I was in the group that thought Georgetown would never fire John Thompson III, so yesterday was surprising. It’s a move that will impact DC area college basketball, especially on the recruiting scene. What does this mean for George Mason basketball and head coach Dave Paulsen? Mason has already had an uphill battle trying to get local recruits and now a new head coach in town could change the landscape a bit. Despite the program’s lack of recent success, Georgetown was still landing a lot of top local talent in the area. Will that continue with a new coach? That depends largely on the who they hire.
There are some new rule changes from the NCAA that will go into effect this season, mostly geared towards helping the offense. Coaches are torn over them and it will be interesting to see how some teams adjust to them in November and December. The changes are in place because they want to help the offense out because there were a lot of ugly games last season. But how will these changes affect George Mason this season?
George Mason’s Final Four run of 2006 is of course in the news again due to Jim Larranaga and Miami playing in the Sweet 16 at the Verizon Center in Washington, DC. Besides all the trips down memory lane, I thought it was interesting some for financial numbers being talked about again. Some are comparing the costs for the NCAA tournament travel and other expenses for smaller schools that have made runs because of Florida Gulf Coast’s current position. ESPN’s Darren Rovell shares some interesting costs that George Mason had to fork over in 2006:
A source close to the George Mason athletic department told ESPN.com that the school lost hundreds of thousands of dollars that were not reimbursed during its 2006 run to the Final Four. One of the culprits: The school still had to pay for hotel rooms even though it played its Sweet 16 and Elite Eight games in Washington D.C., just 20 miles from the school. However, it was a good trade off as George Mason professor concluded that the team’s performance in the tournament that year was worth more than $677 million in free publicity to the school.
There was a 25 percent surge in the number of alumni who were considered active with the university’s alumni association. A $100 million fund-raising campaign attracted $132 million in donations.
The George Mason bookstore took in more money in March 2006 ($800,000) than it did the entire rest of the year ($625,000). Enrollment in the annual summer basketball camp more than doubled. N.C.A.A. licensing revenue went up by $100,000.
I know a lot of people already knew this information but just found some if interesting and it’s such a bigger deal for schools like George Mason, VCU, and Florida Gulf Coast to make deep runs in the tournament
A win against Charleston tomorrow night gets them either Texas or Houston in the next round. Fun fact, Rick Barnes, head coach of Texas, was George Mason’s head coach during the 1987-1988 season. The venue for that game in the semis is still TBD so another game at the Patriot Center might not be out of the question. Don’t know how many fans would actually show up for that one though.
The way George Mason lost to Northeastern in the semifinals was the story of the season. We saw some flashes of excellence but then it was quickly negated by the team’s recurring fundamental problems. At least if Mason plays well in this tournament there will be a glimmer of hope going into next season. We’ll just have to see how seriously the players take this tournament.
Now let’s back to our speculating of March Madness…
George Mason finally got the respect they deserved today as they were ranked #25 in the nation on this week’s ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.
Also, Mason is ranked #26 in the AP Poll.
If you curious here’s a link to see how each one of the AP members voted.
Mason head coach Jim Larranaga has been chosen to serve on the NCAA Division I Regional Advisory Committee. He will represent the CAA (as he often does everywhere) as one of 31 coaches on the committee chosen by the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee and the National Association of Basketball Coaches. These committees help determine which teams will be in the field of 68 this March for the NCAA tournament. Each coach chosen votes monthly and ranks the top 15 for the East region which includes the following conferences: America East, ACC, Atlantic 10, Big East, Colonial, Ivy, Metro Atlantic, Mid-Eastern, Northeast and Patriot. This is really an honor for Coach L and shows how well respected he is in the world of college basketball.
“Just got off the phone with Fairfield coach Ed Cooley. The Stags have accepted a big to play in the 2010 College Insider Tournament.
Fairfield (20-10) will play at George Mason (17-14) of the Colonial League on Tuesday night.”
Tuesday March 16
South Dakota (22-9) @ Creighton (16-15)
Fairfield (22-10) @ George Mason (17-14)
Wednesday March 17
Harvard (21-7) @ Appalachian State (22-10)
Western Carolina (22-11) @ Marshall (23-9)
Middle Tennessee State (19-13) @ Missouri State (20-12)
Portland (21-10) @ Northern Colorado (24-7)
Pacific (20-11) @ Loyola Marymount (18-14)
Thursday March 18
Southern Mississippi (20-13) @ Louisiana Tech (23-10)
- The Washington Times previews the area college teams
- John Feinstein says CAA could get 3 or 4 NCAA bids this season………….yeah
- Another CAA point guard lost for the season, JMU’s Devon Moore
- Andy Katz’s shares his thoughts on the CAA this season
- Pat Forde picks George Mason as best cinderella of the decade
- Learn the words to the new fight song before Friday
- Your Ultimate D.C. Sports Twitter List
- Coach Larranaga’s view on the new block/charge rule change
- GoMason.com wants you to design them a video game, huh?
- Kathy Orton, author of “Outside the Limelight: Basketball in the Ivy League” will be at the Patriot Center Nov. 15 for the game vs Dartmouth