Georgia (1-1) vs. Davidson (0-3)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Thursday, November 21, 5 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: TD Arena (5,100) -- Charleston, South Carolina. Television: ESPNU. Home Record: UGA 1-1, Davidson 0-1. Away Record: UGA 0-0, Davidson 0-1. Neutral Record: UGA 0-0, Davidson 0-1. Conference Record: UGA 0-0, Davidson 0-0. Series Record: Davidson leads, 3-1.
GAME NOTES: The opening round of the Charleston Classic continues at TD Arena on Thursday afternoon, as the Georgia Bulldogs take on the Davidson Wildcats.
The winner will move on to the semifinal round on Friday to play the survivor on the Temple/Clemson matchup, while the losers face each other in the consolation bracket.
Georgia, which finished 15-17 a year ago, has played just two games in the season's first two weeks, both at home. After opening up with a strong 72-52 win over Wofford, the Bulldogs hosted intrastate rival Georgia Tech on Nov. 15 and lost, 80-71.
Davidson has had one of the most disappointing starts in the nation. A season removed for a 26-8 mark and their second straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament, the Wildcats have begun the new campaign at 0-3. Granted, two of those losses came on the road against nationally-ranked squads Duke (111-77) and Virginia (70-57), but sandwiched in between was a disconcerting home defeat at the hands of Milwaukee (81-77).
Davidson leads the all-time series with Georgia, 3-1, although the squads haven't met since 1970.
The Bulldogs fell short at home against Georgia Tech in their latest outing due to their lackluster shooting performance, as they made less than 39 percent of their field goal tries, including 6-of-20 from 3-point range. They also weren't especially impressive at the foul line (19-of-29). Charles Mann was able to override the struggles of many of his teammates with 24 points on 7-of-12 from the field (4-of-4 from beyond the arc), but he was also plagued by seven turnovers. Kenny Gaines was the only other player in double figures with 13 points.
Georgia is still scoring more points this season (71.5 ppg) than it allows to its opponents (66.0 ppg), and it has a great rebounding margin (+8.0) to thank for that. Mann leads the squad with 15.5 points and 3.0 assists per game. Gaines adds 11.5 points and 6.0 rebounds per contest, while Nemanja Djurisic (10.5 ppg, 5.0 rpg) brings stability to the frontcourt.
The Wildcats had their hands full in last Saturday's loss against a Virginia squad that plays outstanding team defense, as they shot just 30.6 percent from the field in the 13-point setback. Tyler Kalinoski tallied a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds, and he was on target from beyond the arc at 3- of-4. De'Mon Brooks and Brian Sullivan also scored 13 points in the losing effort, while the rest of the team (seven players) combined for only 18 points.
Davidson's tough early slate of games has caused it to get outscored by its opposition by 17 points per game. It has been a team that relies on high volume from 3-point range in recent years, and while that remains the case this season (23.7 attempts per game), it has struggled from long distance at just 31 percent. Brooks paces the squad in both scoring (17.0 ppg) and rebounding (6.7 rpg), but also in turnovers (10). Tom Droney is hot on his heels with 15.7 points per game, while Brian Sullivan (14.0 ppg) is also actively involved.
Davidson has had some tough luck on the young season, but that is expected to change against the underwhelming Bulldogs. It's only a matter of time before the Wildcats catch fire from 3-point territory.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Davidson 83, Georgia 74
11/21 10:35:09 ET