Mar 8, 2012; New York, NY, USA; Georgetown Hoyas guard Markel Starks (5) gets tripped as he drives to the basket by Cincinnati Bearcats in the third round of the 2012 Big East Tournament at Madison Square Garden. Cincinnati Bearcats defeats the Georgetown Hoyas 72-70 in double OT. Mandatory Credit: Jim O'Connor-US PRESSWIRE
The Georgetown Hoyas were expected to struggle this year after losing two key seniors, but they've performed above expectations.
With the graduation of seniors Austin Freeman and Chris Wright, expectations were not particularly high for the Georgetown Hoyas this season. Coming into the year, they were ranked 10th in the Big East preseason writers' poll. They significantly exceeded expectations, racking up big wins and avoiding embarrassing losses en route to a 12-6 conference record and a 23-8 overall record.
Georgetown's only non-conference loss was a neutral site loss by just four points to the Kansas Jayhawks. Though the teams they beat for their two biggest non-conference victories got worse after losing to Georgetown, they beat both Alabama and Memphis when both teams were ranked. In conference, their only home loss was to Cincinnati.
As the No. 5 seed in the Big East Tournament, the Hoyas earned a first-round bye before beating Pittsburgh 64-52 in the second round. Georgetown fell in the quarterfinals, though, losing 72-70 after two overtimes to fourth-seeded Cincinnati. The Hoyas enter the NCAA Tournament as the No. 3 seed in the Midwest and will face No. 14 Belmont.
While Freeman and Wright are gone, other players have stepped up to take over the veteran leadership roles. Seniors Jason Clark and Henry Sims are having excellent seasons, while junior Hollis Thompson has made serious improvements from last year. They're supplemented by talented freshman forward Otto Porter, who has improved as the season has gone on.
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