This season Prominent Play will be devoted to my greatest passions, Georgetown Basketball and other Hoya sports, and the college football post-season. Today’s article will focus on the Hoyas meeting with the Terriers at Verizon Center this past Saturday, November 15th.
The first game, regardless of the opponent, is always a great opportunity to assess the talent on the team, from the starters to the current bench players. While the Terriers of St. Francis may be favored to win their NEC Conference, let’s face it, we weren’t playing the likes of Kansas (soon, at home), Duke or Kentucky. However, real talent rises to the top and those who struggle show their challenges immediately.
Rising to the Top: LJ Peak seems to be all that everyone has written home about. He had the kind of start that brings back memories of those of Greg Monroe and others who said “Star” upon first glance. At the same time, Peak’s star would not have risen without the backbone of talent that this year’s team will need to rely on, including our dynamic and tough guards, Devauntes Smith-Rivera aka DSR and Jabril Trawick, who will be very important to this season’s success.
An Inauspicious Start: Joshua Smith is the kind of player every Hoya fan is rooting for. He has taken his lumps, has his issues but as Hoya fans, we hang in and cheer him on. However even Coach JTIII acknowledged that this was a disappointing start. It’s my early season opinion that this team, unlike last year’s team, cannot and should not rely on its success at the hands or size of J. Smith. Rather, we should continue to expect growth and improvement from big men Hopkins and Hayes, who I hope gets more minutes early and often. Mikael can have a break out season and that is what this Hoya team needs from him.
Final Ruminations on the Season Opener: I am glad that JTIII was able to get so many of his players out on the court. Tre Campbell for one impressed me and showed that he may in fact develop into a Markel Starks-type reliable point guard as the season progresses. Paul White, another promising freshman, looked strong, and Aaron Bowen, my personal favorite because of his athletic superiority, needs to stop taking 3s and do everything else he does well, including skying near the basket to tip in, dunk or block shots. Copeland and Cameron should be contributors as well and I have a feeling one or both will get hot in 3 point land when we need them. David Allen should get out there as John Caprio did and contribute to this team. I like this team.
Favorite Moment: Any Hoya faithful could not have missed that special moment between the offspring of two legendary Hoyas in the final minute. Trey Mourning missed a shot, which Riyan Williams grabbed under the basket and put in for 2. Let’s hope both Mourning and Williams see more time and let their genes shine … remember Pat Ewing Jr., the best Sixth Man in recent Hoya history?
Short of being able to provide input to the coaching staff, I will continue to write about my beloved Hoyas on these pages. I would love to have you follow me and comment in good taste.