Georgia Basketball: Will Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde Show Up at SEC Tournament?


The Georgia basketball team has had some impressive wins this season, but they’ve also suffered some demoralizing defeats at the hands of much lesser teams.

Live Feed

LSU rants: We’re sick of watching the LSU Tigers lose to Texas A&M
LSU rants: We’re sick of watching the LSU Tigers lose to Texas A&M /

Death Valley Voice

  • South Carolina Baseball: Gamecocks bounced from SEC Tournament, hopeful for regional host seedGarnet and Cocky
  • Tennessee Baseball: SEC Tournament Recap and Upcoming ScheduleAll for Tennessee
  • South Carolina Baseball: Gamecocks fall to LSU in SEC Tournament, will play again ThursdayGarnet and Cocky
  • South Carolina Baseball: Gamecocks win big over Georgia to advance in SEC TournamentGarnet and Cocky
  • South Carolina Baseball: SEC Tournament previewGarnet and Cocky
  • Mark Fox has the Georgia Bulldogs playing some of the best basketball the program has seen in many years…sometimes.

    Then again, it could be stated without hesitation that Mark Fox’s Bulldogs have looked like (and pardon me for saying this) some teams from the Dennis Felton era this season, dropping games to SEC bottom-feeders like South Carolina and Auburn, and let’s not forget a season-opening loss to lowly Georgia Tech.

    Friday, Georgia will have their first game of the SEC Tournament after a double-bye, facing either No. 11 seed South Carolina or No. 6 seed Ole Miss.

    For the sake of Dawg fans everywhere, let’s hope the same Bulldogs team who beat Kansas State and Texas A&M shows up, and not the one who got taken to triple-overtime by Mercer.

    But it’s been that kind of season for the Bulldogs, and a strong showing in the SEC Tournament will erase any doubt that Georgia should not only be in the NCAA Tournament, but that they stand a good chance of actually advancing beyond the Round of 32.

    The hurdle the Bulldogs have to face in the SEC Tournament is no small task, however.

    On the season Georgia is 1-4 against the top teams in the SEC – Texas A&M, LSU, Arkansas and Kentucky. Now of course, everyone has pitched a goose-egg against Kentucky this year, but you would have liked to have seen Georgia at least split those other games.

    And against their potential opponents in the quarterfinals?

    The Dawgs are 0-2 against South Carolina (Mr. Hyde) and 2-0 against Ole Miss (Dr. Jekyll).

    And Georgia isn’t just 0-2 against the Gamecocks…it wasn’t even close…with South Carolina just humiliating the Dawgs 67-50 in Columbia, and then beating Georgia 64-58 (and it wasn’t even that close) in Athens.

    Now, beating a team three times in one season can be tough, so perhaps the Bulldogs should hope for a South Carolina upset against the Rebels. Then again, Mark Fox may not want to see Frank Martin and his Gamecocks again. On the flip side, it would take a huge effort for Georgia to pull off their third win of the year against Ole Miss. So who would Georgia rather face?

    Jan 31, 2015; Columbia, SC, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks forward Michael Carrera (24) dunks over Georgia Bulldogs forward/center Yante Maten (1) in the first half at Colonial Life Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

    I think I’d like to solve, Pat…Gamecocks?

    Yeah, definitely the better option.

    While it’s true that Georgia has had some injury issues over the last two months of the season (did I say “some”? How about every starter being grounded for some reason or another, and more concussions than the football team saw last season) but not all the troubles against beatable teams can be blamed on health.

    Mark Fox’s philosophy and strategy have never wavered; play big down in the paint, crash the boards, drive hard into the lane on offense and create a lot of free throw opportunities.

    That’s Georgia’s game, and when they do it right, they’re practically unbeatable. It was this style of play that nearly upset the undefeated Kentucky Wildcats. But the problem is, when execution fails in that plan, Georgia has nothing to fall back on.

    That’s when the ugly side of this team shows up.

    If Georgia is missing free throws and not finishing on plays at the basket, they immediately resort to becoming a team of chuckers…hurling desperate 3-point shots and long jumpers from bad angles in an attempt to score in bunches from somewhere besides the charity stripe.

    That’s when you end up with scores like the game in Columbia, S.C.

    No, for Georgia to advance to the semifinals and beyond in the SEC Tournament, both Marcus Thornton and Nemanja Djurisic will have to come up big and play their kind of game. J.J. Frazier is going to have to come out of his concussion-induced funk, and Kenny Gaines can’t just disappear like he did against Kentucky.

    Otherwise, it will be Mr. Hyde taking the court at the Bridgestone Arena, and a short stay in Nashville for the Dawgs.

    Next: 5 Things the Bulldogs Must Improve on in the SEC Tourney