Georgetown and San Diego State will close out your Thanksgiving sports menu with an opening-round game of the Wooden Legacy in Anaheim, scheduled to tip-off at midnight. The Hoyas are 2-1, while the Aztecs are 3-1. The winner will play the winner of USC-St. Joseph’s.
Georgetown Hoyas vs. San Diego State Aztecs
Thursday, November 25, 2021 – 11:59 PM EST at Anaheim Convention Center
Righting the Ship
The Hoyas have rebounded after a shocking home loss to Dartmouth in the season opener. Georgetown looked off its game, falling behind by as many as 22 in the first half as the Hoyas struggled to hit shots from the field.
Sophomore Dante Harris shot just 3-of-13. Graduate transfer Kaiden Rice was shut out on three-pointers in the first half, and Dartmouth knocked down 16 threes in the game to win by nine.
“You’re not gonna win letting a team make 16 threes against you,” Ewing said.
The Hoyas have cleaned things up since then, winning their next two games by comfortable margins over American and Siena. Those two foes combined to hit 13-of-51 from three as Georgetown tightened its perimeter defense. Harris has found his shot, hitting 9-of-16 since his opening game struggles. Rice, who arrived in the offseason after finishing four years at The Citadel, took a bit longer to find his footing.
Through two games, he was averaging just 5.5 points and hitting 4-of-18 from the field, 3-of-15 from three. He got back on track against Siena, however, hitting 7-of-10 on three-point attempts and finishing with 23 points. Rice doubled his scoring average and is now one of four Hoyas averaging double-figure, joining Harris (11.7), Aminum Mohammed (14.0), and Donald Carey (15.3).
Mohammed is the star of a five-man freshman class that also includes Ryan Mutombo, son of the Basketball Hall of Famer Dikembe. Mohammed was named the preseason Big East Freshman of the Year and also leads the team with 7.7 rebounds per game.
The Hoyas are still without sophomore forwards Kobe Clark and Collin Holloway, who has not played yet this season due to injury.
Tough Shooting on the Perimeter
San Diego State has not seen many three-pointers go in the basket this year—on either end of the court. The Aztecs have the No. 30 three-point shooting defense in the country, allowing opponents to hit just 25.6 percent of their outside shots. They were particularly effective in shutting down the two best opponents they’ve faced. BYU hit just 4-of-18, .222, from three, while Arizona State was 6-of-28, .214.
That will present a challenge for a Georgetown team that is No. 18 in three-point accuracy at 41.5 percent, but, as the opener showed, can be streaky from outside.
On the flip side, San Diego State has shot even worse than their opponents from three. The Aztecs opened the year hitting just 5-of-33, .152, through two games. They’ve improved slightly since then but are still hitting just 24.6 percent from three, which is No. 334 in the nation.
As a result, Aztecs games have been rock fights this year. San Diego State has yet to top 70 points in a game and three of their four games have been decided by single digits. The Aztecs are led by a trio of experienced players in Cal grad transfer Matt Bradley and seniors Nathan Mensah and Trey Pulliam, who are all averaging double figures.
San Diego State is experienced. They have five seniors and a junior in their first seven players in the rotation. That should give them an advantage over a young Georgetown team that, despite its recent improvement, has shown inconsistency this season.
The point spread is a concern, though. The Aztecs haven’t blown anyone out this year, and this game will likely be an ugly, close, grind-it-out affair, which means Georgetown and the points should be the pick you make at top betting sites.
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.