The home team’s all-silver uniforms were the only part of the Georgia Bulldogs’ game against the Mississippi Rebels that looked good. Facing a completely beatable Ole Miss outfit in Stegeman Coliseum with their hopes of landing an NIT bid very much on the line, the Fox Hounds absolutely gacked it up in an embarrassing 66-63 loss that was nowhere near as close as the final score suggested.
The contest was competitive in the early going, and the two clubs were tied at 20 with seven minutes remaining until halftime. After that, though, the hot hand that had belonged to Terrance Henry shifted to Murphy Holloway, who made a pair of layups off of defensive rebounds following missed Georgia jump shots to spark a Rebel run that left the visitors out in front by eleven points at intermission.
The Red and Black threatened to make a game of it in the second half, coming back from a 36-23 deficit on a Gerald Robinson trey, a Kentavious Caldwell-Pope tip shot, and a Robinson steal leading to a Caldwell-Pope layup. That narrowed the gap to 36-30, and a Donte` Williams swipe put the Hoop Dogs in a position to make the score closer still, but the game then became a comedy of errors. Georgia committed staggering gaffes after closing the gap by playing harder, spoiling their effort by failing to play smarter. The Rebels, with the aid of the officials, appeared briefly to be benefiting from playing “make it, take it.”
Though a late Red and Black run added excitement to the closing seconds, it was an ugly outing marred by all manner of ineptitude on the part of the Bulldogs. The Classic City Canines made just 35.9 per cent of their field goal attempts (23 of 64), went to the free throw line just 14 times while sending Ole Miss to the charity stripe on 35 occasions, took a whopping 30 shots from beyond the arc while sinking a mere nine of them, and were outrebounded (42-30) and outscored in the paint (22-20).
Simply stated, this was a season-sinking setback. Georgia desperately needed the win, and Bulldog Nation knew it, yet neither the fans nor the team showed up for Saturday’s showdown. Someone ought to be tried in The Hague over this atrocity.