Has there been a more inconsistent team over the last three weeks than the Georgetown Hoyas?
Blown out by Syracuse, blow out Duke, lose to South Florida, smack Villanova, struggle to hold on against Providence, and finally yesterday's loss to Rutgers. After the win over Villanova, many pundits had the Hoyas slotted in the last two seed.
Its doubtful that is going to ring true anymore. Rutgers hadn't beaten a top 10 team in almost seven years, and this win may actually save their head coach's job. Not exactly a great loss.
The obvious answer is Chris Wright. When he scores in double figures, Georgetown is 16-0. When he doesn't, the Hoyas are 2-6.
But that isn't exactly what Georgetown's issue is.
As we said after the Villanova game, the Hoyas are a team that, when they play their game, will beat just about anyone in the country. When they are playing patiently on the offensive end, moving the ball quickly until someone has a good shot or penetration opportunity, and simply playing good, hard, fundamental defense, Georgetown is going to be nearly impossible to beat.
But they didn't show up against Rutgers. At all.
Georgetown got into a bit of a hole early, and completely lost the ability to execute their game plan. The Hoyas forced quick shots on the offensive end. They made ill-advised drives to the rim. They decided not to play any defense on Rutgers.
And that's the real reason that Chris Wright is the most important player for this team.
Wright is the Hoyas' point guard, but he isn't the guy that they run their offense through. That would be Greg Monroe, who proved why with 19 points, eight boards, and six assists last night. Wright, essentially, is a scoring guard trapped in a point guard's body. He doesn't have the mentality or the leadership to, when things are going badly, make a change in what the Hoyas are doing. He's not a vocal leader, and he's not a guy that will get on his teammates if they aren't hustling defensively or are taking bad shots.
The Hoyas, as a result, don't have that coach on the floor. They don't have that leader, the stopper that can get them running their sets. Wright is just as likely to force a dumb shot early in the shot clock as anyone on the team.
It's only natural for a team like Georgetown, who has had a lot of success this season, to come out a bit flat against inferior teams, especially during a road game late on a Sunday afternoon.
And while Georgetown is an excellent team when they do play Hoya basketball, there are going to be times during the postseason that they get into trouble.
If they don't have someone that can change the momentum when that happens, the Hoyas may be primed for an early exit come March Madness.