Way-Too-Early Look at Future for UGA Basketball

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Way-Too-Early Look at Future for UGA Basketball

Georgia head coach Mark Fox talks to Georgia guard J.J. Frazier (30) during the Bulldogs’ game at Stegeman Coliseum against Belmont in Athens, Ga., on Wednesday, March 16, 2016. (Photo by Emily Selby)
The 2015/16 basketball season drew to a close Sunday night with an all-time classic game between North Carolina and Villanova in the NCAA Tournament.  A tournament that the Bulldogs were hoping to be a part of but were left on the outside looking in large part thanks to some bad losses against the putrid Auburn Tigers.  If the Bulldogs want to get back to the tournament in 2016/17 they are going to have to avoid those bad losses and overcome the loss of seniors Charles Mann and Kenny Gaines.  In honor of ESPN releasing their customary Way-Too-Early Top 25 the day after the NCAA Tournaments wraps up let’s take a quick look at the Dawgs next year.
The two best players from last year return in J.J. Frazier and Yante Maten and each of those young men will be expected to be the leaders of the team.  Both earned 2nd Team All-SEC honors and Yante Maten is certainly capable of elevating his game to the 1st Team All-SEC level.  Whether or not he is able to do that this offseason will go a long way in determining whether or not the Dawgs can make a return trip to the NCAA Tournament.  Outside of the two known commodities the Bulldogs have a great deal of youth and some experienced role players.  The development of Derek Ogbeide will be very interesting to watch as he has a physical style of play that should allow him to dominate the boards and he also showed some skill on the offensive side.  Fellow true sophomores Turtle Jackson and Mike Edwards also showed flashes of being explosive players but their inconsistency limited Mark Fox’s ability to play them extended minutes.
Last but not least are the ability to make an instant impact by talented freshmen Tyree Crump and Jordan Harris.  In Crump the Bulldogs will be getting an alpha dawg combo guard that can flat out score the basketball.  He has no conscience when it comes to taking shots and is the type to demand the ball in the big moment.  He plays the game in a manner very similar to Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder who was only a 3-Star recruit coming out of High School (not saying Crump is the next Westbrook).  It would be huge for the Dawgs if Crump is able to create his own shot and knock it down with regularity.  Crump’s running mate Jordan Harris is a lefty with a bit of an unorthodox offensive game but he finds ways to put the ball in the basket.  However, the biggest upside he will bring is his ability to defend.  He has the length and quickness to really frustrate opposing wings. 
As I said, it is way-to-early and the schedule has not been released yet but this is a team that should win 20+ games for the fourth straight season and should make it back to the NCAA Tournament.

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Matthew “Huck” Pasek was born into a family of Georgia Bulldogs. Huck’s father, Gary, graduated from UGA in 1976 and became a high school chemistry teacher at Peachtree HS in Dunwoody, GA where he coached alongside Georgia High School football legend T. McFerrrin. Gary’s love of football, especially Georgia football, was passed along to his son. Huck lives in Belmont, NC with his wife, Whitney, and works in Financial Services Litigation. In his spare time he is an avid golfer, movie fanatic and habitual traveler to St. Simons Island with his wife “just to get away”. The moniker ImYourHuckleberry arose from his favorite movie, Tombstone, and character Doc Holiday’s famous line, “I’m Your Huckleberry”. Matthew was never one to shy away from a confrontation or debate, thus the nickname instantly stuck.

8 responses on “Way-Too-Early Look at Future for UGA Basketball

  1. MidtownTeacher

    Thanks for the write-up.  I don’t know a lot about basketball and so I value reading things that help me learn and think about next season.

  2. Bulldawg Bob2

    IYH_BI Greg Poole Vance_Leavy Agree. I’m not the most knowledgeable basketball guy out there, but lack of consistency was a glaring issue with Georgia this past season. Having  consistent and reliable play from the PG would go a long way to making Georgia a better team and eliminating some of those bad losses and head scratching, chair throwing, hair-pulling out games.

  3. Vance_Leavy

    IYH_BI Greg Poole Vance_Leavy I agree with you about J.J. and Turtle. Personally, I would let Turtle run the show and put J.J. in situations to let him be the true scorer that he is.

  4. Vance_Leavy

    IYH_BI Greg Poole Vance_Leavy I agree with you about J.J. and Turtle. Personally, I would let Turtle run the show and put J.J. in situations to let him be the true scorer that he is …

  5. IYH_BI

    Greg Poole Vance_Leavy nailed it with his post above.  UGA needs to find a consistent point guard who can lead the team.  Can Turtle or J.J. be that guy?  I am not sure.  But if Fox can bring in a guy like Darius Perry in the Class of 17 he is a true point guard who would give the Dawgs a real floor general.

  6. Vance_Leavy

    I’m Your Huckleberry … we are glad to have you on the BI team. Enjoying your stuff, immensely. In my opinion, Mark Fox desperately needs to decide who his point guard is and go with it. I’m talking a true point guard. The hybrid (point and shooting) variety at guard has produced way too many turnovers for the Hoop Dawgs under Fox. Consistently being sloppy with the ball throughout a season, makes you a team that finds themselves consistently on the bubble come March.

  7. Greg Poole

    What are the biggest needs for UGA to get over the hump and eliminate the bad losses that have hurt its tourney selection chances?