Mark Fox might need to take ESPN College Basketball Analyst Andy Katz out to lunch.
Remember back in May when Katz listed Fox’s Georgia Bulldogs in his “revised Top 25 for the 2010-2011 season“?
In a more recent publication, Katz highlighted Georgia’s Trey Thompkins and Travis Leslie in a piece he did on potential 2011 NBA Draft Prospects.
This guy is big on the Dawgs!
But for Georgia to live up to Katz’s lofty “Top 25” expectations, they are going to have to work their way through another tough out-of-conference schedule. On July 1st, Xavier coach Chris Mack tweeted “Get your plane tickets to Athens, GA for February X fans…“. Cincinnati.com confirmed the tweet on July 2nd – Georgia will play Xavier at home in February 2011. ESPN’s Andy Katz has Xavier listed just outside his preseason Top 25 list, but don’t be surprised to see the Musketeers nationally ranked when February rolls around.
The Dawgs also play host to UAB – a team that whipped Georgia last year in Birmingham, AL and finished the season 25-9 and just missed getting an at-large bid into the NCAA Tournament.
Saint Louis is on Georgia’s schedule again next season as well. Last year the Billikens gave the Dawgs a game in Athens in a 64-56 loss. The Billikens ended up 23-13 and 11-5 in the Atlantic 10 during their 2009-2010 campaign. ESPN’s Pat Forde is high on Saint Louis next year, especially since they return every player along with colossal coach Rick Majerus.
Of course the Dawgs have their annual showdown with Georgia Tech…However, next season’s match-up is back in Atlanta where Georgia hasn’t won since the 2000-2001 season (thanks to 28 points from D.A. Layne).
Probably the most intriguing part of the Dawgs 2010-2011 schedule is the Old Spice Classic tournament, which will be held in Orlando, Florida over Thanksgiving weekend. Georgia will join a field that includes Boston College, California, Manhattan, Notre Dame, Temple, Texas A&M and Wisconsin. Five of the eight teams in this season’s group (Cal, ND, Temple, Texas A&M & Wisconsin) all reached the NCAA Tournament last year. Temple and Wisconsin are already on CBS’s Top 25 for the preseason.
The Georgia Bulldogs compete in the SEC East, which has to be one of the toughest halves of any conference in the country. The Dawgs will play national powerhouses like Kentucky, Florida and Tennessee twice. Throw in the remaining SEC schedule along with next season’s out-of-conference warm-up and its starting to look like Mark Fox’s Dawgs are going to have their work cut out for them.