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UVA routs George Mason 68-48

George Mason Basketball: UVA routs George Mason 68-48

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

UVA routs George Mason 68-48

You could probably tell from my post yesterday that I didn't have confidence in Mason winning this game in Charlottesville. It may sound like a broken record but again the Patriots were doomed by turnovers, a lot which were unforced.  The sloppy play killed any sort of momentum Mason tried to ride to get back in the game.  Mason in no way forced their up tempo style of play on the Cavaliers and was stymied by their half court defense. I can't remember the last time Mason had not a single player reach double figures in a game. On the other end the Patriots defense in the first half was pretty awful as Virginia got numerous open looks. UVA's guards were wide open as Mason gave a little too much attention to Mike Scott. The sad part was that Scott was not much of a factor and credit goes to the Mason bigs as they held UVA's front court in check. Erik Copes got to show us his defensive skills in the post and did a good job on the glass.

The problems on offense stemmed from the Mason's back court where it would have been helpful if any guards could hit an outside shot. They tried to speed things up in the second half but UVA was much more disciplined and Mason could learn a thing or two about shot selection from them.  The Patriots are becoming way too dependent on driving the lane. They are having success and getting to the foul line but their inability to hit outside shots and three-pointers hurt their chances of erasing 15 or 20-point deficits.   



Anonymous GMURULES said...

I was there last night and it really seemed like we were out sized also.  All their players seemed so much taller and larger than ours.  We really don't do a good job playing perimeter defense.  We have not all season.  We allow a teams guards to look like super stars.  Also, we do not defend the ball that well at all.  The other team will drive on us like crazy.  I am really disappointed.  I was so jacked about the season and none of our players seem to be stepping up.  Hate to say it, but we got out classed last night.  On sidenote, UVA's scoreboard and screen was something to be jealous of. It was AMAZING!!!!

9:46 AM  
Anonymous Matt Cerilli said...

Yeah I am sure there are a million cirumstances that I am unaware of but I always felt like the CAA Tourney should be played at John Paul Jones Arena.

9:57 AM  
Anonymous BoredInClass said...

In a week of two, the starting lineup should be Edwards, Cornelius, Wright, Pearson, and Copes. The team can't guard the perimeter, give up way too many open looks, and do not seem to recognize when a guy is lighting them up, because nothing changes. I have tried to lay off Hewitt and give him and his staff a chance, and i am probably still reacting way too early, but he is beginning to show his lack of coaching ability. A Coach L team would not give up all those looks. It is so beyond frustration to watch our opponents get pretty much every loose ball and have free rein from the 3 point line. Also, as was mentioned, we can't hit an outside shot to save our life. I have never seen a team be so off target. I won't even get started on Arledge.........

10:31 AM  
Anonymous Mooky_l3d said...

Ryan I agree with a lot of what you said.  Mason was sluggish, sloppy, and uninspired to even stay close in this game.  The passing was lackluster, shot selection and defense were poor.  There was a stretch in the second half where Pearson was yelling at Wright because he was guarding the wrong player.  Slashing to the basket and inside play are great but if you can't open the floor up with outside shots(doesn't have to be 3's) then trying to get into a packed lane takes more time and effort.  The entry passes were so deliberate and lazy UVA had no problem adjusting to get into better position to defend or steal the ball.  I will give UVA credit for playing a good defensive game they are tops in the ACC in defense.  Some of that was Mason's inability to run the offense even without pressure.  

To me the lone bright spot of the night was Copes.  He played with heart, determination, and energy the entire time he was on the court.  He did very well against Sene and Scott.  Scott caught him a couple times but I chalk that up to a veteran player vs a young one.  

Vaughns needs to wake up and start to play with the fire he had last year.  I don't know if it is his shooting slump or what but he looked like he was sulking most of the night and on a couple of steals and opportunities to either lay it in or go hard and get a foul he threw up horrible shots.  His defense was slow and he seemed lost.  If he is still playing this was after Andre comes back then he might find himself at the end of the bench for a while.  

GO MASON!!!!!!!!!!! 

10:33 AM  
Anonymous Matt said...

Last night wasn't really a surprise.  Defensively-if a team is passing and then slashing at will and scoring constantly didn't it dawn on the coaching staff to switch to a 2-3 or a 2-1-2.  Sure they then might have lit us up with outside shooting, but take that chance and make some kind of an adjustment!  Full court pressure was better second half but only on that first pass, we had numerous opportunities to get a steal or a trap by having a 3 or 4 come back from half court.

Offense-Pearson didn't get enough touches, no one could hit an outside shot-I agree with Mooky, doesn't have to be a three.  Telegraphing passes and having those picked away-ahh.

I don't mind being beat by a better team, we were not going to go undefeated.  But if were going to lose I'd rather it not be because we can't play fundamental ball.  Hewitt keeps saying after these games "we did ok..." I just don't agree.  Hopefully we gel with time and can close this year with three wins.

10:53 AM  
Anonymous mr. whiney said...

We have no ball handlers yet we have nobody that can shoot the ball from the outside. Our two big men, Copes and Morrison, can't hit a foul shot to save their own lives. Our best 3pt shooter (vaughns) is a poor foul shooter (aka) streak shooter. We've played a joke schedule to this point and i'm glad we have a weak conference this year because we're going to need it. The funny thing is, if we had acorn last night along with Hancock, we could have stolen that game last night against a top 25 team on the raod. We were so damn close... damn you Coach L.... damn you! We should be 9-0 right now and ranked in the top 25!
For those of you who are about to say "get over it already, look towards the future." I say to you... no. I'm going to sulk until i'm damn good and ready to stop pouting. 

11:23 AM  
Anonymous commboy said...

Vanghns made many 3's last year. But from I can remember is he wasn't a good 3-pt shooter in all games - when he was not doing well, he headed to bench rather quickly or took lesser shots after a few misses. And he had more off games than when he was on. This probably was not that obvious 'cause last year's team also had many others that can make 3's.

11:47 AM  
Anonymous Christopher Hirsch said...

The lack of a credible threat from 3 point land is going to doom us. I hope Andre helps that out when he comes back, but teams being able to not worry about anyone on the outside is really difficult to overcome.

11:53 AM  
Anonymous Christopher Hirsch said...

One being that its an ACC arena?

11:53 AM  
Anonymous Rmjank said...

It's just sad and not fun to watch these games.  The team simply looks uncomfortable with trying to press, with ball movement on offense, and with taking any sort of outside shot.  Ryan looks uncomfortable being fed the ball at the elbow.  Mike looks uncomfortable playing down low.  You only hear the point guard's name when it is the routine announcement that he is bringing the ball up the court (not a single point scored by either).  They look uncomfortable doing anything but passing the ball off to Wright and then staying out of the way (yes, they pass to Ryan also but they do not look comfortable doing it).  The whole team looks like they are trying to execute a game plan that does not fit their style in one way or another.  
So, most of what I've said said seems to be a coaching issue; or something that can be fixed by coaching.  Or, I will hope, something that will iron out to our benefit over the course of the season.  But, the first third of the season is about over, and it hasn't gotten better yet.
Thank heaven the CAA appears to be down overall this year (it seems).  If this was last year's CAA, I don't think we'd be a .500 team in conference play.  Based on what I've seen, I'll be "happy" if we can be among the top 4 seeds come tourney time and be the team nobody wants to play.  I fear it will be uglier.

12:30 PM  
Anonymous Christopher Hirsch said...

The CAA is atrocious this season. Rhode Island has just one win this season and that came against Hofstra and they nearly beat Mason.

Drexel, the leagues preseason number 1 is 2-4.

1:16 PM  
Anonymous BatMason said...

We saw zero (literally) offensive production from Allen and Edwards. Defensively, they got slaughtered from downtown, and they combined for 5 TOs ... i.e. our guards are sucking, but I'm not 100% sure whether it's their fault or the system's. Either way, we're sucking all over the perimeter on both sides of the ball.   

1:57 PM  
Anonymous BatMason said...

I'm with you. This school is so dumb for not sending back-to back-to back teams to the tourney. All they had to do was pucker up and kiss coach L's pasty white crack, now we're going to be kissing the crack of ODU, VCU or Crexel come CAA championship time. Don't blame Coach L, blame this dumb A** school for letting him go.

2:03 PM  
Anonymous commboy said...

Andre has not been a game changer... while his experience will help but I don't expect the team to improve drastically with his presence. I am agreeing with you, I think...

4:02 PM  
Anonymous gmuhoops said...

People forget how good of an on the ball defender he can be. He will really help curb some of those wide open looks we keep seeing mason yield.

4:06 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade703 said...

Damn you Coach L!?!  The winning est coach in GMU history and arguably the most influential GMU employee ever got dissed on here?

4:40 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade703 said...

I agree with part of your post, however Coach L never wanted anyone to kiss up to him.  The same respect that Shaka Smart was shown would have done.

4:41 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade703 said...

Lets call a spade a spade: we aren't fundamentally sound.  Turnovers, defense, passing, rebounding, free throws, smart shots, etc. are all fundamentals.  Good news is that it can be fixed.  We're 6-3 with bad fundamentals.

4:47 PM  
Anonymous gmuhoops said...

Well he screwed us this season, not sure why you're happy about that. And for what, a small pay raise to coach a middle of the pack ACC team?

4:48 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade703 said...

Anything other than the Richmond Coliseum, with all the ambiance of an airplane hangar!

4:50 PM  
Anonymous Christopher Hirsch said...

Taylor is in love with Coach L.

Miami is such a pathetic basketball school. They had a top 20 Memphis team at home last night and the place was half empty and quiet as a library. What a joke.

5:00 PM  
Anonymous Christopher Hirsch said...

Yep, we agree.

5:02 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade703 said...

I am in love with what he brought to the university.  Under his watch, George Mason University grew from a "commuter school" in the DC Suburbs to a nationally known university.  There's no question about that.  But lets continue with bashing Coach L.  Yeah, that makes sense.  I thought we were classier than that.

5:09 PM  
Anonymous Christopher Hirsch said...

I appreciate everything he did as well, but still sucks he left for a job that isn't better than the one he had. People don't have to bow at his altar.

5:12 PM  
Anonymous gmuhoops said...

So sick of people just being happy with the 2006 final four and not ever caring that we reach new levels as a program.  We are basically starting over again when we could have been thinking about having back-to-back tournament appearances.  Sorry if I don't feel like reminiscing about the glory days of Coach L's tenure.

5:13 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade703 said...

OK, we know the problem.  What's the solution?

5:14 PM  
Anonymous mooky_l3d said...

I watched the first Drexel game and saw parts of another they looked like two different teams.  Don't know what happened.  The first game they were unreal.  The next game they were wishing it was unreal.

5:39 PM  
Anonymous mooky_l3d said...

I like Copes starting over Morrison. Maybe he could move to be a motivational player of the bench. His play is all over the place and will someone please tell him to stop glaring at the officials after every call.  He is not Micheal Jordan and he will not get every call.  Use that energy and play ball let the coach get on the refs.

Back to the line up.  Copes will give that effort every night that Morrison is not.

5:45 PM  
Anonymous GMURULES said...

We may be 6-3, but look who we have beat and lost to.  FIU has an RPI of 325.  Monmoth, 322, RI 295.  Brown, high 200's.  I like 6-3, but we should be 7-2 with losses to VT and UVA and blow outs of the others, not OT games all the time and we may have been able to beat VT.  so 8-1.  Our SOS is 301in the country so far.  We don't are not even able to out athletic poor teams.  Instead we give them career high nights. The fundamentals may be able to be fixed, but do we have the staff to do it?  Why is it getting worse, not better? 

6:19 PM  
Anonymous Moses said...

The glory days have been gone for 5 years. L is and was a very good coach and good person and I wish he were still here but still did not parlay 2006 into a top 25 program (despite all of Mason's resources) a la Gonzaga and maybe Butler- both small schools in podunky places. Further, his teams could look completely suckful in the early season as well. Losing to Liberty and such. And the early season schedule of mostly weak teams now is no different than when L was here.
Hewitt has never been known as an x and o guy. More of a recruiter and let em run. I personally hate that, but I'm not going to run him out of town based upon this season so far. UVA probably would have whipped this team if John Wooden, Larry Brown and Bob Knight were on the bench for Mason.  

7:10 PM  
Anonymous Moses said...

Defensive intensity and rebounding solves many, many issues. It's a want to thing. Playing the defensive end is simply not a priority for several players at this point. That said, they're being given little guidance here other than go get em. L's teams played excellent half court D, scrambling and trapping and giving help. He emphasized it and they created much offense off of it.

7:25 PM  
Anonymous seriously... said...

Spot on Ryan and Moses.  I still will never understand the love affair with Coach L.  Yes we did have an outstanding Final Four season, but what else did his teams do at Mason.  Outside of the George Evans team, how many of our teams lived up to expectation?  Christ; Jai, Tony, and Lamar never even won a conference championship.  Coach L never could deliver in Richmond, and when you are coaching a school from a conference like the CAA that has to be priority one.   Most of the time it's the only reason you are playing at the tournament anyways.  Hell, should we have even gotten a bid in 2006?

Take off the blinders folks, Coach L was never that great.  You can't judge Hewitt by what the first few weeks of the season look like with players he never even recruited.  Stop bitching and give it time!

8:52 AM  
Anonymous Ross_williams1 said...

Coming into this season we knew the real question about this team  was the coaching talent. I am not bowing at the Coack L alter but I think that  Hewitt's limitations are the issue here.

9:42 AM  
Anonymous Rmjank said...

So Hewitt is a great recruiter but not so good at X's and O's?  If given the choice, I would rather have the not-quite-as-talented players but the coaching L provided.  It was so easy to get behind that as a fan.  By contrast, this year all we have seen is players able to produce because of their talent alone (e.g. one on one driving to the basket).  My perception is that we might be the most talented team in the CAA, but no way we can get by on talent alone.  We cavalierly (poor word choice, I know) toss around the statement that Hewitt is not good at the X's and O's -- I hope HE doesn't do that.  I hope he (or his assistants) has answers for what we are seeing on the court.  Otherwise, this season will be painful to watch, and our best hope will be for Hewitt to coach for a year or two, bring in some great recruits, and then exit with another one of those generous payout packages while we bring in someone who can coach up the team.
So, count me in as a Coach L whiner.  BUT I am capable of doing both that and getting behind our new regime.  The criticism from these blogs has been mostly constructive and fair, and yes, laden with worry.  Nothing wrong with that, and I look forward to reading everyone's opinion after each game.

10:15 AM  
Anonymous Patriot74 said...

It seems that everytime the team loses a game all the negative posters surface. I dont ever see these people when we win, only when we lose. Which brings me to my next point...are these people true fans to begin with? Of course the team is still trying to find itself but were barely one month into the season. If they're still playing like this in a month then you can write off the season. Considering how bad we've played and the poor level of opposition we've faced(Excluding UVA of course) 6-3 is a decent record.

12:14 PM  
Anonymous commboy said...

I stop being a fan when I don't get bothered however bad the team performs...

2:35 PM  
Anonymous mr. Whiney said...

Maybe you missed it. Coach L. left us at make-out point with our panties down at our knees. He drove off laughing as he kicked up dirt in our eyes... We're frustrated. We feel abused. It's a shame that people try to keep us down (the abused). We have a right to vent. We all bought new dresses for the big ball and and our date (coach L) left us for a bigger slut that puts out more. Yes, we're sore. we'd love to say yipeee! we're 6-3, but i we know what's coming. The sky is dark ahead... the wind is picking up... sirens are screaming... animals are cringing inside with their tails between their legs. If you want to go outside and say "I love it when the wind blows my house down." Go ahead, be our guest... but some us wan't to stay inside and bitch about what a whore mother nature is.

p.s. records don't mean crap. they used to when we sucked. We want trips to the dance. This team could win every game in the CAA this year, but if we don't win in Richmond this spring, we'll be sitting at home with our wonderful record. It's not acceptable.

6:37 PM  
Anonymous BatMason said...

If being a blind and dumb "fan" is what you're referring to, then no, I'm not a fan when it's only good weather, but, we suck a** right now. Forget the record, those teams all sucked incredible a**. We just squandered what may have been our only two chances at accumulating some resume boosting non-conference wins, and guess what? We sucked. There are no fundamentals, and at most times, no rhyme or reason apparent in the game plan. If we could clone Pearson and Copes 4x and play 3 Pearsons and 2 Copes as starters, with two more Pearsons and one more Copes off the bench, then we could afford to survive off our talent alone. But..that's not happening.

If your a homer, that's fine. But with so much good college hoops in the area and on TV, I just don't like watching a sucky, unorganized team...PERIOD.

My main point is, we were getting there, and now it appears that we are going losing ground. And for the record, I'm not a blind homer, though I do love college hoops. I also care a lot about how my school, which for my undergrad is Mason, is perceived nationally and within our state. For all our hype, we just got wrecked by UVa. and we didn't even get to meet Tech, so barring a CAA title, we may already be out of tourney contention. I want this team to win consistently so that the Mason brand is valuated highly, i.e. my experience here is more valuable and exciting to me and others.

We need as many tourney appearances as we can get, and barring some amazing turnaround in play and coaching, I definitely do not see us getting there this year. 
If you can't understand why I want impressive wins for the school, take a look at the economic impact that our appearances have had in the past. It makes the school better as a whole. 

6:53 PM  
Anonymous BatMason said...

I hope Holloway will turn out as good as advertised, 2013-14 could be a beast year w/ Holloway, Sherrod, Okoloji, Copes; if they can polish up Vaughns, Gray or Arledge; and whoever else they can pull in between now and then.

7:06 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade said...

Surely, at 61, he didn't say "at this point in my life I want to move to a sorry job!"

8:00 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade said...

You're right, besides going to a Final Four, putting our school on the map nationally, increasing enrollment and having actual school spirit and pride, Coach L really didn't do much of anything.  I just wish we could go back to the great Westhead/Nestor era of great George Mason basketball.  It was so great back then.

8:05 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade said...

It's not like that.  Not even remotely.  But hey, whatever.

8:08 PM  
Anonymous Gio said...

Arledge was a star with limited minutes...thought we had a chance when we took it down to 10 points but oh well turnovers doomed us again.

8:35 PM  
Anonymous Patriot74 said...

mr. whiney you need to change your name to drama queen.

8:41 PM  
Anonymous Patriot74 said...

The Richmond Coliseum looks like it hasnt been renovated-or cleaned for that matter-since the 1970s. Its a dump!

9:47 AM  
Anonymous seriously... said...

Everything you just posted resulted from that one final four run.  For someone who has claimed in the past to have an extensive basketball resume you sure don't seem to comprehend the fact that Coach L did nothing to use that one run to springboard the program....  Different topic but relevant side note; this is one of the problems of high school athletics, you make some asshole teacher (who likely played the sport a year or two high school varsity) a coach, and all of a sudden they think they are experts on athletics. The moron who used to do the Mason Bench is a great example of this.  Sound like you as well Taylor?

12:42 PM  
Anonymous Rmjank said...

Seriously, for one, I think you may be forgetting events as lately as last year, where all the pundits had it as a given that we would be an at large bid to the tourney, which turned out to be true.  And then of course the thrilling win over Villanova.  And no doubt that over the past several years our team has been more consistent at getting to the tourney, or at least being a major threat to do so.  And we have done this in a conference that has greatly elevated its own status.  We may not have become Gonzaga East (I guess Butler did that), but we are definitely one of the main names in Mid Major Land.

1:56 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade said...

The best thing about this board is that it allows everybody to share differing opinions.  We are all adults and name calling and profanity are unnecessary.  The writers of do a very good job and do not want to see their board denigrate to childish behavior.  Even in disagreement, I would hope we would all have mature, adult, respectful conversations.

OK, I'm off my soap box.

3:45 PM  
Anonymous gmuhoops said...

Writers? One man job buddy.

3:54 PM  
Anonymous Taylormade said...

So noted. :)

4:03 PM  

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