WASHINGTON - The Georgetown University men's basketball team opens the 2011-12 season on Saturday, Nov. 12, hosting Savannah State at Verizon Center. Tipoff is slated for noon. Live video of the game will be available on the Georgetown Athletics website and live audio will be available for smartphone users through the Hoya Sports app. The game can be heard locally on ESPN 980 AM, with Rich Chvotkin calling all of the action.
The Hoyas are coming off a 2010-11 season that saw the team finish with a 21-11 record and advance to the NCAA Tournament for the fifth time in seven years under Head Coach John Thompson III. Georgetown was selected to finish 10th in the BIG EAST Preseason Coaches' Poll.
Georgetown enters the 2011-12 season with senior guard Jason Clark (Arlington, Va./Bishop O'Connell), senior center Henry Sims (Baltimore, Md./Mount St. Joseph) and junior forward Hollis Thompson (Los Angeles, Calif./Loyola) expected to lead the way.
Clark is coming off a junior season in which he started all 32 games and averaged 12.0 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 1.5 steals per game. He is the team's most experienced returnee, with 66 starts in 97 games. Sims appeared in all 32 games last season, starting once (Tulane) and had his best year to date, averaging 3.6 points, 3.2 rebounds and 1.7 steals per game. Thompson, meanwhile, appeared in 32 games and started 22 times. He finished fourth on the team in scoring with 8.6 points per game. He ranked second on the team with 4.4 rebounds and was tied for third on the team with 42 three-point field goals made.
The Hoyas also welcome back a pair of sophomores who saw extensive playing time last season in forward Nate Lubick (Southborough, Mass./St. Mark's) and guard Markel Starks (Accokeek, Md./Georgetown Prep). Lubick started 13 times last season and averaged 4.0 points and 3.5 rebounds, while Starks appeared in 29 games, averaging 1.5 points.
The Georgetown roster also features one redshirt freshman - Aaron Bowen (Jacksonville, Fla./QEA [N.C.]) - and five freshmen - Tyler Adams (Brandon, Miss./Brandon), Mikael Hopkins (Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha), Otto Porter (Sikeston, Mo./Scott County Central), Jabril Trawick (Philadelphia, Pa./Abington Friends) and Greg Whittington (Columbia, Md./Oakland Mills) - who all will be looking to make immediate impacts.
The meeting with Savannah State will be the fourth all-time in program history, with the Hoyas leading the head-to-head series, 3-0. Georgetown is 3-0 all-time against the Tigers, the last win a 63-44 decision during the 2009-10 season. In the last meeting between the teams, Clark scored 14 points and grabbed six rebounds to lead four players in double figures as the Hoyas won a game in Savannah, Ga.
Georgetown has won both of the previous meetings between the teams in Washington, including a 100-38 decision during the 2008-09 season at Verizon Center.
Savannah State is coached by former Georgetown guard Horace Broadnax. Broadnax, who played for John Thompson, Jr. and was part of the 1984 NCAA National Championship team, is in his seventh season at SSU.
Under Thompson, the Hoyas have a 6-1 record in season openers, winning the last six, including a 62-59 win at Old Dominion last year. Saturday's game against Savannah State is the first time the team has opened at home since the 2008-09 season, when GU posted a 71-62 win over Jacksonville.
Thompson-led teams have an all-time record of 81-21 at Verizon Center, including a 10-4 mark at home last year. Against non-league opponents, Georgetown is 87-24 under Thompson.
The Hoyas continue their homestand on Monday, Nov. 14, hosting UNC Greensboro in a Mainland game of the Maui Invitational at Verizon Center. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m. The game will be shown live on MASN and can be heard locally on AM 570.