Anemic for most of the season at full strength, Georgetown’s offense has picked up the pace over the last two games, ironically without the team’s second-leading scorer.
We’ll learn now whether that quirky trend was an anomaly or foretelling.
School athletics officials revealed sophomore Greg Whittington, one half of the Hoyas’ two-prong scoring duo on the wing, is out indefinitely due to academic issues. The 6-foot-8 forward, who has teamed up with fellow sophomore Otto Porter to lead the Georgetown attack, vacates 12 points and seven rebounds per game for a team struggling to generate offense as is.
The Hoyas haven’t skipped a beat so far in Whittington’s absence. In fact, the team’s pulse is the healthiest it’s been since knocking off UCLA and taking Indiana to overtime in the Legends Classic. Georgetown is averaging 70.5 points per game on 48-percent shooting from the floor during the two games played without the Columbia (MD) native, up 24 points and 11-percent from the team marks set in the first two conference games with him.
Porter’s resurgence has been the main reason why. The future lottery pick has scored 19 and 20 points, respectively, on better than 50-percent shooting (13-of-24) during the two games without his partner in crime. Porter had been in an offensive rut prior to the Whittington ruling, making a season-low two field goals—discounting his season opening performance against Duquesne that was shortened by an eye injury—in a blowout loss against Pittsburgh.
Georgetown lacks enough scoring weapons and playmakers to withstand a prolonged Whittington absence. If this matter lingers, the Hoyas are dead meat in a top-heavy Big East. But John Thompson’s bunch is holding down the fort in the meantime without him.
The “next man up” mentality is diffusing through the Georgetown locker room, embraced wholeheartedly thus far by the team’s leading scorer. Just how long that vibe can last, however, remains unclear, something the Hoyas don’t want to find out first-hand.