After cutting a sizable Marquette deficit to 2 with a little over seven minutes remaining, Georgia allowed the Golden Eagles to mount an 11-0 run before the four minute time out and the Eagles never looked back, winning the game 89-79. Mark Fox and company blew an opportunity to gain a very quality out of conference win over a tested program, but defensive inefficiency as opposed to offensive faltering, thwarted the Dawgs today. This team will really struggle moving forward if they fail to develop an identity on the offensive side of the ball.
The Good: The ones that have normally been good. #1 and #30. Frazier and Maten combined to shoot 17 for 28 and finished with 46 points collectively.
The Bad: My, oh my. Rebounding was abysmal all day for Georgia. At no point did the Dawgs pose a semblance of a threat on the glass, both offensively and defensively. While the final line only ended at 42-31 in favor of Marquette, extra opportunities allowed Marquette many open and avoidable three point attempts.
The Concerning: The ability to close out on the open shooter cost Georgia a chance at a quality win. The Golden Eagles were 13/27 in the game, including 8/10 in the first half. Defensive rotation was very poor all afternoon. In my opinion, comes down to a lack of true depth on the wing position, especially in defensive sets. Pape Diatta and Jordan Harris must step up for the Dawgs in this area.
The Improving: Bench play and assists (21 on 29 buckets). While the back court was streaky at times, it was good to see Mike Edwards score 11 off the bench. Georgia desperately needs a third option to step up as a complement to Maten and Frazier.
#00 Turtle Jackson: If/when he and Juwan Parker can serve as an effective complement to JJ Frazier in the backcourt is when Georgia can reach their offensive potential. Currently, he is an effective ball handler, but a streaky shooter at best.
#1 Yante Maten: This team goes as Maten goes. Keep feeding him and Georgia should achieve a mild amount of success. It's the guys around him who need to step up. He finished the game with 24 points and 6 boards on 10/13 shooting. He may be the best player to come from Mark Fox outside of KCP.
#2 Jordan Harris: He and Diatta only combined for four minutes tonight. Very odd to see for two players who Georgia needs to step up.
#3 Juwan Parker: Like I have said time and time again, this offense cannot function with Parker as the focal point and he needs to realize that. He finished the game 0/5 and forced some questionable shots at unfortunate times. For a player shooting only 28% from the field, he does not need to operate in a 'shoot first' mind set.
#4 Tyree Crump: He did not see the floor tonight. Fox's rotation are favoring experience over potential, that's for sure.
#5 Pape Diatta: After a solid outing in his last home contest, it looked like Diatta was getting more comfortable in his role. With only two minutes played tonight, it raises questions about Diatta's future in Fox's rotation.
#13 E'Torrian Wilridge: What appeared to be a streak of confidence helped Wildridge today as he finished with five points in 23 minutes. He may have taken some of Kessler's playing time as well
#24 Houston Kessler: After seeing Mike Edwards step up, it appears Kessler's time will be limited moving forward. He only saw the floor for two minutes this afternoon.
#25 Kenny Paul Geno: Geno has actually played relatively quality basketball this week. He had 15 points in the exhibition against Morehouse and played well on defense tonight. The issue? He makes UGA almost play 4 on 5 on offense. His missed three, rebound, and missed three seemed to be Georgia basketball in a nutshell.
#32 Mike Edwards: After 11 points and several and one opportunities, it looks like Edwards has found his role. He must box out better though, a real deficiency for Georgia.
#34 Derek Ogbeide: Again, he makes one play a game that makes you question his hand eye coordination. He must serve as a legitimate complement to Maten in the front court for UGA to succeed.