2005 Georgia Bulldogs Basketball Preview
2005 Georgia Bulldogs Team Preview
Since Coach Dennis Felton took over the Bulldogs two years ago the team has not been to the NCAA Tournament. He has been rebuilding and that takes time. They probably won’t make it this year either but they should be closer to that goal.
Georgia is one of those rare teams that enters the 2005-05 season with all major players returning and five talented freshmen recruits. This is a young team composed primarily of sophomores and first-years. One senior returns, backup guard Jay McAuley.
For the past two seasons the Bulldogs have been a small team by SEC standards. This year’s frosh class features Rashad Singleton, a 7’ 0”, 250-pound center; Kendrick Johnson, a 6’ 10”, 225-pound swingman; and Terrance Woodbury, a 6’ 6”, 205-pound guard. In terms of size, this is progress.
However the new player who should have an immediate impact will be 6’ 4”, 185-pound guard Mike Mercer-- a highly rated, athletic point man. He’s a good defensive player with versatility, but his shot needs work.
Two juniors and three sophomores compose this season’s Georgia Bulldogs’ starting five. Junior guard Levi Stukes led the team in points, averaging 15.2 per contest. Sophomore guard Sundiata Gaines gave the Bulldogs 12 more points a game. Coach Felton likes to play a perimeter offense and both of these accurate shooters work well with this model.
At center 6’ 10” David Bliss gave the Bulldogs a consistent presence off the boards with 5.4 RPG and 7.2 PPG. He’s still going to be the main man inside while the first-year big men take some time to mature. The inside game, with forward Steve Newman is barely adequate, especially for a team that ranked last in their conference in 3-point percentage. Guard Channing Toney, who rounds out the starters, is a terror at the free throw line, hitting 91.0 percent and can also contribute from outside.
The 2005-06 Georgia Bulldogs are an improvement over last year’s team but major progress will have to wait until the new big men are ready to contribute in a consistent fashion.
For more info on the 2005 Bulldogs check out the official Georgia athletic site.