George Mason unraveled in the second half to fall to VCU in the Atlantic 10 opener last night. Both teams started off shooting cold but early turnovers plagued Mason early. Not that this should be a surprise considering the Rams have been turning over Mason for years now. With 14 minutes to play in the second half Mason did manage to cut the lead to six but VCU went on a big run after that to run away with it. It’s easy to say that the freshmen will sometimes play like freshmen but as a matter of fact 13 of Mason’s 22 turnovers came from Moore, Jenkins, Royal, and Thompson.
Shevon Thompson continues to be a rebounding machine but also a liability on the offensive end. They struggle to get him the ball high and even when he is in position he stumbles or mishandles the possession. We all know he’s not nearly assertive enough in the post for someone his size but now we are really seeing him disrupt the offense. Sad to say but if they had any other options on bench outside of Julian Royal I think we’d see him on the bench more. Early in the season teams were focusing on Thompson more and it opened things up for the guards. We saw them have great success with this in the Charleston Classic but now teams have switched strategies.
With Marko Gujanicic still sidelined with the academic issue the depth is even more shallow than before. This is a game were some of the younger guys who struggled early on would have been pulled but they had no one else to put in. Otis Livingston has been the team’s most consistent player and DeAndre Abram and Jaire Grayer have shown flashes but all have a ways to go in their development, especially on defense.
Right now given the roster situation games like this should not surprise anyone. They simply don’t have the horses to compete in a game or an atmosphere like that. The rebuild continues.