills and confidence of his bench.
3) Offensive Sets
Now that Fox has a deeper roster and more time for his team to learn and practice running the triangle offense, he has the opportunity to add in different concepts to the offense. I'd like to see him experiment with a dribble-drive element, ways to set up lobs to his leapers and big men, schemes to attack zone defenses, and the like.
In any case, the Italy trip was no doubt a fantastic educational and team-bonding experience. Hope it leads to a special year.