Rushed Reactions: Georgetown 78, #7 UCLA 70Posted by Brian Otskey on November 19th, 2012
Brian Otskey is an RTC contributor. He filed this report from Georgetown’s victory over UCLA on Monday night at the Barclays Center. Follow him on Twitter @botskey.
Three thoughts from Georgetown’s impressive win over UCLA and Shabazz Muhammad…
- UCLA needs a ton of work defensively. Georgetown took it right to UCLA, getting whatever it wanted around the rim. UCLA’s rotations and help defense were putrid all night long and the frustration was clearly displayed by Ben Howland. The UCLA head man was yelling “hellllllp!” countless times to his defenders but the message didn’t seem to get through. UCLA was 35th in defensive efficiency last season but an infusion of talented freshman could make it hard to match this time around. It’ll take some time for these highly talented offensive players to learn how to play defense that wins games at the college level. Howland’s club sure is talented but it has to get better on the defensive end if it hopes to make a serious move in March.
- Georgetown is solid year after year. The culture of winning John Thompson III has established at Georgetown is one of the underappreciated stories in college basketball. Year after year, the Hoyas produce a winning team that displays great fundamentals and a trust between teammates that results in great chemistry and sound execution. Georgetown isn’t as talented as some of its previous teams but if the Hoyas keep playing this way, they’ll contend in the Big East yet again. Talent is important, but it’s not the most important factor at Georgetown. Make no mistake, the Hoyas do have some talent (Otto Porter comes to mind) but they win with basketball smarts and gritty defense.
- Shabazz Muhammad. The highly-touted freshman from Las Vegas made his first collegiate appearance in Brooklyn after the NCAA deemed him eligible for competition. The UCLA wing clearly has a lot of talent and athletic ability but it could take him some time to get into a flow. Throwing him into the fire right away against a fundamentally sound Georgetown team (and star defender Greg Whittington) isn’t the best way to see what he really can do. Once Muhammad gets comfortable against lesser competition, he should be more than ready to take on the big boys on UCLA’s schedule. Muhammad will make UCLA better but it’s unrealistic to expect instant gratification with the star freshman.