Georgia Basketball Game Notes
Georgia (14-11, 7-7 SEC) vs. Auburn (10-16, 4-10 SEC)
Wednesday, February 24 at 7:00 p.m. ET
Auburn Arena (9,121) in Auburn, Ala.
TV: SEC Network (Mike Morgan, PBP; Joe Dean, Jr., Color)
Radio: Georgia Bulldog Network by IMG (Scott Howard, PBP; Chuck Dowdle, Color; Tony Schiavone, Producer) Flagship: WSB AM 750
The Starting Five
• UGA leads the all-time series with AU, 92-90; however, the Tigers own a 58-23 edge in Auburn.
• UGA ranks No. 7 nationally in field goal percentage defense and No. 20 in 3-point defense. UGA has held 22 of 25 foes under their season shooting percentage from the floor.
• UGA entered SEC play No. 8 in the league in rebounding margin at +1.6 but is No. 4 in stats for SEC games at +4.0.
• Over the last 28 games (dating back to the ‘15 SEC Tourney), Yante Maten has 22 double-figure scoring and nine double-figure rebounding games…with eight double-doubles.
• Derek Ogbeide ranks No. 16 among SEC rebounding leaders in SEC play at 6.2 rpg. Ogbeide is the league’s most proficient rebounder vs. SEC teams per 40 minutes at 14.9 rpg.
Bulldogs Travel To The Plains For Second Matchup with Tigers
Georgia’s Bulldogs and Auburn’s Tigers will meet for the second time in two and a half weeks on Wednesday evening when they square off at Auburn Arena at 7 p.m. ET.
On Saturday, Feb. 6, Georgia gradually built a lead in the first half and used an 18-2 run in the second stanza en route to a 65-55 victory.
The contest wraps up a travel-heavy leg of Georgia’s schedule. Auburn represents the Bulldogs’ fourth road games in a five-contest span, as well as their sixth road date in a nine-game period.
Georgia is 14-11 overall and 7-1 in the SEC following last Saturday’s loss at Vanderbilt.
Four Bulldogs are averaging double digits, both overall and in SEC play.
Yante Maten paces Georgia at 16.0 ppg overall and 15.6 ppg in league action. The sophomore from Pontiac, Mich., also is the top boarding Bulldog at 8.0 rpg overall and 8.5 rpg versus league foes.
J.J. Frazier, who was Georgia’s leading scorer for much of the season, is chipping in 15.4 ppg overall and 15.1 ppg against conference competition. Seniors Kenny Gaines (12.7 overall/11.4 SEC) and Charles Mann (10.6 overall/11.1 SEC) round out the Bulldogs scoring at a double-digit pace.
All told, the aforementioned quartet has accounted for 70 of the Bulldogs’ 73 double-figure scoring outputs this season.
Auburn slipped to 10-16 overall and 4-10 in SEC play with a 69-59 loss to Ole Miss over the weekend.
Tyler Harris is the Tigers’ active scoring leader at 14.0 ppg, while Cinmeon Bowers adds a double-double of 11.9 ppg and 10.0 rpg. In addition, T.J. Dunans, who against the Rebels saw his first playing time since a December knee injury, averages 11.9 ppg, and Bryce Brown contributes 10.4 ppg.
Keeping An Eye On…Entering Today’s Game:
Among UGA’s career Leaders
Charles Mann is…
• 40 points from No.17 Willie Anderson
• 2 assists from No. 8 Rod Cole
• 22 assists from No. 7 Pertha Robinson
Kenny Gaines is…
• 35 points from No. 25 Ray Harrison
• 5 3FG from No. 6 G.G. Smith
• 33 3FGAs from No. 5 Dustin Ware
J.J. Frazier is…
• 1 3FGs from No. 13 Terrance Woodbury
• 14 3FGAs from No. 15 Rashad Wright
Series History With The Tigers
Georgia owns a 92-90 edge in its all-time series with Auburn, but the Tigers possess a 58-23 advantage in games played in Auburn.
The Bulldogs and Tigers met just 14 days ago at Stegeman Coliseum, with Georgia securing a 65-55 victory.
Georgia was led by J.J. Frazier with 16 points, while Yante Maten added 12 points and 12 rebounds for his fifth double-double of the season.
The Bulldogs held the Tigers to 25.9 percent shooting from the field.
After a slow start a Derek Ogbeide scored Georgia’s first points on a tip-in at the 16:36 mark, and the Bulldogs led the for the remainder of the game.
After owning a 31-22 lead at the half, Georgia opened the second stanza on an 18-5 spurt to take control of the contest.
The Bulldogs held Auburn to just one field goal in the first 11 minutes in the second period, and Georgia eventually led by 25 points twice, lastly at 60-35 before the Tigers closed the game on a 20-5 surge.
In the most recent matchup on The Plains in last year’s regular-season finale, Charles Mann scored 13 of his 15 points in the second half – including the 1,000th of his UGA career – as Georgia rallied to a 64-61 win.
The victory gave Georgia its second consecutive 20-victory campaign for the first time since 1997-98 and just the third occasion in 110 seasons of intercollegiate play.
The Bulldogs played without Kenny Gaines, their second-leading scorer, who sprained his left foot in practice two days earlier.
KT Harrell’s 3-pointers on two straight possessions, the latter with 13:53 left, gave the Tigers the biggest lead for either team at 46-39. Another trey at the 11:34 mark matched the seven-point margin.
That’s when Mann took charge of Georgia’s comeback. He scored seven straight to tie the score at 52-52 with 8:48 left. A pair of Mann free throws at the 1:32 mark broke the sixth tie of the game and put Georgia ahead 62-60.
Auburn missed three consecutive 3-pointers in a possession inside the final minute. Cinmeon Bowers was fouled rebounding the third miss and made one of two foul shots with 5.8 seconds left.
J.J. Frazier then converted two free throws to secure the victory.
Last Time Out
Georgia dropped a Southeastern Conference road game to Vanderbilt, 80-67, Saturday afternoon in Memorial Gymnasium.
The Bulldogs were led by J.J. Frazier with 21 points, his eighth 20-point game of the season. Yante Maten added a double-double of 19 points and 10 rebounds, and freshman Derek Ogbeide totaled a career-high 11 points in the contest.
Vanderbilt jumped out to a 10-2 lead just 4:54 into the game, and Georgia played uphill the rest of the day.
Early in the second half, J.J. Frazier dropped six quick points cutting Vanderbilt’s lead to seven.
A pair of Charles Mann free throws cut the lead to four midway through the half, but Vanderbilt responded with a 7-0 run.
A Positive Breakout
Not that the media needs any self affirmation but the folks who predicted Yante Maten would be one of the nation’s “breakout” players this season – including those at CBS, NBC and SI – are probably feeling pretty good.
Most expected Maten to up his contributions following the departure of seniors frontcourt mates Nemanja Djurisic and Marcus Thornton. He’s done more than just that.
As a freshman a year ago, Maten averaged 5.0 points, 4.3 rebounds and 18.2 minutes per game for the Bulldogs.
This season, Maten has more than tripled his scoring (16.0 ppg) and also has upped both his rebounding (8.0 rpg) and playing time (29.7 mpg) by massive chunks.
Maten has posted five career-high scoring outputs, including four in the first seven games. He improved from 13 points entering the year, to 17 points versus Chattanooga in the opener, to 21 points in back-to-back outings against Seton Hall and Oakland, and to 24 points versus Winthrop. Maten topped that mark with 25 points at Mississippi State.
Maten’s increased production can actually be traced back to last year’s postseason. He notched his first double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds against South Carolina in the SEC Tourney.
That opened an active 28-game stretch in which Maten has recorded:
• 22 of his 26 double-digit scoring outputs;
• All nine of his 20-point performances;
• All nine of his career double-figure rebounding efforts; and
• All eight of his double-doubles.
Dogs’ “D” Has Been Consistent
Georgia is No. 2 in the SEC and No. 7 nationally in field goal defense at 38.0 percent. The Bulldogs have held 22 of 25 opponents under their season FG percentage.
During the 2015 calendar portion of the schedule, Georgia’s opponents connected on a paltry 36.6 percent (218-of-596) of their shots from the field. Subtract out those totals and UGA’s opposition made 45.8 percent (3203-of-6990) of their field goals attempted.
Georgia also has held 11 of its 14 SEC foes under their season FG percentage.
In the league opener on Jan. 2, Florida became the first team to shoot a better percentage against the Bulldogs than otherwise. The Gators entered the game shooting 42.2 percent but hit 42.3 – yes, .1 of one percent better – versus Georgia.
Texas A&M was the first team to make half its attempts against the Bulldogs, shooting 52.7 percent on Jan. 16. Kentucky also did so, shooting 51.8 percent against Georgia.
Better Boarding Bulldogs
Georgia’s rebounding efforts have improved consistently this season.
The Bulldogs entered SEC play ranked No. 8 in the league in rebounding margin at +1.6.
Through 14 conference dates, Georgia has climbed to No. 5 at +2.6. More impressively, the Bulldogs are No. 4 in rebound margin against SEC opponents at +4.0.
Much of that improvement can be contributed to Yante Maten. The sophomore from Pontiac, Mich., has upped his rebounding numbers from 7.5 rpg in games during the 2015 calendar to 8.5 rpg versus SEC foes.
In addition, freshman forwards Derek Ogbeide and Mike Edwards also have increased their boarding averages. Ogbeide was at 3.2 rpg in Georgia’s first 10 games but is grabbing 6.2 rpg in SEC play, while Edwards has jumped from 2.8 rpg to 3.4 rpg.
Frazier 100 Assists, 50 3s Again
J.J. Frazier has 103 assists and 58 made 3-pointers on the year, topping the century and half-century marks in those stats for the second consecutive year.
Last season, Frazier posted 104 assists and knocked down 50 shots from beyond the arc.
Frazier joins G.G. Smith as the only two Bulldogs to reach those milestones twice.
All told, Georgia guards have accomplished that feat eight times as outlined below.
100 Assist, 50 “3” Bulldogs
Season Player Asts. 3FGs
1991-92 Litterial Green 115 62
1995-96 Katu Davis 122 62
1996-97 G.G. Smith 148 52
1997-98 G.G. Smith 148 81
2000-01 D.A. Layne 108 65
2010-11 Dustin Ware 114 57
2014-15 J.J. Frazier 104 50
2015-16 J.J. Frazier 103 580
Ogbeide’s Upped Contributions
Freshman Derek Ogbeide (pronounced “Ohwg-Bay-Day”) has logged career-most minutes during each of the past three games, while also improving his career-high scoring and rebounding outputs as well.
Over Georgia’s first 22 games, Ogbeide’s most playing time was 21 minutes against Texas A&M. He improved that tally with 22 minutes at Mississippi State, then played 26 MP versus Florida and saw 29 minutes of action at Vanderbilt.
Ogbeide grabbed 13 rebounds at Mississippi State, equaling Yante Maten’s effort against Chattanooga as the most by a Bulldog in a game this season.
At Vanderbilt, Ogbeide posted his first double-digit scoring output with 11 points…and also swatted a career-best three shots.
UGA In Midst Of Most SEC Success
Georgia is looking to extend its most successful stretch in Southeastern Conference play ever.
The Bulldogs’ 32 wins over the past three seasons and 23 during the past two campaign represent UGA’s most ever in 83 seasons of SEC competition.
The Bulldogs finished 11-7 and tied for third in the SEC last season. That followed a 12-6 record in 2013-14 when Georgia tied for second in the league and a 9-9 effort during the 2012-13 season.
That marked just the fifth time the Bulldogs have finished .500 or better in SEC play for three straight seasons. Georgia also did so from 1968-70, 1981-83, 1985-87 and 1995-97.
FYI, UGA has never put together four straight .500 or better conference campaigns.
The Bulldogs are one of only two teams to secure a top-4 seed to each of the past two SEC Tournaments, along with Kentucky. UGA and UK also are the only two teams to advance to the semifinals of both the 2014 and 2015 SEC Tourneys.
Gaines, Mann Rewriting Records
Kenny Gaines and Charles Mann are consistently making moves on UGA’s career scoring leaders ledger.
Mann entered the season at No. 36 among the Bulldogs’ all-time points leaders and has ascended to No. 18. Gaines became Georgia’s 46th 1,000-point scorer against Clemson on Dec. 22and is now No. 26.
Entering the Auburn game, Gaines has 1,195 points, 35 shy of No. 25 Ray Harrison, and Mann has 1,308 points, 40 off the current No. 17 Willie Anderson.
Rebound Count Equally Key
In addition to the scoreboard, the “boardboard” has been a relatively strong indicator of Georgia’s fortunes this season. The Bulldogs are 12-2 when winning or tying the rebound count.
Games at Kentucky and against Florida in Athens are the only times Georgia lost when out-rebounding its opponent.
Injuries At An Inopportune Time
After a relatively injury-free preseason, the Bulldogs were bitten hard in the week of the season opener.
Following a Nov. 6 exhibition outing, freshman Derek Ogbeide (pronounced “Ohwg-Bay-Day”) suffered a shoulder injury that kept him out of action for four weeks.
In addition, Juwan Parker, who started the first 18 games last season, has been held out of action since the exhibition due to soreness in his Achilles. Parker missed virtually the entire second half of last season due to that injury, which required offseason surgery.
The lateness of those changes forced Georgia to mix and match rotation combinations for much of the first several games.
Ogbeide Back, Making Big Strides
Following the aforementioned injury-induced detour, Derek Ogbeide (pronounced “Ohwg-Bay-Day”) has shown signs of becoming an inside presence.
Ogbeide enjoyed an impressive unofficial debut in a Nov. 6 exhibition win over Armstrong State with a game-high 10 rebounds in 19 minutes of action.
Ogbeide suffered a right shoulder injury in practice thereafter and missed Georgia’s first five games of the season.
He finally made his official premiere against Kansas State, checking at the 17:27 mark of the first half versus the Wildcats and playing two minutes in the contest.
“He was just cleared today a little before 2 o’clock,” Mark Fox said. “I just wanted to get him 45 seconds here and there just to get him to relax and so he’d been out there before.”
The day before the Kansas State contest Fox was asked about what Georgia was missing without Ogbeide.
“He would allow us to impose our size and physicality on people” Fox said.
The Pebblebrook High School product now is helping Georgia doing just that.
Ogbeide played a combined five minutes against Kansas State and Winthrop before UGA’s 11-day break for Final Exams.
In the 18 games since, he is contributing 4.6 points and 5.7 rebounds in 15.7 minutes.
Ogbeide’s impact has been even more dramatic in SEC play. He is No. 16 among league rebounding leaders in stats for conference games despite being the only player in the top-20 averaging less than 20.0 mpg.
In fact, equating out 40-minute production makes Ogbeide the SEC’s most proficient rebounder among league leaders in conference play as outlined below.
Per 40 SEC Rebounding Averages
Player GP RPG MPG R/40MP
D. Ogbeide, UGA 14 6.2 16.6 14.9
C. Bowers, AU 14 10.3 28.7 14.4
B. Simmons, LSU 14 10.1 35.2 12.6
M. Carrera, SC 14 9.1 30.0 12.1
D. Jones, VU 14 7.9 26.4 12.0
Bulldogs In The BPI & RPI
Georgia is No. 59 in the ESPN’s Basketball Power Index (BPI) and No. 80 in the NCAA’s Ratings Percentage Index (RPI).
The Bulldogs’ strength of schedule, which was ranked as the nation’s toughest in both ledgers for a good bit of December, is No. 6 in the BPI and No. 24 in the RPI. Georgia’s non-conference RPI is ranked No. 2.
Georgia is the only Division I team in the nation that has played only one opponent with an RPI higher than 200 this season.
UGA’s All-SEC Tandem…
Kenny Gaines and Charles Mann were both named preseason first-team All-SEC in voting of league coaches, becoming just the second duo of Bulldogs to earn first-team preseason honors since the recognition began prior to the 2004-05 season. Travis Leslie and Trey Thompkins were first-team preseason All-SEC selections prior to the 2010-11 season.
Mann, who also was a first-team pick a year ago, is Georgia’s first-ever two-time first-team preseason All-SEC selection.
…Has Very Strong Ties
Peach State natives Kenny Gaines, who is from Atlanta, and Charles Mann, who hails from Alpharetta, have played a significant role since they arrived on campus in 2012.
Between them, Gaines and Mann have a combined 240 games played, 182 starts and 6,633 minutes played.
Much of those numbers have been compiled together. Gaines and Mann have started together for 81 of Georgia’s 91 contests since the beginning of the their sophomore year of 2013-14. All told, they have played 1,964 minutes and 37 seconds together at Georgia.
Mann Breaks UGA FT Record
With his successful trip to the line at the 8:22 mark of the second half against South Carolina on Feb. 6, Charles Mann became Georgia’s most prolific free throw shooter.
Mann broke Alec Kessler’s UGA career record for free throw makes. In January, he broke Litterial Green’s career attempts mark.
Mann, the nation’s active career leader in trips to the line, also ranks among the SEC’s top-10 in FTs and FTAs as outlined below.
SEC Career Free Throw Attempts
Rk. FTA Player Seasons FT
1.1152Pete Maravich, LSU1968-70893
2.892Bailey Howell, MSU1957-59682
3.873BJ McKie, SC1996-99672
4.848Carl Widseth, UT1953-56621
5. 835 Charles Mann, UGA 2013-16 574
6.785Ronnie Williams, UF1982-84546
7.784Jerry Harper, Bama1954-56473
8.773Udonis Haslem, UF1999-02515
9.767Allan Houston, UT1991-93651
10.744Litterial Green, UGA1989-92548
SEC Career Free Throw Makes
Rk. FT Player Seasons FTA
1.893Pete Maravich, LSU1968-701152
2.682Bailey Howell, MSU1957-59892
3.672BJ McKie, SC1996-99873
4.651Allan Houston, UT1990-93767
5.621Carl Widseth, UT1953-56848
6. 574 Charles Mann, UGA 2013-16 835
7.550Kenny Walker, UK1983-88733
8. 549Alec Kessler, UGA1987-90720
9.548Litterial Green, UGA1989-92744
10.546Ronnie Williams, UF1982-84785
More PT for KPG
Kenny Paul Geno entered the 2015-16 season with a career high of 21 minutes played against Missouri late last season.
This season, Geno is averaging 20.7 minutes of action per game. The Booneville, Miss., native has matched or bettered his previous career-most MP in 12 games, including a career-best of 35 versus Chattanooga.
Mann Joins UGA Top-10 Assist List
Charles Mann moved into Georgia’s all-time top-10 assists leaders during the Bulldogs’ Jan. 23 victory over Arkansas.
Mann distributed five buckets-to-be against the Razorbacks to up his career total to 355.That tied Donald Hartry, who was a member of Georgia’s 1983 NCAA Final Four and 1984 and 1986 NIT teams, for the No. 10 slot.
Mann now has 377 assists, four shy of No. 8 Rod Cole.