Improbable Georgia will Pose Issues for Xavier

Brian GaylordCorrespondent IMarch 19, 2008

The Xavier Musketeers are in trouble.

Do you know how long it takes to load a musket, especially with Bulldogs bearing down on you? While Xavier foot soldier Stanley Burrell busies with a musket, Georgia’s Sundiata Gaines will go for his throat.

Not even a tornado could stop the Georgia Bulldogs’ improbable run through the SEC Tournament, grabbing an NCAA Tournament berth in the only way they could.

A tornado that pounded the Georgia Dome forced the SEC Tournament to relocate to Georgia Tech’s home gym last Saturday, where the Bulldogs won a doubleheader. Georgia beat Mississippi, Kentucky, Mississippi State, and Arkansas to claim the SEC Tournament crown.


All season long Georgia lost close games. Finally in the SEC Tournament, they learned how to close the deal.


The Bulldogs had lost 10 of their last 12 games before the SEC Tournament, securing a No. 14 seed in the West bracket of the NCAA Tournament.


No. 14 seeds have an uninspiring 13-72 record against No. 3 seeds in the past 20 years. But the state of Georgia hasn’t been this hot since Yankee soldiers set it ablaze in the Civil War. Look for the Bulldogs to be the 14th  No. 14 seed to win in the past 21 years.


Florida coach Billy Donovan said that if Georgia beats Xavier, he wouldn’t think of it as an upset.


Following a win over Xavier, next up for the Bulldogs likely will be the Purdue Boilermakers, who should get past Baylor. Purdue is going to need a few stiff boilermakers after it loses to Georgia.

It’s at this point that the road leads back to Georgia for the Bulldogs, likely victims of Duke in the Sweet 16 round.

But it’s all gravy for the Bulldogs, a team that 12 days ago appeared to be playing out the string.


The pressure is squarely on the Musketeers. On Josh Duncan, Drew Lavender and the rest.


They’re going to need to roll out the big guns. Muskets aren’t enough to take down Bulldogs.