Rutgers vs. Georgetown: Big East Basketball Preview


Rutgers is coming off a grind-it out win against Notre Dame and is heading south for a match-up with another Top Ten Team. The Georgetown Hoyas are coming off a drubbing of DePaul.

Big game for Rutgers...another shot to get on the left side of the board...

Keys and an interview with Casual Hoya after the jump...

OTB: Most people predicted G'Town would slip in the Big East standings this year. What's caused them to rise instead?

CH: It has been a few things. One, Henry Sims has stepped up in a way no one could have possibly imagined in his senior year. He was previously a rarely used role player in his first three years, but has somehow evolved into one of the Big East's best big men and one of the best passing big men in the country. Second, our freshman class was better than advertised. Otto Porter has the look over a superstar, and Greg Whittington, Jabril Trawick, and Mikael Hopkins are giving us quality minutes as well. Third, Hollis Thompson and Jason Clark have been able to shoulder the scoring load, seamlessly replacing Chris Wright and Austin Freeman.

OTB: Who's the best offensive player on the team?

CH: Jason Clark is the most complete offensive player on the team, can score in a multitude of ways, and is leading the team in scoring. Hollis Thompson is the purest scorer on the team though, and when he gets hot, look out.

OTB: Who's the best defender?

CH: Greg Whittington is Georgetown's best defender. He is a 6'9" shooting guard that can guard three positions. His best defensive game was against Marquette, where he effectively shut Darius Johnson-Odom in the second half as we completed an epic comeback from down 17 with 13 minutes to go. Jabril Trawick is excellent on defense as well.

OTB: Are you a man to man team or a zone team?

CH: For the first time in John Thompson III's reign at Georgetown, I'd say we can effectively guard both ways. We have played man-to-man very well, and our zone can be suffocating because of our length. It is pretty remarkable how much the roster has changed in a year. Last year we started three guys under 6'3", this year we have three guys that are 6'8"-6'9" that can guard three positions and handle the ball. In other words, YOU GUYS ARE SCREWED.

OTB: Best place to get a beer in DC?

CH: I like Rocket Bar. Good spot to grab a beer and play a bunch of bar games like pool and darts. Rocket Bar also has something that Rutgers fans won't find anywhere in scenic Piscataway, NJ: chicks.

OTB: Where will Georgetown finish in the Big East standings?

CH: Gun to my head, I think it will be third behind Syracuse and Connecticut. I could also see them finishing 8th. I have no clue.

OTB: What's going to happen in this game? Who wins?

CH: I think your prediction is similar to how I see it. Close until the last 7 minutes, then Georgetown pulls away. Mark me down for 76-62.

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Keys to the Game:

1. Rebound: Georgetown is big. They can get to the rim, they can shoot, and they can rebound. Rutgers is going to have to put in the same effort as they did at Pitt to come away with this win.

2. Penetrate the Zone: Eli Carter, Jerome Seagears, and Myles Mack are going to have to penetrate Georgetown's zone--when they play it--and get to the hoop. They're going to have to draw contact or get the ball to the big men.

3. Make Your Free Throws: The key to pulling off an upset on the road is right here. Make 85% or higher and you have a really good shot.

4. Dane Miller, Dane Miller, Dane Miller: Keep doing what you're doing.

5. Get Points from Carter and Mack: Neither of these guys can be off tomorrow. Rutgers is going to need offense out of their guards--double digit offense. They can't win otherwise.
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