Talking Wake, FT shooting, Mfon minutes and more

While we wait for Wake Forest to get here…we have a few topics to discuss.

First, a trivia question: what do Maryland and Virginia, the top two teams in the ACC rankings have in common? Each has only one loss, and it came to Wake Forest. The Demon Deacons last lost at Duke on Jan. 17, by 20, but have won back-to-back games against North Carolina and Virginia since.

Duke held Wake’s senior point guard Ishmael Smith to 7 points on 3-for-12 shooting that night at Cameron. Smith fouled out of the game (and still played 36 minutes) and looked visibly frustrated on the TV screen. Since that game? Smith has scored 20 points against North Carolina, 21 points against Virginia, and he’s the reigning ACC player of the week.

Someone asked Paul Hewitt today before practice when was the last time he’d seen someone so fast with the ball in his hands as Smith.

Tywon Lawson,” Hewitt said, laughing. “I’m glad he’s not here anymore. Actually, Ishmael smith might be faster with the ball.”

Hey, not too many breaks in the ACC. And Tech is in the thick of it now.

Mfon’s Minutes Part II

Hewitt addressed a couple of points of interest today…

As mentioned before Mfon Udofia’s minutes have steadily declined, from 41 minutes in Tech’s ACC opener against FSU to 13 minutes Sunday against FSU.

It’s pretty clear that a healthy Iman Shumpert is Hewitt’s first pick for primary ball-handling duties in ACC competition. It’s also clear that Udofia isn’t as comfortable on the wing as he was at point guard. He’s 3-for-13 for 9 points in his past three games, with Shumpert doing most of the ball-handling.

“I just think he’s had a tough time shooting the ball,” Hewitt said. “Like most freshman when they’re not shooting it well, they start maybe to press a little bit. I still think that he plays as well defensively as anybody we have, and he’s a guy that gets loose balls and makes hustle plays. He’s just got to get back to what he did early in the year to get himself so much playing time. He just plays harder than everybody else.”

Mfon acknowledged it’s been a challenging adjustment from point guard where he’s played most of his life to the wing, where he’s not able to create his own shot as much.

When asked if he anticipated playing this much on the wing, Udofia said, “Not really. I just wanted to come here and play. This is the position I got put in, so I’ll do the best I can.”

Hewitt did say part of the reason Mfon’s minutes were down so much against FSU on Sunday was because of how well Brian Oliver and Glen Rice Jr. were playing in that game.

Free Throw Woes

As a team Tech shot only 50 percent at the free throw line in the last two games – 11-for-22 against Clemson and 11-for-22 against FSU.

One game might have been a fluke, but after two in a row, Hewitt was ready to switch up some of the free throw games the Yellow Jackets use at practice, if nothing else to break the routine.

Gani Lawal is a guy who’s going to talk a bulk of the free throws, and he’s been struggling the last few games. He was 3-for-8 against FSU and 2-for-6 against Clemson (and 2-for-6 against Virginia two games prior to that). In the last five games he’s shooting 50 percent at the line (14-for-28). The six games before that, he was shooting 76 percent (38-for-50).

Against Clemson and FSU, Lawal looked a little stiff at the line, like he might be falling into some bad habits from last year. (But hey, I wasn’t watching as much last year, so maybe you guys can tell me!)

Anyway, Hewitt said Lawal came into the gym on the team’s off day Monday and felt like he worked it out.

“I think his lower body hasn’t been relaxed enough,” Hewitt said. “That’s one of the things we talked about.”

Lawal said he’s just got to keep working on them.

It’s a work-in-progress,” he said.

Texting Coach?

Hey, it’s a new age, and players have a new method of communicating with their coaches. Hewitt was talking today about how Tech spoiled several opportunities in the final two minutes against FSU by not paying attention to detail.

And then he said he didn’t have to remind his players much about that because….

“I got text messages Monday morning from guys saying ‘Coach, sorry, promise we’re going to start paying attention to stuff now,’” Hewitt said.

Did Ya Know?

Derrick Favors, who had his No. 34 South Atlanta jersey retired Tuesday night, wears No. 14 now because when he got to Tech Brad Sheehan was wearing No. 34….

Wake Forest forward Al-Farouq Aminu, who happens to be leading the ACC with 11.4 rebounds per game, and Gani Lawal were teammates on the 2007 state championship team at Norcross High which went 30-3.

As for why Al-Farouf chose Wake Forest over playing with his brother Alade Aminu at Tech?

“His mom felt a smaller school atmosphere was better for him,” Hewitt said.

47 comments Add your comment

Technophobia

January 27th, 2010
6:12 pm

Technophobia

January 27th, 2010
6:12 pm

Technophobia

January 27th, 2010
6:24 pm

Wake’s gonna be tough. I hope the guys were serious about paying attention to the little stuff. When the margin of victory is typically around 2 or 3 points like it has been lately, the little stuff is the difference.

someone's going to say it

January 27th, 2010
6:25 pm

might as well be me:

One game might have been a fluke, but after two in a row

Try more like 5 seasons in a row

Carroll Rogers

January 27th, 2010
6:35 pm

Good point, Techno, last three games have been decided by two points each.

two games to five years, huh, Someone? Are you one of those people who likes to save up things to be mad at and dish them all out at once in an argument? ….just wondering.

collegeballfan

January 27th, 2010
6:42 pm

I do not care how spectacular you are on the basketball court, if you can’t shoot 75% from the free throw line you are a loser. Lawal would have won the FSU game by hitting 75% of his free throws.

stingem

January 27th, 2010
6:53 pm

I know it has got to be frustrating for Udofia on the wing. He’s a great kid though so I’m sure he hasn’t acted out of character. Just think he should be given a little more respect at the point guard position, not taking anything awaya from Iman.

jacketsacc

January 27th, 2010
6:54 pm

Do you think Mfon will transfer if he doesn’t get more PG play? he was recruited for that position.

Ric Flair

January 27th, 2010
6:58 pm

Every season GT is near the bottom of the ACC in free throw percentage. Other teams are consitently near the top. Doesn’t happen by accident. Obviously, not enough attention is being paid to it. It is the difference in 2 or 3 wins per season, making the Tournament and not. Very frustrating.

Just remember, “To be the Man, you have to beat the Man…………Woo!”

Primetime

January 27th, 2010
7:05 pm

the starting lineup should be: Shumpert, Udofia, Oliver, Lawal, and Favors. Bell is just out there not producing game after game. The other guys are just more talented. I respect him coming back from his injuries and all but i thought we were trying to win.

freethrows

January 27th, 2010
7:12 pm

I agree with FT commentary, if only we could shoot it like we did against Duke.

yeah but,

January 27th, 2010
8:20 pm

any text messages promising to work on their free throws? Rake Wake

Carroll Rogers

January 27th, 2010
8:24 pm

As hard as it’s been on Mfon to play out of position, he’s still getting to start and getting his opportunity. I have to think transfer worries are premature.

ND

January 27th, 2010
8:25 pm

Watched a high school team shoot 30 for 36 from the FT last night. One kid hit all 10 that he took and I swear almost all of them were nothing but net. If the HS kids can do it why the heck can’t a college kid?

Primetime: I like that lineup but we all know that wouldn’t last past 3 game minutes before Blewitt subbed.

Leaving school early is looking even better for ol Javaris. Gotta believe his NBA career is o-v-e-r.

Angus

January 27th, 2010
8:31 pm

I thought the FT woes may be exaggerated……nope – they rank 238th in D1 (66.3%).

It’s not like Shaq’s on the team – players 1-8 on this team can shoot the ball.

GT66

January 27th, 2010
9:45 pm

Iman is a good player in the wrong position–the point guard should not be a walking turnover. Let Mfon run the point and Iman be the 2.

Tokyo jacket

January 27th, 2010
10:27 pm

ND, how many of the kids you watched in that HS game were legitimiate high-level D1 prospects? I would never argue that these guys can’t shoot free throws, but rather, don’t…at least not enough. Look at a guy like Mark Price. He was never going to practice driving the lane, taking wild a$$ shots or dunks. He practiced three things: free throw shooting, shooting in general, and handling the ball.

Most high level programs (not Duke) put more emphasis on athletic ability now than they do fundamentals like free throws, assists, and ball security. The thing that makes coach K great is that his players are so fundamentally sound in their 3rd and 4th year. He develops that.

I’m 6′9″ and 31 yrs old. I play ball with kids (18-25) much more athletic than I am. They should be running circles around me, but they have no fundamentals including free throws. They just don’t practice that stuff as much anymore.

Biff Pocoroba

January 27th, 2010
10:30 pm

When you recruit street ballers, you can’t expect them to listen to you. That is why they practice their dunking in warm ups instead of working on shooting.

someone's going to say it

January 27th, 2010
11:06 pm

Are you one of those people who likes to save up things to be mad at and dish them all out at once in an argument

I’m a bit of a sockpuppet, but you’re mostly correct.

Hewitt’s teams completely lack offensive philosophy. I’ll worry about FT’s when the team actually looks like they have a plan in most games. GT loses games because they throw away possessions with unforced turnovers and an inability to take decent shots on the majority of possessions. Fix the offense and lose by two because of bad FT shooting? That’s when I’ll worry about FT’s.

Technophobia

January 27th, 2010
11:47 pm

I agree that the free throw issue is hurting us and needs to improve. The point about Duke is true, I’ve always noticed that they take advantage of easy points and always have under coach K. That’s why, even when they are being out played they are usually close. Free throws are a matter of focus, consistency and practice and a lot of kids don’t like to practice things they aren’t good at. These guys should already know how to shoot free throws and although some practice time should be spent on this, some of it has to be on the players own time. Otherwise they’ll never get there.

LOST to UGA 66-73.

January 28th, 2010
3:25 am

Javaris Crittenton is a thug, a college drop-out of Georgia tek, who yesterday was kicked out of basketball for the remainder of the year when David Stern announced that Javaris Crittenton plead Guilty to Gun Possession in the locker-room in a dispute with another player, just like Stephon Marbury. No different. Either one. Thugs. “Possession of Guns will not be tolerated in the workplace,” Stern announced. Crittenton admitted brandishing guns into the Wizards’ locker room — violating a provision added to the collective bargaining agreement in 2005 — after a dispute stemming from a card game on a team flight where the gambling debts are welched and so they draw down on each other like the Old West. Crittenton was injured and wasn’t playing anyway, but forfeits his pay starting today for the rest of the year. Mired in a horrible season, this Georgia tek thug was not going to helping his teammates and fans with a play-off anyway, and now he loses all his pay. Javaris Crittenton is a Thug from Georgia tek, if there ever was a Thug from Georgia tek.

Paul Hewitt currently has Georgia tek on NCAA Probation following a ruling that the Academic Progress Rate of the Georgia tek men’s basketball Thugs is 914, the lowest in the nation. The NCAA has limited Paul Hewitt to only 11 Scholarships today January 28, 2010 for the Thug basketball he is promoting at Georgia tek. UGA men’s basketball enjoys a huge advantage Academically over the Thugs from Georgia tek on Paul Hewitt’s teams, with a much Higher NCAA Academic Progress Rate for UGA compared to Paul Hewitt as well. And by the way Paul Hewitt has a Losing Record by Several Games to UGA.

Stephon Marbury is a thug, a college drop-out of Georgia tek, who in 2007 defended Michael Vick in the infamous Newsweek interview where Marbury thug said “We don’t react the same when other animals are being killed for sport or for the sake of human pleasure.” It’s not wrong to kill dogs like Michael Vick did holding them up and cutting their throats when they didn’t perform well in dogfights, according to this Georgia tek Thug. In 2005, married with 2 children, Marbury had sex in the back of his pick-up truck on an outing to a strip club. Marbury has had numerous public fights with teammates and his coaches such as Larry Brown in 2006. The Knicks’ poor performance combined with Marbury’s public spats with his coach led to a severe decline in Marbury’s popularity, with Frank Isola and Michael O’Keefe of the New York Daily News stating that Marbury is “the most reviled athlete in New York.” In 2007, Isiah Thomas as his coach then removed Marbury was the line-up and Marbury just left the team and said in public that Marbury would blackmail Isiah Thomas for removing Marbury from the line-up and got into a fisticuffs over it on the plane flight. Marbury is a thug who was hated by all his teammates, hated by all his coaches, and who was wildly booed by the fans the loudest of all boos ever before being run out of basketball. Run out. And, now 2 weeks ago, it is announced that Marbury has signed with Shanxi, a Chinese basketball team. Marbury, a Thug, is not a team player as demonstrated in the 2004 Olympics when for the 1st time in history the U.S. Dream Team lost and lost and got only a bronze medal. Stephon Marbury is a Thug from Georgia tek, if there ever was a Thug from Georgia tek.

This is who Paul Hewitt brings to Georgia tek to get Beat by UGA, and why.

MaChelle Joseph, Georgia tek women’s basketball coach, refused to shake the hand of Andy Landers when The Lady Dawgs beat the crap out of Georgia tek’s women’s basketball team again and now have a 28-3 record against Georgia tek women. Poor sportsmanship is a theme at Georgia tek nowadays. She also has a worse NCAA Academic Progress Rate than UGA Lady Bulldogs.

Paul Johnson’s Recruiting Coordinator Giff Smith, on the same day yesterday, one week prior to Signing Date for the Nation’s Number 51 Football Recruiting Class, quits the position of Paul Johnson’s Recruiting Coordinator. How is that going to affect the Number 51 Recruiting Class in the Nation ? Uh, it cannot get any worse. Very disappointing recruiting class for Paul Johnson, again and for Giff Smith. No wonder he quit with the Number 51 Ranked Recruiting Class of just Thugs anyway. Thugs who Flunk Out. Thugs who cannot win a bowl game. Thugs who are 1-8 vs. Coach Richt. This is yet another serious black eye for Georgia tek and Paul Johnson. Obviously, Giff Smith is not needed in Buffalo in the next 6 days, so why burn Paul Johnson and Georgia tek like this, instead of waiting until after next Wednesday ?

Little Joey Hamilton, Georgia tek Thug.

Paul Johnson’s Director of Player Personnel was arrested for leaving the scene of an accident, was found a few blocks away with pot in his car, and was drunk. This was what little Joey Hamilton did with his 1st Paul Johnson Paycheck as Paul Johnson’s Director of Player Personnel. Then, the week of the Georgia tek Georgia football game Paul Johnson’s wife is interviewed and Paul Johnson’s wife states that she doesn’t even care about football.

Paul Johnson’s football team has a way worse NCAA Academic Progress Rate than UGA football players too.

Paul Johnson all week prior to the game, who said that he Paul Johnson didn’t think that the UGA game was all that important to him personally. Then, after the game, Paul Johnson yells to reporters of the AJ-C that they should write to the Georgia tek fans having to deal with the aftermath of the 24-30 Loss to a team Paul Johnson didn’t care about beating and said was not an important game to him, that the Georgia tek fans should hit UGA fans in the face.

Campus Crime at Georgia tek is rampant. It is mostly your “student-athletes” yet you whine about the Thugs in the surrounding neighborhood.

Before your football games, your Athletics Department has to Warn Georgia tek fans not to throw whiskey bottles as the players of your opponents as they go through the tunnels to the Bobby Dodd stadium named for another college drop-out of the University of Tennessee at Knoxville who never not once beat Vince Dooley, but instead Lost every time and then quit.

Of course on a campus of 30 percent Asian males and only 29 percent women in the slums of a city of 6 million people, Georgia tek fans seriously are not safe and that is the reason why no one goes to any of your games Number 48 in the nation in Attendance while you play 6 teams who did not even go to a bowl game. That’s who Georgia tek can beat, while by direct comparison Georgia tek has not won a Major Bowl Game now since 1955, a span now of 56 years in a Row.

Javarius Crittenton apologized for what he called an “embarrassment”

A long string of continuous embarrassments for Georgia tek.

The Cuckoo's Nest

January 28th, 2010
7:51 am

Good grief, when did the mental ward get internet access?

It’s like I’m at the corner of Blvd & North and some homeless dude’s incoherently shouting at the top of his lungs to no one in particular – and all the while, his pants are down around his ankles.

Roll up the windows, lock the doors, “don’t make eye-contact, kids”, maintain plenty of space btwn the other cars so you can move quickly if needed….

AJC, can you not just make a separate blog for all the nut-jobs to have it out 24 hours a day, all to themselves? Kind of like a cross btwn a cage match and the padded rooms you see in insane asylums. Call it The Cuckoo’s Nest.

buLLdawg, “Choke”, et al can get all of their insecurities and varying phobias out as much as they like while the rest of us actually discuss sports.

The SYSTEM IS A PROBLEM

January 28th, 2010
8:07 am

I tried to give Hewitt time with this group of talent, but he is not the man for the job. Even though his offense sets are terrible they get into the offense better when MFON runs this team. IMAN is a running turnover and doesnt play too much defense similiar to Mike Bibby. However he is from Chicago and most kids from that area can score (Bynum, Scheyer, Rose etc.).

Defensively this team is great, but when they are in the close game and need some offense they look just like the Hawks in the half court CLUELESS. This offense makes a point guard look terrible and lost, so don’t blame MFON for the lack of minutes. The SYSTEM IS A PROBLEM.

The # 6 ranked Point Guard in the nation last year and I watched him play several games he can definitely RUN A TEAM and you move him to the Shooting Guard. Coach K said after the Duke game that MFON played like veteran, too bad his coach does not see the leadership qualities.

Mark Fox Runs This State

January 28th, 2010
8:26 am

Best hoops coach in the state is in Athens, 73-66 as dessert on top of a big fat 30-24 cake.

War Jacket

January 28th, 2010
8:32 am

I saw Coach K on a preview show last weekend, and he was asked what has changed the most in college BB the last 15 years, and he just laughed. Lack of fundamentals was his response. It’s gotten to the point where I can’t watch Tech play anymore. Turnovers, poor decisions, bad shot selection, abysmal free throw shooting,.. I’ve never seen less production from so much potential.

Baba O'Riley

January 28th, 2010
8:38 am

Let’s see…ULTRA LONG post from an anti-GT person at 3:25 in the morning. I think everyone that follows these ajc blogs knows this is buLLdawg.

Baba O'Riley

January 28th, 2010
8:40 am

I forget…what is the UGA basketball team’s current record?

Jesse Stone

January 28th, 2010
8:42 am

Dessert on top of cake???? I thought cake was dessert?

juvenal

January 28th, 2010
8:56 am

feel safer in the ATL than athens, game-time; more cops, way fewer drunks(except when the daugs are in town,then thank God for the extra cops!)

Jesse Stone

January 28th, 2010
9:23 am

Based on Mark Fox RUiNS This State’s comments above, it looks just like football season. The victory over GT has defined UGA’s season. Your team is 9-9 and you lost to Wofford.

BobinBuford

January 28th, 2010
9:26 am

It’s hilarious to hear a UGA fan talk about academics. Tell me, Lost, er, I mean BuLLdawg, how many of those great UGA athletes are taking those monstrous UGA majors like Leisure and Recreation Studies?? Which football team has over 90% of their players on academic special admissions?? More importantly, which team will probably be in the NCAA tournament, while the other will be lucky to get a NIT bid??

By the way, GT never had a class where the students were asked how many points in a 3-pont FG.

juvenal

January 28th, 2010
9:32 am

blabladaug’s real name should be patches…what if the good players won’t come because they don’t seem to improve that much?

gt is a 12th rate team in the acc

January 28th, 2010
9:42 am

Hey tech fans…. UGA 30 – gt 24!!!!! HAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

UGA 73 – gt 66!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHHAHA!!!!! LOSERS!!!!!!!!!

If your basketball team continues to struggle, maybe you ask Jarvis Crittenden to teach your team how to “SHOOT”.
He has nothing else to do since he is suspended for the rest of the year!! He is pretty good with his gun, I mean jump shot. Gilbert Arenas knows. He can validate this.

GT athletics has now produced another felon!!!

WE RUN THIS STATE!!!

doughboy

January 28th, 2010
10:31 am

The free throws are killers in every game, but did anyone notice the number of trips to the line for the other team vs. Tech? We have some good height but do not get the ball inside to draw fouls. When the other team is going to the fowl line 26 times and we only get 10 or 11, something is wrong. In one of the last games, we did not go to the foul line until the start of the 2nd half. The big guys are begging for the ball but we can’t get it to them. We really are missing a point guard that can drive and dish it off. When the big men get the ball under the net, they need to take it to the hole with authority, not just a half hearted lay it up. Come on TECH, lets get it going and MOVE THE BALL faster and get some inside baskets or at least draw some fouls!

Carroll Rogers

January 28th, 2010
10:52 am

Lost….fitting name for you and the runaway 3 a.m. post.

juvenal

January 28th, 2010
10:58 am

Carroll, bLabLadaug posted this on MB, patched it here-duud needs an ambien rx…

Paul in RDU

January 28th, 2010
11:06 am

Carroll – Lost… at 3:25 am is actually BuLLdawg. He copied and pasted most of this “stream of unconciousness” on Bradley’s blog around the same time.

That Guy,

January 28th, 2010
11:25 am

Once again, the dumb masses that are uga fans tend to rear their pie holes on a GT blog. They appear to be perpetually enamored with GT. Deep down inside, they really want to cheer for the good guys but just aren’t intelligent enough to form rational thoughts regarding anything in general, let alone GT sports.

To the 3:25am nut job…sleep deprivation and caffeinated drinks don’t mix well. You know that you’re not supposed to be on your mama’s computer after 10 pm. You’re supposed to be at work serving up hot cakes at 5:30am.

Here’s a tip for you…the dialup connection really isn’t faster at that time of day.

GTgreg

January 28th, 2010
1:19 pm

Wow, what a psycho. I got distracted reading that idiotic blather from the ignorant dawg fan. Anyone from uga who criticizes GT on the CHARACTER of our athletes is a true moron and hypocrite. There have been almost literally 100x more arrests at uga. Let’s talk about the Rapist Basketball team you had, and the Tony Cole guy who was a complete gangster. Just today, Chris Terry, a CAPTAIN from your team a few years back, gets arrested for being a coke dealer. What about Odell Thurman. I could go on and on with all the arrests. Just look at AJC from Sept – Dec of this season, and there were several. And None for GT.

Anyway, what I was going to post is that the Norcross team you mentioned above that had Gani Lawal and Al-Farouq Aminu in the post, also had Jodie Meeks (UK & now NBA) and Jordan DeMercy (FSU) playing guards, among other very talented players. One of the best HS teams the state has ever seen.

dagtbuzzman

January 28th, 2010
1:36 pm

Dear Lost Hater,
Why you are so miserable & pathetic ? Did your UGA Dad beat you as a child ?
By now, TECH fans have just had to accept the fact that there are some UGA fans that just to love to rag TECH on a TECH forum. Gotta admit, sometimes you guys can be quite entertaining.
Lost Hater, I believe you are an embarrasment even to your own UGA brethern.
Get a good night’s sleep. Maybe it will change your outlook on life.

Technophobia

January 28th, 2010
2:01 pm

“Lost dawg”, if found please return to owner.

yellarjacket

January 28th, 2010
2:07 pm

Wake is very athletic and with Ish Smith pushing it up the floor, we better get back on D in a hurry. I see this game turning into a track meet. Don’t think Tech will be able to press as much, because Ish is very hard to trap and will make us pay when he breaks the press.

Couple of good matchups. Lawal and Favors vs McFarland and Aminu. Should be a very good game.

GT childhood/Wake manhood

January 28th, 2010
2:54 pm

I agree w/ yellarjacket. Wake-Tech matchups here are usually physical and down to the wire.

I just hope Lawal doesn’t pull another 79% performance on us from the FT line!

Burdell

January 28th, 2010
3:47 pm

@LOST–

Speaking of felons…any current news items about former Bulldongs that we should be aware of?

Ahem…Chris Terry…

Technophobia

January 28th, 2010
5:58 pm

Looking over the team stats, the two teams appear very close and should be a good matchup. They even shoot FT’s a little bit worse than us. lol

Hello BuLLdaug

January 28th, 2010
6:04 pm

You should feel better next season….daugs should win a few more with so many cupcakes.

DAWGmaster

February 8th, 2010
7:08 pm

BOO TECH DAWGS RULE THE PLANET!!!!