Mason’s season officially over after CBI loss to Loyola

2017-03-16 10_55_48-Patriots fall to Loyola in CBI - George Mason University AthleticsGeorge Mason fell to Loyola (Md.) last night in a game they didn’t look all that interested in. Hosting the first round of the CBI tournament costs the school money and Mason had one of their worst performances of the season. Mason shot 33% and was out-rebounded by the Greyhounds. Loyola came out strong and just looked like they wanted the game more than Mason did. They out-hustled Mason all game long, who struggled badly to make any shots in the first half. Marquise Moore and Jalen Jenkins combined for 7 total points in their final game as Patriots. Dave Paulsen opted to go with the young guys for the majority of the minutes, a teachable moment I’m sure. After the game Paulsen said that perhaps it was a mistake to play in the tournament:

I’m not one to call out players’ effort on the court but it’s been a long season and perhaps the importance of winning this game just wasn’t all that interesting to them. Especially after recovering from the VCU loss in the Atlantic 10 tournament perhaps they were also just burned out from the grind of a long season. I agree with many of the fans that say we should be done with the third tier tournaments and this is certainly a sign pointing that way. I don’t know but it was a sad way to end a strong season where the program showed big strides of moving in the right direction. After three years of 20-loss seasons Mason finally gave us a 20-win season and that’s an achievement I don’t think many could have expected a few months ago.

In other news as we switch to next season’s team it appears that someone on the roster might be transferring. The other day it was reported that Mason offered a 2017 forward from Mount Vernon high school in New York (Sherrod Wright played there). The recruit is Greg Calixte who is a 6’9″, 230-pound big man, who scores well in the post and rebounds the ball well. Boy could Mason use this kid next season. Without a scholarship available at the moment it would have to mean someone on the roster is moving. Pretty obvious after watching this season just who that may be but stay tuned.

  • Gunston98

    Yeah I’m ok never doing the CBI/CIT tournament ever again, just don’t think it’s worth it.

  • ricandersen

    Can anyone tell us how much it did cost GMU?

    I believe schools pay $30,000 to play in the CTI. I’ve read both $40,000 and $50,000 for the CBI.

    • gmuhoops

      I’ve seen the $50K or so number before. I think they get most of it back though through the tournament’s revenue share and ticket sales but yes still paying a fee to host games.

  • dsnjd1

    Bad Decision? Ya’ think? Loyola was a sixth place team from the Patriot League, with an RPI of 212 (Mason’s WAS 103) with sub-.500 winning percentage. The only successful outcome would have been a win, or a loss in the finals (like under Blewitt, a few years ago…which would have been the equivalent of two good weeks of practice) Bruce Pearl at Auburn actually wisely TURNED-DOWN a bid to the CBI an after a bid after an 18 win season in the SEC, to give his player extra study time (No kidding, that’s what he said. And, no one actually studies in the SEC!) I think you will find this year’s the obligatory banner for the 2017 CBI hanging in an unmarked janitors closet in somewhere off the Main Concourse at EBA, available for viewing by appointment only, or if you are lucky enough to catch a glimpse after some kid throws-up during the Sesame’s Street Live Show..

    • gmuhoops

      I have to wonder if the decision came from Brad Edwards, who tweeted out some hype prior to the game, to build marketing on the program is finally winning again. Seems strange a Paulsen team would come out so flat. Did the team think the season was over and then the AD was just like hey why don’t you guys play in this?

      • Gamoo79

        Kinda have to wonder. There didn’t seem to be any motivation there at all.

        • Chris Hirsch

          I thought at least Marquise and Jalen would be hyped to be playing some sort of postseason basketball for the first time in their careers.

          • Gamoo79

            Yeah, you would have thought.

      • Gamoo79

        BTW, do you have any idea what happened to the comments I posted about an hour ago? Took me a long time to type. Thanks.

      • ricandersen

        I was very happy with the way the season [should have] ended. We finished in the top half of the A-10, got our first first-round bye in the A-10 tournament, got our first A-10 tournament win, then played toe-to-toe with VCU for 32 minutes, before getting worn down by a top-50 team.

        Heck, if we somehow pulled out those last 8 minutes versus VCU, we go on to face Richmond, a better team, but a team that we own. I give us 50/50 odds. Beat Richmond, I think we get an NIT berth.

        Seriously, we were perhaps 48 minutes away from an NIT bid? From last year’s 11-21 record. Phenomenal turnaround.

      • Gamoo79

        Hey Ryan, maybe my long post didn’t “take”, or maybe you deleted it. I’m ok either way…its your site and you do a great job with it. But if you do know what happened to it, I’d appreciate knowing.
        If not, oh well, technology 🙂 Thanks

        • gmuhoops

          That’s weird i don’t see it in the comment que, or even the spam. Can u try to repost it?

          • Gamoo79

            Thanks!!

  • Chris Hirsch

    The team had shown signs that they were out of gas to close the regular season, but I think how they played in the A10 tournament gave the administration false hope that they had enough left in the tank to make a run in a subpar tournament. If Mason had lost to Fordham, I doubt they would have played in the CBI.

    • Gamoo79

      Agreed

    • StopWearingPurple

      In Paulsen’s two seasons I have never seen them dog it. The short bench got us some great wins but unfortunately they never seemed to have as much in the tank after the four game win streak.

  • StopWearingPurple

    Danny 4Min/Game Dixon?

  • dsnjd1

    Oh’ by the way in the outside world…thugs lose…thugs lose…thugs lose. Virginia Criminal University is “one and done”.

    This just frees N.C. State to make to “Lil Will Wade” “the next” former VCU coach to flame-out on an Enormous State University level (Jeff Capel../Oklahoma…Anthony Grant/Alabama…and Shaka Smart/Texas [flame-out in progress])

    I’ll say it again: ain’t “VCU schadenfreude” grand?

  • dsnjd1

    Well….Kevin Keatts has left UNCW after two years (and two CAA titles) and has taken the job at N.C. State. (Keatts was big in landing Luke Hancock after he left Mason in the wake of Coach Larranaga’s departure..) So, it looks like Mason will have to deal with “Little” Will Wade for at least another year.

    • Chris Hirsch

      Not if he goes to LSU….

      • dsnjd1

        Yeah, you’re right, but I think Clemson where “Little Will” started as a “student manager”, would be a more logical destination. But don’t care where he goes as long as he goes somewhere to continue the chaos at VCU. They’ve done very well hiring coaches, in the last fifteen (Capel, Grant, Smart) years. It’s simple probability they are due for a Hewitt of their own sooner or later.

  • Gamoo79

    These may not be a popular opinions,
    but here are some of my thoughts.

    I’m really concerned about Temara and Relvao. They just don’t seem like very good players and frankly I hope one of them is the upcoming transfer. Temara best move is flexing on the bench.

    Also, as much as I like Jaire and Otis, neither seem like high ceiling guys to me. Otis just does not seem like an A10 point guard. Too many turnovers, and he falls down to much (see both VCU games). And neither has a dependable shot. And remember, both were emergency offers as DP was trying to fill out the roster at the last minute. I doubt either would be on the team under normal circumstances.

    I hope we continue our upward movement next year, but with Marquise and Jalen gone, a step backward would not surprise me.
    As coach Dave keeps getting more of his guys in, I am very optimistic about the future…just not too sold on where we are right now.

    • G-n-G

      Hmm…interesting points. I’ll offer a few in response.

      DP said after the VCU game that Relvao was cleared to practice only in Oct and has been trying to play when he might otherwise have been rehabbing and getting back into game shape. I’d give him at least next season to make any conclusions on him. He has shown some blocking skills, sets good picks, and has promise as a passer to cutting guards.

      Tamara may never be more than an energy, get-me-10-minutes guy. At this point he doesn’t have much touch around the rim, but he’s just a freshman and DP has experience developing bigs (see: Muscala).

      I agree that Otis hits the ground too often (several times per game) but think that’s mostly a danger to his health. If you compare his soph year stats with an A-10 first teamer (Jaquan Lewis) in his second year then he looks pretty good. Even playing about 350 more minutes, Otis shot better from 2, comparable on 3, and better on FT (with 25% more attempts). Otis grabbed about 70% more rebounds and had a better assist/TO ratio. Jaire has a nice shot (see 80+% FT) and with more reps should be a 40% three-point shooter.

      So overall I’m still optimistic about next year and (like you) the overall trajectory. I do wonder if the guards this team will lean on for the next 2 years are quick enough to stay in front of their man (putting pressure on the bigs). I’d like to see DP apply some disruptive pressure more next year, not just when they’re down 25.

      • Gamoo79

        Thanks for the input. You put some good facts and figures in there that I didn’t know about. Kinda makes me feel better.
        I appreciate it!!

        • WB

          I definitely share your concerns regarding our post players. I really don’t mean to be critical of hardworking college kids, but there’s nothing I’ve seen out of them on the court that screams potential. I’m super happy to be wrong about that. I look at a guy like Ian Boyd and think “ok, some mistakes, but he’s showing you glimpses of what he can do”… just not getting that from the other guys.
          I think Otis is solid. Not saying he’s the best or whatever, but in terms of spots on the team where we can improve, the PG spot is less concerning for me.

  • dsnjd1

    Mike Rhodes former VCU assistant under Shaka Smart and current coach of Rice University, who has a career record of 24-40 at Rice, has been hired at VCU as their next coach. Rhodes was the former coach at Randolph Macon prior to joining Shaka Smart’s staff at VCU. Looks like RPI is trying to keep it in the family when it comes to hiring coaches, Unlike, Mason when L left, I guess in order to minimize defections.

    • dsnjd1

      Oh’ LOL….Will Wade is being trashed as “classless” in Twitter….so funny…because of the way that the LSU job was accepted. Wade reportedly did not address his team after he accepted the LSU job.. So funny…a few days ago Wade was being praised as “the second coming” and as the foundation of a certain VCU Dynasty to come. Boy dreams die hard. I wish upon RPI fans a second coming …a second coming of Paul Hewitt, if that is possible. It builds character, VCU fans, it builds character. lol…lol…lol . .

  • Gamoo79

    A lot has been made, and rightly so, about the 90+ sell outs at the Siegal Center and the rabid fans. It is, and they are. But, its easy to be that way when your team is winning. I don’t know what kind of success Rhodes will have at VCU, but if he pulls a Hewitt or a Brad Daugherty at UNC, it will be interesting to see if the fans continue in their rabidity (is that a word?).
    VCU has become a plum position where the right coach could possibly make it into a Butler or Gonzaga. So far they have done well in hiring unproven coaches, but Rhodes’ record doesn’t look good, and trying to stay in the “family” and continue the “havoc” style instead of looking for the best possible coach could come back to haunt them. Havoc only brings in fans if the team is winning. Otherwise, its nothing more than another style of play. (Westhead ball would have brought in huge crowds…if it had worked. I’d rather win with Tony Bennett than lose with Paul Westhead)
    VCU may continue to roll, but this hire seems to be a bit of a head scratcher.

    • dsnjd1

      This hire seems to be evidence that VCU buys into “the system” philosophy of success. (See the New England Patriots) VCU could have had any number of hot coaches given their success and facilities. Yet they chose “a system guy” with less than a .500 D-I record. Let’s hope they are proven terribly wrong. Obviously, in any case the VCU mystique has suffered a big hit, though,. They are probably asking themselves…”how could any one leave our great nationally respected program and beautiful city and go elsewhere”? Well Jim Larranaga left Mason, Shaka Smart left Virginia Criminal University and Brad Stevens left Butler all left and got PAID! When it comes down to it, money still talks and talks and bullshit still walks. (And plus, Richmond, Va. in certain areas is disgusting!) .

  • Gamoo79

    Richmond Times-Dispatch raving about the Rhodes hire. Even though his overall record is sub .500, apparently he took a Rice team that was 12-23 ish, and this year was 23-12 ish.
    Who knows, maybe he’s pretty good. We’ll see.

    • dsnjd1

      Yeah, his first two years at Rice were under .500, this past year was his break-out year, winning a game or two in the CBI. It really makes you wonder how Mason would have done hiring a Larranaga assistant rather than hiring “the virus”. Scott Cherry is now the head coach at High Point, James Johnson is the Head of B.B. operations at Miami (after a failed tenure as Va. Tech’s head coach), Chris Caputo is back as a Larranaga assistant at Miami., and Mike Huger (a Larranaga assistant starting in 2006-2007) is now the head coach at Bowling Green

    • gmuhoops

      It was between him and Wade to replace Shaka two years ago, I think they went with Wade because he could maintain the high level recruiting. Conference USA is awful i think its around #23 ranked conference and he finished 5th so he doesn’t a whole lot. Rice was a tough job but I think it’s funny VCU is getting coach that went 1-5 against their rival ODU over the last 3 seasons.

      • dsnjd1

        It looks to me like VCU is intent on “recreating that Shaka Magic”, and will probably continue to hire within that coaching tree so until one fails. Can’t really blame them; its worked so far. The other approach ….getting the big name who succeeded at another level….like.Westhead and Hewitt…rarely works, as every Mason fan knows.

  • Gamoo79

    So Rhodes is bringing Havoc back. “We’re going to pick up full court and see if they like pressure.”
    Like I said, I am really worried about us at PG.

  • dsnjd1

    In the “what have you done for me lately department”, Georgetown University, who made the Final Four in 2007, year after Mason, announced today that John Thompson,III will not be returning to coach the Hoyas in 2017-2018. I guess that being the son of a legendary coach, and having a Final Four appearance on your resume’ is not enough to overcome two straight TWENTY LOSS seasons!

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