The college basketball articles I've been reading or seeing on TV lately have completely neglected to mention a certain 2007 Final Four team and a 2008 Big East contender ; the Georgetown Hoyas.
While there are teams such as North Carolina that are returning a large number of star players AND bringing in highly rated recruiting classes, and while Georgetown lost key players such as Roy Hibbert and Patrick Ewing, Jr. to the NBA draft, and while the Big East is a fairly solid conference, these are no reasons to count out the Hoyas before the season even starts.
"What about the tough schedule?"
Georgetown's first major test comes on December 13 against another draft-ravaged team, the Memphis Tigers. After what should be fairly easy wins against Mount St. Mary's and FIU, the Hoyas go through a tough stretch of games, including road games at UConn, Notre Dame, Duke, and Marquette. The home games during that period certainly won't be easy wins either; with Pitt, West Va., Providence, and Syracuse coming to D.C to take on G-town. If Georgetown can win more of these few games than they lose and avoid getting upset in other games, they should be in very good shape to take a top 5 seed in the Big East tournament, and advance onward with a decent seed into the NCAA tournament.
"But with Roy Hibbert and Patrick Ewing, Jr. leaving though, the Hoyas would seem to have a need for players down low, right?"
Here, diaper dandy Greg Monroe should adequately fill in for Big Roy down low, while promising guards Chris Wright and Austin Freeman will see major increases in playing time, and will need to step up at guard position. Look for junior DaJuan Summers and senior Jessie Sapp to be the veteran leaders of the team, as well.
No, I'm not saying they're better than UNC. And no, I'm not saying that Georgetown is necessarily a national championship quality team this year. What I am saying, though, is that other teams who are overlooking G-town will soon realize that theres still plenty fight left in these dogs.