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Hoop dawgs come up short again, but again show improvement

January 14, 2010

In a rebuilding year like Mark Fox is faced with, you’ll take every moral victory you can get. I’m not big on moral victories, but the Dawgs sure have been more fun to watch as of late than they have been in quite some time.

Georgia fell to #21 Ole Miss last night at Stegeman, 80-76. After leading for pretty much the entire first half, the Dawgs took a 1 point lead into halftime, and after shooting 56% from the floor, you’d have to say they were playing great. Ole Miss came out and played better in the second half though and in the end, the Dawgs made some poor shot selections and just shot a lot of bricks in general (turnovers also remain a problem – Georgia had 13).

Still, what you’ve got to remember is that this is a work in progress, and if you’re looking at it from that angle, you’re liking what you’re seeing. Coach Fox clearly was a great hire, the things he has done with this team are outstanding. We have been severely outmatched from a talent standpoint in our past 3 games (all against top 25 teams), yet we’ve managed an upset, a near upset on the road at Kentucky, and now a 4 point loss at home. If I had told you going into the season that in that 3-game stretch, we’d go 1-3 and nearly pull upsets on the other two, you’d have taken it in a heartbeat.

One thing that stands out to you though, as a fan, is the number of players on these past 3 teams that we’ve faced who are from the state of Georgia. If and when Mark Fox starts keeping more of these guys close to home, he’s going to do great things. Because judging by the way I’ve seen him coach up Travis Leslie and Trey Thompkins, I shudder to think what he could do with a kid like Derrick Favors or John Wall.

Georgia’s next game is on the road at Mississippi State, Saturday at 3pm.

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