Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Young Talent Gives Hoya Fans Reason To Be Hopeful

ATHLETIC SUPPORTER Young Talent Gives Hoya Fans Reason To Be Hopeful The future is always brighter than the past for any sports fan, and for fans of Georgetown basketball this is no different this offseason. Coming off a disappointing campaign that saw the Hoyas’ 27-year postseason streak end after being picked by many to be a Sweet-16 caliber team, Georgetown loses only one player and will field a deeper and more experienced squad on the hardwood.

Looking forward, the loss of point guard Kevin Braswell, a four-year starter, leaves Georgetown with a gaping hole in the “dribbling the ball up the floor” category, but the Hoyas remain deep in most other categories. Unfortunately, ball handling is an essential part of any successful team, and it will likely be the Hoyas’ weak spot next season.

With everyone but Braswell returning plus the additions of swingman Brandon Bowman (incoming freshman), guard Darrell Owens (he sat this year as a freshman due to clearinghouse ineligibility) and guard RaMell Ross (coming off a foot injury), depth will not be an issue, except at the point.

Bowman is a 6-foot-7 wing player from Los Angeles who played on one of the top high school teams in the nation this past season and has demonstrated his significant skills in recent weeks at a junior national tournament in Germany and at the Capital Classic here in Washington.

Bowman certainly took advantage of the spotlight, getting named to the All-Tournament team in Germany while dropping 17 points in limited minutes at the Cap Classic. He displayed a smooth handle and a three-point stroke (made three from downtown) and the ability to jump out of the building. Landing Bowman could prove to be a coup for Head Coach Craig Esherick and the coaching staff, a player who is only now appearing on the radar of many “recruiting experts” and breaking into top-100 rankings.

Despite this, he won’t provide help at point guard, where Georgetown will have to rely on Drew Hall, who backed up Braswell this year, with either Tony Bethel, Ross or Owens backing him up. But it won’t be long before a true point guard arrives to help out Hall thanks to the recent verbal commitment of rising high school senior Matt Causey, the younger of two brothers (the elder plays for Duke).

A fierce competitor, the younger Causey transferred high schools this past season in order to increase his level of competition yet continued to excel as both a playmaker and scorer, averaging 18 points and eight assists per game after transferring to Berkmar (Georgia). Causey is another player whose stock is rising in the opinion of many experts and could very well be an impact player.

One of Causey’s AAU teammates might also be headed to the Hilltop, this player of a much higher profile thanks to the sizeable shadow his father casts on the basketball court. Patrick Ewing Jr. doesn’t quite have the size of his father, but his 6-foot-8 athletic frame has enabled Ewing Jr. to make a name for himself as a defensive force with great athleticism. Although still very raw and unpolished at the offensive end, Ewing Jr. would be a positive addition for Georgetown, maybe even bringing the old man back to campus more often, which would certainly be a plus for the Hoyas’ bigmen.

The final member of the Class of 2007 (scary, isn’t it) set to come to Georgetown is local boy Darien Townes, a 6-foot-10 forward/center who, much like Ewing, is a defensive force with great leaping ability who needs polishing at the offensive end. And much like Bowman, he needs to grow into his frame so he’ll have some bulk to complement his height.

These four players could make up the total of Georgetown’s recruiting classes for the next two years, because the only scholarships that will definitely be open are Braswell’s and Demetrius Hunter’s (who transferred to UNLV last August) for next year and those of Wesley Wilson and Victor Samnick the following season – fellow junior Courtland Freeman can potentially gain a year from a medical redshirt after missing most of last season with injuries.

The group of guys coming to Georgetown over the next couple of years gives reason for tempered optimism, however, as always with recruiting, I am a strong supporter of “I’ll believe it when I see it.” Recruits don’t win games, players do.

The coaching staff has done a good job plugging some of the holes that will arise as players move on, especially considering Georgetown is no longer the top college basketball destination it once was – inferior facilities, significant player attrition and one NCAA Tournament appearance in the past five years.

Maybe these guys can help change that.

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