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What to look for in tonight's exhibition game

George Mason Basketball: What to look for in tonight's exhibition game

Monday, October 31, 2011

What to look for in tonight's exhibition game

Game will streamed free on

We already knew this but here is the official release on Johnny Williams redshirting this season

George Mason plays it's only exhibition game tonight against Lycoming college. Johnny Williams (shoulder) and Vertrail Vaughns (ankle) are not playing tonight but there are plenty of new faces to watch for in his one.  This will be the first official game action we get to see under Paul Hewitt and although you can't learn much from watching the Patriots play a D3 school, here are some things to look for tonight.

Hewitt's offensive strategy. He's been saying that he wants to play uptempo this season and conditioning has been a point of emphasis in early practices so far. It will be interesting to see this in action and how well the conditioned the team is at this early point of the season.  

Who stands out at point guard? Vertrail Vaughns won't be playing tonight but I doubt he'd be the point guard anyway since he's much better suited for the shooting guard spot. I'll be looking to see who looks like a leader out there at the point and who helps facilitate this uptempo offense. Expect to see  a lot of Bryon Allen and Corey Edwards tonight.

Front court rotation.  I'm very curious to see how Morrison, Pearson, and Copes are used. Will they often be on the court the same time or will Hewitt start with Copes coming off the bench?  Also, how will Jonathan Arledge be used, the sophomore struggled to get playing time over Paris Bennett last season. 

How ready is Sherrod Wright?  A lot of fans have high expectations for Sherrod Wright, who is returning from a shoulder injury this season. The coaching staff has been praising him in off season workouts and practices, but is he game ready or will he need some time to get back into it? I'll be looking to see how comfortable he looks being out there again.  I imagine he will be taking a lot of shots tonight and look to see how many plays Hewitt runs for him.  


Anonymous Fancrazy said...

Mason fans need new traditions. I am tired of listening to Living on a prayer. First of all the tittle makes mason sound like we are incapable of playing at a high level. It seems like we are resorting to praying to the basketball gods for a victory. Shoot for 2, 2 or 3. Come on now that’s just whack.
I was watching the stealers, patriot game last night. And the fans where crazy. Everyone was waving a yellow towel around. It made the stands look really cool. I would love to see mason fans waving the towel.

I wonder if others have thoughts about mason fans, and suggestions to make the game more exciting.

2:34 PM  
Anonymous GmuAlum said...

Fan traditions and actions are what bring charm to a specific sports game. This is even truer for college sports. Whether it is the WE ARE… PENN STATE chant for Penn State football or the fans in Syracuse standing and clapping their hands at the beginning of each half until the basketball team hits their first shot… these bleacher traditions make the games more exciting.

2:38 PM  
Anonymous Matt said...

What happened to the scrimmage with Marquette? 

2:39 PM  
Anonymous gmuhoops said...

That scrimmage is November 5.

2:47 PM  
Anonymous DaveE said...

I want a new long lasting tradition as well. The Wolf pack have their thing. The gators have their chop. is it possible to make a star figure with your hands?

10:32 PM  
Anonymous Mason Guy said...

This is Mason's tradition.  We win basketball games.  Lots of them.  I personally wouldn't be caught dead with a towel.

Nice first outing last night.  Corey Edwards provided a spark and looks comfortable on the court.  Copes is a beast and looked great against this competion, ran the floor well for his minutes.  They are raw but talented.

8:08 AM  
Anonymous Jphubba said...

OK You can all cancel your orders for NCAA or NIT fix and don't bother setting aside the last day of the CAA tournament. There were good things tonight for sure. Wright can still go to the basket strong. Copes and Alredge showed some promise. Edwards may be a decent point guard someday. The pep band was terrific. I am sure that there's more to be said on the positive side.

Nonetheless, the negatives were obvious. No semblance of a half court offense. In fact, no hint of an organized offense other than throwing the ball up and hoping to clean up the garbage on the offensive board. It worked against Lycoming's midgets, but it won't work in the CAA. Bad ball movement, little perimeter defense. In fact, damn little organized defense at all. At least twice Copes and Arledge were both under the basketball but could not stop a much smaller player from getting to the rim. 

No senior leadership. Pearson showed his accustomed lack of poise. I realize that Pearson occasionally makes his outside shot, but I would be happy if he never took another jump shot and instead stayed on the low block (where he never once got the ball during this game). Morrison still has no offensive moves. Copes, widely advertised as raw offensively, had better moves around the basket.  And Mike had his obligatory dumb fouls.

I think Mason made six three pointers, but only one (Allen) by a guard and all were standing jump shots (well Pearson doesn't actually jump when he takes his outside shot). Against a good team, Mason wouldn't get most of these opportunities. In fact, against a good team, they would not get half the scoring chances they had against Lycoming.

In short, this team has a long way to go before it can be competitive in the CAA.

9:46 AM  
Anonymous BoredInClass said...

Well then, how to follow this one up. I think the biggest thing I noticed was that guards were passing up 3s. I know some of this was because Vertrail wasnt playing, but it doesn't seem like this team has the confidence from beyond the arc yet. It is imperative in my opinion that Bryon Allen develop a consistent 3 pointer to counter his driving ability. It is also extremely important to figure out who the 5th starter is with Allen, Wright, Pearson, and Morrison being locks for now. Bennett started last night and didn't play terrible, but he also didn't play well, missing too many open shots. I never thought id say this but the team is really missing DJ Cornelius. He can push the ball and also stretch the defense out with his shooting ability and I think that is exactly what this team is lacking. Our front court will be fine, Allen and Wright can drive the lane at will against most teams, the team just has to refine their skills and develop an outside shooter or 2.

10:14 AM  
Anonymous c hirsch said...

How you look in an exhibition and how you look as a team come January/February/March usually have nothing to do with each other.

10:17 AM  
Anonymous Jphubba said...

We can only hope. I doubt, however, that Pearson will develop any more poise by the first of the year, Nor will Morrison learn how to play offense.

10:28 AM  
Anonymous gmuhoops said...

nice assumption after a gloried dress rehearsal and two key guards not playing.  

10:34 AM  
Anonymous Jphubba said...

All well and good, but I think the operative phrase is -- you practice the way you play

11:00 PM  
Anonymous gmuhoops said...

I encourage people to speak their mind here about the team good or bad but can we at least wait until they start playing real games?

8:31 AM  
Anonymous DaveE said...

relax, look who we played. I am a fan but you cant possibly think the teams we playing during the season and the NCAA tournament will be this bad. 

5:37 PM  
Anonymous DaveE said...

 Heweitt said if he gets his charged dropped to a misdemeanor he will let him play. And he goes back to court Nov 15th. So things are looking good.  F

5:41 PM  
Anonymous WhoRu said...

gmu hoops, who are you. Alumni, Current student, A player? lol 

5:43 PM  
Anonymous Mason Guy said...

No idea what you are talking about.  I said they looked ok for a first game.  I also said they are raw, meaning they have a lot of work to do.  Unless you are talking about the tradition thing...if you want to make hand signals at the games have at it. 

11:54 PM  
Anonymous DaveE said...

 read what you wrote. you did not say they looked ok. you said "Nice first outing last night.  Corey Edwards provided a spark and looks comfortable on the court.  Copes is a beast and looked great against this competion, ran the floor well for his minutes." with the exception to the raw talenent comment these are un-merrited things to say when we play lycoming. 

College Sports in general are excitting becasue its about tradition, heart and passion, Un like many professionals who play for money. So why are you knocking some one who wants more tradition in his team. Traditions is what makes college sports fun and excting. Of course winning is exciting but it be nice to add something else to the mix. 


9:49 AM  
Anonymous Mason Guy said...

Hold on there guy, I'm all for tradition, but I'm sick of people saying Mason doesn't do this or Mason doesn't do that.  Show up for the games, and make lots of noise, thats what matters. 

Eric Copes may be the best true freshman big man Mason has ever had, but he still has a long way to go.  Edwards looks really talented so far but he is also first year, he will make his mistakes.  Its a start. Don't you watch Phil Jackson's Audi commercials?  I know you are a good fan, so see you at the games.

10:51 AM  
Anonymous Fun said...

I with dave, read this More fans would come out to games if there was more fan involvment.

1:09 PM  
Anonymous Mkowalick said...

did you see the NAIA game where the fans covered the floor with TP. If Mason did this there would certently be a lot of noise.

1:11 PM  
Anonymous Mkowalick said...

students remember their alma mater's traditions long after they've forgotten much of what they learned in a classroom

1:16 PM  
Anonymous IWantFootball said...

Football incorporates fans way better then basketball. More the reason to bring football to mason. Dont tell me we will loose money. I dont buy that. It is way to hard to count the revenue a football team brings in. You cant only count ticket sales. You have to count merchendise sold in the bookstore. Hotel revenue. Food purchased not only at the stadium but the whole campus.

Kids apply to schools that provide exciting things to do. So more students would be applying. An Application was 50$ when I applied. So dont tell me we will loose money. Yes we will prob loose money if you are only looking at ticket sales.

We could also rent out the stadium for concerts just like we do with the patriot center.


3:12 PM  
Anonymous Gordon said...

Georgia Tech fan here.

How does Hewitt's staff look?  Because if they aren't guys that know how to teach offense, you can just get used to what you saw.  You will get good players and you will have a good clean program.  Good luck (unless you play us).

7:41 PM  

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