Georgetown is in some deep trouble, folks.
The Hoyas fell to 0-2 at home against the Big South this season, losing to UNC-Asheville 79-73 on Saturday. It was the Hoyas third home loss of the season to a mid-major as well, following this week’s 15-point loss against Monmouth. D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera played one of his worst games in a Hoya uniform, shooting 2-10 from the field including 1-8 from the 3-point line. However, Georgetown’s problems go far beyond what its best player is doing on a given afternoon.
Simply put, the defense is the culprit of this team’s struggles right now. Neither Bradley Hayes nor Jessie Govan is adept at defending in pick-and-roll scenarios right now, and it’s forcing the rest of their defense into help situations that then creates further openings for the offense to exploit. The second portion of that — the help defense — hasn’t been great either, as they struggled to recover out onto shooters for UNC-Asheville throughout the contest. Asheville shot 9-of-19 from 3, including five 3s from backup guard Dylan Smith.
Georgetown needs to clean it up on that end, or else they run the risk of missing the NCAA Tournament this year. They’re currently 6-5 with one matchup remaining against Charlotte before starting conference play. They do have Marquette and Creighton on the road early in league play, but they don’t have to enter the difficult part of conference until about mid-January. That should give them some time to clean up what’s been ailing them thus far.
However, it’s time that we stop just assuming that it’s automatically coming after this week’s play. The Hoyas have some serious issues to work out, and that places them a step below Xavier, Villanova, Butler and Providence at the very least heading into Big East play.