On April 2, 2017, Georgetown hired the great Patrick Ewing to replace longtime coach John Thompson III. Georgetown has long tried to keep John Thompson Jr, who coached from 1972-1999, happy. Ewing played at Georgetown under Thompson Jr and had a great career as a member of the Hoyas so it was a no-brainer when they hired Ewing
Everyone assumed and rightfully so Ewing would kill it on the recruiting trail and he just hasn’t. For this, we’ll look at what we’re supposed to be his best recruits that Ewing had picked up. Jamarko Pickett has been his best recruit as the Hoyas coach, he was ranked 76th in his class of 2017, Pickett is an okay player good shooter, solid rebounder but that’s about it, plus he only shoots 39% shooting from the field. He hasn’t lived up to his ceiling entering his final season, only averaging 10 PPG with only 6 scholarship players active late into the season.
Next is James Akinjo who was ranked 90th in his class of 2018, he was good in year one but transferred only 7 games into last season to the University of Arizona. Akinjo had 13.4 PPG in his 7 games last season but a trend will build in that he’s a solid player that Ewing couldn’t keep around.
From a recruiting perspective Jabari Sibley is next in line, Sibley is 97th in the 2020 class, we’ll still have to see what he can do at Georgetown in what will be his freshman season.
Next is Josh LeBlanc, who was 122nd in his class of 2018, he’s from Baton Rouge, LA and he had 9.1 points and 7 rebounds per game in only 24 MPG his freshman season. Clearly LeBlanc is talented this one is different though, as along with Myron Gardner (JUCO), and Galen Alexander (Texas Southern), Josh LeBlanc (LSU) transferred after a civil lawsuit was put out against them after being accused of Sexual Harassment, Assault, Burglary. They left due to feeling like they were attacked publicly by Media, Peers due to allegations that they claim they didn’t commit. Georgetown’s administration was quiet about the whole thing.
That leads to my next point of Ewing’s inability to keep players. James Akinjo (Arizona), Josh LeBlanc (LSU), Galen Alexander (Texas Southern), Myron Gardner (JUCO) all transferred last season, and Mac McClung entered the Transfer Portal last week. That is five players in what is 7 months’ time and that’s a huge problem. This instantly looks bad on Ewing and falls on him.
On May 6th, Ewing said in an interview that “McClung would return for his Junior Season” will going through evaluation in the Draft Process. McClung said “It seemed to have confused teams,” because McClung said that he had never told Ewing he was definitely coming back. That seems to be what was the straw that broke the camel’s back in his relationship with Ewing and he was done with it.
He’s the second player now to transfer due to issues with Coach Ewing, James Akinjo the other. Not having trust from your players is a HUGE issue and clearly he doesn’t have enough trust from his guys going into his 4th season. His team should be ready for an NCAA Tournament bid, not hoping to be able to fill out a roster and being near the bottom of the Big East because they are a bad team. They went 5-13 in Big East play last season and are losing McClung, Omer Yurtseven, Terrell Allen, and Jagan Mosely. Yurtseven is leaving early for the Draft, while Allen and Mosely graduated. They aren’t getting any better anytime soon either and it’s looking rough for Ewing.
In Ewing’s first season they went 15-15 his first season not bad for a first season. They built off that momentum and went 19-14 in his 2nd season while making the NIT. This past season was supposed to be the year they made a return to the NCAA Tournament but instead, they went 15-17. They are getting worse the longer Ewing is there and a change probably needs to be made.
Their starting-5 heading into next year is Jahvon Blair (SR), Jalen Harris (SR, Arkansas Grad Transfer), Jamarko Pickett (SR), Timothy Igohefe (SO), Qudus Wahab (SO), that just isn’t a good team. That’s a team that can maybe get 13/14 wins but not anything resembling an NCAA Tournament team. It feels the team is getting worse the longer Ewing is at the helm, so it could be time to make a change before things get setback even more for the Hoyas,
A once-prominent College Basketball program is one of the worst teams in the Big East in 2020-21, which is just crazy, as I never thought I’d see the day where that was the case especially with a Georgetown Legend as their head coach. While I’m not sure Ewing is a bad coach, he hasn’t been able relate to 18-22-year-olds’s thus far or they wouldn’t always be leaving early. No disrespect to Patrick Ewing but this just hasn’t worked out for him as the Georgetown Head Coach.