Saturday, October 23, 2010

Georgia Tech Hoops Fest Thoughts: Tech Goes As Far As Iman Shumpert

I went to Georgia Tech's Hoops Fest after work on Friday to watch the Jackets scrimmage. First some individual players thoughts and then team thoughts.

Individual Players:
-Iman Shumpert is clearly the best player on the team. His unit consisted of Nick Foreman, Derek Craig, Jason Morris, and Lance Storrs yet they led most of the game until Shumpert got hurt.

-Shumpert was holding his left hand and went into the locker room returning with a bag of ice. Early reports indicate it is a dislocated finger.

-I could see Shumpert being a Greivis Vasquez type player as a better defender. But if Shumpert has an off shooting night, GT is going to struggle in the half court.

-Both squads pushed the ball nearly every possession. Hewitt said before the scrimmage this team is going to run and score a lot of points. In twenty minutes of scrimmage the total was around 100 points.

-Glen Rice's stroke looked better. Maybe he has been taking some lessons from his dad. He is probably the second best play maker on the team.

-Kam Holsey is athletic and can run, but didn't show much in the post or stepping out on offense. Being the tallest player by two inches on the floor he didn't dominate the boards.

-Brian Oliver is still going to be mostly a spot up shooter.

-Mfon Udofia still plays very fast...too fast really.

-Freshman Jason Morris showed some athleticism but didn't do anything spectacular. Hewitt said he is the most athletic player on campus since Ish Muhammed to ESPN's Doug Gotlieb.

-Moe Miller looks to be the best pure point guard. Makes solid decisions most of the time and can shoot outside.

-Transfer Brandon Reed from Arkansas State did not play which was surprising. I know he is not eligible this year, but it would have been nice to see something from him.

-Daniel Miller did not play due to mono. Maybe it was because is sick but just watching him run out during introductions I wonder how he can keep up with the pace the team exhibited on the floor.

-Freshman Nate Hicks did not play either. Hicks was a late signee who was lightly recruited out of Panama City. He is skinny and needs a year to put on weight.

-Redshirt sophomore Derek Craig nailed about 7 three pointers missing only 2 or 3 that I can remember. He should get some playing time this year because he looks to be by far the best shooter on the team. He was guarded mostly by Udofia during the scrimmage.

Team Thoughts:
-Pete Zaharis coached one team and Daryl LaBarrie the other. Zaharis was much more vocal. New assistant Robert McCullum didn't say much (or do much). Not sure what to make of that.

-Hewitt said the main goal for the team is to get back to the NCAA Tournament this year and he thinks they can do it. He said this team is going to run so expect a Hewitt team similar to his first couple of years. Short on size, plenty of speed.

-With Daniel Miller out it was tough to gauge what the post situation will be, but I think rebounding will have to be a team effort.

-Free throw shooting does look to be better this year. I think the team will shoot around 70-75%.

-Transition looked smoother with less turnovers too.

-My guess on a starting lineup would be: M. Miller, Shumpert, Rice, Oliver, Holsey with D. Miller, Udofia, and either Morris or Storrs the first three off the bench.

-Finally, this team will go as Shumpert goes. I think he can be a first team All-ACC player and when he is on he may be the best player in the league, but in games where he struggles I am not sure where else the offense comes from on a consistent basis.


  1. Good Report, I was wondering how the Jackets would look.

    I'm just not seeing how this team is going to be very good. No experience on the front line and you are asking your guards that struggled for the most part last year to lead your team.

    If Shumpert doesn't average 18 pts 6 rebs and 5 assts, I don't think Georgia Tech can get to the NIT much less the NCAAs. Hewitt hasn't coached up a GT squad since 2003-2004.

  2. Tom Ryan3:03 AM

    My expectations are low, largely because of the question marks. We know what we have with Shumpert: a very good defender whose shooting numbers are not very good (38.5% FG last year; 33.3% on 3s). I think the key will be D. Miller. We need him to be a force on defense and rebounding and contribute at least modestly on offense. I think we will be in big trouble if we do have to play four guards a lot because I don't think their aggregate offensive firepower will be enough to offset the serious height disadvantage that would create against most teams.

  3. If Tech makes the NCAA Tournament I think even the biggest Hewitt bashers would have to say it is good season.

    Right now, I think Tech is headed to a NIT bid unless Shumpert is a 1st All-ACCer and a second players steps up as a consistent playmaker.


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