Daily Dawg Thread: February 01, 2024

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Daily Dawg Thread: February 01, 2024

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MBB Photos/Video/Box Score: Game Photos and Coach White’s Postgame Presser – Alabama

Watch a fullscreen slideshow HERE.

On what made the difference tonight…

“I thought Sears and Nelson hit timely shots. Their ability to turn us over – 19 turnovers at home – was just not putting yourself in a good enough position. Transition defense setting – our half-court defense in the second half was ineffective. We just did a poor job all-around off of free throws, off of makes, off of misses. Our urgency level wasn’t the same as it was in the first 20 against a team that is as good in the first few seconds as anyone in the country, and they capitalized. A couple free throw line block outs haunted us, but a couple Seara threes in the right corner and the top key late were huge shots. And I thought he played great defensively, as well, as all those guys were particularly in the second half. As well as we played defensively in the first half, we just weren’t as sharp in the second 20, and you can’t beat a good team with that type of effort defensively.”





On any similarities between tonight’s result and the Tennessee result…

“Potentially. As you’re building, you have to learn how to win. Those two games had some similarities in that you’re playing with a lead in front of an electric environment, and there is a lot of emotion in the building. And then all of the sudden, they hit some – you hate saying they hit tough shots because you take away something from the opposition, but Sears did step up and hit a couple daggers, and we didn’t respond well enough. Especially with the empty possessions offensively that we had, it took the air out of the building a little bit. The environment in the building was obviously more of a factor in the first half because of the way we were playing, and it can’t be all about defending at a really high level when you’re making jump shots. It’s something that we will continue to preach with this current team and moving forward with this program. Credit Bama for their defensive resolve through their empty offensive possessions, particularly in the first 25 minutes of the game. They continued to defend and defend at a much high level, in fact, playing without the lead. We’ve done that. We’ve done that a couple times here this season, but we have to be better, obviously, like you brought up, playing with a lead at home.”

On turnovers and ball-handling…





“Odd. It was a really physical game both ways. It was, probably more so than any game this year, guys hitting the floor – both teams. In the first seven, eight, ten minutes of the second half, there must have been eight times when both teams had eight guys diving on the floor. So, credit both teams’ intensity level. Taht said, we had a lot of balls in the paint for us right in front of our bench in the second half that whether it was an unclean pass or unclean catch or a Bama defender getting a finger or hand on it, led to some turnovers. Which led to some transition points for those guys. We also had some near misses at the rim in the second half. One or two of those go, maybe you can extend the lead, but I felt like we played a little bit tight offensively down the stretch. Again, a lot of that had to do with their ball pressure and the fact that they continue to chip into our lead – and eventually take the lead.”

On frustration losing two in a row…

“These guys will keep fighting. I’m not worried about that at all. This was a top net opportunity. It’s not like we gave up a lead to a mid-major opponent or an inferior opponent. I think our guys feel good about the way that they played for 20-25 minutes and the way we continue to fight down the stretch. In addition, we play with a lot of heart considering what’s been going on around this facility in the last few days. Silas just played 19 minutes, and he literally hadn’t broken a sweat since we were in Gainesville. That’s a lot of toughness. That’s a lot of heart. Justin Hill, Jabri Abdul-Rahim and Noah Thomasson are the same way. A lot of these guys have been banged up with illness, and they swing away. Our guys played really hard, but we have to play better.

On preparation going into the South Carolina game…

“We got to get healthy. We’ve got to hydrate. We’ve got to sleep. Four or five of these guys have got to get rest. It’ll be more of a mental approach tomorrow, and then Friday we’ll get after it a little bit, but it’ll be abbreviated. Here we go again 1:00 tip on Saturday. We’re going to need every ounce of energy we can get to guard those guys and to generate some offense.”

On Sunahara’s absence…

“The decision was to bring him off the bench and try RJ Melendez coming off his best game. I thought RJ played well again tonight. It was just one of those decisions where we rode the guys. We played nine instead of 10. We decided on Dylan right there in the pregame. Sunny will come back and be ready to go at practice tomorrow, and he’ll be effective and lead. But who knows who will play on Saturday.”

Box Score

UGA Athletic Board Winter Meeting

AD Josh Brooks

The University of Georgia Athletic Association Board of Directors held its annual winter meeting Wednesday afternoon at the Georgia Center for Continuing Education and Hotel. 

J. Reid Parker Director of Athletics Josh Brooks highlighted Georgia’s success this fall, the academic achievements of Bulldog student-athletes, and updates to numerous facility projects. Faculty athletics representative David Shipley also gave a glowing academic report. 

Below are highlights from Wednesday’s meeting. 

Highlights of Brooks’ Remarks

• Fall athletic achievements — Georgia volleyball earned back-to-back NCAA tournament appearances for the first time since 1995; soccer won the program’s first-ever SEC championship; football finished with an undefeated regular season and an Orange Bowl victory. 

• Georgia finished ranked No. 29 nationally in the fall Learfield Directors’ Cup standings. 

• Stegeman Coliseum has become a huge home court advantage this season. Men’s basketball general public tickets for the South Carolina, Florida and Auburn games are already sold out. 

• Women’s tennis is ranked No. 3 nationally, Softball No. 6, men’s swimming and diving No. 7 and women’s swimming and diving No. 13. 

• The 3.20 GPA in 2022-23 was the highest ever in school history. This past fall, Georgia student-athletes boasted a 3.19 GPA.

• Over the past three years, Brooks has made nine head coach hires, while Georgia has won three national championships and six SEC championships. Seventeen teams made postseason play during the 2022-23 athletics season. 

• Georgia’s No. 7 finish in the 2022-23 Learfield Directors’ Cup was the highest for the program since 2005. 

• The Georgia Bulldog Club raised a record $102 million in 2023. 

• There have been 15 capital projects that are completed or in progress, with $284 million committed to these projects. 

• The Foley Field enabling project is complete. Georgia baseball now has a new, state-of-the-art locker room and film room, along with new LED lights. Estimated completion of the full Foley Field project is Winter 2025. 

• Construction is ongoing at the Jack Turner Softball Stadium, with an estimated completion date of Fall 2024. This includes a new locker room, all-sports weight room and indoor practice facility. 

• Renovations to the Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall Circle of Champions is scheduled to be complete this February. 

• Phase 2 of the Sanford Stadium South Side Improvements is scheduled to be complete this August.

• The new Lindsey Hopkins Indoor Tennis Facility is set to open this February. 

• Brooks also revealed more details on a Stegeman Coliseum Master Plan, which includes Phase 1A of a new scoreboard, audio and lights.

• The estimated time frame for the new track and field complex enabling project is summer or fall of 2024. 

Highlights of a glowing academic report from Professor David Shipley

• 539 Georgia student-athletes combined to finish with a 3.19 GPA this past fall. Women’s Golf boasted the highest GPA among Bulldog athletic programs with an impressive 3.67 team GPA. Men’s tennis had the highest GPA for a men’s team with a 3.50. 

• 67 percent of Georgia student-athletes finished with a 3.0 GPA or better this fall. 

• Football student-athlete Ladd McConkey was nominated for the prestigious William V. Campbell Trophy as one of the nation’s top football scholar-athletes. 

• Women’s golf student-athlete Caterina Don is Georgia’s nominee for the SEC’s H. Boyd McWhorter Scholar-Athlete of the Year. 

WBB: Georgia (10-10, 1-6 SEC) vs. Tennessee (12-7, 5-2 SEC) Tonight at the Stege

Georgia (10-10, 1-6 SEC) vs. Tennessee (12-7, 5-2 SEC)

Thursday, Feb. 1 || 7 p.m. ET || Stegeman Coliseum (10,523) || Athens, Ga. || SEC Network

TV: SEC Network (Eric Frede and Christy Thomaskutty)

Listen: Jeff Dantzler (GeorgiaDogs.com, 960 AM The Ref or 103.7 FM)

Opening Tip

» Georgia welcomes the Tennessee Lady Vols on Thursday for a renewal of one of the greatest rivalries in Southeastern Conference basketball history. The Lady Bulldogs and Lady Vols tip off at 7 p.m. on the SEC Network. 

» Thursday’s game marks Georgia’s Equality Night. Lady Bulldog student-athletes will wear special warm-up shirts to celebrate the beginning of Black History Month. 

» Georgia and Tennessee have split the last eight meetings in the series, with each program taking four wins a piece. The Lady Bulldogs have won three of the last four against Tennessee in Athens. 

» Georgia ranks fourth in the SEC in field goal percentage defense, holding teams to just 37.2 percent from the field. 

» Fifth-year senior forward Javyn Nicholson ranks third in the SEC and 13th nationally with 11 double-doubles this year. Nicholson has scored in double figures in 19 of 20 games. 

» While Nicholson is Georgia’s leader this season, a couple of guards have stepped up as of late. Asia Avinger is fifth among SEC players with 86 total assists and has scored in double figures in three of the last five games. Taniyah Thompson has drawn five-straight starts, scoring in double digits in four of those five contests. De’Mauri Flournoy has scored in double figures in three consecutive games. 

» Georgia is in its second season under the leadership of Coach ABE. ABE’s successful first year included a NCAA tournament appearance, 22 wins, and a fifth-place finish in the final SEC standings. 

» The Lady Bulldogs were the only SEC squad to not have a single player enter the transfer portal this past offseason. 

»  Coach ABE’s teams have won 20 or more games in 11-straight seasons, while her 12 NCAA tournament appearances rank third among active SEC coaches, only behind Kim Mulkey (LSU) and Dawn Staley (South Carolina).

Baseball: Charlie Condon has been named a preseason first team All-American by D1Basebal

University of Georgia outfielder/infielder Charlie Condon has been named a preseason first team All-American by D1Baseball, it was announced Wednesday.

A 6-6, 216-pound native of Marietta, Ga., he posted one of the greatest seasons in school history in 2023. Condon was the consensus National Freshman of the Year. He hit .386/.484/.800 with 25 home runs and 67 RBI in 56 games. He led all freshmen in OPS (1.284) and slugging, while tying for the most home runs nationally among freshmen.

He is projected as a premium pick in the 2024 Major League Baseball Draft as the redshirt sophomore enters his third season at UGA. The Bulldogs are preparing for the season that begins Feb. 16 at Foley Field.

D1Baseball’s editors and national writers selected their preseason All-America teams with one guiding principle in mind: to identify the best and most valuable college baseball players for the 2024 season. Condon made their first team as a designated hitter.

In related baseball news, tickets are on sale to attend the University of Georgia’s First Pitch Banquet in the William Porter Payne and Porter Otis Payne Indoor Athletic Facility on Saturday, Feb. 10.

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Greg is closing in on 15 years writing about and photographing UGA sports. While often wrong and/or out of focus, it has been a long, strange trip full of fun and new friends.

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