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A-10 opponents revealed for GW, Mason

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A-10 opponents revealed for GW, Mason

Overall college basketball schedules won't be revealed for several more weeks, but we do have a healthy amount of info for two local programs.

George Washington and George Mason, both members of the Atlantic 10, learned their in-conference opponents this week. Each A-10 men's basketball team plays 18 games with five home-and-home partners. Those partners are bolded.

George Mason

Home: Dayton, Duquesne, St. Bonaventure, Saint Joseph’s, Davidson, George Washington, Richmond, Saint Louis, VCU

Away: Fordham, LaSalle, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Davidson, George Washington, Richmond, Saint Louis, VCU

George Washington

Home: Fordham, LaSalle, Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s, Davidson, Duquesne, George Mason, Richmond, VCU

Away: Dayton, Massachusetts, St. Bonaventure, Saint Louis, Davidson, Duquesne, George Mason, Richmond, VCU 

Mason and GW essentially have the exact same home-and-home series, including a matchup against each other. The lone difference has the Patriots facing Saint Louis and the Colonials meeting Duquesne. VCU should remain formidable even with the loss of coach Shaka Smart to Texas. Davidson made the NCAA Tournament this past season.

GW, despite the loss of graduating senior John Kopriva and transfer Kethan Savage, will enter the season as one of the conference favorites under coach Mike Lonergan. Their lone meeting with Rhode Island, the likely preseason favorite, will take place at the Smith Center. 

The Colonials reached he second round of the NIT last season. Returning starters and rising seniors Kevin Larsen, Patricio Garino and Joe McDonald should be in the mix for All-A10 preseason honors. 

Dave Paulsen enters his first season at George Mason. The former Bucknell coach replaced Paul Hewitt in March. The Patriots went 20-42 over the past two seasons.

Georgetown gets a boost with Jessie Govan returning to school

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Georgetown gets a boost with Jessie Govan returning to school

After testing the NBA Draft waters, Georgetown center Jessie Govan decided to return to the Hoyas for his senior season.

Govan announced his intention to return on Instagram a week before the final commitment deadline.

Returning to the Hoyas is definitely a boost to the program that will be in their second year under head coach Patrick Ewing.  At 6-10, Govan was the team’s leading scorer (17.9 ppg) and rebounder (10.0 rpg) averaging a double-double last season.

Paired alongside power forward Marcus Derrickson, the Hoyas were nearly unstoppable in the paint. Derrickson though decided to forgo his senior year and signed with an agent after the season.

Had Govan decided to leave that would have meant over 56 percent of the team’s scoring and rebounding would have departed (to graduation or professional pursuits) in a handful of months. Not the best outlook for a 15-win team that went 5-13 in the Big East.

Instead Ewing gets back his leading scorer that many believe he can mold as a young protégée. While in the draft process without an agent Govan had workouts with the Boston Celtics and the New York Knicks. Both are valuable experiences that he will bring to a relatively young Georgetown squad.

Having Govan for one more year will bridge Ewing’s second season to transfer big-man, Omer Yurtseven to his first year of eligibility in 2019. They were set up to having a walk-on and two sophomores being the only returning Hoyas over 6-6 for the upcoming season.

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Future NBA prospect Omer Yurtseven transfers to Georgetown from NC State

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Future NBA prospect Omer Yurtseven transfers to Georgetown from NC State

The pieces are starting to come together for Patrick Ewing.

On Monday the Georgetown Hoyas picked up perhaps the biggest (literally and figuratively) target of the transfer market, Omer Yurtseven.

From North Carolina State, the transfer from Istanbul Turkey will have two years remaining of eligibility. Due to NCAA transfer rules, he is not allowed to play for the 2018-19 season.

MORE NCAA: TOP BUZZER BEATERS IN NCAA TOURNAMENT HISTORY

Standing at 7-0, the center helped power the Wolfpack to an NCAA tournament bid this past season. Averaging 13.5 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks a contest, Yurstseven earned All-ACC Third Team honors in the 2017-18 season. He also touted a 58.3 shooting percentage and was not afraid to pull it up from deep either (22 made three-pointers).

NC State lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to No. 8 Seton Hall, but he was limited due to foul trouble with only two points and two rebounds in 14 minutes of play.

Initially, he is the option to fill the void that Jessie Govan will leave, whether that is during this offseason or next. Already the team has lost power forward Marcus Derrickson

Yurtseven will just be another frontcourt talent for Ewing with the Hoyas.

It was widely reported that he was considering playing options, both in the United States and abroad before this announcement. Easily he has the talent to go in first round of the NBA Draft whichever year he declares.

On the same day, the Hoyas also announced the signing of four-star guard James Akinjo.