Georgia Basketball: Dawgs’ Loss to Kentucky Actually a Victory


The Georgia basketball team might not have finished with the most points on Tuesday night, but the game against No. 1 Kentucky was far from a lost cause.

More from Georgia Basketball

When J.J. Frazier hit a three “from the Oconee County Line!” as Brad Nessler called it during ESPN’s broadcast, it seemed like the Hoop Dawgs just might do the unthinkable and knock off the undefeated Goliath in blue uniforms from Lexington – the Kentucky Wildcats.

Instead, 11 minutes and 10 seconds of game play later, the Wildcats were celebrating their 30th win of the year after coming back from down nine points in the 2nd half, their largest 2nd half deficit of the year, by the way.

No, Georgia didn’t get what would’ve been the biggest win in program history, but the Bulldogs certainly did not walk out of Stegeman Coliseum (which was at its peak capacity and the rowdiest it’s ever been on Tuesday night) empty-handed.

Thanks to ESPN’s broadcast of the game in primetime, the game, Athens, and the Georgia basketball program, were all the center of the sports world’s attention on Tuesday night. Boosters were watching. Future recruiting prospects were watching. Everyone was watching, and the Dawgs did not disappoint.

Not only did the team almost come away with a victory against an opponent whose dominance this season is on the verge of record-breaking, but the student section and the rest of Bulldog Nation showed up and showed out.

Mark Fox coached a beautiful game with an undersized and less talented team. And that’s not a knock on the Dawgs at all, it would be a tall order for some NBA teams to match the talent level on Kentucky’s stacked roster, and as was mentioned a few times in last night’s broadcast, only the NBA’s Portland Trailblazers sport a taller starting lineup than Kentucky.

The fact that Georgia out-rebounded Kentucky with players like Nemi Djurisic, Marcus Thornton, and Yante Maten going up against the human trees in Kentucky’s Karl-Anthony Towns, Willie Cauley-Stein, and Dakari Johnson is a huge testament not only to our guys’ effort, but to Mark Fox’s coaching.

Nemi and Marcus, who played their final game in Stegeman Coliseum on Tuesday, have grown so much since they first stepped foot on the University of Georgia’s campus, thanks in part to their tenacious effort, and to Coach Fox, who, in my opinion, is among the most underrated head coaches in the country.

Any young player watching had to have been impressed with what he saw. The Dawgs must have been especially intriguing to the 3 or 4-star type prep players who get overlooked by programs like Kentucky.

Georgia still has opportunities in the SEC Tournament and in the NCAA Tournament to further impress the country, but Tuesday’s game against UK got the ball rolling for the Hoop Dawgs.

David might not have beaten Goliath on Tuesday night, but David certainly did not lose. David’s looking as good ever, and he’s ready to get back out there and show what he’s made of.

To the rest of the country, you might wanna think about hopping on the Bulldog Bandwagon now, cause things are starting to heat up in Athens.