Early schedule forces Georgetown freshmen into hurry up mode


Early schedule forces Georgetown freshmen into hurry up mode

It's crazy to think that after months and months without college basketball, the new season tips off in less than two weeks. For Georgetown, that means Nov. 14 against Radford. No offense to the Big South program, but what's perhaps truly crazy for the Big East's Hoyas are the headliner non-conference foes that follow. Not just games down the line, but BOOM, right away.

That's why the summer trip to Italy wasn't just an opportunity for the players, particularly the incoming freshmen, to see the world. It provided the young roster, one with only three upperclassmen on scholarship, extra practice time.

"Our schedule gets very difficult very quickly," Georgetown coach John Thompson III said during a recent interview with "We don't have the luxury of time easing into the season."

Game two on the docket is the much-anticipated clash at Maryland on Nov. 17. The Terps, led by sophomore guard Melo Trimble, are ranked No. 3 preseason in the Associated Press poll.

Next up, No. 17 Wisconsin in the opening round of the 2K Classic at Madison Square Garden. The Badgers lost to Duke in the national championship game last season. Speaking of Duke, Georgetown faces either the No. 5 Blue Devils or always-formidable VCU in New York some 48 hours after tangling with Wisconsin.


Without assuming the result of any game, the Hoyas could be 1-3 nine days into the season. They could also vault themselves high into the national rankings after opening in the "others receiving votes" bin. Despite the presence of Big East Player of the Year candidate D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera and a roster Thompson considers among his most versatile ever, Georgetown finished eighth among the teams receiving votes outside the top 25.

Ongoing practices at McDonough Arena could alter his thinking, but it's clear Thompson expects those freshman -- center Jessie Govan, forward Marcus Derrickson, swingman Kaleb Johnson -- will be high in the rotation. All three were graded four-star recruits by ESPN.

From last season's team that finished 22-11 and reached the NCAA Tournament's round of 32, five players return with clear spots in the rotation: Guards D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera, Tre Campbell and L.J. Peak with forwards Isaac Copeland and Paul White. Thompson noted Hayes' strong showing in the tournament win over Eastern Washington continued into the previously seldom-used center's offseason workouts. Forwards Trey Mourning and Reggie Cameron provide additional depth.

Govan, a 6-foot-10 New Yorker with an array of big man could start at center over senior Bradley Hayes -- and help Thompson unlock parts of the game plan limited in recent seasons. Derrickson offers 3-point range from the frontcourt while Johnson replenishes some of the bulldog mentality lost with the graduation of Jabril Trawick.  

"I think the trip was beneficial," Thompson explained. "I really think it helped the freshman class because they're going to be in the mix. Just getting them acclimated and going through a few practices before practice officially began. Having them play in some games. ... I think the trip helped."

Georgetown also hosts former Big East rival Syracuse and plays at Charlotte before starting conference play Dec. 30 at DePaul. Playing at Connecticut in January -- during the midst of Big East play -- is perhaps another case of scheduling insanity or a toughening up test before the final weeks of the regular season.

Plenty of playing time opportunities exist for the freshmen. Those moments will come early and against notable competition. Better grow up quick, kids. With this crazy schedule, there really isn't another choice. Boom.

New AP Poll for Top 25: Ohio State drops to No. 11

USA Today

New AP Poll for Top 25: Ohio State drops to No. 11

Clemson is back at No. 2 in The Associated Press college football poll behind top-ranked Alabama, moving up to where it started, after a convincing victory and Ohio State's first loss of the season.

The Crimson Tide are a unanimous No. 1, with all 61 first-place votes Sunday, for the first time this season.

The Tigers trailed only Alabama in the preseason rankings, but a couple of close wins in September -- combined with seemingly impressive performances by other highly ranked teams -- dragged Clemson to as low as No. 4.

Coming off a lopsided win against North Carolina State, Clemson rose a spot this week. Notre Dame is No. 3 and LSU is No. 4, setting the stage for a top-five matchup between the Tigers and Crimson Tide in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Nov. 3. Both have an open date this week.

Michigan is No. 5 and Ohio State dropped to No. 11 after being upset by Purdue.


No. 25 Appalachian State is ranked in the AP poll for the first time in school history. The Mountaineers (5-1) have not lost since opening the season with an overtime defeat at Penn State.

"It's awesome to be recognized," Appalachian State coach Scott Satterfield said Sunday. "We've had a lot of positive things happen to our program the last three to four years. The first time we go bowl eligible, which was awesome. Then we go win our first bowl game. That was really cool. And then to go win our first Sun Belt championship two years ago. That was awesome. So there's been a lot of first for us over the last three years. This is another first."

App State transitioned to the FBS, the highest level of Division I football, in 2014 after years as an FCS power. Under former coach Jerry Moore, the Mountaineers were a regular playoff participant. The program peaked in the mid-2000s, winning three straight FCS (Division I-AA) championships from 2005-07. And App State pulled off one of the most stunning upsets in college football history against Michigan in 2007.

Moore retired after the 2012 season and was replaced by Satterfield, a former App State quarterback and assistant coach. The move up in class and into the Sun Belt has been practically seamless. The Mountaineers are 46-23 under Satterfield, with two Sun Belt titles. The only other Sun Belt team to ever be ranked was Troy on Nov. 13, 2016.

"To be recognized in the FBS level football and for our program to be a team that just went through transition four years ago and now to be ranked is pretty remarkable," Satterfield said. "We have a lot of pride, a lot of tradition in our program."

This season's team was expected to contend for another conference championship. A case could be made it is exceeding even those high expectations after replacing four-year starting quarterback Taylor Lamb, two four-year starting offensive linemen, four defensive players that were four-year starters and veteran defensive coordinator Nate Woody, who left for Georgia Tech.

Satterfield said this is may be his fastest team at App State and credited senior safety Josh Thomas, senior defensive tackle MyQuon Stout and fourth-year junior offensive tackle Victor Johnson with providing leadership for one of the least experienced rosters in the FBS. Running back Jalin Moore, another senior who was lost for the season to a knee injury two weeks ago, has become a de facto assistant coach for App State.

Since falling to Penn State, the Mountaineers have outscored their opponents 231-49. Next up is a key game for first place in the Sun Belt East at Georgia Southern (6-1, 3-0) on Thursday night.


  • No. 14 Washington State was the only big mover to rise in the rankings this week, jumping 11 spots after beating Oregon.


  • Ohio State dropped out of the top 10 for the first this season, tumbling nine spots
  • No. 19 Oregon dropped seven spots after taking its second loss
  • No. 22 North Carolina State fell six spots after losing for the first time this season


  • No. 23 Utah is ranked for the first time this season, making it five straight years the Utes started the season unranked but moved into the rankings at some point. From 2014-16, Utah started the season outside the Top 25 but finished it ranked. Utah has won three straight, scoring at least 40 points in each game
  • No. 24 Stanford is back in the rankings after falling out two weeks ago


  • Michigan State and Mississippi State fell out of the rankings again after losing for the third time this season
  • Cincinnati's first loss of the season, in overtime to Temple, cost the Bearcats their first ranking since 2012


  • SEC -- 6 teams (1, 4, 7, 9, 12, 16).
  • Big Ten -- 5 (5, 11, 17, 18, 20).
  • Pac-12 -- 5 (14, 15, 19, 23, 24).
  • Big 12 -- 3 (6, 8, 13).
  • ACC -- 2 (2, 22).
  • American -- 2 (10, 21).
  • Sun Belt -- 1 (25).
  • Independent -- 1 (3).


No. 7 Georgia vs. No. 9 Florida in Jacksonville, Florida. The first of two games involving the Bulldogs that will decide the SEC East. Georgia faces Kentucky on Nov. 3.

  • No. 14 Washington State at No. 24 Stanford. Cougars try to grab control of the Pac-12 North.
  • No. 18 Iowa at No. 17 Penn State. The Nittany Lions will help decide the Big Ten West with home games against the Hawkeyes and No. 20 Wisconsin.

Former Hoya Marcus Derrickson signs a two-way contract with Golden State Warriors


Former Hoya Marcus Derrickson signs a two-way contract with Golden State Warriors

Leaving the Georgetown Hoyas a season early is initially paying off for Marcus Derrickson. 

Less than a month before what would have been his senior season at Georgetown, the 6-7 forward has signed a two-way contract with the Golden State Warriors. 

Derrickson nabbed the second two-way position on the Warriors after an outstanding Summer League translated to a solid preseason.

Fitting right into the Warriors deep-ball oriented scheme, Derrickson was 6-16 from three point range during the five-game preseason. He's a versatile stretch-four that continues to develop and improve on his outside game. 

By signing a two-way contract, the former All-Big East Second teamer will have a chance to get called up to the two-time defending NBA champions at any point this season for up to 45 days. The remaining time will be with the Warriors' G-league affiliate the Santa Cruz Warriors

This arrangement will earn Derrickson a contract of $75,000 and a prorated amount for however much time he is practicing/ playing with Golden State. 

If he is called up to the NBA for more than the allotted 45 days, then the Warriors are obligated to give him a minimum rookie contract. 

Derrickson continues to prove himself as the list of aspiring players dwindles. As each contract begins to near its end, the Warriors time after time offer another opportunity.