Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Daily Swarm

This guy is becoming ubiquitus. Interviews on 790theZone, Jim Rome, ESPN Radio, Cold Pizza, Southern Sports Report, Best D Sports Show. Man!! I will write up a re-cap of the Best Damn Sports Show Interview later. Here is a link to the video clip of the Cold Pizza interview if you want to see the whole thing. (high-res version......... low-res version). In one story, Hewitt said that the media requests are building so much that he has had to have some of his assistants help out. Wes D. has done handfuls of interviews as well.

Best part of his interview on Cold Pizza:
JC: Some of your critics say your biggest weakness is your inside play
PH: Are those the same critics that picked us 7th in the ACC? (he then goes on to praise Luke S).

Right-click on this link and "save as" to save this highlight on your harddrive. This is Jack's steal to seal the end of the BC Game.

Congrats to BJ Elder for getting the national recognition. (story here). He was honorable mention for all-american hoops, along with a long list of other players.

The team is getting used to life on campus for a couple of days before heading to St.Louis (story here)........... Here's is RamblinRed's look at Nevada - kind of scary reading his take on things. While they have one guy kind of like a larger Tim Pickett (Kirk Synder), they also have a 6'11" center who knocks down 3-point shots (Nick Fazekas). These guys are going to be a handful.............. Meanwhile the NY Times did this piece on the team.......... Here's a look at the St.Louis bracket.................. Here's another look at Nevada............. From a local Las Vegas paper, here is another look............. Even the AJC gets in on the act in this story about Nevada............ One Nevada player, Garry Hill-Thomas, evidently is an insomniac - maybe he can keep his teammates up the night before our game so they'll run out of gas............. This story touts Nevada as that one team that flies under the radar and has what it takes in March............. This story looks at Nevada as the "top dog"................... Here's another look at the "cinderella" team from Macon Telegraph.

Click on the Georgia Tech link to read ESPN's take on the team - get more out of Luke and Bynum and stop turning the ball over.............. This story talks about the Jackets trying to limit distractions. It is great to see all the attention the players are getting - it is rightly deserved. I just hope they can really turn off these distractions and focus on the task at hand - beating Nevada. They may think the attention is special now, but wait and see what happens if we make it to the final four. They ain't seen nothin' yet............... C-Moore's return has made a big difference on this team. IMO, "trading" Nelson for Moore was one of the best things that happened. This AP story is fantastic with great quotes from Coach Hewitt and the players. Wouldn't it be great for Moore to come back and be part of a final four team..... or even more??? Either way, it has been a special year already............. Here's a look at the tourney from a Canadian perspective, eehhh. Nice comment on GT - "One person who's all-too-aware that forecasts can be wrong is Georgia Tech coach Paul Hewitt, whose team was picked to finish seventh in the ACC this season. So his players don't think they have an advantage just because some high-seeded teams are gone. "The fact that we were so overlooked provided a great lesson to our players," Hewitt said. "We were left for dead. Now we're in the Sweet 16. We know there are some real quality teams out there that aren't being recognized."................. Not a nice article about graduation rates of players - says GT is one of 7 teams in the tourney that graduated less than 1/3 of their players. Would be interesting to know WHY these players did not graduate - was it losing Nelson to UConn, Bosh to the NBA, Isenhauer passing away, etc???? What I want to know is how many are flunking out or just not finishing their degrees................ picks GT in the Final Four - "At some point, the world will wake up and discover the greatness of Jarrett Jack."............... Here are some random comments from the AJC.

Well, what will CBS show during their wrap-up after the final game - not much in the way of buzzer beaters, as this article points out.............. Speaking of non-shining moments, the Dook hatred continues (story here).

Coach Purnell actually picked UAB over Kentucky. Check out his picks for the Sweet 16 - he still has 3/4 teams from the ACC going to the final four (Dook WF and GT - his original picks).

C-Moore makes 2nd team and Luke makes 3rd team. (story here). Sorry but no-way Luke finishes behind half of these guys!!! He's 1st team all the way............ Speaking of Luke, this article from the Washington Post looks at foreign players in the dance, including Luke.

Story on A.McHenry taking advantage of teams playing off of him. If he can use this as a platform for a stronger game next year that would be yet another weapon for Coach Hewitt.

You ever see one of those movie thrillers where the bad guys gets killed and you THINK he is dead...... then he manages to make one last ill-fated attempt to kill the good guy?? Well St.John's is the bad guy that just won't die. Check out this story from the New York NewsDaily. Here is a short blurb from the AJC. I will post a summary later, but Coach Hewitt addressed the coaching situation AGAIN on Best Damn Sports Show tonight. He said - "I addressed those questions back in December when Mike Jarvis was fired. As long as Dave Braine is my AD, I will be at GT. I have a great situation at GT. When you see coaches getting fired irrationally, you have to stick with it when you have a good situation."...................... Here is an interesting discussion on the UNC discussion board about Hewitt and the St.John's job.

Now, in articles posted in the last few hours, the NY media is finally starting to accept that they are not getting Hewitt (story here). Interestingly they point out that it would be ideal to get Hewitt, but NOT ideal if he brought his staff- as they do not know NY high school recruiting, which is one of the factors that brought down Jarvis.

There could be about 8-12 kids declaring for the draft from high school - amazing, although I think the number will probably end up somewhere closer to 6, but we will see. This ESPN article looks at each player. The Morris watch continues - still looks like an April / May announcement - KY fans are extermely postivie - we'll just have to be patient................ This story looks at Kentucky's team next year, including the possible addition of Morris........... Here's another look at some recruits playing in the Roundball Classic............. Here is more recruiting news from around the ACC, including more mentions of Morris (as a KY lean). But I wouldn't put too much stock in this site. They have consistently made errors. For example the article says that JR Smith at UNC has not scored high enough on his SAT, but Smith's dad said otherwise last week.

In other recruiting news, Buck Fredrick has been added to the Carolina All-Star Classic roster. He will replace Ra'Sean Dickey, who has opted to play in another all-star game. (story here). Players are only allowed to play in 2 post-season all-star games.

Guess what - Dez will be catching balls in the ATL next season....... with the Falcons!!!!! Fantastic!! It will be interesting to see what role he can play with Vick coming back healthy for a full season. Here is his official Falcons bio page........... Here's the official press release.............. Here's the UPI story............ The Chicago Tribune covered the story in the most detail (story here). Key points - Dez visited the Giants, Cardinals, KC. He signed a $2MM deal with a $600K signing bonus. What excicted him the most was that the Falcons schemes rely on receivers making one-on-one moves to get open....... Actually I found a public version of the story here.

Looks like Joe could miss Orlando's next game (story here), although the good news is that an MRI on his knee showed no significant damage.

Looks like the Cowboys are probably interested in Dorsey to beef up their O-line. He spent a good bit of time with them during the NFL combine. He is project to be a late 2nd - 3rd round pick.

You might want to set your VCR's - on Saturday ESPN Classic is doing a 30 minute look back at the 1990 Final Four, including Dook, UNLV, GT and Ark. Comes on at 6:30pm on ESPNClassic.

Funny, light-hearted interview with PH, John Salley, Tom Arnold and Chris ????.

Salley: When I heard GT signed a coach, I thought it was Mark Price. When I saw your face on the news, I thought - who is this black guy? He must be one of Mark's assistants.

Chris: Congrats on the Sweet 16. J.Salley, Coach Hewitt brought a picture of you from your GT days. (Hewitt shows picture of Salley dunking with tiny shorts cinched up his crack).

J.Salley: Coach, I thought we were friends. Why you gonna show me in those daisy dukes????? But coach, I would really look like the hoops expert on this show if you were to go all the way. Can you help me?

PH: We'll do our best. Kidding aside, we have to thank John Salley for coming in a couple of years ago to talk to our players. It is important that our players understand the legacy that was created with Bobby Cremins, Mark Price and John Salley. Those 3 guys started it and we are just trying to carry it on.

Tom Arnold: Really Coach. What exactly did Salley tell your team..... where all the Atlanta hot spots are??? (laughter). Coach, you are the highest seed left in your bracket - what does that say about the game?

PH: There is so much parity that you can pretty much throw away the seeds. There are going to be a lot of close games regardless of seeds. The lack of bigmen has just evened out the game so much.

Chris: BJ and Jack are your studs. Does it make you nervous having a freshman at PG?

PH: No because Jarrett is a sophomore (Chris looked very ruffled when he realized he goofed). JJ is just so steady this year and has improved his game so much.

Salley: Does Nevada make you nervous?

PH: Do you want the politically correct answer? Actually, they are a team with a lot of confidence right now. They are playing well and we got to scout them when we played UConn in the pre-season NIT.

Salley: Actually coach, the strategy I would use is to send in your B-team to get into a fight with their A-Team (more laughter).

Chris: Coach, with your team doing well, there are rumors about the St.John's coaching job. Is this stressful?

PH: I addressed those questions back in December when Mike Jarvis was fired. As long as Dave Braine is my AD, I will be at GT. I have a great situation at GT. When you see coaches getting fired irrationally, you have to stick with it when you have a good situation.