Saturday, September 13, 2008

Tevester Anderson's Virgin Islands Team Wins Silver

The Virgin Islands basketball team was successful all the way to the championship round in the FIBAs America basketball games last week. Puerto Rico, however, took home the gold.

Puerto Rico won the championship game by hitting 15 of 27 from three-point distance. Carlos Arroyo, who has played for the Denver Nuggets, Utah Jazz, Detroit Pistons, and Orlando Magic, was 5 of 10 from that distance. Carmelo Lee was even better, hitting 5 of 7 from behind the arc. Juan Barea, a player for the Dallas Mavericks, won the MVP award for the games.

Tevester Anderson's Virgin Island's team has now won the silver medal two years in a row. Although disappointed, Anderson indicated that he was proud of the fact that his team gave it their all, and the "third time might be the charm."

Article in Spanish (from Tiempo, La Noticia Digital)

Tevester Anderson coached for 9 years at the University of Georgia (1986 to 1995). During his tenure, Georgia earned five post-season berths, including three trips to the NCAA tournament. After leaving Georgia, Anderson coached at Murray State. As a head coach at Murray State, his teams averaged over 20 wins per season.

Anderson is the current head coach at Jackson State of the SWAC conference. He and his wife, Joyce, have 9 children.

Congratulations to Coach Anderson!

Terrance Shannon

Seems to have a ton of potential. ESPN is thorough in their analysis.

From what I understand, Georgia still has a shot at getting Shannon.

Can we do it? We're in competition with a number of big-time programs that would love to pick Shannon up. I think that high school athletes want to see Georgia win consistently. Or they want us to get that top-flight recruit first, then they will get on board.

Well folks, it really could happen this year. Both. Georgia may get that signature recruit and the team might win 20 games this year.

Let's get four commitments lined up, perhaps with Shannon and Favors being the last two.


Football Prediction: Georgia vs. SC

This game scares me. Steve Spurrier has had extra time to prepare and South Carolina is playing for respect.

Georgia is playing for revenge. They beat us last year at home and we owe them one.

I'd love to see Georgia romp. Let's put up 45 points. Maybe 45 to 13.

But the realist in me remembers something troubling. Georgia's goal line offense. When we had the ball against Central Michigan, we couldn't blow their guys off the ball and punch it in. Sure, we scored eventually, but when your offensive line outweighs their guys by probably 30 to 40 pounds at each position, and you have the advantage of knowing the snap count, a good team is supposed to line up and score easily. Georgia did not.

Therefore, the question is raised: Can Georgia move the ball against a really good defense? We had two seniors on the line last year and couldn't score an offensive touchdown at home. How can we do it this year at their place with the new guys we have up front?

Football is won in the trenches. Respect is just as compelling, if not more so, than revenge. Unless Georgia plays mistake-free football, it's going to be very close. I'm predicting 23 to 17, Georgia, but it could just as easily be the other way.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Chris Barnes Expected to Have Break-Out Season

According to the readers of the Chronicles, Chris Barnes is the big man who is most likely to have a break-out season. Barnes garnered 45% of the votes in the poll, while Albert Jackson, Howard Thompkins, and Jeremy Price tied with 18% each.

Implicit in the idea of a break-out season is the realization that a player has untapped potential. Jeremy Price had a nice season last year. Albert Jackson came on strong. Howard Thompkins should provide Georgia with an elite scorer.

But out of all of Georgia's big men, Barnes is the one who is most intriguing. We saw flashes last year of him being on the receiving end of a few Zac Swansey assists. Barnes definitely has all the physical tools. He can rise with the best of them. He has great hands and decent fundamentals.

Last year, Barnes averaged just 2.6 points and 2 rebounds per outing. True, he was hurt for a good bit of the season, but he still played in 21 games, averaging 9 minutes per contest. He shot only 45% from the free throw line.

He can do better. With the graduation of Bliss providing more playing time in the post, Barnes figures to get an increased amount of minutes.

I voted for Barnes in the poll, and if I were Felton, I would start by making Barnes watch footage of Trevor Booker, the power forward at Clemson. Then I would roll film of UGA's own Anthony Evans.

Barnes can play just as big as Booker and Evans. He can seal guys off in the post and score. He can be a big-time rebounder. I think all he needs is a relatively injury-free season, more playing time, and confidence. It's time for him to break out.

We're expecting it.

Shaquille O'Neal Announces Retirement

Shaq recently announced that he will retire after the 2009/2010 season. Now, I wouldn't be surprised if he changes his mind, but that's beside the point.

I mention it here because Shaq was part of one of the greatest moments in Georgia basketball history. He was on a loaded LSU team that featured O'Neal, 7' 0" center Stanley Roberts, and a fantastic shooting guard, Chris Jackson.

But that season, the magic belonged to Georgia. Georgia won its only regular season SEC title in 1990, when Alec Kessler, Rod Cole and Neville Austin led the team to victory over LSU. Neville Austin provided the final margin of victory with two free throws late. Alec Kessler scored 30 points. Georgia won the game 86 to 85.

Can Brewer Step up in 2008/2009?

Troy Brewer came to Georgia after signing relatively late in the process. He was the only signee of the Dawg's 2007 freshman class to commit during the spring signing period.

Brewer averaged 15 points and 5 rebounds per game for the nationally known basketball program of Montrose High in Maryland. Montrose coach, Stu Vetter, was very high on him.

Vetter on Brewer

Brewer did about as well as could be expected for his first year at Georgia. He averaged 8 minutes per game and shot just 30% from the floor. Part of that low shooting percentage was due to the fact that he was often inserted into the game late, when Georgia needed a three-pointer to try to catch up to an opposing team that was pulling away.

But another factor in Brewer's lower shooting average was the fact that he relied too much on the three-point shot. Over 82% of his shooting attempts were three-pointers. When he did shoot from inside the arc, he did not do well, going only 5 for 16.

Brewer has ability. He has height. He has good shooting form, and shot 8 of 9 from the free throw line. But he needs to expand his game. He will need to drive the ball to the hoop and keep defenders honest.

The new three-point line should not be that big of an adjustment for him, I anticipate, because he was already shooting from well behind the three-point line in some of his shots. The real key for Brewer this year is working out. If he can get stronger, it will increase his confidence, toughness and ability to score when defensive players are crowding him.

Can Brewer step up? There are minutes available at shooting guard. Dawg fans are pulling for him. If he can commit himself to being a complete player, work hard in the off-season, he might earn more playing time and be a bigger contributor this year.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Memorial Fund Set Up for Anthony Gay

A fund has been set up in the memory of Anthony Gay.

On June 29th, 2008, Anthony Gay, age 30, was struck by a hit-and-run driver as he walked along a road in Lexington, Kentucky. The driver also hit two other cars in the same area, but to date, no witnesses have come forward and no arrests have been made. Anthony Gay died of his injuries 4 days later.

Although Anthony worked in retail, he was not covered by medical or life insurance. The memorial fund was established to help the family with the significant costs of Anthony's care and treatment over the last four days of his life.

Donations can be made at any Fifth Third Bank.

In addition to the memorial fund, a blog has been set up to appeal to the public for help in solving the case.


Anthony was the son of former UGA assistant basketball coach, Larry Gay.

Martavius Adams, formerly of Oklahoma State

has transferred to Arkansas State.

Martavius Adams, a 6' 8" big man from Irwinton, Ga., was a one-time UGA recruit. Georgia reportedly backed away from Adams, and he ended up signing with Oklahoma State. Adams averaged 3 points and 2 rebounds in 12 minutes per game during his freshman year, the 2007/2008 season.

I initially presumed that Torin Walker, the 2009 recruit from Columbus, Georgia, would be joining Adams at Oklahoma State. However, I later discovered that Adams had been granted a release to transfer by Oklahoma State coach, Travis Ford.

Adams has enrolled at Arkansas State. As this Blog's readers probably already know, Arkansas State is being coached by John Brady, former coach at LSU. Adams will have to sit out for the 2008/2009 basketball season, and should be eligible to play for 2009/2010.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Torin Walker Cancels Visit to Athens

Torin Walker has canceled his visit to Athens, according to

Scout reports that Walker, a post prospect from Columbus, Georgia, called both the coaching staff at Georgia and the coaching staff at Minnesota, to tell each group that he would not be following through on scheduled visits.

Although I don't have access to the premium article, it appears that Walker will be signing with Oklahoma State.

So, as far as potential signees are concerned, Terrance Shannon and Derrick Favors are still uncommitted. Shawn Kemp, Jr., is still on the board.

Georgia, after receiving commitments from Demario Mayfield and Daniel Miller for the 2009 class, has one or possibly two slots available. We'll see how this all plays out.

Where Are They Now? Steve Newman

Stephen Mark Newman was born October 25th, 1984 in Orlando Florida. He attended First Academy in Orlando, where he averaged 23 points, 12 rebounds and 4 blocked shots his senior year.

Newman became the first signee for new coach, Dennis Felton, back in 2003. Newman played hard and well for Georgia over his four years, averaging 5 pts and 3 boards per outing. He was also involved in community events during the year and basketball-related ministry efforts during the summers, traveling with Athletes in Action and Sports Reach. Newman was named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll.

Newman had high games of 22 points and 9 rebounds for Georgia, but his best game, no doubt, came on the road against Arkansas.

Newman against Arkansas

After graduation in 2007, Newman was initially signed to play in the Netherlands, for the Landstede Zwolle team. Shortly thereafter, Newman signed with the Erdgas Ehingen team in Germany (September 2007).

Newman has been playing since March 2008 for the Australian team, the Kalamunda Eastern Suns. Newman's contract was up in July 2008, but I think he was re-signed by Kalamunda. More later.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Aaron Craft Commits to Bruce Pearl

Aaron Craft, a 6' 1" point guard from the 2010 class, has committed to play for Bruce Pearl.

Craft averaged 18 points per game last year. He shot 53% from the field, 36% from behind the arc.

Craft also carries a 4.0 GPA.

UT has a talented class of freshmen this year, and brings in Kenny Hall, a post player from the Atlanta area in their 2009 class.

Bleacher Report Reviews Auburn Basketball

The Bleacher Report does a good job with their reviews.

And that's just the point on their review of Auburn basketball. Despite the thoroughness of the report, I just don't see a lot here for Auburn. Am I missing something? The guys could be a lot better than I expect, but I don't see that Auburn upgraded their prospects for winning in the 2008/2009 season.

Besides that, what happened to the guy Auburn recruited from North Carolina? Is he still part of their class this year?


Gillespie in on 7-footer?

Here I was thinking that UK was done with recruiting. Now it turns out that they may be trying to bring in Jorge Diaz, a 7-footer who has played for Puerto Rico's junior national team.

Diaz had been committed to play for Nebraska. However, because his first language is Spanish, Nebraska requires that he demonstrate English proficiency to get into college. Meanwhile, Diaz has already been approved by the NCAA Clearinghouse.

Diaz was scheduled to take the exam for English as a second language, known as the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), but a computer glitch at his school meant that he couldn't take the exam when it was scheduled.

Since Nebraska has higher standards than the NCAA Clearinghouse, it is possible that Diaz might not be admitted. The University of Kentucky has said that it is prepared to try to get Diaz into school so that he could play for Billy Gillespie.

Reminds me a lot of the snags that Georgia had with recruits a few years ago. It seems that the former University of Georgia recruit who was later admitted to Memphis, has been playing there, and playing well, for years.

Well, UK doesn't need any extra help in the post, in my opinion, so I hope that either Diaz gets into Nebraska, or that he announces that he would rather play in sunny Georgia, closer to home.

Jon Kreft to UAB

Not really big news here, although Jon Kreft is a big player.

Kreft made the news way back when, when he was a 5-star recruit, if memory serves me. Anyway, I think he had an issue with drugs, which I won't repeat here.

The purpose for commenting on his commitment to UAB is to forecast what the future looks like for Jeremy Jacob, who was formerly with the University of Georgia. I'll keep this post somewhat short.

Jon Kreft committing to UAB makes it more likely that Jeremy Jacob will do the same. Jacob envisions playing one year at his new school, Chipola Junior College.

Jacob, then, will be coming out of Chipola at the same time as Casey Mitchell, a guard who is a UAB commit, and Jon Kreft. Jacob is being recruited by UAB. It would make it easy, or so it seems to me, for Jacob to continue playing with the guys he knows, those being his teammates from Chipola.

Jon Kreft's commitment gives UAB some real potential. Kreft is not a huge scorer or rebounder, but he does have some talent. Good shooting range for a big guy. Put Demarcus Cousins, Jeremy Jacob, Casey Mitchell and Kreft together, and you have a really good signing class. Tamir Jackson is still out there, I believe. If he re-commits to UAB, then they will have enough young talent to start making a move in their conference.

Don Haskins, NCAA Championship Coach, Passes

Don Haskin passed away yesterday.

Haskins was a pioneering coach, perhaps best known because of the movie, Glory Road, which chronicled his experience at UTEP. Haskins was the first to field a starting five made up of all African-Americans. His team beat a University of Kentucky team that was coached by Rupp, and Haskins won the NCAA championship.


Bobby Knight, Nolan Richardson, and Tim Floyd were just some of the coaches who were influenced by Haskins.