#116 Georgia Men's Basketball 2012-13 Preview

Georgia Bulldogs

2012-2013 Overall Rank: #116
Conference Rank: #11 SEC
Georgia Men's College Basketball 2012-2013 Team Preview
Georgia Team Page


Georgia had a pretty young team and lacked a superstar outside of the hype of incoming freshman Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. The result was an inconsistent season. Caldwell-Pope, a 6-4 shooting guard, came and did what he was supposed to do…jack up three-pointers. He shot nearly seven per game, connecting on 30.4 percent. That number will need to go up and Caldwell-Pope will also need to start using his size to finish around the basket on a more regular basis. On a team that lacks other proven scorers, the Bulldogs will rely on Caldwell-Pope and he has to do more than just shoot the long ball.

2011-12 Record: 15-17, 5-11
2011-12 Postseason: None
Coach: Mark Fox
Coach Record: 50-46 at Georgia, 173-99 overall

Who’s Out:
Gerald Robinson and Dustin Ware were the experienced seniors on last year’s team. Robinson was the only dynamic scorer on the team and he averaged 14.2 points per game. After Caldwell-Pope’s 13.2 points per game the next highest was 8, and that belonged to Ware. Ware, a 5-11 point guard, has been a steady hand in the backcourt over the last few years and his absence will be felt. However, he did lose his starting job for a while during his senior season, which will prove to be advantageous for the returning players who now have some extra experience. The only other loss is wing Connor Nolte who was pretty far down the bench after transferring in from Furman.

Who’s In:
There are no Caldwell-Pope type players in this group who will come in and make a national splash right away. Out of need, point guard Charles Mann and shooting guard Kenny Gaines are most likely to see quality minutes as true freshmen. Coach Mark Fox pretty much covered all of the bases with this class, adding small forward Brandon Morris and power forward Houston Kessler. The big men will have time to develop, but the backcourt players will need to contribute right away. Gaines could be in a starting role from day one due to a lack of other options, with Caldwell-Pope playing at the small forward spot. If he can do some scoring, Georgia will be happy.

Who to Watch:
But what was just a year ago a very inexperienced frontcourt will now have to take on a much larger role. It starts with junior post player Donte’ Williams. He stepped into the starting lineup last season and led Georgia with 5.1 rebounds and 1.6 blocks. None of that was too surprising as he was expected to do that despite not playing much at all as a freshman. However, Williams also averaged 7.8 points per game and started to show his potential as a major scoring threat in the paint. If it gets to the point where some teams need to double-team Williams in the paint, he has the ability to pass out and find the open shooter. The power forward spot was manned by Marcus Thornton for most of the 2011-2012 campaign. He is not much of a scorer, but he can do the dirty work in the paint. But if Coach Fox wants a better scorer on the floor, he can turn to sophomore Nemanja Djurisic. The 6-8 forward from Montenegro got some starts while Thornton was hurt and played very well. He is a smart player who can shoot the ball and is not afraid to do his job on the glass. With further depth provided by seven-foot senior John Florveus and 6-10 sophomore Tim Dixon, the Bulldogs have plenty of depth in the post. That depth could even lead to Djurisic, despite his 6-8 frame, spending some time at the small forward spot. If he is up for it defensively, it would help put less pressure on the newcomers on the perimeter.

Final Projection:
Senior Vincent Williams is the new floor leader for the Bulldogs. He only averaged 12.4 minutes per game last season, but he did start 11 games and has been around long enough to know how to run the system. He is a capable outside shooter and could even be a decent all-around scorer if he has to be. However, Georgia will be in trouble if they are relying on him for points. They need him to set up the other scorers and finding other scorers besides Caldwell-Pope will be the difference between a competitive team in the SEC and another year in the basement.

Projected Postseason Tournament: CBI/CIT

Projected Starting Five:
Vincent Williams, Senior, Guard, 2.9 points per game
Kenny Gaines, Freshman, Guard, DNP last season
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Sophomore, Guard, 13.2 points per game
Marcus Thornton, Junior, Forward, 3.0 points per game
Donte’ Williams, Junior, Forward, 7.8 points per game

Madness 2013 NBA Draft Rankings:
#11 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope

Madness 2012 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#143 Kenny Gaines