College Hoops roundup in the DMV

College Hoops roundup in the DMV
November 23, 2011, 7:40 pm

By Benjamin Standig
CSNwashington.comMaryland: record (2-2); streak (L1)Recent: Dropped two of three in Puerto Rico, including a stunning 26-point loss to MAAC program Iona. Terrell Stoglins spectacular 32 points led the way to win over Colorado.Upcoming: Florida Gulf Coast (Nov. 25), Illinois (Nov. 29)Whats working: James Padgetts offensive rebounding and Ashton Pankeys defensive boarding. 20 of Padgetts 26 rebounds have come on the offensive end and led to quality second-chance opportunities for the 6-8 junior forward. As for the Terps leading rebounder, 28 ofPankey's 35 rebounds have come off opponents misses. Before the season Mark Turgeon said the chiseled 6-9 redshirt freshman was Marylands best rebounder and Pankey is yanking down 8.8 boards per game. Apparently Turgeon knows of what he speaks.Whats shaky: Running the offense. Without point guard PeShon Howard , everyone knew the Terps would struggle getting at times getting into their offense, but not to this degree. Through four games the Terps are averaging 15 turnovers - 26 against Iona - compared to just nine assists. Terrell Stoglin (19.3 ppg, 3.0 TO, 39.7 FG) can score in bunches, but he is no point guard and Turgeon is working overtime trying to get the volume shooter engaged in the team concept. Think of it this way; even though Greivis Vasquez was on his way to leading the nation in turnovers as a sophomore, Gary Williams let Greivis be Greivis because his other options were limited. Turgeon has a similar dilemma, but as a first-year coach trying to establish a program, he is pulling back hard on the reins. This is the biggest challenge Ive ever had in coaching; its not even close, Turgeon said after losing to Iona. At Stoglin is offseeting his miscues by making some shots. Freshman Nick Faust has committed 10 turnovers while shooting 26.9 percent from the field.Georgetown: record (3-1); streak (W1)Recent: The Hoyas fell to No. 14 Kansas 67-63 in the opening game of the Maui Invitational and then rebounded with a 27-point win over host Chaminade.Upcoming: Memphis (Nov. 23). Will also face the Tigers on Dec. 22 at the Verizon Center.Whats working: The Hoyas top seven scorers are all knocking down at least 52 percent of their field goal attempts. That includes freshman forward Otto Porter (53.8), who also leads Georgetown in rebounds (6.0) and 6-10 center Henry Sims (59.3), who has more assists (16) than the starting backcourt of Jason Clark and Markel Starks combined (11). Whether he is shooting from inside or outside the 3-point arc, Hollis Thompson is hitting an identical 58.8 percent of his shots. The 6-8 junior with a textbook jump shot has drilled 10-of-17 from beyond the arc.Whats shaky: Against the Jayhawks, the one high-end opponent the Hoyas have faced, the usually rhythmic Princeton-based offense generated only six assists. Overall the Hoyas are averaging 16 assists though interestingly only Sims (4.0) and power forward Nate Lubick (2.8) are generating more than two assists per game. That is not terribly surprising this early in the season considering the two bigs are quality passers and the offenseoften runs through the high post, but eventually the guards will have to take a more commanding playmaking role.Virginia: record (4-1); streak (W2)Recent: The Cavaliers took two of three at the Paradise Jam tournament in the U.S. Virgin Islands. After losing 57-55 to TCU in the opener, Tony Bennetts squad soundly defeated CAA preseason favorite Drexel and Missouri Valley foe Drake.Upcoming: Green Bay (Nov. 25), Michigan (Nov. 29)Whats working: That stifling Bennett coached defense. The Cavaliers are holding opponents to 46 points per game and 24.7 percent (18-of-73) from 3-point territory this season. On the other end of the court, Mike Scott was a double-double machine last season and the 6-8 forward is averaging 14.8 points and 10 rebounds this campaign. Scott tallied 21 points and 10 rebounds in the win over Drake, sinking 8 of 10 free throws in the process.Whats shaky: The Cavs are limiting opponents points, but are not exactly lighting up the scoreboard themselves. Virginia averaged 54.6 points during the three-game island swing and continued to struggle with its 3-point shooting (33.3 percent on the season, 28.9 at the Paradise Jam). Not having a fully healthy Sammy Zeglinski (ankle)hurts. The senior guard is averaging 0.7 assists per game after dishing out 2.3 last season.Virginia Tech: record (3-0), streak (W3)Recent: The Hokies have been idle since downing Florida International 78-63 on November 15.Upcoming: No. 5 Syracuse (Nov. 23; Madison Square Garden); St. Bonaventure (Nov. 27)Whats working: Showing he is more than back after missing last season with a foot injury, Dorenzo Hudson poundedFlorida International with 31 points. Springy freshman forward Dorain Finney-Smith's 11.0 rebounds ranks second in the ACC.Whats shaky: How much the three early games prepared the Hokies for Wednesday's significant test against Syracuse. Erick Green re-aggrevated his achilles injury in the win over Florida International and coach Seth Greenberg will need significant minutes out of his point guard to combat the Orange's vanted 2-3 zone.George Mason: record (4-2); streak (W2)Recent: Wrapped up a three games in four days stretch by throttling Brown and Albany by a combined 46 pointsUpcoming: Bucknell (Nov. 30)Whats working: Ryan Pearson inside efficiency. Playing on consecutive nights during the consolation round of the NIT Season Tip-Off, the power-packed forward sank a robust 62.5 percent (20-32) of his field goal attempts and averaged 23.5 points in the two wins. Pearson scored 24 points in 23 minutes against Brown and is averaging 21 points and 9 rebounds on the season. The potential CAA Player of the Year interior ways versus Albany led the Patriots to scoring 52 of their 66 points in the paint.Whats shaky: Turnovers woes never factored into the recent wins, but the Patriots coughed the ball up 36 times in their two losses, nine from point guard Bryon Allen. Freshman Corey Edwards took over the playmaker role against Brown and finished the two-game stretch with only two turnovers while handing out eight assists..George Washington: record (3-1); streak (W2)Recent: After getting thumped by No. 24 Cal, GW rebounded with an 86-73 win over Detroit and two-point squeaker over Austin PeayUpcoming: Bowling Green (Nov. 23)Whats working: Tony Tony Tony. As in Colonials all-everything point guard Tony Taylor, who scored 22 points in the victory over Detroit and produced a clutch steal in the closing seconds to preserve a win over Austin Peay. The 6-1 senior and all-Atlantic 10 performer leads the Colonials in points (18.3), assists (3.8), steals (1.5) and 3-point shooting (62.5 percent), and passed the 1,000 career point total against Detroit.Whats shaky: Take away Taylors 52 percent shootingclip and the Colonials are sinking a woeful 40.1 percent of their shots. Biggest misfiring culprit, Lasan Kromah. Four games into his return after missing the entire 2010-11 season with a foot injury, the wing guard has connected on only 9 of 34 shots (26.5 percent).