It is finally over. Steven Goff of the Washington Post was first to report the news today. George Mason has fired Paul Hewitt after four seasons and a 66-67 overall record in Fairfax. His conference record over the last two seasons in the Atlantic 10 was 8-26 and made for a disastrous transition into a new conference for the program. His failure at Mason went well beyond just the wins and losses, his teams often looked sloppy, unprepared, and in complete disarray in games. Turnovers and poor defense were issues every single season and no improvement was ever really shown. In four years none of his teams ever came close to competing for an NCAA tournament bid.
His roster management, something he mentioned was a problem at his prior coaching stint at Georgia Tech, was also an issue. He failed to recruit a point guard or for that matter, back court players that could compete at a high level. The 2014-15 team dealt with injuries/eligibility issues but looked like a team full of forwards and didn’t have the back court needed to compete in the Atlantic 10. After three full seasons of being here, I found it odd that Hewitt was talking about how they were going to struggle on offense before the start of this year. He had all this time to bring in his own recruits and this was the result? And read up on this year’s best player Shevon Thompson and you will find Hewitt got extremely lucky when he found him as they were initially looking for his teammate.
Hewitt also wasn’t the most likable guy among the fan base. He often blamed players in post game interviews and had a condescending tone when discussing losses. He was never all that energetic on the sidelines and did little to engage with fans. He asked me to put together a Q & A at Brion’s Grill only to lecture those who went about saying critical things about the program on social media.
It’s finally time to move on to hopefully better days for Mason Nation.
[Photo by Bill Bride]