Troy Temara, a 6’8″, athletic forward has signed his letter of intent to play at George Mason after verbally committing to the program back in September. Temara is probably the most athletic and physically gifted of the 2016 class and has plenty of highlight reels that include monster dunks. The interesting thing with him is if he can bring that outside jumper in the post, a staple in Dave Paulsen’s pick and pop offense that we didn’t see this season. With Shevon Thompson and Marko Gujanicic gone, the team is in desperate need for some athleticism and scoring up front. The question will be whether or not he can form a formidable pair in the front court with Jalen Jenkins.
Temara joins a Mason recruiting class that includes sharp-shooters Kamari Newman, Justin Kier and shooting guard Ian Boyd.
Looks like George Mason has added a home and home series to the schedule with Penn State, starting at Happy Valley next season.
It’s that time again, join our bracket challenge on CBSSports.com and win Mason prizes. Join an elite group of winners that features former walk-on player Jimmy Nolan!
Here is the link to the bracket group
The password is mason
My wife has already picked her bracket, based on team mascots, and will probably beat me again for the fifth straight year. Good luck.
While we are all tired of watching this team lose on Wednesday night of the Atlantic 10 tournament, some applause needs to be given to Dave Paulsen. Paulsen came to George Mason with little time to recruit, player transfers, inherited a team with no back court, and had his leading returning scorer quit mid-seaon. Yet somehow this group won more conference games and overall games then last season after the previous staff had four years of recruiting. Also being competitive each night and giving the fans something to cheer about at home games once again was definitely brought back this year. Yeah, I think Paulsen did okay in his first year here.
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Freshman Otis Livingston II, who we may sometimes forget is a freshman because of how confident he plays, earned a spot on the Atlantic 10’s All-Rookie team. Livingston had to be in the running for conference Rookie of the Year honors as well, but was beat out by Fordham’s Joseph Chartouny. Chartouny led the conference in assists and was a big part of Fordham’s turnaround this season. To me, Livingston was a more valuable player to his team than Chartouny but theses awards are typically statistic and results driven. Just more bulletin board material for Otis who continues to amaze us with his progression this season. Also an argument could be made for Jaire Grayer to be on this All-Rookie team as I don’t understand how Saint Joe’s Lamarr Kimble made it. Congrats and a well deserved honor for Otis.
George Mason finished strong at home as they blew past Richmond behind a big second half last night. The win means Mason finished 12th in the conference and will play 13 seed Saint Louis in the first round of the Atlantic 10 tournament this Wednesday in Brooklyn. See the full bracket here for the conference tournament. Seniors Shevon Thompson and Marko Gujanicic had strong games in their EagleBank Arena finales finishing with 16 and 15 points respectively. However the real star for Mason was freshmen Otis Livingston who scored 21 points and was 5-for-5 on three-pointers. Livingston was extremely patient in this game and showed real leadership and maturity down the stretch. It’s certainly been fun to watch this kid develop over the course of the season. Mason completely dominated the Spiders inside the paint and on the boards, something that they have to continue if they want to still be playing in Brooklyn past Wednesday night.
We all know this team can rebound but it was impressive to see this team score 54 points in the second half. The offense has been up and down all season and sometimes they have struggled to put points on the board even in games they are playing pretty well. They will need this kind of momentum on offense this week in the A-10 tournament. A win against Saint Louis gets them another crack at George Washington.
[Photos by Bill Bride]
Lot of coverage this week on the 10th anniversary of George Mason’s Final Four run in 2006. Has it been that long? Definitely has a special place in my heart as I started this site that August after it happened. There’s a great in-depth look from Matt Norlander of CBS that is definitely worth your time and shares a lot tidbits that most people don’t know. Also the Washington Post has a great video:
Jim Larranaga and his Miami team will be practicing at George Mason to prep before the ACC tournament. Will they scrimmage our guys?
Well looks like I jinxed the team after I posted this last week. George Mason followed up their impressive win over VCU with two straight losses on the road at La Salle and GW just last night. Both losses were nothing like the VCU game where Mason dominated inside on both ends. Instead it seems they have reverted back to their ill-advised outside shooting woes. GW kept them out of the paint and held Mason’s offense to almost nothing outside of Jaire Grayer. Jalen Jenkins finished with a mere two points while Shevon Thompson struggled with four turnovers. On top of that they lost Marquise Moore again just before the half, it appeared his ankle was bothering him again.
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The improved play of Jalen Jenkins has certainly been a big part of George Mason’s wins over Davidson and VCU. He has been a clutch go to guy and a real force inside on both ends of the court. Jenkins has averaged 14.2 points per game over the last five contests and has given the offense a needed spark. Too often this season Mason has relied on outside shooting to beat teams and we’ve all seen how that has been wildly inconsistent. Jenkins and Thompson are providing points in the paint off put backs and great leads from Otis Livingston and Marquise Moore. The team overall is now less one-dimensional on offense and a lot tougher inside on defense.
The coaching staff certainly played a role in getting him back on track:
“He spent extra time with assistant coach Duane Simpkins banging him with a football blocking pad during post shooting drills. What Paulsen calls “the lag time” between practice improvement and game improvement ended with Jenkins going for 20 points and nine rebounds in an 81-75 loss at Davidson on Jan. 9 in the Patriots’ third A-10 game.”
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George Mason went into this game with a different approach then we’ve seen recently, work the ball inside and forget the three-point shooting. Well it worked as the team played more to their own strengths in a 76-69 win over VCU, yes that VCU. Last time against the Rams, Mason was flustered by VCU’s press and didn’t break the 50 point barrier. Tonight they forced VCU to play their game, a gritty battle won on the boards and at the free-throw line. It was a true “earn every inch” type of game. Mason took only five three-point attempts the whole night and got big nights up front from Shevon Thompson and Jalen Jenkins. On defense they forced VCU into plenty of bad shots and possessions. Marquise Moore back in the lineup certainly helped on defense and was a game changer tonight in the back court scoring 15 points and getting to the line for 11 attempts.
I like that Dave Paulsen and company stuck to their game plan and got the younger players to buy into it in this game. They were playing with a lot of confidence from the start and it carried over into the second half. You could tell winning this game meant a lot to the players and that’s something we all love to see.