Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Where Are They Now?

Robert George Dryden was born on August 26, 1978, in Jacksonville, Florida.

Dryden played his high school ball at Terry Parker High School in Jacksonville. He experienced a growth spurt, and went from 6' 1" to 7' 1" during his time in high school. Dryden was recruited by the University of Georgia, and spent his first year, 1996/1997, as a red-shirt.

Dryden began to develop under Tubby Smith, but various injuries delayed his progress, including a stress fracture in 1997/1998, and a broken bone in his foot in the 1999/2000 season.

Dryden's career at Georgia took a somewhat strange twist after Tubby Smith left to coach at University of Kentucky. Dryden had a run-in with Coach Ron Jirsa, a former assistant coach who took over Tubby's spot as head coach. According to reports, Coach Jirsa came to Dryden and insisted that he change his major. Dryden refused, and he was dismissed by Coach Jirsa.

Dryden was re-instated after meetings were held with the University's academic support staff. However, Dryden's playing time under Jirsa was diminished.

Dryden averaged 7 points and 4 rebounds during his senior year, 2000/2001.

After leaving the University, Dryden played in the CBA in Canada. He later participated in camps held by the Philadelphia 76'er's and the Memphis Grizzlies, and played internationally for a period of time in Slovenia and China. More recently, Dryden played in the D-League in Fayetteville, N.C., and Los Angeles, California.

Dryden hung up his tennis shoes and started his own construction company, which does work in northern Florida and in southern Alabama. Robb currently lives in Panama City, Florida.

Robb Dryden

Favors Registers Double-Double

Derrick Favors went 12 for 12 from the floor, including a three-pointer in South Atlanta High's game against Duncanville High of Texas.

Favors scored 30 points for the game, to go with 21 rebounds. He also had 4 steals and 2 blocked shots. South Atlanta won the game 67 to 53.

South Atlanta goes on to face Lawrence North in the T-Mobile Classic in Muncie, Indiana. Lawrence North is 7 and 1 on the year and is one of the top-rated schools in Indiana.

Should be a good game.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Derrick Favors Competes

Favors is playing today in the T-Mobile Invitational. His game begins at 1:45 p.m., in Muncie, Indiana.

Favors still has UGA in the mix. He considers himself, "wide open." It would be fun to pair him up with Howard Thompkins. It could happen.

Derrick Favors

Favors is averaging 29 pts, 12 rebounds, 5 blocks, 4 steals and 3 assists per game. South Atlanta is 9 and 0 on the year.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Rashad Wright Sees Through Eye Problems

Rashad Wright has an eye infection. He has been playing well for the Alba Berlin squad, but it looked like his health problems were going to put him on the bench for a while.

Wright missed one game just before Christmas, but he managed to play in the last game. Wright scored 17 points in a losing effort.

As Coach Jim Harrick used to say, "Rashad Wright is a baller."

Sundiata Gaines Strikes from Deep

Goes 5 of 8 from behind the arc, and leads his Pallacanestro Cantu team to a win over Rieti Solsona.

Gaines also had 4 steals and 6 assists in 31 minutes. Cantu is on a 3-game winning streak.

After his shooting went down for a bit, Gaines has scored in double figures for the 5th straight game.

Different Country, Different Uni', Familiar Arm Sleeve

Inaugural Alec Kessler Memorial Tournament

to begin tomorrow.

Coach Durham will speak at a Tournament dinner.

Alec Kessler Tournament

D-League Update

Fred Gibson and the Albuquerque Thunderbirds are 2 and 9. Fred is coming off the bench and is making contributions where he can.

Steve Newman's scoring has gone down. He didn't score any points in his last game, and in the game today, has not scored yet.

Ezra Williams is playing the best out of the three. He did a little bit of everything in his last game-- he had a few rebounds, assists, and points. His team, the Austtin Toros has won 8 straight.

Mike Mercer done for the Year

From articles in the Tampa press, Mike Mercer tore his ACL in his right knee again. It was reported as a sprain, just after the Wright State game, but it apparently was much more serious.

Sad for it to happen. I wish him every success. I don't know what the prognosis is for someone who has two season-ending knee injuries, but it doesn't sound good.

Hope he keeps his head up, trusts God, and works hard at his school work while the doctors do whatever they have to in efforts to get his knee back in shape.

Dawgs Win!!

Man, that was a great game against North Carolina A&T. Dawgs almost hit 100.

The game sure had enough offense. For those who like contests in which Georgia scores the basketball, it was a fun one to watch.

Howard Thompkins gets my award for Player of the Game. He had 22 points with 12 rebounds. He had 4 steals and 2 blocks, too. He could have scored a lot more points, had Coach Felton kept him in longer. As it was, he shot 8 of 10 from the field.

Corey Butler is a close runner-up for Player of the Game. He had 19 points with 9 rebounds and 7 assists. He was just shy of a triple-double. I don't know if Georgia has ever had a player get a triple-double, but it would be neat if Corey did it.

Jeremy Price had a good game. Played within himself. He still is not getting off the floor with the kind of elevation that I expected him to have. But his game is around the bucket, getting rebounds and stick-backs. And for the most part, that's what he did during this game. He did have a three-pointer, but that was a banker, and I doubt he called it.

Travis Leslie played a decent game. He had 10 points and 5 rebounds. Only shot 4 of 12, according to the stat sheet I saw.

Good interview, by the way, by Howard Thompkins. He credited the other guys, was very modest about his own production and his need for improvement. He will be one of the great ones at University of Georgia.

Franklin County Falls in Finals

Franklin County lost in the championship game of the Upward Classic Christmas Tournament, held in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

UGA signee, Demario Mayfield, was the high scorer for the game, with 24 points. Franklin County's opponent, Oldsmar Christian, was able to seal the win with a late lay-up.

Franklin County had previously advanced to the championship game by beating Scott County, 79 to 77. Mayfield scored 24 points in that game.

Scott County's coach credited Mayfield as being the key to the game, and said that his team couldn't seem to stop Mayfield. At one point, Scott County was winning the game by 10, and Mayfield sank three straight 3-pointers to get his team back into the game.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Demario Mayfield Fills the Stat Sheet

In a recent game, Demario Mayfield scored 27 points, with 13 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals and 1 blocked shot.

In a positive sign for UGA's future, Mayfield went 9 of 11 from the free throw line.

Mayfield's team, the Franklin Lions, went into the Christmas Tournament at 7 and 1 on the year, and in first place in region 8AAA.

Could Mayfield be the scoring two-guard that Georgia needs?

Drazen Zlovaric Reflects During Christmas Season

I thought this article was extremely well done.

Away for Christmas

Loganville Christian Wins Holiday Tournament

Loganville Christian Academy won a recent Christmas Tournament held in Albany, Georgia.

Georgia signee, Daniel Miller, was named Tournament MVP.

LCA is now 10 and 0 on the year.

Takais Brown Playing in Slovenia

Takais Brown, former player at University of Georgia, is currently playing for the Alpos Sentjur team in Slovenia. He scored 12 points with 9 rebounds in his last game, going 6 of 8 from the floor.

Brown may be called upon to score more for the team. Alpos Sentjur is ranked near the bottom of the Slovenian Basketball Federation.

As background, Slovenia was part of the former Yugoslavia. Sentjur derives its name from "St. George," who, according to tradition, was a Christian martyr and military hero.

Brown previously played in Helsinki, Finland, for the team, Torpan Pojat. He also played for a brief time in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico.

After starring at Southeastern Illinois Junior College, Brown was considered one of the nation's top junior college recruits. It was considered a major recruiting coup for UGA when he signed with the Dawgs.

However, due to academic reasons, Brown missed the first two games of the 2006/2007 season. Therefter, Brown proved to be a major contributor, averaging 14 points and 6 rebounds for the year.

Unfortunately, other off-court issues arose and Brown was dismissed from the team prior to the 2007/2008 year.

It looks like Takais is doing well in the international arena.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

It's About Life

Georgia lost the other day to Texas A&M Corpus Christi. Many people are on the message boards, calling for Coach Felton to be fired. Some, to be sure, have contacted the Athletic Director, Damon Evans, to demand change.

I figured that it was a good time for me to express my opinion as well.

I want W's as much as the next guy, if not more. That's part of the reason for having a Blog. I enjoy following Georgia Basketball and I really want the team to win, and win big. But the Blog is just as much about life as it is about basketball.

And it's that confluence of life and basketball that makes me think that Coach Felton should stay.

As I think about the state of Georgia Basketball, I look at the roster. Lots of freshmen and sophomores. There is no doubt that Coach Felton would have a more experienced team, with a better overall record, had he not dismissed Mike Mercer, Takais Brown and Billy Humphrey. The offense would look better, the defense would be more effective.

However, Coach Felton's approach is that standards are just as important, if not more important, than wins and losses. And he's right.

Basketball may seem like everything, and that line of thinking is often embraced by fans, friends and family. Even teachers look the other way and let athletes slide. But in the grand scheme of things, the window of time in which a player is able to compete athletically opens and closes very quickly.

Therefore, Georgia's coaching staff would be doing their players a great disservice, in my opinion, if they as practical guardians of young lives, did not at least attempt to address patterns that would hurt the players (and possibly, the rest of society). They would be harming, rather than helping, student-athletes if they did not try to instill habits that would serve the players well during their collegiate career and long after they hang up their tennis shoes.

Standards are more important than wins.

And as I heard Coach Felton speak during the post-game show, a difficult interview time for him, I'm sure, I heard him say that he told his team that "things are never as good as they seem, and never as bad as they seem."

It would have been easy for him to fly off the handle, start throwing chairs and what-not, and there may have been some private expressions of frustration, but in his public comments, his tone was very measured. No excuses. Disappointment. Concerns about the lack of execution by the team. But even in his team's embarassing defeat, he still seasoned his comments with encouragement. Coach Felton showed me the marks of a mature program leader-- one, who in the midst of setting standards, also grasps the importance of relationship.

And that's why I really want him to succeed. I want him to be successful because of what it means to him and what it means to me.

I want a coach to be able to get relationship, standards and winning records in the proper order. I want that coach to be able to demand that his players go to class, and for the leader of a basketball program to have the confidence to insist on doing things the right way, no matter how talented you are at putting a ball through a hoop.

Then while a player is in the basketball program, I want to have the coach to build in some important life lessons-- the kind you pick up while distributing toys to kids at St. Mary's, or having parties for children at the Boys and Girls Club.

As we go through life, we will have a multitude of opportunities to choose between a "W," and a less glamorous, less exciting, more uncomfortable, standard. We will be called upon to adjust to losses while preserving relationships.

I believe that you get the relationship down first, set standards that allow the relationship to grow, and then you build like crazy with effort. At the end of the day, or the end of a life, you look up and you find that success has visited, stayed and become a close friend.

I think we caught of glimpse of what the program can be during last year's SEC Tourney. It was enough to cause me to believe that Coach Felton can get it done.
I'm going to go out on a limb here. I'm predicting that Georgia Basketball will begin to take off this year, with Coach Felton at the helm.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Dawgs Lose.

No excuse for this one. Shouldn't have been in overtime. Shouldn't have shot the last shot with so much time left in regulation. Shouldn't have missed the last free throw.

Time to go with the freshmen, Coach Felton. Jackson is a good reserve. We saw today what we have. Ware, Leslie and Thompkins are the future of the program. I say, let's ride 'em. Major minutes. Don't take Thompkins out unless he fouls out, or just can't go.

Ricky McPhee's Scoring Records in High School

After looking at the Rivals article, I thought some readers might like to know more about his high school numbers.

As of last year, McPhee was #1 in Gwinnett County for career three-pointers, beating out talented scorers such as Louis Williams, Billy Humphrey, Chris Allen, and Jodie Meeks.

McPhee was #7 for 3-pointers made in a season. And his 25 points per game rank him #12 in career scoring average.

Gwinnett County Scoring Records

Ricky McPhee Recognized

Good article from UGA Sports.com.

Glad to see that McPhee got some press after the Wofford game. He really has done a nice job off the bench for the Dawgs. I mentioned in an earlier post that he might be able to contribute. Don't know how he will do in the SEC portion of the schedule, but every game counts when you're trying to get into the NCAA Tournament. And if teams play zone against us, he'll have his opportunities for more playing time.

Corey Butler has enjoyed ribbing McPhee some. The nickname, "McThree", has a nice ring to it, and it might stick.


Thompkins, Ware, and Leslie

The state of Georgia had some pretty good basketball players hitting college campuses for fall 2008. Out of the Rivals 150 top players, 16 were from Georgia.

Of course UGA can't sign all 16, but we did sign 3. In order to assess how Georgia's recruiting has panned out, I thought it might be useful to see how Thompkins, Ware, and Leslie have measured up against the other players from Georgia that were part of the 2008 Rivals 150.


1st in scoring, 4th in shooting percentage, and 3rd in rebounding. He's also 4th in free throw shooting percentage, and 2nd in 3-point shooting.


9th in scoring, 14th in shooting percentage, 1st in assists.


4th in scoring, 5th in shooting percentage, 4th in rebounding.

Note: This analysis is just an early snap-shot. As the schedules get tougher, the results will surely change. At any rate, in a future post, I'll put up the information that is available now for each player. I may do a follow-up review half-way through the conference schedule and then again at the end.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Swan-Zee! Swan-Zee! Swan-Zee!

Big Shot Bob:


Meet Big Shot Z!!

a. Kentucky video


b. Wofford audio

Coach shoulda' known better

Zac's shots are more impressive, in my opinion, because of the following:

a) Zac has shot his buzzer-beaters over two defenders;

b) Zac's shots have come in overtime;

c) Swansey actually has to dribble and advance the ball upcourt at full speed before shooting, whereas Horry normally catches the ball flat-footed and lines up a set-shot;

d) Zac increases the degree of difficulty by twisting his body into pretzels before launching.

Besides, Horry went to Bama, instead of choosing like Zac and all other sensible people to go to the best school in the SEC, our own University of Georgia!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Aunt Bea to South Carolina?

Maybe since she lived in Mayberry, she could have attended in her younger years.

But not Aunt Bea. Mr. Beas. Beas Hamga.

Beas Hamga is a 7-footer who was highly recruited coming out of high school. He went to UNLV, but has asked for his release, and is considering South Carolina.


It could happen. I suppose he would have to sit out a year, but if he transfers sooner, rather than later, he could be eligible before the SEC slate starts next year.

If Horn starts attracting quality big men to his program, South Carolina will have fixed the main issue that they have had the previous few years-- the lack of size in the post.

Tubby Smith's Team Defeats #9 Louisville

Tubby seems to be molding Minnesota into a pretty tough team. First big win, I think, since he was hired.

I'm impressed. Good for him.

Minnesota is 10 and 0. They'll have some tough games later, but so far, so good on the young season.

Mike Mercer Goes 7 of 10

Leads South Florida to a victory over Murray State. Gilchrist, the other new player for Stan Heath's team, went 3 of 6, and scored 8 points.

Mercer was 0 of 2 from behind the arc, and 0 for 1 from the line. He still needs to improve his touch, but he seems to be rounding into playing shape and getting his timing back.

I Gave Up. You Did, Too

Stunning win for Georgia. Not that it was an upset. It's that Georgia snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. And then, we snatched it back again.

Georgia defeated Wofford by a score of 74 to 73. I haven't seen a box score, but it can't be pretty. We had way too many turnovers. Way too few rebounds.

They out-scrapped us, beat us to loose balls, executed better. Played with more poise. We missed free throws from our guys who normally sink them. I was not looking forward to reading the message boards.

Hats off to Ricky McPhee and Zac Swansey. Howard Thompkins and Corey Butler were also key to the victory. Corey did not shoot particularly well, but he had some good rebounds.

We don't look good without Thompkins. Woodbury sat out the game. Georgia is not a good team right now. But I'll take the victory.

We're 7 and 3. Let's win a few more.

Bam-Bam Time

I posted a poll earlier this year regarding which UGA player would have a break-out year. My vote went for Chris "Bam-Bam" Barnes.

Although he is still recovering from the surgery over the summer on his right wrist, I am hopeful that his health is improving all the time. If so, then today's game against Wofford might be the type of contest in which he starts to excel.

I am looking forward to the game. We'll need contributions from everybody during this stretch, and I am hopeful that Chris and other guys will play well.

Georgia against Wofford

Game is at 2:00 in Athens.

Georgia should win this one, but you never know. The key, I think, will be exploiting our size advantage on the inside.

Wofford does have a guy who is 6' 9", but other than that, they are truly undersized, compared to Jackson, Thompkins, Price and Barnes.

Wofford will likely try to get Junior Samples, er, rather Salters going. I never did like Hee-Haw very much, so let's have Corey Butler shut this guy down.

Wofford Roster

I'd like to see Georgia get a comfortable lead, enough so that we can see some more of Drazen Zlovaric and Troy Brewer.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Big Butts

is not so big anymore.

Have to give the guy credit. Isaac Butts has slimmed down and has molded himself into a pretty good basketball player. Of course, if he wanted to play basketball, he could have accepted the football offer from UGA and walked on to the basketball team, but I guess that wasn't for him.


I'm still waiting for a two-sport high school star to sign with Richt and agree to help out the basketball squad. Almost happened, kind of sort of, with Walter Hill, in a weird, twisted way.

I wonder if "Ike" has a turner-round jumpshot?

Recruiting is a strange beast.

Dennis Felton recruited Tony Woods hard, as I understand. I remember something that led me to believe that Georgia backed off at the last minute. In any case, Woods ended up going to Wake.

While many lament the fact that Woods went to school out of state, the question remains as to whether he is as good as the pundits have predicted. Could he have given Georgia 10 points and 7 rebounds on this year's team? I don't know.

For example, Woods played in tonight's contest against the Richmond Spiders. He had 0 points and 1 rebound. In the meantime, he had three personal fouls. I don't doubt that Woods will put it together at some point. But if a guy is a 5-star and is supposed to be a lottery pick in the NBA Draft next year, it seems that he should score at least a bucket in every game played.

He'll probably respond to this post (not that he would read it, mind you) with a 50-point outburst in his next game.

Louis Williams goes off.

Has 26 points on 10 of 17 shooting. Also notched 4 assists and 2 rebounds without a turnover. Williams led Philadelphia to the victory over Washington by a score of 109 to 103.

Still wonder how good Georgia would have been if Williams had ended up in Athens. Guy can score going left or right. Good free throw shooter. Super athletic.

Steve Newman in action

As previously noted, Newman got his first start this week. Although he didn't score in the game, he did get some media exposure.


Fred Gibson and Ezra Williams Battle Again

Similar result. The Austin Toros defeated the Albuquerque Thunderbirds again last night by a score of 127 to 121. This time, the game had the added drama of overtime.

Fred went 3 for 3 from the floor for the Thunderbirds. He also had a steal and a rebound. No turnovers in 16 minutes. That's a pretty good game.

Ezra scored 9 points. He was 2 of 6 in shooting, but was able to offset an off night from the floor by getting to the line. He was 4 of 5 from the charity stripe.

Austin improved to 6 and 3. Albuquerque is 1 and 7.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

This Week's Articles

By the way, those who have not visited the site before might not be familiar with the drop-down menu on the side for the archived posts. Check there for older articles, or click on a player's name at the end of an article and pull up further information on that individual.

For example, this week there were articles on Josh Harrelson up at UK, Ole Miss Coach Andy Kennedy, Ezra Williams, Fred Gibson, Chris Daniels, Rashaad Singleton, Mike Mercer, and Daniel Miller, to name just a few of the individuals recently spotlighted.


Just wanted to say thanks to the guys who came by the site for the first time. I especially appreciate the ones who left comments.

I know that Paul Westerdawg and David Hale made mention of my site on their blogs, so thanks goes out to them in particular. Those guys, along with the crew at "Catfish and Cornbread" are very highly respected as writers about the UGA sports scenes.

Welcome to the new and welcome again to the regular readers.


Josh Harrelson of UK to Fire Away in

High-Low offense.

The guy is shooting 50% from three. That's a whole heck of a lot better than Kentucky's guards. My thinking is that Harrelson will play a similar role to Howard Thompkins for UGA.

If Harrelson gains confidence and DeAndre Liggins starts to play well, Kentucky could improve quickly.

By the way, I am surprised that Coach Gillespie got over the fact that Liggins refused to go into a game in the second half after playing just 2 minutes in the first. My thinking was that a guy who challenges a coach's authority, especially a coach like Gillespie, would go to the end of the bench for an extended stay.

Coach Kennedy Arrested

I could make a joke about "mug night," but I won't.

Coach Kennedy was arrested for assault after he got into an altercation early Thursday morning with a cab driver. Coach Kennedy and another man had just left the Lodge Bar in Cincinnati. The cabbie alleged that Kennedy punched him and shouted racial slurs.

Hopefully, the truth will come out.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Sundiata Gaines Leads Pallacanestro Cantu to Victory

Gaines, who reportedly hasn't played his best basketball lately, bounced back with a big game against Angelo Biella.

Although the game was closer than it should have been, after Cantu opened up with a big lead, Cantu was able to escape with an 87 to 85 victory.

Gaines was the leading scorer, with 23 points. In a particularly positive sign, he went 5 for 9 from behind the arc. B.J. Elder, formerly of Georgia Tech, supported Gaines with 16 points from his shooting guard position.

Chris Daniels Finishes

Man, this is a great play.

Reminds me of the Virginia Tech game and Dustin Ware's behind-the-back pass to Albert Jackson for the stuff.

The main difference is that when Ware and Jackson teamed up on the play on t.v., I understood the commentators! Ha!

Anyway, Daniels take the no-look, between the legs bounce pass from a teammate and flushes it.


Marlon Brown Coming Back to UGA

Boy, I really hope that Felton and Richt can pull in Marlon Brown from Tennessee. The guy has serious basketball skills, and he would give our 2009 signing class a great boost.

Rivals did an article on Brown, and they indicate that he visited Coach Felton back earlier this month. I thought that Brown had decided that he was going to stick to just football, but by visiting Coach Felton, he is apparently stating that he still wants to do both. Hopefully, he showed up for the Virginia Tech game.

Since Brown is coming back on Saturday for an official visit, my thought would be that he wants to take in the basketball game. The Dawgs are playing Wofford, and UGA should play well. No guarantee, but if we needed some extra incentive to win the game, Brown's visit would suffice.

Securing a football commitment from Brown would give Georgia's basketball Dawgs a great all-around player, without costing the team a scholarship. He's a reliable outside shooter, a tough defender, and he finishes with either hand in the paint. Not a point guard, but handles the ball well enough to help bring it up the floor. Explosive leaper who would only get better as his body matures.

Let's reel him in.

What can Brown do for UGA? Hopefully, sign, and play two sports!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Steve Newman gets his first start of the year.

Steve Newman has moved into the opening line-up for the Utah Flash.

Newman was given the start last night at the center position. He responded with 5 rebounds and 2 blocked shots. Although he did not score any points, the Utah Flash did win the game against the Reno BigHorns, 114 to 108.

Newman is not guaranteed to keep his place in the opening line-up, but if he hustles, rebounds and hits his shots when open, he could develop into a guy like David Lee, formerly of University of Florida, who is playing for the New York Knicks.

Ezra Williams plays a Complete Game

Ezra Williams had his most impressive game of the year for his team, the Austin Toros.

Unfortunately, it was at the expense of Fred Gibson and the Albuquerque Thunderbirds.

Williams came off the bench and really contributed. He shot 7 of 10 from the field, and 2 of 3 from behind the arc. He did not shoot any free throws, which indicates that Williams is still relying mostly on his "spot up and shoot" game, rather than taking it to the basket.

At any rate, Ezra also had 3 assists and a rebound before fouling out of the contest. Williams is averaging 8 points and 2 boards per game.

Fred Gibson and Albuquerque Thunderbirds

lose to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.

In an NBA D-League match-up, the Thunderbirds lost to the Vipers by a score of 122 to 99.

It appears that the Thunderbirds just aren't very good. They are now 1 and 6 in the young season.

Fred Gibson scored 5 points on 2 of 5 shooting from the floor, and 1 of 2 from the line. Who knows, maybe the coach will shake up the line-up and give Gibson more minutes. Probably couldn't hurt.

Daniel Miller scores 25 in win over Sherwood

Daniel Miller, the 6' 11" Georgia signee, traveled with his team to Albany, Georgia.

There they faced Sherwood, a team that I believe is affiliated with the church that produced "Facing the Giants," the movie in which Coach Richt appeared.

Miller scored 25 points for the game. I don't have any other stats, but if I find some, I will post them later.

Mike Mercer goes 6 for 16

in his first game for South Florida.


He has never been shy about taking his fair share of shots. Even when they're not falling.

Stan Heath was definitely not happy about losing to Niagra. I don't know much about their team, but Niagra doesn't sound like the kind of team you want to have beat you in basketball. Maybe ice hockey or something, but not hoops.

Anyway, South Florida has lost three straight. They'll round back into shape, and so will Mercer. I was glad to see that his knee is holding up. And I predict that he will be a big-time scorer, even though it will take him a little while to overcome the jitters and the adrenaline rush of just being able to play again.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Rashaad Singleton Gets Press

Rashaad Singleton has been recognized for the contributions he is making to his new team, the Florida Southern Moccasins.

Singleton, who arrived at Georgia as a thin, 7-foot prospect, later began to hit the weights constantly. He became the team's leading weight-lifter.

Singleton left UGA after he lost his starting position. He ended up transferring to Division II team, Florida Southern, to complete his final season.

He has given Florida Southern a defensive presence in the post, and has already started to set records for blocked shots.


Saturday, December 13, 2008

You Never Know When Good Things Might Happen

Damien Wilkins has continued his giving ways.

He recently participated in an Oklahoma Thunder event to help one family who lost their home in a fire just before Thanksgiving. The children received bikes and one declared, "This is the best Christmas ever!"


Dawg fans are proud of Damien!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Crazy Hair

Late in the basketball season of 2007/2008, Coach Felton pledged that he would shave off his moustache if the Dawgs made it to the NCAA Tournament.

Well, against all odds, the Dawgs played four games, in three days, with two overtimes, and one tornado. And they won the SEC Tournament, automatically advancing to the NCAA Tournament's coveted field of 64.

True to his word, Coach Felton came out to the Tate Center during the spring, and before a group of cheering students, had his barber make him completely clean-shaven.

Fast-forward to fall, 2008. Coach Felton has grown back his moustache. And the team is struggling. They stumbled out of the gate and lost a couple of games that they should have won. Then came the embarassing loss to Illinois.

After that game, the seniors called a team-only meeting.

I'm not sure what was said, but I will say this: Georgia looked like a new team out there in the Dawgs' next game against Virginia Tech.

Georgia was much more patient offensively. They shared the ball. Cut down on turnovers. Played with more purpose, defensively. There was no second-half let-down. Everybody scored. And the Dawgs pulled out a game down the stretch against a quality opponent.

But it was more than that. Not just the way they played. The team looked different.

Corey Butler, the player nick-named, "the Senator", apparently decided to dispense with some of his statesman-like bearing, and ran out onto the floor sporting a Mohawk. Drazen Zlovaric had the same style. If Drazen's parents caught any of the highlights of the game on the Serbian version of ESPN, they must be there fraught with worry over how American life has totally corrupted their son.

As strange as the Mohawks were, the other hair-cuts had them beat. Travis Leslie, Dustin Ware and perhaps a couple of others had designs in their hair. I thought that aliens might have landed and put their characteristic crop circles on the scalps of our players. But it was weirder than that. Nothing geometric that I could see. No pattern that would suggest the visit of a race of highly advanced extra-terrestials.

No, this appeared to be pure whimsy.

Well, I'm all for fun. Coach Felton started this hair thing just before last season's successful tournament run, and we might just need some kind of extra magic again if the Dawgs are going to return to the NCAA Tournament in 2009.

Whatever the case, I definitely liked the team returning to its winning ways. I say, keep the crazy hair until we lose.

Felton and the Dawgs Give Back

Fantastic event. I tip my hat to Coach Felton for organizing the Boys and Girls Club Christmas Party again this year, and to Georgia's student athletes for participating and making us all proud.

Giving back to the community will stick with the players, long after the uniforms have faded and most of the athletic exploits have been forgotten. It has been said that once a heart is stretched with compassion, it never goes back to its original size.

I expect that the children of the Boys and Girls Club will certainly enjoy the time this weekend. They will have a visit from Santa (Terrance Woodbury), and a few toys to cherish, courtesy of Coach Felton and Wal-Mart.

Although the children will likely forget the toys they received at Christmas in 2008, perhaps what will remain with them is an abiding sense that someone cared, and the inspiration to keep the gift-giving going.

Boys and Girls Club Event

Chris Daniels' Expanded Range

Chris Daniels has expanded his range. Both geographically and athletically.

As readers of the Blog know, Chris Daniels is now playing in Poland. He joined the team, PGE Turow, earlier this year. Prior to that, he played for Kotwica. You can click on his name at the end of the article to pull up some of the background information on him.

At any rate, YouTube has a video of one of Daniels' buzzer-beating, long-range jumpshots, from back when he was with the Kotwica team.


Daniel Miller has Impressive Stats

Through the first week of December, Daniel Miller is averaging a double-double.

He averages 25 points and 13 rebounds on 72% shooting.

I know people will try to diminish his attainment, based on the fact that he plays against over-matched competition. But I still say, there is a lot to like here. Has the grades, the frame on which to build, and has decent fundamentals.

As many have said, you can't teach 7 feet. I am reminded of the kid, Thabeet at UConn. Came to the country at 6' 8", and kept on growing. He's now 7' 3", 270 lbs, and is a junior. He's pretty much a lock for being a first-round draft pick, whether he comes out this year or next.

Now I'm not saying that Thabeet and Miller are the same kind of athlete. But the point is that Thabeet didn't play against great competition in Tanzania, yet he was able to go to UConn and work on his game. Timid at first, I understand, he didn't average a whole lot of points his first year. But he worked hard and got better.

Can Daniel Miller blossom as a person and a player at UGA? We sure hope so. I'll continue to follow his progress.

Mike Mercer to Start for South Florida

Stan Heath is ready to shake up his team a bit. So far, South Florida is 3 and 3. Starting help may be on the way, as Mike Mercer and another transfer, Gus Gilchrist, will soon complete their one-year period for sitting out.

It looks indeed like Mercer will be in the starting line-up this coming Sunday. Hopefully, his knee is recovered, and he can get past the issues that have distracted him from playing at a high level.


Virginia Tech Coach Aggravated about Loss to Dawgs

Coach Seth Greenberg drew up a play to get his top scorer open. Georgia switched on the screen and Chris Barnes ended up guarding the shooting guard for Tech. However, the point guard with the ball didn't see the play develop and Georgia was able to emerge with the 1-point win.

VT Not Happy

Thursday, December 11, 2008

How Corey Butler Came to Play at Georgia

But for some astute judging of talent by Mike Mercer and Billy Humphrey, UGA would not have its starting shooting guard.

Mercer and Billy Humphrey competed against Corey Butler on the AAU circuit, and they convinced him to try out for UGA's team. Channing Toney also played a role in building Butler's confidence.

Butler Joins Team, Helps Out

Although Channing Toney, Mike Mercer and Billy Humphrey are now playing for other teams, UGA fans are still grateful for their one contribution that keeps on giving: Corey Butler.

Butler is the "glue guy" on Georgia's team. Best defender, articulate spokesman, reliable three-point shooter, good from the free throw line. I would love for him to shoot more and to develop his mid-range game, but other than that, he has done a fantastic job this year. He contributes in so many ways, it's hard not to have him on the floor.

I'm glad he decided to stick with it and keep playing basketball.

Rivals Article on Albert Jackson

Albert Jackson gets some recognition from the Rivals network and UGASports.com.

I'm proud of Jackson for hanging in there and powering through his injuries so he could contribute this year. He ran the floor well with Dustin Ware. I don't know if his dunk last year in the SEC Tournament made ESPN's top plays, but he and Dustin Ware made it this year with Ware's behind the back pass and Jackson's slam to finish the break.

He had the shot that gave Georgia the lead. I think he traveled on that play, but that's part of the game. Sometimes the refs miss a call and it works to our advantage.

Jackson hit a couple of free throws, if memory serves me. And he had the big rebound at the end of the game to preserve Georgia's slim 1-point margin of victory.

Albert Jackson deserves the press. He's a 6' 10," 6' 11" guy with big hands and a powerful build. He has worked hard to get to this point, and we'll need him during the year.


Hopefully, Georgia's game against Virginia Tech is a sign of greater things to come. Our big men were just terrific. If our guards can start knocking down jumpshots, Georgia might win a few games.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Trouville is still alive in Playoffs

Levi Stukes is playing for Trouville, down in the Uruguayan League.

On an interesting note, Trouville had a game actually stopped on December 1, due to fan violence. Trouville played against Hebraica, and the police shut the game down with 2 minutes to go.

The game started off well, with lots of scoring and an up-tempo contest. However, a number of fouls were called and the game started to bog down. Hebraica was up by 14, 78 to 64, and then the Hebraica players and bench were called for technical fouls. Stukes shot 7 free throws and helped pull Trouville within 2 points. Thereafter, violence started to break out, and the police stopped the game. Due to the suspension, Hebraica won 85 to 82.

After that eventful game, Trouville got blasted by 49 points in a game against Defensor. However, Trouville bounced back with an 82 to 77 victory over Malvin, and the latest news reveals that they are still alive in the playoffs.

Corey Butler Stats (Historical, Dekalb County)

Part of the purpose for the Blog is to create a database of information about current and former UGA basketball players.

I may have posted some of this information on the Rivals message board, but since message board posts are deleted every couple of weeks or so, I wanted to re-post it here, in a semi-permanent place.

Here is a link to some of Corey Butler's stats from his high school days at Cross Keys. As the information indicates, Butler was #2 in scoring for Dekalb County (higher than Cameron Tatum, a current UT player; Jeremy Price of Georgia; Anjuan Wilderness at UNC-Charlotte; and Alade Aminu at Georgia Tech), #11 in free throw shooting, #8 in steals, #7 in assists, and #11 in rebounding.

Dekalb County Basketball Stats for 2005

The fact that Butler was the only player in Dekalb who appears in 5 of the 7 categories kept by the the County, strongly suggests that Corey Butler was the top all-around player in the County.

Dawgs Win!

Huge win by the Dawgs against Virginia Tech. The Dawgs are now 6 and 3. Not bad for a team with young point guards.

There was a lot to like about this game.

1. Play of the Point Guards

Dustin Ware and Zac Swansey were much better. I like Dustin's confidence. He still settles for the long-distance jumpshot too much, but he will be a consistent scorer one of these days.

Zac Swansey played his best game of the year, in my opinion. He fought over the top of screens, defended with energy and purpose against a quick point guard for Tech. Distributed the basketball to shooters.

Zac did not shoot particularly well. There were a couple of drives to the basket in which he missed lay-ups. Not easy lay-ups, mind you, but ones that he normally converts. And he missed two critical free throws down the stretch. But the bottom line was that Swansey defended, passed well, and didn't turn the ball over. On balance, a good game.

2. Corey Butler

Corey Butler. My player of the game. He led the team in scoring with 11 points. He went 4 of 8 from the field, and made the assist late to Albert Jackson. The key to the entire game, however, was the job Butler did against Tech's shooter, Vasallo, in the second half. Butler defended like crazy. Fantastic game.

3. Chris Barnes

I keep saying that Barnes can give us "Trevor Booker-like" play down in the post. Booker is the fantastic power forward for Clemson. Well, against Tech, Barnes showed Dawg fans a glimpse of the player he can become. He went 4 of 4 from the field.

And let's face it. Teams are intimidated by a big guy who goes strong to the basket and dunks the ball with authority. Barnes did that last night. But in addition to his power game, Barnes also demonstrated improved fundamentals, scoring at least one basket with his off hand, a skill he developed while he was recovering from surgery on his right wrist.

Barnes can put up big numbers. Great hands. Fantastic leaping ability. Decent-enough shooting touch. He missed a couple of free throws, but other than that, a great job.

4. Dennis Felton

Coach Felton just seems a lot more relaxed this year. Guys on the message boards calling for his job and saying things that don't bear repeating. Meanwhile, Coach Felton was interviewed by Rivals, recently, and I was impressed.

Felton was just calm. Said that even in the loss to Illinois, he saw some things that he was pleased with-- such as the team's defensive intensity. Way too many turnovers, of course, but rather than calling his team out publicly, he praised them. That's what a good coach does with a young squad.

I have a feeling that Felton will make UGA very happy this year. This year. Sure, he has a 13-man roster with 9 freshmen and sophomores. Members of his team have had injuries, this season and last, that have hurt player development. But UGA basketball is growing, and as his players improve, Felton will look smarter and smarter.

Anyway, Felton has kept up the guys' spirits, has them believing in themselves, and I'm betting that a lot of UGA fans will get on board in the not too distant future.

Ezra Williams Playing Consistent Ball

As I posted a couple of weeks ago, Ezra Williams is playing for the Austin Toros of the NBA D-League.

Williams is averaging a respectable 7 points and 2 rebounds in right at 18 minutes per game. He has yet to miss from the free throw line. He also has 1 assist per game, which I figure is about right for him.

Williams did not play in the Toros' last game, a win over the Sioux Falls SkyForce. Not sure if he was injured or not. The Toros won rather convincingly, by a score of 117 to 91.

Since Austin is affiliated with the San Antonio Spurs, maybe Williams will be considered by management if the Spurs need a scorer from behind the arc.

Richard Hendrix in D-League

File this one under "Basketball."

It's only tangentially related to UGA. Georgia has done a nice job the last few years in playing against Alabama. One of the keys to UGA's performance against the Tide was keeping Richard Hendrix under control.

Hendrix is a star in the making. If he ever learns to shoot free throws, the guy could really help Golden State. Hendrix is playing now in the D-League, out west playing for the Bakersfield Jam.

Turns out that Hendrix has some ability-- not sure how much, but some ability-- from behind the arc.

Anyway, I admire Hendrix for playing hard at Alabama and going about his business in the right way.


Monday, December 8, 2008

Swansey Speaks to Break-Down Against Illinois

Hopefully, Georgia has fixed the problems that led to the 34-point blow-out loss to Illinois. UGA will be playing Virginia Tech tomorrow, and the game is on t.v.

Zac Swansey was interviewed as part of the Red and Black follow-up article to the Illinois game. He blamed the loss on a lack of teamwork.


The Dawgs need a quick start against Va. Tech. Tech is an ACC team, and they have some pretty good pieces, including Dorenzo Hudson, a shooting guard that Georgia recruited; and Jeff Allen, a 6' 7" power forward who played with Jeremy Jacob at Hargrave.

Steve Newman and Utah Flash have Off Game

Steve Newman played in Utah's most recent game against Bakersfield. He scored just 3 points in 17 minutes, going just 1 for 6 from the field. He was able to grab 6 boards in the contest, but it would have to be considered as an off game for him.

His teammates didn't fare much better. Though Bill Walker had a nice game, with 23 points on 8 of 10 shooting, the Utah Flash was no match for the Bakersfield Jam. Bakersfield won the game, 122 to 81.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Montegranaro over Sundiata Gaines and Cantu

Sundiata Gaines is coming along in his rookie season in Italy. In the most recent game, Montegranaro beat Gaines' team, Pallacanestro Cantu, 85 to 82.

Unfortunately, Gaines had some of the blame for this defeat. He got fouled on a three-point attempt with just seconds remaining on the clock. He ended up missing all three of his free throws.

He'll get better over time, but part of that improvement will have to be getting better at the line.

Daniel Miller goes over 1,000 points

Congratulations to Miller.

Miller, a UGA signee, scored 24 points in his last game. He also had several blocked shots, and even a few assists. He went over 1,000 points during the contest, an impressive attainment in his high school career at Loganville Christian Academy.

Hopefully, Miller is lifting weights and getting as strong as he can be for the upcoming year. Georgia will need some help.

Dawgs Lose to Illinois

Nothing to say about this one. The team had a "players only" meeting after the game. Might be the only positive from a 34-point loss.

I was not expecting Georgia to win any of the games in this 3-game stretch. Western Kentucky, Illinois and Virginia Tech are pretty tough teams to face this early in the season, especially since Georgia is so young at the point guard position.

However, I was expecting Georgia to show up in all of the games. Defend, take reasonable care of the ball. When other teams end the game on a 22 to 0 run, that's just unacceptable.

With that said, as bad as the Illinois loss was, Georgia has a long season ahead. I don't want to assume that we will continue to lose indefinitely. Not before we have a chance to play the games. Expecting a loss here and there is one thing. Giving up is another.

Anybody remember the movie, "Facing the Giants?" It was a sports movie put out by a church down in Albany, Georgia. If I'm Coach Felton, I pull the team together and have them watch it.

Facing the Giants is the story of a coach in his sixth year. The team is playing poorly. His best player transfers, and the team's expectations hit rock bottom. I won't say anything more, just in case you haven't seen the movie, but there are some obvious parallels between the movie and UGA's basketball experience. There are some obvious differences, too. But that's why the team should see the movie. I'll stop there.

The point that I was trying to get to was that there was a line in the movie about how our attitudes and actions follow our beliefs.

The worst thing that could happen now is for UGA's basketball team to give up on the season. They must compete. Must continue to fight. Must not quit. It's bigger than just basketball.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Chris Burnette

This guy is a stud, on and off the court. It is possible to do both. Get it done in athletics and in the classroom.

Congratulations to Chris Burnette for his hard work and accomplishments, and we look forward to him doing a great job for Georgia.


Friday, December 5, 2008

Illinois Concerned about UGA's Big Men

Clemson was able to get the ball inside and exploit the relative lack of size of the Illinois post players. Clemson's two starting post players went a combined 13 for 20 shooting, and Clemson won the game, 76 to 74.

Now, Illinois is set to tip off against the Dawgs tomorrow. We don't have anyone who plays quite like Clemson's Trevor Booker. I think Chris Barnes has the potential, but he's still a good distance away from putting it all together on the court.

Yet and still, Illinois is concerned about our big men. Can Chris Barnes step up? Will Jeremy Price have a big game, despite his weight loss? Is Thompkins in better shape? How about Ajax? He played well against Santa Clara. Not so well against Western Kentucky.


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Penn State Downs Georgia Tech by 2.

Tech losing at home to Penn State is somewhat like Georgia losing to WKU. Penn State hasn't been a great program, but they're a good one.

The difference for Penn State was their point guard play. Stanley Pringle shot the ball well, made good decisions, and set up players for high-percentage shots.

Tech player, Gani Lawal, is the real deal. He has really come into his own this year. Had 34 points on 15 of 19 shooting. Penn State is not that strong on the inside, but that's not the point. Lawal is good and he will compete in the ACC portion of the schedule this year.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Dawgs Lose to Western Kentucky.

As indicated by the post from earlier today, things turned out about as I expected.

UGA doesn't have the strength at point guard. I believe point guard is the most critical position on the roster when a team plays an away game.

If our point guards go 5 for 15, and make poor decisions/unforced turnovers to boot, we're not going to win.

Dustin Ware will eventually be a clutch player for Georgia. I really believe it. But judging from his stats and what I could tell from the radio, he just didn't get it done against Western Kentucky.

Might need to shake up the line-up. Jackson didn't give us much. Thompkins might be ready to start. Thompkins starting off the beginning of the game and at the half might help us avoid the extended cold spells.

It also sounds like Chris Barnes has earned more minutes, in spite of the fact that he missed a few important free throws. Barnes is not as tall as Jackson, but he plays bigger than his size.

Thompkins Gets More Press

Fresh after his being named "SEC Freshman of the Week," Thompkins received a nice write-up in the Athens Banner Herald.

I love the guy's attitude. Confident, but not overly so. Complimentary of his teammates.

Team Captain, Corey Butler, speaks to the freshman's impact.

We'll need him to step up big over the next few games.


Dawgs Travel to Bowling Green for 9:00 Game

This is as big a game as Georgia has had in the young season. It is also a big game for Coach Felton, personally.

As the Red and Black states, Felton did an incredible job at Western Kentucky. I'm sure there are a good number of other schools with the credentials of a perfect graduation rate and multiple appearances in the NCAA Tournament. It would be a good exercise to see just how many.

At any rate, Felton deserves a great deal of credit for the growth at Western Kentucky. He has Georgia's program on the way, and the two schools will meet tonight at 9:00.

It will be hard as nails for Georgia's basketball team to get a win. I'm not expecting it, though I do want the Dawgs to show up. I'd like to see Travis Leslie get going again, a good game from the point guards, and see what happens.

WKU Game

Monday, December 1, 2008

Seth Curry leads Liberty to Win over George Mason

Curry scored 22 points, with 6 rebounds and 3 assists, with just 1 turnover for the game.

Liberty is now 4 and 1 on the year. Their win over George Mason, a team that was undefeated and just a couple of years ago, the darling of the NCAA Tournament, makes a statement that Liberty is for real.

Curry had a jumper and two free throws in the last 41 seconds. Looks like Seth will be a star, just like his older brother, Stephen. Wonder if Seth wants to transfer?

D-League Update

Fred Gibson scored 16 points in just over 20 minutes in a losing effort for the Albuquerque Thunderbirds. The Thunderbirds lost to the 14'ers on Sunday. In addition to his 16 points, Gibson also had 3 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals.

Steve Newman had 5 points and 4 boards in his last game. He was 2 of 4 from the field, with a three-pointer.

The Utah Flash is now 1 and 1 on the season. Fred Gibson's Thunderbirds team is 0 and 2.

UGA goes up against Western Kentucky and Pettigrew

Some of you who follow the Rivals message board for UGA basketball may remember that a couple of years ago I was a Steffphon Pettigrew supporter and wished UGA had offered him.

Dennis Felton went up to see Pettigrew work out and came back without making the offer. Felton's a pretty good judge of talent, and I get the sense that he was looking for a particular style of player with what he believed was his last scholarship for the 2007 class.

Since Pettigrew was a bit of a "tweener," a player that is not considered big enough to play inside, nor a good enough dribbler to play outside, Dennis Felton probably wanted to go with another guard. However, since Jeremy Jacob, a member of Georgia's '07 signing class, did not stay, hindsight suggests it probably would have been best to bring Pettigrew in.

Here's the YouTube video from the Pettigrew signing with Western Kentucky.


Pettigrew was relatively quiet last year, and averaged something like 5 points. However, he has come into his own during the early part of the 2008/2009 season. WKU's coach has apparently dispensed with trying to make Pettigrew a guard, and put Pettigrew at the power forward position, where he played in high school.

Although Pettigrew is shorter than most other power forwards, he has found a way to out-physical and out-work his opponents. In his two most recent games, Pettigrew had 20 points against the Salukis, and a huge 17-point, 12 rebound performance against Louisville, the #3 ranked team in the country. Even more impressive was the fact that in the Louisville game, Pettigrew was matched up in the post against Samardo Samuels, a big 6' 9" 270-lb post player.

A fantastic offensive and defensive game. In short, the type of guy that Felton might wish he had now. Although Pettigrew probably would not start over a Jeremy Price or a Howard Thompkins at Georgia's power foward slot, it would have been great to bring Pettigrew off the bench to play somewhere when the match-ups were favorable.

I still like Pettigrew. Just hope that he doesn't go off against us.

Derrick Favors, Jalen Kendrick, and others.

Justin Young gives an overview of some of the early season basketball action in Georgia.

Derrick Favors has given the standard all-around dominant performance. I appreciate his humility. Would love for Georgia to have Favors and Thompkins trade back and forth on the high-low game. We'll see.

Jalen Kendrick gets some of Justin's attention. Kendrick's shooting on the evening was probably not up to his standards, but you have to like a 6' 6" guy who can actually play the point guard position.

Manny Atkins had a great game recently. He'll fit in nicely at Virginia Tech. Tech already has Dorenzo Hudson, a guy that UGA offered, and Terrell Bell, a forward that I know we considered (may or may not have offered, I don't remember). Bell didn't score in today's game against Wisconsin. Dorenzo Hudson scored 8 points on 3 of 5 shooting. Hudson looked to have a lot of potential in that game, but he just is not getting too many shots.

Justin's High School Recaps

Smoltz says he's a fan of the basketball program

He looked pretty good in the video, previously attached. For a guy coming off of surgery and pretty much at the end of his baseball career, he still has real basketball skill.

The Red and Black has more information on the reaction to Smoltz. I was glad to see that Zac Swansey enjoyed the visit.

More on Visit from Smoltz

John Smoltz talks to UGA basketball team

Great speech by Smoltz. One of my all-time favorites for the Atlanta Braves.

I hope the Dawgs basketball players realize how special a time it is that they are having.

I enjoyed watching Coach Felton and John Smoltz shoot it out in a game of HORSE.

Who knew Felton had game? He can hit that consistent outside jumper. Coach Felton even talks constantly. Was fun to see some of his personality come out on the video.

Smoltz and Felton

Howard Thompkins named SEC Freshman

of the week.

Thompkins won the award after playing very well in two games last week. He had 10 points and 5 blocks against St. Clara, and then followed up with 23 points and 7 rebounds against MVSU.

Thompkins now leads the team in scoring with 16.5 points per game.

Let's hope he wins the award again next week, which would mean that he played very well against Western Kentucky.


Friday, November 28, 2008

Video on Wayman Tisdale

Great video on Wayman Tisdale. His basketball, music, and recent health challenges.

I think it will load correctly. You may have to scroll over to it. It's #1 of the Top 5 shows on "Inside the NBA," and it was aired recently as part of the show's Thanksgiving broadcast.

Keep Your Head Up

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Fred Gibson makes Roster

As with Steve Newman, Fred Gibson has made a D-League team in the Southwest.

Who knows? If he has been working on his jump-shot, Gibson may end up as a really fast shooting guard on some future NBA squad.


Steve Newman makes the D-League

I thought that he had made the team, but it's more official now that the last round of cuts have occurred and Newman is listed on the roster.

Utah Flash Roster

Congratulations, Steve.

Drazen Zlovaric

It's amazing what 7 of 8 shooting can do for a guy.

I imagine we won't see too many remarks on message boards about whether Drazen is a "project" or not. Most sports fans use the term to mean someone who will need a lot of work and a couple of years before being able to contribute, if at all.

Well, if you can hit a number of outside shots in a row, and are 6' 9" to boot, with great handles, the likelihood is that you are NOT a project. A couple of years could make Zlovaric stronger, no doubt, and added strength will help him compete at a higher level. But the consensus now is that the issue is not so much whether Zlovaric can play or when he can play, but rather, how can we get him more minutes.

Another recently debated topic deals with Tanner Smith. Some have lamented the fact that Georgia "missed" on Tanner Smith. The program really needs a shooting guard, and with Ebuka Anyaorah being sidelined with injury, some argue that the coaching staff should have worked harder to bring Smith in.

As great a kid as Smith is, and I would have loved to have him join UGA's program, the truth is that Georgia didn't miss on him. From all I understand, he was recruited and given a scholarship offer.

In the end, Smith's recruitment stopped when Zlovaric committed. In all likelihood, had Smith committed earlier, we would have taken him. But it appeared that the Georgia staff ranked Zlovaric as being a better prospect. And since Zlovaric is taller, with more impressive athleticism, I can understand a basketball program taking him, rather than Smith.

If Zlovaric continues to shoot well, I doubt we will see much posted on Tanner Smith. I'll continue to follow Smith and cheer him on as he competes for Clemson. Sometimes, recruiting is about timing and choices, rather than whether someone was overlooked.

The last matter involving Zlovaric is Felton's body of work in recruiting. It is true that the state of Georgia has a lot of talent in its high school ranks. It is also true that a number of highly-touted players left the state to compete for other schools.

Yet, you still have to give Felton credit for the talent he did bring in. Zlovaric, Thompkins, Ware and Leslie will be big-time players for Georgia for years to come. It has been many years since Georgia has had as talented a class as this one.

Felton traveled all the way to Serbia to check Zlovaric out, and he appears to have gotten it right. Zlovaric can play. The other guys are fantastic, too. They all project to be great representatives of Georgia basketball, and I look forward to their development. Felton is a hard worker on the recruiting trail, and he is bringing in some high quality student-athletes, including last game's designated player of the game, Drazen Zlovaric.

Go Dawgs.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Steve Newman Scores for Utah Flash

Looks like Steve Newman made the roster of the Utah Flash, the NBA Development League team. He was not among the most recent cuts, and when you check the team roster, Newman is listed. I'm not sure if there will be another round of cuts, or what the influence is of NBA teams sending players down.

At any rate, Newman played in the pre-season game that the Flash had this past Saturday against the Idaho Stampede. He played 20 minutes and scored 6 points with 6 rebounds. He went 2 of 4 from the floor, and was 1 of 1 from behind the arc.

Congratulations, Steve!

Dawgs Win!! The good, better and excellent.

Wow! The Dawgs were clicking on all cylinders last night. They scored 98 points on Mississippi Valley State. Final score: UGA, 98. MVSU, 57.

The Dawgs' performance was so outstanding that I have to dispense with my "good, bad and ugly" analysis, and make it, "the good, better, and excellent."

Now, I will put my disclaimer out front. This was Mississippi Valley and it was at home, and I want the Dawgs to succeed. I don't want to get too enthralled when there will be hard days ahead. But, enjoying a win is allowed. And, with my own permission, I will proceed to do so.

The good. We got the W!! Hooray! The Dawgs are now 5 and 1. Not a bad season start.

The better. Contributions from up and down the bench. We got to see who we have. The point guards played much better in eliminating turnovers and distributing the ball. No one was injured, and the players who are recovering (Woodbury, Jackson and Thompkins) were out there on the floor, gaining confidence and getting in shape.

The excellent. Rebounding was superb. Great balance between tough defense and scoring. And Drazen Zlovaric. Who knew? Seven of eight from the floor. Raining in jump-shots. Drazen can put the ball on the floor and finish with authority. I don't know how much of that part of his game was on display last night, but he is super athletic.

Trey Thompkins. The guy can flat out play. He will be the team's leading scorer. He will need to get much stronger and his legs will have to heal. But he is a legitimate 6'9", and he can really score the basketball.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Rashad Wright leads Alba Berlin to Victory

Rashad continues to play well in Berlin.

In his most recent game, he scored 12 points against TBB Trier. Alba had gone up by 18 in the game, however, Trier came storming back and got the lead down to single digits.

Wright iced the game at the end with several free throws and Alba won the game by a score of 89 to 78.

Oregon Blasts Alabama

I expected Alabama to lose. It's hard to travel from the East Coast all the way to Hawaii, begin a game at what is to an Alabama player's normal clock, 11:00 p.m., and come away with a victory against a good opponent.

But the issue for Georgia is that the SEC isn't looking good. Alabama lost 92 to 69. I watched part of the game, and it looked like it was going to be much closer. I guess Alabama ran out of gas. Foul shooting continues to be a problem for them. They shot only 26 of 41 from the line, and were held to .370 shooting from the field.

A few interesting notes from the game:

Alabama runs the offensive set that Georgia used to run.

Not that the average reader wants this much detail, but if any of you played for Coach Durham, you would remember. Alabama's offense starts with the John Wooden-style pass out to the wing, followed by the point guard running to the basket. If he's not open, then you pass it to the high post for the shot or the dump down into the big man on the opposite block.

Oregon was led by big man, Michael Dunnigan. Other contributors for Oregon included Billy Humphrey's cousin, Matthew Humphrey, who hit two three-pointers, and Teondre Williams, who went 2 of 5 from the floor. UGA considered both Humphrey and Williams for a scholarship at one point.

The leading scorer for Alabama was Senario Hillman, who had been recruited by UGA a couple of years ago. Hillman may be starting to play better. His freshman year was somewhat disappointing for those that expected him to take over the league with his top-flight athleticism.

Ronald Steele did not play well. JaMychal Green was only 1 of 4 from the field.

Bad outing for Alabama. They are 1 and 2 on the year.

Results of the 1st Unit vs. 2nd Unit Poll

Decided to take down the poll today. Twelve readers, including yours truly, participated.

The hypothetical was this:

Assuming a scrimmage between Georgia's 1st and 2nd units, how many games would the 2nd unit win? The first unit was, for purposes of the exercise, Swansey, Butler, Woodbury, Jackson and Price; and the second unit was Ware, Brewer, Leslie, Thompkins and Barnes. I also added that readers should assume that all players were healthy, and that the 2nd unit could sub in Drazen Zlovaric.

The results were as follows:

Most readers (5 votes, or 41%) voted for option b, which was 3 or 4 games. I guess I could have made the selection a little tougher. In second place, (3 votes, or 25%) was option a, 1 or 2 games. Last place was tied (2 votes each/16%)between option c, 5 or 6 games, and option d, which held that the 2nd unit would win more than 6.

I voted for option c. I think that Thompkins and Leslie are way under-rated. When Ware relaxes a bit, he is going to surprise.

Thanks to all who participated.

Tom Crean is Coaching

I agree with him that his program was at "zero." He will struggle to win games this year, about like Georgia did in Felton's second year.

But Crean is building it. He's starting with the fundamentals. Going to class. Playing hard. Indiana will be back.

And they might even make the NCAA's before too long. Not this year. Not next. But soon enough, based on what Crean had to work with when he arrived.

The good thing about Crean's situation is that he has a 10-year deal, the unwaivering support of his school's administration, and he is not hampered by annual scholarship limits. Besides that, Indiana has great basketball tradition, which will help in recruiting.

Indiana Progressing

Monday, November 24, 2008

Ezra Williams contributes

The Austin Toro's lost to the Colorado 14er's, 120 to 104.

Ezra Williams came in off the bench and scored 14 points in a losing effort for the Toro's. The difference in the game was the fact that the Toro's had 30 turnovers.

In other news from the Toro's, former UGA recruit, Mohamed Abukar, was waived by the team due to injury.

Dawgs Win!!

UGA beats Santa Clara 54 to 48. Georgia is now 4 and 1. Not a bad start for the year, especially with the injuries we have had and the young point guards.

Still want to see Leslie get more time, but we'll have to see how it goes. Woodbury didn't shoot well from the field. But he was money from the free throw line.

Trey Thompkins didn't shoot for a good average, but you can tell the guy has game. He had 10 points and 5 blocks in just 17 minutes.

Chris Barnes was 2 for 2 from the field.

Corey Butler did not score much, but he had his usual key contributions.

Ajax was named the player of the game. He had 12 points and hit two big free throws down the stretch. He also grabbed 5 rebounds and had a block. Coming off of injury, and playing against their big guy, Bryant, I think it was great for Jackson's confidence.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Today's Posts

Today's posts have updates on the following topics:

1. Damien Wilkins and the Oklahoma Thunder

2. Channing Toney at UAB

3. Levi Stukes and 3-point contest

4. Demario Mayfield

Damien Wilkins back in Starting Line-up

The Oklahoma Thunder haven't exactly lit up the NBA in their new location.

When the team moved from Seattle and changed their name from the Supersonics to the Thunder, it was understood that the transition might be a little rocky.

However, it's been worse than that. The team has been bad from almost day one. The Thunder is in last place of the 15 teams that make up the Western Conference of the NBA. They have won just one game all year long. And the Thunder recently fired their coach, P.J. Carlesimo.

The coaching change might work out for the benefit of Damien Wilkins. Wilkins played sparingly in the first part of the season, averaging 5 points and 2 rebounds in 14 minutes per game. However, interim Thunder coach, Scott Brooks, has opted for a smaller line-up and has given the start at small forward to Wilkins.

Wilkins responded with 11 points on 4 of 9 shooting.

Channing Toney averaging

4.7 points per game for UAB.

If I remember correctly, they have him playing down in the post. UAB has one 6' 8" guy getting minutes, but otherwise, they go Toney at 6' 5", Delaney at 6' 2", and Johnson at 5' 8".

Meanwhile, Robert Vaden, their shooting guard and the remaining member of their starting five, is getting the majority of the touches. In the last game, he launched 13 three-pointers. He connected on 8 of them, so it's obvious that he can shoot. And they did beat Arizona on a bizarre play.

But with Vaden slinging it from deep and Toney having to guard much bigger players, I don't see Toney's scoring average going up that much. In the last game, Toney played 26 minutes, but took just 2 of the team's 52 shots.

UAB will be regaining some guys after fall quarter, if memory serves me, and they might help Channing get back to a rotation as a shooting guard. But as for now, it looks like Toney's skills are being utilized awkwardly in this, his final year.

Levi Stukes to Compete in

Three-point shooting contest.

Uruguay's basketball league will have their version of the Final Four this week. Four professional teams are playing in a tournament to see which squad will represent the country in international competition which will take place in Argentina in December.

As part of the competition, Levi Stukes is going up against 5 other players to see who is the best 3-point marksman.

Good luck, Levi!

Franklin County Citizen on Mayfield Signing

Felton has looked at the kid. Watched him play, watched him practice. Hope Mayfield comes in ready to contribute.

Demario Signs

Saturday, November 22, 2008

300th Post

For my 300th post, I wanted to thank everyone who reads the Blog.

Special thanks to those who leave comments. I really appreciate it.



Dell Curry and Stephen Curry

Great, great interview on Sports South. Did anybody else catch it?

I'm definitely in Stephen Curry's corner. Hope he has a fantastic season.

Don't Sleep on Vandy

I watched a little bit of the Vandy game the other night. I think they played Illinois.

Anyway, Vandy really impressed me. They lost the game, but they will win their fair share this year.

Some recruiters missed on Festus Ezeli. Reminds me a little bit of Al Horford. He is starting at center for Vanderbilt, which moves Olgilvy to the big forward position.

Besides the big men, Vanderbilt has a number of shooters. And they looked good despite the fact that one of Vandy's top players is out sick. If he gets back on his feet, Vanderbilt will be able to bring in waves of players. Look out SEC East.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Utah Beats Ole Miss: SEC looking Bad

The SEC is not doing as well as I expected. The West was going to be weak, I figured. However, I was not anticipating that Alabama and Auburn would be defeated by Mercer.

I definitely did not like UGA losing to Loyola. But when you combine that loss with Kentucky's loss at home to VMI, it shows that the SEC East and West have started the year out slowly, and both parts of the conference must be rated, "underperforming."

Now, Utah beat Ole Miss. I don't know if that's an upset or not, since I don't follow Utah basketball. I didn't even know they played basketball out there.

I was interested in Georgia's recruitment of Zach Graham a couple of years ago. But he went 0 for 6 against Utah, so I guess I'm not that good an evaluator of talent.

If the guys from the other conferences keep beating the SEC squads, then we may get just a couple of few teams into the NCAA Tournament.

Let's play Travis Leslie More

Travis Leslie played just 16 minutes last night. In that time, he had 4 points on 2 for 2 shooting. He was fantastic on the boards, too, getting 6 rebounds, 2 of which were on the offensive end.

Leslie also had 2 blocked shots. These were hustle plays, that were critical to Georgia going on its 13 to 0 run in the second half.

Coach Felton said in the post-game show that Leslie is not as familiar as he would like with the defensive philosophy, and is "playing on instinct out there."

Yet and still, the guy had incredible production in just 16 minutes. If this is instinct, I'll take it.

Since Terrance had an off night (5 for 14, 0 for 3 from long distance, 0 for 1 from the free throw line, with 3 turnovers), and Leslie hasn't missed from the field, I'd sit Woodbury for a while and ride the hot hand. After getting a blow, bring Woodbury back out and slide Leslie up to the 2-guard, or even down to the 4-position. Anything. I, for one, would love to see him play more.

Georgia vs. Santa Clara: Keeping up with the Johnsons

Georgia will be playing Santa Clara on Monday night.

If Dawg fans remember, Santa Clara is the team on which Kendrick Johnson's brother plays. Calvin Johnson is a 6' 2" senior who averages 5 points and two rebounds per game.

I'm sure that Johnson will want to come out and play very well against the Dawgs.

Georgia Beats Presbyterian

Final score: 55 to 47.

I did it last time, so I'll repeat it maybe one last time, using the good, bad and ugly analysis method.


Travis Leslie was 2 for 2. Troy Brewer hit a 3 right away. The Dawgs took it to the inside. Chris Barnes went 3 for 4. Zac Swansey was the player of the game, imo, shooting 6 for 10 from the floor and getting 6 rebounds.

Georgia played well without Albert Jackson and without Howard Thompkins. Georgia got behind and turned it around on a 13 to 0 run. Georgia played full court press.


I consider the "bad" to be things that I'd like to see happen differently.

So, I think Travis Leslie deserves more playing time. He was 2 of 2 from the field and got 6 rebounds in very limited minutes. He was the spark off the bench that the Dawgs needed.


Foul shooting. Atrocious. We shot 2 for 11. Our point guards have to shoot well from the free throw line, particularly at the end of games, and they're not doing it.

Terrance Woodbury did not shoot well-- 5 for 14. He needs to score the basketball and shoot a high percentage.

We were losing in the second half to Presbyterian. Not good.

Bottom Line:

A win is a win. Georgia is 3 and 1 on the season. Two more games coming next week. We need to get both of these, and ease Thompkins back into the mix.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Today's Posts


1. Unexpected Draft Selection in NBA D-League

2. Ezra Williams played last night for the Austin Toros

3. Sundiata Gaines Adjusting

4. Daniel Miller signing article

Check the Blog Archive (on the left) for the stories.

Unusual Selection for D-League

Frederick Levar Gibson was selected in the NBA D-League draft, held Friday, November 7. Gibson was drafted by the Albuquerque Thunderbirds in the 10th round.

Gibson's decision to play basketball might be somewhat unexpected to those Dawgs who remember Gibson's play on the football field. During his collegiate career, Gibson excelled as a receiver, garnering an impressive 161 receptions, almost 3,000 yards, and 20 touchdowns. He was selected in the 2005 NFL draft, as pick #131 by the Minnesota Vikings.

Gibson, who considered himself, "Randy Moss, without the attitude," spent time on the practice squad of several NFL teams, however, he never made it onto the field during an official NFL game.

To those who know him best, Gibson's decision to pursue basketball might not be that much of a surprise at all. Gibson grew up in Waycross playing basketball. He averaged 21 points a game as a senior. Being a 6' 4" speedster, he was a hotter commodity as a receiver than at shooting guard, so he signed a football scholarship with UGA.

Notwithstanding Gibson's role on the football team, Georgia Coach Jim Harrick still had his eye on Gibson for the basketball squad. In 2001/2002, Gibson in fact joined the basketball team after the football season, and scored a career-high 13 points against University of Florida. He averaged 5 points and a rebound for the basketball Dawgs, and shot 45% from the floor.

Now that Gibson is with the Albuquerque Thunderbirds, he is now back to his comfort zone. He stated it this way prior to the NFL draft: he liked basketball, but played football because it was his job.

Since he was not able to showcase his talents on the football field, Gibson has apparently returned to his first love.

The Albuquerque Thunderbirds has a pre-season game tomorrow night. I'll check the results and post a recap if Gibson gets to play.

Good luck, Freddie!

Ezra Williams

starts the pre-season schedule for the NBA D-League's Austin Toros.

Williams came in off the bench for the Toros and scored 5 points on 2 of 4 shooting. Ezra also garnered 2 rebounds.

The Toros lost the game to the Rio Grande Vipers, by a score of 77 to 70.

Gaines Adjusting

Sundiata Gaines recently had a down game against Milan.

Playing against a physical defense, Gaines must have been reminded of his final college contest, against Xavier. He didn't get many calls going to the basket, and Gaines finished the outing against Milan shooting just 1 for 9.

The coach for Pallacanestro Cantu, Luca Dalmonte, attributed Gaines' performance to youth, adding that his playmaker was born in 1986, and will have ups and downs as he adjusts to international life.

Daniel Miller gets Write-up in Walton Tribune

Miller has been playing well to start the new season.

The Walton Tribune followed Miller's signing and the subsequent comments by Coach Felton.

Felton is putting his stamp on the program. He is bringing in high-character, high-academic guys who will put the team first.

From a purely basketball standpoint, I think Felton is getting a guy who can help. Some have compared Miller to Rashaad Singleton. I think the better comparison might be Dave Bliss.

Overlooked somewhat by other schools, Bliss came on board, hit the weights, and was instrumental in Georgia's return to respectable basketbll and the Dawgs' SEC Tournament Championship run. But for the chronic problems with his back, Bliss would have contributed much, much more.

The major difference between Miller and both Singleton and Bliss is on the offensive end. Singleton really struggled unless it was a dunk. Bliss developed a decent shot from the foul-line in. Miller, on the other hand, has better fundamentals at the same point in his career. He might not be the athlete that Bliss was, but if Miller builds up his body and toughens up, he could anchor the middle for Georgia and perform well for the future.


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The One that Got Away

sometimes comes back.

True in fishing, at times, and true every now and then in basketball recruiting, as in the case of Porsha Phillips.

I don't post much on the Lady Dawgs, but I thought this article was good enough to share.


Hanging with Demario Mayfield

This one is old, folks.

Nonetheless, I wanted to make sure that the Chronicles includes some of the available background information on Demario Mayfield.

I thought the Athens Banner Herald did a good job with the interview.

Georgia's going to get a good player.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Dawgs Win!!!

Actually, it's more relief, than excitement...

But I'll take it.

Proud of Corey Butler. Great game for him. Shot 4 of 5 from three-point land. He was the key to Georgia's come-back.

Travis Leslie didn't score well. He still is the x-factor. He rebounded and had a blocked shot or two.

Bravo! Big ups for the point guards. They missed the last two 1 and 1's, but on balance, they played well.

Jeremy Price played better. We need something from down low. Nothing much from Albert Jackson today.

Believe it or not, I expect our big men to play better in SEC play, where they will be going up against other big players, as opposed to the tall three-position guys that the smaller schools have.

Kudos to the guys for not giving up after the team got down by 11.

Georgia is 2 and 1 on the year. If we can win a few games and keep our confidence up while Howard Thompkins is healing, and our point guards gain experience, we might find a way to have a good year.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Loyola of Chicago Whips the Dawgs: Recommendations for the Future

Embarassing loss. It's early in the season, but it's still awful to lose to Loyola by more than 20 points.

I thought that Georgia might lose this game. In fact, I had expected it, since UGA has two young point guards, the team had to travel after playing Friday night, it is much colder in West Lafayette, and the game got started at 9:30 EST.

However, I hadn't anticipated the total beat-down.

Here are my recommendations for righting the ship:

1) Start Travis Leslie. He went 10 for 14 from the floor, scored 23 points in 26 minutes.

2) Don't take Leslie out unless absolutely necessary.

3) Get Thompkins ready as soon as possible. Don't risk injury for the guy, but if he can shoot, let him pick up his conditioning by playing.

4) We're really hurting at point guard. In my opinion, drastic measures are called for.

We need to get this guy out on the court. Even if he is not available immediately, let's start the discussions now so that when he is available to the team, his transition is seamless. He is, in my opinion, the best point guard on campus-- sort of a shorter version of Travis Leslie.

Ware and Swansey might perform very well over time, but if they play like they did tonight, we need a third option.

5) Run better offensive sets. I said after Friday's game that our offensive execution was "ugly." I thought that it was true then, and although it was impossible to tell definitively from the radio, it probably hurt us again when we played Loyola. Price and Jackson were not getting the ball in the position on the floor in which they could do anything with the ball. Maybe things will improve with better players, but..,

We cannot swing the ball from side to side and expect to have success. The Lakers learned that lesson with Shaquille O'Neal. As dominant as he was, if all he did was just get the ball on the block, he could be doubled or defended by a guy like Dennis Rodman. But when the triangle offense was instituted, and O'Neal started flashing to the post, diving to the basket for designed lobs, and generally moving around more, the Lakers were ready for their championship run.

It's not an ideal analogy, but I think UGA would find, just like the Lakers, that having a designed offense opens up the floor for your skill players. We would have more assists if we ran a few set plays, with the action going toward the basket. We do some things now, I am aware, but not enough.

6) Shake the loss off. Take care of business tomorrow.

Kendrick Johnson at Abilene Christian

As posted earlier, Kendrick Johnson is playing at Abilene Christian this year.

The coach for ACU is believing that Johnson can bring strength to the team's front court.


Kendrick averaged 20 points and 15 rebounds his senior year at Morton High School in Morton, Texas. Johnson came to UGA as part of the 2005 signing class that included Mike Mercer, Terrance Woodbury, Billy Humphrey and Rashaad Singleton.

Due to chronic ankle issues, Johnson played only one year at Georgia.

Dawg fans wish Kendrick the best at his newest school.

Snow Storm?

Let's hope we don't need it. But if it takes one to win the whole tournament, then I'll sing a few bars of "Let it snow" early this year.

Dawgs Head to West Lafayette

Sunday, November 16, 2008

More on VMI over Kentucky

VMI had a good coaching strategy going in. There was no way they could compete with UK inside, so their coach said he wanted the team to shoot 50 three-pointers. VMI ended up shooting only 31, but they hit 14 of them.

VMI plays that way all year. VMI shot 1,045 three-pointers last year, while the other teams they played shot only 695. VMI ended the year leading the entire nation in scoring.

Less discussed, but just as important, is the fact that VMI also led the nation in steals. VMI gives different looks on defense, using a box and 1, 3-quarter court trap, half-court trap and full-court presses to rattle the other team and force them to play at VMI's speed.

In the game against UK, VMI employed that philosophy and pressured Kentucky's guards. UK had so many turnovers, that they never could really focus on getting Patrick Patterson the ball.

VMI played fast all year last year, and they still had a losing record, going just 14 and 15. So how did they go into Rupp Arena and come away with a win? I think Kentucky's lack of a point guard and VMI executing on its strategy was vitally important. But perhaps more than anything, the key to the victory was VMI's coach showing the video from last year of Gardner Webb beating Kentucky.

So although Kentucky had 22,000 fans, the huge arena, a light show, fireworks and all that, even though Kentucky got a bunch of calls and had a series of slam dunks, VMI gladly traded that for the opportunity to quickly advance the ball and sink a three. VMI believed that they could win, and they outhustled UK to pull off the shocker.

Here's an article and a video from Kentucky.com.

Keydets Win!

Just a Note

If you are interested in more information, be sure to check the Blog Archive to the left. Click on the down arrow for a chronological drop-down menu.

Labels (names of coaches, players or particular topics) are listed at the bottom of each post. The labels are in hyper-text, so you can click on a particular label for past posts about the same person or subject.

Steve Newman will Compete in D-League Training Camp

Steve Newman, who graduated from UGA in 2007, has been invited to training camp by the Utah Flash. Training Camp opens today in Orem.

Newman earned a spot by competing in the open try-outs that were held by the Flash in September.

Prior to returning to the States, Newman played in the Netherlands and in Australia.

As readers probably know by now, background information on Newman is available by clicking on his name at the end of this post.

Good luck, Steve!

I'm no Gillespie fan, but,

this is going overboard

Patric Young to Florida

"Close, but no cigar" for UGA.

As others on the message boards have stated, Georgia was on the outside looking in for Young. I believe it was worth the effort on a high talent, high academic recruit.

Disappointing, but on the bright side, there are a number of other guys that UGA probably needs more. Derrick Favors, a talented shooting guard or another point would be nice.

With a base of the Dawgs' talented freshman and sophomore class, Felton can afford to keep working hard on the recruiting trail to find the guys who will complement the team and take us to the next level.

Rashaad Singleton battles Miami and former

UGA recruit Dequan Jones.

Florida Southern played Miami (Fl) yesterday. Although Miami overwhelmed Florida Southern, 96 to 60, Rashaad Singleton did pretty well. He scored 8 points with 7 rebounds and 3 blocked shots. He was 0 of 3 from the line and had 4 turnovers. Dequan Jones scored 7 for Miami.

If Rashaad Singleton ever cuts down on his turnovers and gets better form on his free throws, he could continue his playing career somehow. He may do so anyway, but you hate to see a guy who works as hard in the weightroom not maximize his talent in the other areas of the game.

Swansey gets Press

Zac Swansey did a nice job in playing against South Carolina Upstate. He deservedly gets accolades for his performance Friday night.


Daniel Miller goes for 38

While the Dawgs were battling South Carolina Upstate Friday night, Daniel Miller was playing in Powder Springs, Georgia.

The recent Dawgs signee had a great game against Christian Heritage, scoring 38 points.

Congratulations, Daniel!

It's Corey Butler!

Corey Butler deserves to have a nice picture in the Red and Black. Great representative of the program. Delighted that he is on scholarship for his last year. I have high hopes for him as we kick off the season with Corey starting at the 2-guard.

In the South Carolina Upstate game, Butler forced at least three tie-ups. Not all became turnovers, but Butler is willing to stick his nose in there, sometimes against bigger guys, and force the turnover or change in the possession arrow.

I want to see Butler go after it on the offensive end. Drive the ball, shoot when open. He can do it.

Butler is a key cog for the Dawgs, one of the three captains for the year. Perhaps that's why I took particular exception to


Come on, Red and Black. Please have someone who knows basketball edit your sports articles. Easy mistake to make, but unacceptable to Dawg fans. It's Corey Butler!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Georgia over South Carolina Upstate

The Good.

Travis Leslie: Great body control. High-flying dunks. Went 3 of 4 from the free throw line. Led the team in scoring in limited minutes.

Troy Brewer got out on the break and dunked on a guy. Who knew he was that athletic?

Albert Jackson and Terrance Woodbury are apparently over their injuries.

Drazen Zlovaric looked good. So did Zac Swansey and Dustin Ware.

Chris Barnes showed his usual ups on one occasion.

Contributions from up and down the bench.

The Bad.

Georgia was outrebounded. Think the final margin was 41 to 30.

The 3-point shooting was bad. Maybe bad enough to put it in the "ugly" category, but I will attribute Woodbury's 1 for 7 night to the fact that he is coming off an injury.

Albert Jackson fouled out. I think he had 0 points and just a few rebounds. I'll take it for this game, but he will have to stay out of foul trouble over the next couple of games.

If we rebound like we did and shoot like we did, SEC teams will blow us out.

The Ugly.

Gxtra was terrible. I gave them props last week. This week I have to take it back. Horrible buzz on the audio. Awful replays that showed slow-moving ad's before the replay started. No way to keep up with the score. Freeze-frames often.
I appreciate the effort, but the execution was way off.

Georgia's offensive sets. I keep thinking that UGA will get better in this regard. Please, let Pete Herrmann go see Mike Woodson's staff of the Atlanta Hawks and let's learn some new plays.

Jeremy Price's injury. Reports are that he got poked in the eye, twice. I hope he is okay. Howard Thompkins is still hobbled. Albert Jackson is just coming off a rolled ankle. Chris Barnes still has some brace on his wrist. If Price can't go in the NIT, we have 2 players in the post and I don't see how Georgia wins more than one out of the four games.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Georgia Offers Milton Trio

This may be somewhat old news, but while we're talking recruiting nowadays, it should be noted that UGA has made scholarship offers to Julian Royal, Dai-Jon Parker and Shannon Scott.

The AJC reported on the three teammates.

Talented Trio

The good news is that UGA will have open scholarships in 2011. We project to be able to accept all three if we can garner their commitments. A number of the other schools would be over their scholarship allotments.

Demarcus Cousins

Wonder if Felton ever looked at him... Maybe not since he was an early commit to UAB. He certainly can play, and if he's still on the board, it might be worth the effort. Would much rather have Favors,

But my bigger question is

Should Recruits have this much pull?

Howard Thompkins

Won't play tonight, but it looks like he will play soon.


Whenever he does suit up, he'll feel the effects of the injury, and will be hampered by having missed out on a good bit of the strength and conditioning work. However, a rusty and recovering Trey Thompkins is still a pretty good basketball player.

He'll likely get better as the year goes on. Maybe just in time for the SEC portion of the schedule.

Coach Herrmann has compared Thompkins to Tracy McGrady, Kevin Garnett, and Tim Duncan. That's indeed lofty praise. The surprising one to me was Tracy McGrady. I don't think Thompkins has McGrady's speed and athleticism, but I'm willing to be convinced.

Get better, Thompkins. The Pre-Season NIT is around the corner, and we'll need you.