CBE Hall of Fame Classic Semifinals
Georgia (2-1) vs. George Washington (3-0)
Monday, November 21 at 7:00 p.m. ET
Sprint Center (18,972) in Kansas City, Mo.
TV: ESPNU (Bob Wischusen, PBP; Fran Fraschilla, Color)
Radio: Georgia Bulldog Network by IMG (Scott Howard, PBP; Chuck Dowdle, Color; Tony Schiavone, Producer) Flagship: WSB AM 750 (Atlanta); Sirius: 132
• UGA and GW split two previous meetings, with UGA winning in Athens in 2012-13 and GW doing so in D.C. in 2013-14.
• UGA coach Hugh Durham and player Dominique Wilkins in the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame last Friday.
• J.J. Frazier became UGA’s 47th 1,000-point scorer last Monday vs. UNC Asheville. Frazier has since moved up to No. 38 and is No. 19 points from No. 37 Rashad Wright.
• Mark Fox collected his 250th career win with UGA’s victory over UNC Asheville.
• UGA has hit the 20-win plateau the past three years, just the second time in 111 seasons the Bulldogs have done so. Mark Fox is the first coach to lead UGA to three-straight 20-win efforts.
Dogs Face Colonials in CBE Semis
The Georgia Bulldogs will face the George Washington Colonials on Monday night in a semifinal matchup of the CBE Hall of Fame Classic in Kansas City, Mo. UGA and GW will face off on ESPNU at 7:00 p.m. ET in the Sprint Center, with Kansas taking on UAB in the doubleheader’s nightcap.
The tournament’s schedule features a 7:30 p.m. ET consolation contest on Tuesday evening, followed by the championship tilt at 10:00 p.m. ET on ESPN2.
Georgia is 2-1 on the young campaign and notched victories over UNC Asheville and Furman last week in Athens in the Bulldogs’ first to CBE Classic outings.
Junior forward Yante Maten and senior guard J.J. Frazier lead Georgia and are one of the nation’s premier inside-outside combos. Maten paces the Bulldogs with averages of 21.7 points and 9.3 rebounds per game. Frazier is chipping in 19.0 points per game.
Maten and Frazier entered the season as the fifth-best forward-guard scoring duo returning to Division I basketball for 2016-17. That was after the combined to score 33.4 points per game a year ago (Maten 16.9 ppg, Frazier 16.5 ppg).
George Washington arrives in Kansas City with a spotless 3-0 record.
The Colonials are led by forward Tyler Cavanaugh and his averages of 18.0 points and 8.7 rebounds per game. Yuta Watanabe also is scoring at a double-digit pace of 11.7 ppg.
Keeping An Eye On…Entering Today’s Game:
Among UGA’s career Leaders
J.J. Frazier is...
• 19 points from No. 37 Rashad Wright
• 24 points from No. 36 Bill Ensley
• 28 points from No. 35 Terrance Woodbury
• 34 points from No. 34 Jumaine Jones
• 15 3FGs from No. 9 Jody Patton
• 15 3FGAs from No. 10 Ray Harrison
• 7 FTs from No. 13 Chris Daniels
Yante Maten is...
• 5 blocks from No. 10 Trey Thompkins
• 7 blocks from No. 9 Chris Daniels
• 8 blocks from No. 8 Marcus Thornton
• 10 blocks from No. 7 Willie Anderson
Series History With GW
George and George Washington split their previous two meetings, with each team winning the home portion of a home-and-home series contested three and four seasons ago.
The Colonials captured the most recent matchup, 73-55, on Jan. 3, 2014 in Washington, D.C. Kethan Savage scored a game-high 18 points for GW. Current Bulldog seniors J.J. Frazier, Kenny Paul Geno, Houston Kessler and Juwan Parker all saw action in that game; however, no current George Washington player participated in the contest.
Last Time Out
The tandem Yante Maten and J.J. Frazier spearheaded Georgia past Furman 84-78 Thursday night at Stegeman Coliseum in the Bulldogs’ second of four games in the CBE Hall of Fame Classic.
The duo combined for 55 points as Frazier poured in 28 and Maten amassed 27, both season-high marks. In the final 7:00 of a one-point game, Maten sank 6-of-6 from the free-throw line and Frazier added nine points, seven of which came from the charity strike.
At the break, the Bulldogs held the advantage at 36-31, although Furman’s John Davis III hit a buzzer-beating trey to narrow Georgia’s lead from eight to five.
The second half proved to be more of a seesaw affair, with six lead changes. The Paladins went up for the first time 50-49 with 12:13 left – interestingly, the first lead change in any of Georgia’s three games this season.
Juwan Parker found Mike Edwards in the lane for a two-handed slam with 6:54 remaining to recapture a 59-58 lead the Bulldogs would not relinquish.
Durham, Wilkins Enter CBB HOF
While Kansas – in Kansas City – is obviously the star attraction of the CBE Hall of Fame Classic, Georgia shined brightest at the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame induction ceremonies last Friday (Nov. 18).
That’s when former Georgia coach Hugh Durham and player Dominique Wilkins comprised one-quarter of the Hall’s Class of 2016 inductees. Appropriately, Durham and Wilkins, who together led the Bulldogs to numerous significant firsts, together were Georgia’s first inductees into the Collegiate Hall of Fame.
“It has only happened once, I think, Coach (Dale) Brown and Shaquille (O’Neal) at LSU,” Durham said. “Dominique and I have remained close through the years. He is the foundation of Georgia Basketball. We can take credit for bringing him in, but he is the face of Georgia Basketball. There’s a lot of pride to go in together.”
Durham arrived in Athens in 1978 and was charged with turning around a program that hadn’t finished .500 in more than a decade. Georgia was 14-14 and 14-13 in Durham’s first two seasons before Wilkins arrived as a McDonald’s All-American and the most celebrated recruit in the program’s history.
Wilkins was tabbed SEC Player of the Year as a freshman in 1981 while leading Georgia to a 19-12 finish and an appearance in the NIT, the Bulldogs’ first-ever postseason bid.
Wilkins was tabbed All-America a second-straight time in 1982, the same season he helped lead Georgia to the NIT semifinals.
Wilkins departed after that season and was the No. 3 overall pick in the 1982 NBA Draft before enjoying an illustrious professional career that included being a nine-time All-Star and seven-time All-NBA selection.
Durham remained in Athens for 17 seasons and is Georgia’s winningest hoops coach ever with 297 victories. He led the Bulldogs to the 1983 NCAA Final Four in their first NCAA Tournament appearance. All told, Georgia reached postseason competition 11 times under Durham.
Durham established a national name as head coach at Florida State from 1967-78 before coming to UGA. He led the Seminoles to 230 wins an NCAA runner-up finish in 1972 when they lost to UCLA, 81-76, in the national championship game. After Georgia, he won 106 more games at Jacksonville University.
“You stop and see the people being inducted around you and you step back and go ‘What am I doing with this group?’” Durham said. “It’s a great feeling, but it really is a surprise. As far as families, I’m sure they’re proud. I’m sure they are proud to be a part of it. When you’re a coach, you stand here and think about the reason you’re here. If you didn’t win games, you wouldn’t be here. If you didn’t have good players, you wouldn’t win games. If you didn’t have good assistants, you didn’t have good players. If you didn’t have an administration that wanted you to do well, then you wouldn’t have good assistants. That’s the long way of saying there are so many people you represent when you’re standing up here. I reflect back on that and the relationships really are special.”
Wilkins was dubbed the “Human Highlight Film” while in Athens, a nickname that has followed him from being Georgia’s career scoring leader when he departed college to 26,668 points and an amazing 24.8 career scoring average in the NBA.
“It’s mind blowing,” Wilkins said. “It’s a special moment in my life to go in with Coach (Durham) because he is like a father to me. You talk about being chosen from 350 D1 schools and to be chosen as one of the greatest. I can’t even tell you how that feels. It’s special because it’s the highest collegiate award you can get.”
A large contingent approaching 50 of Bulldog supporters was in attendance, led by current head coach Mark Fox, UGA’s J. Reid Parker Director of Athletics Greg McGarity and former players such as Mark Slonaker, the captain of Durham’s first team at UGA and later an assistant coach on his staff; Derrick Floyd and James Banks, stars on Georgia’s 1983 Final Four team; and Chad Kessler, father of current Bulldog Houston Kessler.
The Hall of Fame’s Class of 2016 also includes players Mark Aguirre (DePaul), Bob Boozer (Kansas State), Doug Collins (Illinois State), Lionel Simmons (La Salle) and Jamaal Wilkes (UCLA) and coach Mike Montgomery (Montana, Stanford and Cal).
Fox Garners Career Victory 250
Mark Fox notched his 250th win in 13 seasons as a head coach with last Monday’s victory over UNC Asheville.
Fox was 123-43 in five seasons at Nevada from 2004-09. He was 127-104 in his eighth campaign in Athens when the Bulldogs topped UNC Asheville on Nov. 14.
All told, Fox has produced nine 20-win teams and advanced to the postseason nine times – including four occasions at Georgia – during his head coaching career.
Frazier Joins Millennium Club
J.J. Frazier knocked down a 3-pointer with 17:57 left in the first half against UNC Asheville and in the process became Georgia’s 47th 1,000-point career scorer.
“I’ve been here four years,” Frazier joked, “I should have gotten it eventually.”
After scoring 415 points in his freshman and sophomore seasons combined, Frazier poured in 573 points a year ago. That represented the 15th-best single-season tally in Georgia Basketball history.
Frazier now has 1,045 points, which has pushed him to No. 38 among the Bulldogs’ career scoring leaders. Frazier could eventually challenge to reach the Bulldogs’ top-10 scoring leaders, a mark that currently begins at 1,451 points by D.A. Layne. Frazier is now 406 points shy of that tally with 28 regular-season games remaining.
Frazier Provides Bucket-To-Be
J.J. Frazier didn’t only score points last season. He also dished out 151 assists, the fifth-best for a season in Georgia’s 111 years of basketball.
Combine Frazier’s 573 points and the bare minimum of 302 points via those assists, and he had an immediate hand in 875 of the Bulldogs’ 2401 points a year ago. That’s 36.4 percent of UGA’s offensive output during the 2015-16 campaign.
Maten May Make Mark, Too
With a season similar to 2015-16, Yante Maten also could join the list of 1,000-point Bulldogs this winter.
Maten began the year with 722 points, with 562 of those coming during 2015-16. That represented the No. 18 single-season total in UGA history.
Maten now has 65 points this season and 787 – 213 shy of 1,000 – during his 69-game collegiate career.
Bulldogs have been reaching the millennium mark at a steady clip over the past few seasons. J.J. Frazier was the seventh Bulldog to top 1,000 points during Mark Fox’s tenure, joining Charles Mann (1,411 points), Trey Thompkins (1,396), Kenny Gaines (1,324), Nemi Djurisic (1,123), Travis Leslie (1,099) and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (1,013).
Dogs Giveth And Giveth Away
Nothing more than a strange but true coincidence here but Georgia’s 1.0 assist-to-turnover ratio this season is exactly that.
The Bulldogs have posted the same number of assists and turnovers in every game to date – 14 of each at Clemson, 17 against UNC Asheville and 10 versus Furman.
Parker Productive In Return
Juwan Parker has enjoyed a successful return to action after missing the 2015-16 season with an Achilles injury.
Parker has 26 points, 20 rebounds and 11 assists in Georgia’s first three games. Though obviously a small sample size, that’s Parker’s most boards and assists and second-most points in a three-game span during his career.
Previously, he scored a combined 30 points in consecutive games against Chattanooga, Lipscomb and Gardner-Webb during his freshman year. Parker’s other previous best three-game tallies were 17 rebounds during that same three-game span and seven assists versus Appalachian State, Chattanooga and Lipscomb also during the 2013-14 season.
Parker’s averages of 8.7 points, 6.7 boards and 3.7 assists this season are considerably higher than his career averages of 4.9 ppg, 3.7 rpg and 0.9 apg entering the year.
Parker started the first 14 games for Georgia’s 2015 NCAATournament team before suffering the Achilles injury. He played limited minutes in four contests that season but was out all of last year following surgery in the summer of 2015.
Turtle Gets His First Nod
William “Turtle” Jackson secured his first collegiate start against UNC Asheville.
Jackson was a four-time All-State performer and scored 2,275 points at Athens Christian School before becoming UGA’s first Athens-area signee in more than two decades.
Jackson and J.J. Frazier both started against UNC Asheville, giving the Bulldogs two point guards on the floor.
Bulldogs Sign Two
Nicolas Claxton and Rayshaun Hammonds have signed letters-of-intent with the University of Georgia, head coach Mark Fox announced on Monday, November 14.
Both players inked papers during the NCAA’s weeklong early signing period. Claxton signed in ceremonies on Nov. 14, while Hammonds did so on the previous Thursday, Nov. 10.
Claxton is a 6-10, forward from Legacy Charter School in Greenville, S.C., and the son of former Bulldog Charles Claxton. Nicolas averaged 12.9 points and 7.1 rebounds last season, as well as blocking 3.0 shots per game. He has helped Charter compile a 49-14 record over the past two seasons.
Claxton represented the U.S. Virgin Islands during the 2015 Centrobasket U17 Championships in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He averaged 11.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 4.8 blocks per game in five outings, leading the Virgin Islands to a runner-up finish in the tournament. Claxton posted single-game highs of 20 points and 15 rebounds against Mexico in the semifinals, as well as 10 blocks in a group stage matchup with Bahamas.
“Nic is a terrific shooter and passer for a player with his length,” Fox said. “He really is going to be a good inside-outside scoring threat. I know he is excited about playing at his parents’ alma mater.”
Hammonds, a 6-8, forward from Norcross, Ga., was named first-team All-State for Class 6A by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as a junior after averaging 16.7 points, 10.0 rebounds, 2.0 blocks, 1.7 assists and 1.2 steals per game for the Blue Devils. As a sophomore, Hammonds averaged 14.1 points, 7.8 boards and 1.9 blocks at Norcross.
Over the past two seasons, Hammonds has helped Norcross post a combined 53-8 record and a pair of state tournament appearances. The Blue Devils finished 26-4 last season, losing to eventual state champion Westlake in the Sweet 16. Norcross was 27-7 in the 2014-15 season and lost to Pepplebrook in the state quarterfinals.
“Rayshaun has terrific versatility and can score the ball in a variety of ways,” Fox said. “He’s coming from a great program, and we are excited he is a Dawg.”
Both of Claxton’s parents, Charles and Nicole, attended UGA. Charles was a four-year letterwinner for the Bulldogs from 1992-95 and was an All-SEC and Freshman All-SEC performer. Among Georgia’s career statistical leaders, Claxton is currently No. 20 in points (1,274), No. 5 in rebounds (840), No. 4 in field goal percentage (.542) and No. 2 in blocked shots (247). He was drafted by Phoenix in the second round of the NBA Draft and eventually played with Boston during the 1995-96 season.
Frazier, Maten On POY Watch List
J.J. Frazier and Yante Maten both were named to the Lute Olson Award Preseason Watch List. The award is presented annually to the nation’s top Division I basketball player who has played at least two seasons.
Georgia was the only team in the SEC and one of only nine nationally to have two players on the list. The other schools were Cincinnati, Indiana, Kansas, North Carolina, Oregon, Villanova, Wisconsin and Xavier.
There were five SEC representatives on the 50-player ledger, which also featured Kentucky’s Isaiah Briscoe, Texas A&M’s Tyler Davis and Arkansas’ Moses Kingsley.
The recipient of the 2017 Lute Olson Award will be announced at the CollegeInsider.com awards banquet on April 31 in Phoenix, Arizona, site of the NCAA Final Four.
Olson won 780 games in 34 seasons, 24 of which were spent at the University of Arizona. During that stretch he led the Wildcats to 11 Pac-10 Conference titles, 23 consecutive NCAA Tournaments, four Final Four appearances and a National Championship in 1997.
A Potent Inside-Outside Combo
The tandem of junior forward Yante Maten and senior guard J.J. Frazier provides Georgia with one of the college basketball’s most explosive inside-outside combinations.
A year ago, Frazier and Maten averaged 16.9 and 16.5 points per game, respectively. That made Frazier the SEC’s leading returning scorer and Maten the third-leading returnee this season.
The combined average of 33.4 points per game Frazier and Maten produced during 2015-16 makes them the fifth-best returning inside-outside combination in Division I basketball this season.
Bulldogs Travel To Spain
Georgia got an early start to the season with a summer tour of Spain, where the Bulldogs were 3-0 and won by 26.0 points per game. Associate head coach Philip Pearson and assistants Jonas Hayes and Yasir Rosemond served as head coaches on the trip.
Pearson led UGA in the first matchup, a 65-48 victory over the Madrid All-Stars. Yante Maten paced Georgia with 19 points, while Derek Ogbeide notched a double-double of 10 points and 10 boards.
Under Rosemond, the Bulldogs raced to a 118-70 win over the Valencia All-Stars. Mike Edwards led the way with 20 points. J.J. Frazier added 18 points, including five 3-pointers, and five assists. Freshman Jordan Harris chipped in 17 points.
Georgia wrapped up the trip by beating the Barcelona All-Stars 96-72 under Hayes. Maten again led UGA in scoring with 23 points, and Tyree Crump contributed 20 points and four assists. Ogbeide, Edwards and Maten combined for 32 rebounds, with Ogbeide collecting his second double-double in Spain.
“The overseas trip was good for us,” Mark Fox said. “We have three new players and Juwan (Parker) coming off a medical redshirt. It was probably best for Juwan to knock some rust off. We felt like it was a real good experience for our team, but we’ll have to see how much when we start playing games.”
A Tough Slate Awaits Bulldogs
A year ago, Georgia played the nation’s third-toughest non-conference schedule. Comparative numbers from last season and 2016-17 indicate the Bulldogs will again face a very challenging non-conference ledger.
The teams that comprised UGA’s 2015-16 non-conference schedule sported an average RPI of 115 during 2014-15. The 13 teams that the Bulldogs could face during the 2016-17 schedule averaged an RPI of 116 last season.
“We’ve always tried to schedule tough,” Mark Fox said. “We’ve always tried to challenge our team in non-league games because you have to establish a strength of schedule. And you won’t have quality wins unless you play quality teams. We have a long list of hard games, but with those challenges comes great opportunity.”
UGA In Midst Of Most SEC Success
Georgia has been winning within the SEC at the Bulldogs’ best rate ever. Over the past four seasons, UGA has:
• Posted four straight .500 or better league records – the first time in 84 seasons of SEC play UGA has done so;
• Notched three-straight double-figure SEC win totals – another program first;
• Posted its most SEC wins over two- (23), three- (33) and four-season (42) spans.
Georgia finished 10-8 in SEC action last season. That followed a 11-7 mark when the Bulldogs tied for third in the SEC in 2014-15, a 12-6 record in 2013-14 when Georgia tied for second in the final league standings and a 9-9 effort during 2012-13.
A HomeGrown Roster
Nine of the 15 players on Georgia’s 2016-17 roster are products of Peach State prep basketball programs.
That list includes eight of the 14 active players on the Bulldogs’ roster – seniors J.J. Frazier (Faith Baptist Christian Academy), Houston Kessler (Landmark Christian School) and Brandon Young (Marist School); sophomores William “Turtle” Jackson (Athens Christian School), Connor O’Neill (Blessed Trinity Catholic High) and Derek Ogbeide (Pebblebrook High); and freshmen Tyree Crump (Bainbridge High) and Jordan Harris (Seminole County High).
In addition, Christian Harrison, a walk-on transfer from Troy who is sitting out this season, played at Woodward Academy.
Maten Up For Mailman Award
Yante Maten has been named to the watch list for the 2017 Karl Malone Award, which is given annually to the nation’s top power forward by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
The award is named after Karl Malone, a 2010 Naismith Hall of Fame inductee. Malone led Louisiana Tech to the Sweet 16 of the 1985 NCAA Tournament. He went on to become a two-time NBA Most Valuable Player and 11-time first-team All-NBA performer for the Utah Jazz. Malone scored 36,374 career points in the NBA, second only to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar at the time of his enshrinement. He also won Gold medals at the 1992 and 1996 Olympic Games, the first coming as a member of the original Dream Team.
The other players featured on the Watch List are Lauri Markkanen from Arizona, Johnathan Motley from Baylor, Ivan Rabb from Cal, Amile Jefferson from Duke, Jonathan Isaac from Florida State, Carlton Bragg, Jr, from Kansas, Dedric Lawson from Memphis, Miles Bridges from Michigan State, Isaiah Hicks from North Carolina, Bonzie Colson from Notre Dame, Michael Young from Pittsburgh, Caleb Swanigan from Purdue, Bennie Boatwright from Southern Cal, Tyler Lydon from Syracuse, TJ Leaf from UCLA, Alex Peters from Valparaiso, Kris Jenkins from Villanova and Austin Nichols from Virginia.
J.J. Almost Everywhere In SEC Stats
J.J. Frazier ranked among the SEC’s top-10 leaders in a league-high eight of 11 major statistical categories last season – the most of any league player.
Frazier was No. 5 in assist-to-TO ratio and steals; No. 7 in scoring, assists, free throw percentage and 3-point percentage; No. 8 in 3-pointers per game; and No. 10 in minutes.
Basically, the only categories without Frazier listed were field goal percentage, rebounds and blocked shots.
Potential History-Making Dogs
Of the hundreds of Georgia hoops alums that spanned the first century of play, only five could say that they played on three 20-game-winning squads: Larry Brown, Michael Chadwick, Ray Harrison, Jon Nordin and G.G. Smith.
Over the past two seasons alone, seven more Bulldogs have joined that fold: Marcus Thornton, Kenny Gaines, Charles Mann, Kenny Paul Geno, Houston Kessler, Brandon Young and J.J Frazier.
This year’s seniors could become the first UGA players to post four-consecutive 20-win efforts. They also may challenge Georgia’s winningest four-year period and the most wins by any Bulldogs ever.
Georgia’s most productive four-year span produced 83 wins from the 1994-95 through 1997-98 seasons. Interestingly, there were no four-year letterwinners during that stretch.
The most wins ever by a Bulldog is 82, the tally posted by Richard Corhen and Gerald Crosby while playing for UGA from 1981-82 through 1984-85.
Wilkins Returns To College Game
Dominique Wilkins served as color analyst for Georgia’s season opener at Clemson. Wilkins teammed with Bob Rathbun, his broadcast partner for telecasts of the Atlanta Hawks, for the matchup.
The Clemson contest was the first time Wilkins called a collegiate game.
“If it hadn’t been Georgia, I probably wouldn’t have done it, to be honest with you,” Wilkins said. “I can’t tell you what that university means to me personally, so anytime I can engage and show my face and show my appreciation I want to do it.”
Jarvis Hayes Behind The Mic, Too
Former Bulldog Jarvis Hayes, who joined the SEC Network as a color analyst this season, served in that role for the Furman game.
In 2003, Hayes joined Dominique Wilkins to become just the second Bulldog to earn consensus first-team All-SEC honors two times. A native of Atlanta, Hayes and his twin brother, current Georgia assistant coach Jonas Hayes, played for the Bulldogs in the early 2000s.
The Hayes twins transferred to Georgia after playing at Western Carolina as freshmen.
Jarvis was the AP’s SEC Newcomer of the Year in 2002 after averaging a league-best 18.6 points. He reached 1,000 points at Georgia in just 55 games, six games quicker than UGA’s career scoring leader, and helped the Bulldogs to on-court records of 22-10 and 19-8 during two seasons.
Hayes was selected by Washington with the No. 10 overall pick of the 2003 NBA Draft and went on to play seven seasons with Washington, Detroit and New Jersey, as well as two seasons internationally in Italy and Romania.
Hawks Return To Athens
For the fourth consecutive year, the Atlanta Hawks made the short trek to Athens and Georgia Basketball’s practice facility to open training camp in September.
Georgia Basketball owns one of the nation’s largest practice facilities, a $30-million, 120,000-square-foot practice structure that opened in 2007. The Hawks had access to the adjacent practice gyms of the Georgia men’s and women’s basketball programs, as well as the playing floor within Stegeman Coliseum and other facilities.
The Hawks have opened training camp in Athens each season since Mike Budenholzer, the 2015 NBA Coach of the Year, became head coach in 2013.
“These are world-class facilities that are a great environment for our players to come in and focus on basketball,” Budenholzer said. “We love this facility. We love coming up to the University of Georgia. It feels like the right place for us to start our season.”
“I think the facilities here are spectacular,” said Dwight Howard. “Everything here is “A-1” – the practice facility, the main floor, the weight room – has been unbelievable. We wish we could stay longer.”