John Thompson III and Georgetown finished in a three-way tie atop the Big East standings in 2012-13. The Hoyas shared the league title with Louisville, who ended the season as the national champion, and Marquette, who they will continue to build a rivalry with in the new Big East Conference.
Georgetown lost versatile forward Otto Porter Jr. to the NBA, after deciding to forgo his final two seasons in Washington D.C. The Hoyas will try to make their fifth straight March Madness appearance in 2014, though they've only won a single NCAA tournament game during that time frame.
The Hoyas should compete for another Big East title in the league's inaugural season, competing with the likes of Marquette, Creighton and Villanova. They are currently receiving votes in the AP Poll and will need to adjust to life without Porter, who is still nearby as a member of the Washington Wizards.
This preview will give a glimpse of Georgetown's roster, projected rotation, returning players, newcomers, key players, season scenarios and, of course, a prediction of how the Hoyas' regular season and postseason play out.
Reggie Cameron- The 88th-ranked player, according to Rivals in 2013, Cameron played his prep ball at Hudson Catholic High School in New Jersey. Cameron is a pure shooter who will be able to stretch the floor. He is a perfect fit for the Princeton offense and is similarly built to Porter.
He will be able to play either forward position but would be best served as a stretch 4. Cameron chose to come out east, choosing Thompson and company over Michigan, Connecticut, Miami, North Carolina and Seton Hall. Expect Cameron to see minutes as a true freshman, though off the bench.
Joshua Smith- Despite starting his junior season at UCLA before quitting the team, Smith was recently granted two seasons to play at Georgetown by the NCAA. As a true freshman, Smith averaged 10.9 points and 6.3 rebounds in just under 22 minutes per game.
Smith's numbers dipped to 9.9 points and 4.9 rebounds in 17.2 minutes as a sophomore, before struggling in those six contests in late 2012, making his decision to leave UCLA an easy one. Smith is reported to have lost 40 pounds and dropped to 310, possibly allowing him to play more extended minutes.
Markel Starks- The distributor and primary ball-handler in Thompson's Princeton offense, Starks has improved each season. His scoring averages have increased from 1.5 as a freshman to 7.1 as a sophomore, before breaking out as a junior and dropping 12.8 points per game.
Starks also dished out three assists and swiped 1.3 steals in just over 34 minutes. He made two three-pointers per game, connecting on 42 percent of his attempts from deep. Without Porter, Starks will take on more of a scorer's role, though he will have plenty of returning talent to dish the ball off to as well.
D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera- Coming off the Hoya bench as a freshman, Smith-Rivera was an offensive spark plug, scoring just under nine points in 25.2 minutes per game. He also pulled in three rebounds and assisted on 1.4 baskets, though was never shy to shoot the ball himself.
Smith-Rivera should enter the starting lineup as a sophomore but will continue to be a top offensive option regardless of whether he starts or is a reserve. The 6'3" guard from Indianapolis could improve on his shooting efficiency, as he only made one in three shots from behind the arc.
Nate Lubick- The ultimate glue guy and team player, Lubick's role increased to starter as a junior, after being a key reserve his first two seasons. Lubick played just under 30 minutes per game, averaging 7.1 points, 5.4 rebounds and 2.8 assists, while also making plays that don't show up in the scorebook.
The 6'8" forward will continue to be called upon to make hustle plays, taking charges and diving on the floor for loose balls. While he may not have a single extraordinary skill, he is capable of beating you in a number of ways and is deceiving in doing so.
0 Tyler Adams C 6'9" 254 JR Brandon, MS
1 Reggie Cameron F 6'7" 225 FR Hackensack, NJ
2 Greg Whittington F 6'8" 205 JR Columbia, MD
3 Mikael Hopkins F 6'9" 223 JR Hyattsville, MD
4 D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera G 6'3" 218 SO Indianapolis, IN
5 Markel Starks G 6'2" 175 SR Accokeek, MD
12 David Allen G 6'2" 185 SO Dallas, TX
23 Aaron Bowen F 6'6" 208 SR Jacksonville, FL
24 Joshua Smith C 6'10" 350 JR Kent, WA
25 John Caprio G 6'6" 220 SR North Caldwell, NJ
31 Stephen Domingo G 6'6" 206 SO San Francisco, CA
32 Moses Ayegba C 6'9" 247 SR Kano, Nigeria
34 Nate Lubick F 6'8" 219 SR Southborough, MA
42 Bradley Hayes C 7'0" 251 SO Jacksonville, FL
55 Jabril Trawick G 6'5" 210 JR Philadelphia, PA
Others: Stephen Domingo, Moses Ayegba, Greg Whittington (injured)
Bench: Tyler Adams, David Allen, John Caprio, Bradley Hayes
Mikael Hopkins- Though Smith's early arrival to Georgetown came as a pleasant surprise, Hopkins is my pick to start at center for the Hoyas, though that could very well change by Big East play. Hopkins has started 31 games in his career, though he's been wildly inconsistent in that role.
Hopkins should be more inconsistent as a junior, after averaging 5.9 points, 2.9 rebounds and 1.3 assists in half of the available minutes each game. With Smith's immobility still in question and unfamiliar in Georgtown's system, Hopkins is still a better fit in the Princeton offense for the time being.
Jabril Trawick- The third guard in Georgetown's starting five will be Trawick, a junior from Philly. Trawick averaged 5.8 points, 2.9 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.1 steals a year ago. While those numbers are nearly identical to Hopkins' junior year stats, Trawick saw more on-court action, averaging 26.6 minutes of PT.
At 6'5", Trawick will have to defend the other team's 3-position, while also improving on his offensive game. Trawick made less than 30 percent of his three-point attempts, a vital part of their offense. Trawick is under the radar compared to his fellow Hoya teammates and could be poised for a big junior year.
Best-Case Scenario: Sweet 16
In his nine seasons at the helm, John Thompson III has won eight NCAA tournament contests. Half of those came in 2007, when Jeff Green and Roy Hibbert led them to the Final Four. Since then, they've only been able to muster two tournament victories and haven't reached a Sweet 16 during that time.
The 2013 second-round matchup against "Dunk City" (Florida Gulf Coast) ended the Hoyas season, and Otto Porter's collegiate career, rather abruptly. Georgetown is bound to get over the hump and back into the Sweet 16, but until they get back there, it remains a best-case scenario.
Worst-Case Scenario: NIT Bid
While Georgetown is projected to finish second or third in the new Big East, there is still uncertainty in the new league. Seven of the league's members came from the old Big East, while Creighton, Xavier and Butler are the odd men out. Adjustments and more in-depth game plans will be necessary for all involved.
While the Hoyas essentially bring back everyone besides Porter, he truly was the primary focus of their offense a year ago. Greg Whittington, who was expected to replace Porter, tore his ACL in the offseason. Whittington had averaged 12.1 points and seven rebounds in 2012, before being ruled academically ineligible for the second semester, so they are used to not having Whittington available to suit up.
Prediction: 21-11 (12-6), At-Large Bid, NCAA Tournament Third Round
The Hoyas will challenge themselves on several occasions in non-league games, with matchups against Oregon, Kansas and Michigan State on the docket. They will be able to add some easy wins still and won't have to travel to play on the road anytime between Nov. 9 and Dec. 20.
In league play, only Marquette and Creighton will finish with better conference records. The Hoyas will protect home court, while away from home they will get to visit historic Hinkle Fieldhouse on Jan. 11, as they take on the Butler Bulldogs in the first of two meetings this season.
On Selection Sunday, the Hoyas will hear their name with a No. 7 seed next to it. Georgetown will win a nail-biting opener, before losing to a second-seeded opponent in the round of 32. Despite a successful season on paper, fans will be disappointed with recent NCAA tournament success, or lack thereof.