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2019-20 Georgetown men's basketball preview

Georgetown Hoyas

2018-19 record: 19-14, 9-9 in the Big East

Head coach: Patrick Ewing

Tenure at Georgetown: 3rd season

Career coaching record: 34-29

Home court: Capital One Arena

Starters: G James Akinjo, G Mac McClung, F Jamorko Pickett, F Josh LeBlanc, C Omer Yurtseven 

Bench: G Jagan Mosely, G Jahvon Blair, F Myron Gardner, C Qudus Wahab

Overview: The Hoyas will look to make the jump to the national stage after receiving a bid to the NIT last season, as the young and talented team further develops under famed Georgetown alumnus Patrick Ewing's tutelage. The team's scoring will be driven by the undersized yet athletic backcourt. Reigning Big East Freshman of the Year Akinjo will look to become a more efficient scorer and take care of the ball better after averaging 13.4 points per game and 5.2 assists per game last season. Meanwhile, McClung, who became a YouTube star with his ability to jump out of the gym, will try to show off a better shooting stroke after shooting just 27.7 percent from deep. 

Georgetown will need to make a jump defensively if it hopes to make the Big Dance after ranking 133rd in KenPom's adjusted defensive efficiency last season. The backcourt features a 6-foot-1 Akinjo and 6-foot-2 McClung, so the frontcourt and bigger bodies on the bench will be critical in defending the inside and providing help defense. The Hoyas start with an easy nonconference schedule before the 2K Empire Classic where they will face Texas, and if both Georgetown and Duke wins, the Blue Devils. After finishing up with other "bubble" NCAA teams like Syracuse, SMU and Oklahoma State, Georgetown will move onto conference play where it will look to crack into the top four in the Big East. 

One thing that needs to go right: The Hoyas make the jump defensively and re-enter the national conversation—a long time coming for the historic program.

One thing that could go wrong: Georgetown cannot overcome its youth with inefficiency and turnovers on the offensive end. That, plus an average defense, leaves them in the NIT again.

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