Senior night is coming up and this game against the Hoyas is obviously important, not so much because this game is absolutely needed. Not so much for the tourny's, be it NCAA or Big East, but because it is senior night. So to give everyone a leg up on the new look Sans Christ Wright Hoyas I have once again enlisted the fine folks over at Casual Hoya for some assistance. They do good work over there and it is immanently worthy of your attention and readership.
1 What is the shelf life of this team like sans Chris Wright. Can the Hoyas make a run in the Garden without him? and if it comes to it can this Hoyas team reach the sweet 16 without him.
Nothing is impossible. I would not UTTERLY RULE OUT a Sweet 16 if Chris Wright does not come back-- we didn't have him against Syracuse and had the ball and the open look we needed to make it a game. And what are the matchups? But come on. I will sleep much better in the first weekend as soon as Chris Wright makes his triumphant return to the team. And perhaps more importantly, he will come back with A VENGEANCE. Without Chris Wright we can get lucky and make it to the Sweet 16. With Chris Wright, playing with a chip on his shoulder and a metal pin in his hand (or whatever they did in surgery) then THE SKY IS THE LIMIT. I am about half-serious about this. Wright is going to leave it all on the floor in March. SWEEP THE LEG.
2 Who needs to step up for the offense to function close to capacity in the absence of Wright.
Somebody, anybody. In all seriousness, it has to be freshman Markel Starks. He is the only other player on the team who is a pure point guard with ballhandling capabilities close to Wright. The problem is he is not nearly the shooter Wright is, although he hit two enormous threes against Syracuse. Vee Sanford, another reserve guard, shoots lights out and plays lockdown defense, but apparently kicked John Thompson III's dog at some point, because no matter what he does, he never seems to get extended run. It seems like JT3 has committed to Starks as his point guard of the future, so he'll need to step up for the offense to function in Wright's absence.
3 whats up with Julian Vaughn? I was worried about his effectiveness in the post going into the last game but he was a non factor then and continued to be a non factor against Cuse
Isn't it obvious? He doesn't have TIGER BLOOD or the DNA OF ADONIS. But really, only Charlie Sheen does and we're all just hoping for handouts.
Realistically, Julian's been overachieving this year. He's not the best athlete of all time and playing against guys like Gates or Rick Jackson can present real issues when he has to work harder for shots (and defend to prevent them from scoring). He wasn't a guy with a very polished offensive game but has shown a solid hookshot and the occasional ability to hit a foul line jumper - thankfully, however, he's cured himself of the heat check 3s. Tough to see him going 3 straight games playing this poorly but it's pretty clear that without him playing well, Georgetown struggles to compete.
4 Higher degree of difficulty, winning the Big East tournament or the NCAA tournament
Big East Tournament. Every single team you play has seen you once or twice this season. Every single coach knows the intricacies of your offensive & defensive sets. Brutal conference, there are no secrets or surprise players on the bench.
5 I liked your sweet 16 question a lot so what’s your number?
Assuming that 11 teams from the Big East make the Tournament, I’d like to think that half of them make the Sweet Sixteen. So my number, for now, is over/under 5.5 teams.
Pitt has been a force all season, and I like St. John’s to make a nice run behind Dwight Hardy and all of those seniors. UConn has a good shot assuming Kemba doesn’t get cold, Syracuse should be able to ugly it’s way to the Sweet 16, and Notre Dame should be able to as well before it meets a physical team that knows how to guard the perimeter. I don’t think Nova will, I don’t think Cincy will, I don’t think WVU will, and I don’t think Marquette will. That leaves either Georgetown or Louisville having to make it in order for the over on the 5.5 to hit, and that’s a huge question mark.
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