Georgia’s second-half comeback falls short in 68-67 loss to Mississippi State

ATHENS, Ga. – An impressive second-half comeback attempt fell short as the Georgia men’s basketball team was defeated by Mississippi State, 68-67, on Wednesday night in Stegeman Coliseum.

Five Georgia players contributed double-digit points for the Georgia offense, including senior forward Derek Ogbeide (10), senior guard Turtle Jackson (11), junior guard Jordan Harris (13), junior guard Tyree Crump (10) and sophomore forward Rayshaun Hammonds (12).

Hammonds and Harris highlighted the Georgia offensive performance. Hammonds recorded his second double-double on the season and the third of his career. Harris’ stellar offensive efforts resulted in two new career-highs, as he tallied 13 points and sank three baskets from behind the three-point line.

On defense, Georgia committed a season-low nine turnovers against a Mississippi State team that ranks third in steals in the conference.

“We had that bad stretch at the end of the first half. We broke some plays, made some sloppy passes, and didn’t have our hands up in the zone,” Georgia head coach Tom Crean said. “We overcame all of that. I’m not sure a couple weeks ago if our team overcomes that. We’re getting better. I think everybody can see it, I hope everybody can see it. The last two games we were good enough to win, but we just didn’t get the result. But we’re absolutely getting better, and we’re going to stay with it.”

Jackson sparked the Georgia offense in the first minutes of play, scoring eight of the first 10 points with two three-point baskets and a layup. A layup in transition by freshman guard Tye Fagan, along with a deep three from junior guard Tyree Crump, brought the Georgia squad within one point of Mississippi State with eight minutes remaining in the first period.

Following a made three-point basket from Harris to tie the game at 20-all, Georgia regained its first lead since the opening minutes of play with a layup from Ogbeide. The Georgia defense strung together two-straight stops, and Claxton’s first basket of the day gave Georgia a four-point advantage with just under four minutes to play.

Mississippi State then went on a 11-0 run within the last two minutes of play in the first period, sending Georgia into the locker room trailing, 36-25.

Out of the locker room, Mississippi State extended its run to 17-0 to give Mississippi State a 42-25 advantage. After knocking down a three-point basket, Harris stole the ball and was fouled going up for the shot. The junior guard sank one free-throw, bringing Georgia within single digits of Mississippi State for the first time in the second half.

With 13 minutes remaining in the second period, Georgia went on a 7-0 run to cut the Mississippi State lead to single digits. Jackson contributed assists in three-straight scoring possessions in under two minutes. Scoring the trio of baskets were Hammonds and Claxton. Hammonds highlighted the 7-0 run with two back-to-back baskets, the last of which from behind the arc. Capping the run was a jam from Claxton to lessen Mississippi State’s lead to five (56-51).

The Georgia offense continued to chip away at the Mississippi State lead. Back-to-back baskets from Ogbeide brought Georgia within four with 4:30 to play, marking the smallest deficit of the second half for Georgia. Harris countered a Mississippi State three-pointer with an and-one to maintain the four-point margin. The Georgia defense came up huge with a steal from Hammonds, resulting in a jumper from Crump to make it a two-point game with three minutes remaining.

Despite the impressive second-half performance by the Georgia offense, shooting 55.2 percent from the field and 55.6 percent from the three-point line, Mississippi State held on to defeat Georgia, 68-67.

With this loss, the Georgia Bulldogs fall to 1-12 in the SEC and 10-16 overall. Next, Georgia travels to Oxford, Mississippi, to take on Ole Miss on Saturday, Feb. 23, at 3:30 p.m. E.T. on SECN.


• A crowd of with 7,153 fans filled Stegeman Coliseum. Through 15 home games this season, Georgia has averaged 8,912 fans, which is the most since the 2002-03 season (9,857).

• Georgia’s lead in the all-time series narrows, but still lead 58-55 overall and 29-20 in Athens. This marked Mississippi State’s first win in Athens since 1/12/13.

• The rebounding battle went Georgia’s way to a tone of 35-29. Georgia, the SEC’s No. 1 rebounding offense, has now won the rebounding battle 17 times this season.

• Inching up to the next plateau in Georgia’s career rebounding list, Derek Ogbeide grabbed five rebounds. He is now four boards away from tying Chris Daniels who sits No. 8.

• From the 3-point line, Georgia went 9-for-25 including one that tied the game with 10 seconds to go in regulation. Guards Turtle Jackson and Jordan Harris each hit three. For Jackson, it notched his second-consecutive game with three 3-pointers and fifth game this season with at least three 3-pointers. He had eight such games in his previous three seasons. For Harris, it was a career-high.

• At the half, Mississippi State led 36-25 after finishing on a 16-1 run which included a sequence of 13-straight points. Turtle Jackson had eight of Georgia’s first 10 points and went into the break with the same amount for a team-high. Quinndary Weatherspoon had a game-high 16 points. Weatherspoon, the SEC’s third-highest scoring average (18.1 ppg), finished with a career-high 31 points.

• Sophmore forward Nicolas Claxton, the SEC’s leader in rebounds, had exactly his average at nine.

• Georgia had a season-low nine turnovers and allowed Mississippi State, SEC’s third-best team in steals, only five takeaways when the visiting Bulldogs average 8.5 spg.



On the comeback effort…
“We had that bad stretch at the end of the first half. We broke some plays, made some sloppy passes, and didn’t have our hands up in the zone. We overcame all of that. I’m not sure a couple weeks ago if our team overcomes that. We’re getting better. I think everybody can see it, I hope everybody can see it. The last two games we were good enough to win, but we just didn’t get the result. But we’re absolutely getting better and we’re going to stay with it.”

On if the comeback builds confidence…
“It should [build confidence.] It absolutely should. Like I said to them, it’s not my saying and not my rule, but ‘the tunnel is always darkest before it’s light.’ It’s a dark time when you come all the way back like that and don’t get it, but let’s just make sure we get through it and find that light. It’s corny, I know, but it’s the truth. It fits what we’ve been dealing the past couple of weeks.”


On being down 17 in the first half and fighting back…
“We showed a lot of perseverance tonight. We fought back. We gave it our all. We didn’t do a great job in the first half putting ourselves into the hole. But showing that resiliency, that was good. Just us coming out and fighting and being together.”

On Coach Crean’s message to the team after the game…
“Of course, he was confident. He was a little frustrated like everyone else was. But just telling us, you know, there’s light at the end of the tunnel. Right now, we’re in a dark place, but there’s light. He believes in us. He believes we can beat any team that we play on our schedule, SEC tournament, whatever it is. We just got to keep fighting.”


On making a three pointer to tie the game…
“Yeah when I hit that shot, I thought we had a good chance of winning the game. That it would probably go into overtime. I thought we were going to get a stop and go into overtime and try to win the game in overtime.”

On what the team is working on as a whole…
“We are a good team. Like Nic [Claxton] said, we’ve just been in a slump. And when you’re in a slump it’s hard to get out. We’ve been competing hard and practicing every day and we just come out in the games and fight the best way we can.”

On Mississippi State’s closing run at the end of the first half…
“I mean, if you’ve got a guy like [Quinndary] Witherspoon, he’s a pretty good player. If a guy gets going, it’s hard to stop him once he’s going. He was making layups, he was hitting shots. It’s hard to stop a person that’s in rhythm but you can slow him down.”

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UGA football games with Tennessee and Auburn to flip beginning in 2020

UGA football games with the Tennessee Volunteers and the Auburn Tigers will flip on the calendar beginning with the 2020 season.

News of the change of the games was first reported on Tuesday by Brandon Marcello of 247Sports. UGA President Jere Morehead confirmed the change on Wednesday.

Georgia and Auburn have played the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry in November every season since 1937. With the new change, the Georgia-Auburn game will take place in September or October with the Tennessee contest taking place in November.

Auburn pushed for the move after the SEC schedule was altered when Missouri and Texas A&M joined the conference in 2012. To make the schedule work, Georgia was forced to travel to Auburn in consecutive seasons (2012 and 2013).

As a result of that change, Auburn now hosts Georgia and Alabama in odd seasons and plays in Athens and Tuscaloosa in even seasons, often in the span of three weeks.

At the same time, Georgia now plays at Auburn and Georgia Tech in odd years and hosts them in even years. And the Auburn and Georgia Tech games are usually close on the calendar.

Most reports indicate that moving the Georgia-Auburn game was considered beneficial for both schools as it would put some separation between two rivalry games that were being played close together.

Back to Georgia playing at Auburn in back-to-back seasons, UGA Director of Athletics Greg McGarity said today that the favor likely won’t be returned to Georgia any time soon.

The SEC scheduling rotation is currently set through the 2025 season. It would take a major scheduling overhaul to make Auburn travel to Georgia twice in a row before then.

If Auburn ever does play at Georgia in consecutive seasons, it will likely have to come in 2026 or later.

Future UGA Football Schedules

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Georgia falls to No. 19 LSU 83-79

ATHENS, Ga. – Nicolas Claxton led four Georgia players in double figures; however, the No. 19 LSU Tigers defeated the Bulldogs, 83-79, in a sold-out Stegeman Coliseum Saturday night.

Claxton led Georgia (10-15, 1-11) in points for the eighth time this season with 17. Forward Rayshaun Hammonds added 13, and guard Jordan Harris and forward Derek Ogbeide scored 12 each. Guard Christian Harrison had his first career start and logged a career-high 19 minutes of action.

“This was the best I’ve felt before a game all year,” Georgia head coach Tom Crean said. “Usually my stomach hurts from about 5:30 in the morning on from the nerves and anxiety of getting ready to compete. The way we practiced the past few days, the authority with how we practiced, the intensity, the communication, the competitiveness – all of those things were really good. They’ve been good, but we haven’t always brought that effort to the game. Today, they did, but we fell a little short. If we can build on that, we’re going to win games. No doubt about it.”

Georgia gained the lead to begin the contest and then the game was tied twice in the first three minutes. A 3-pointer from guard Turtle Jackson maintained the Bulldog lead 7-4 at 17:34. Georgia held the lead and a trio of three’s from guard Tyree Crump ignited an 8-3 run resulting in a 20-14 edge.

The Bulldogs retained the advantage for the next eight and half minutes until LSU (21-4, 11-11) made a 3-pointer pulling ahead 21-20. A layup from Crump started an 8-2 run for Georgia bringing the gap down to four, 34-29, and the Tigers led 41-37 at the intermission.

Following halftime, the Bulldogs tied the game 45 all at the 18:12 mark. The Bulldogs eventually went up by five, the largest of the game, on a 3-pointer from guard E’Torrion Wilridge.

The game was then tied thrice and the lead changed four times over the next six minutes. LSU tipped in the ball to regain the edge 70-68 at the 6:41 mark and led for the rest of the game. A free throw from Claxton narrowed the gap to one at 72-71. The Tigers pulled ahead with a layup a minute later. The Bulldogs chipped away at LSU’s lead, but they were unable to overtake the Tiger victory.

Both teams shot the ball at a high percent. Georgia was 27-for-57 (47.4-percent), and LSU was 30-for-54 (55.6-percent). It marked the third-highest field goal percentage in a Georgia loss with one of the other being the LSU game in Baton Rouge last month when the Bulldogs shot 53.6-percent in a 92-82 loss.

The Bulldogs return to Stegeman on Wednesday, February 20 at 6:30 p.m. to take on the Mississippi State Bulldogs on the SEC Network.


• Another big crowd at Stegemen Coliseum with 10,298 fans. Through 14 home games this season, Georgia has averaged 9,038 fans, which is the most since the 2002-03 season (9,857).

• Georgia went into the contest winning the previous five games in the series between LSU, but the Tigers snapped that streak. The Bulldogs still lead the series when played in Athens to a tone of 28-23. LSU has now won 6 of the last 10 meetings and owns the all-time series 66-47.

• The rebounding battle was dead even at 30-30. Both teams entered the game as SEC’s No. 2 and No. 3 schools in rebounding margin. The SEC’s leader in rebounding, Nicolas Claxton, grabbed six boards to make his season total 226.

• Inching up to the next plateau in Georgia’s career rebounding list, Derek Ogbeide grabbed five rebounds. He is now nine boards away from tying Chris Daniels who sits No. 8.

• The Bulldogs did a good job protecting the basketball with a season-low 11 turnovers. LSU entered the game as SEC’s top defense in steals, averaging 9.4 a game. The Tigers managed six.

• Georgia faced both the SEC Player of the Week and the Freshman of the Week in guard Tremont Waters and forward Naz Reid, respectively. Waters finished with 20 points and five assists, while had 13 points and six rebounds.

• Both teams shot the ball at a high percent. Georgia was 27-for-57 (47.4-percent), and LSU was 30-for-54 (55.6-percent). It marked the third-highest field goal percentage in a Georgia loss with one of the other games being the other LSU game when the Bulldogs shot 53.6-percent in a 92-82 loss.


Head Coach Tom Crean

On Senior guard Christian Harrison…

“Inch-for-inch, pound-for-pound, he might be as tough and as gritty as anyone on our team. He keeps getting better, and he’s another example of how this program is built on coaching everybody. There’s a grittiness and energy that he brings to the game. He moves without the ball, and he doesn’t need the ball to impact the game. I think the way he went after Waters was very beneficial to us during the game.”

 Sophomore Forward Nicolas Claxton

On his thoughts on tonight’s game…

“We had two really good practices leading up to tonight. The fans were behind us the whole game and that gave us a lot of support. But, at the end of the day we just didn’t do the little things we needed to do.”

On if tonight’s play is progress for the team…

“I would say it is progress. Us just playing our hardest for the whole forty minutes. Not coming out in the second half and being in a drought. At the end of the day, we did not want a moral victory. We wanted to come out and get the win. Like I said, it was the little things. I think they had 11-second chance points in the second half. That started with me, I did a poor job of boxing out. So, I take the blame for that. But, all we can do is get back to the drawing board and be ready for our next game.”

On the play coming out the timeout with 29 seconds left...

“Derek (Ogbeide) he kind of set me like a run up screen, I was supposed to drive and make the layup. So, we executed the play right, I just came up short on the layup.”

On Harrison’s basketball journey…

“I just want to tip my hat off to Christian. He came here last year and didn’t play at all. This year, his minutes have been kind of up and down. But, throughout all of that he has just stayed persistent. He just kept grinding. He comes in everyday and he doesn’t complain like some guys do. He just comes in and works and you see the results today.”

On tonight’s “moral victory”…

“We played them tough the whole entire game. It can be kind of a moral victory, but we don’t want moral victories. But this does show that they (LSU) are probably top three in the SEC at least. That shows that we can play with anybody. Just come out and try to finish the season strong, that is all we can do at this point. Just keep grinding day by day.”

On Yante Maten and Kentvaious Caldwell-Pope attendance at the game…

“We did not get to talk to them yet. But, I appreciate them coming back and supporting us.  It really means a lot.”

On his matchup against Naz Reid…

“I just wanted to come out and be aggressive. Coach Crean, he instills a lot of confidence in me day by day. Since he has gotten here, he has said just attack. That was the matchup we like. So I just went at him as much as I could.”

Senior Guard Christian Harrison 

On starting in tonight’s game…

“No, I didn’t know, (about starting) I didn’t until a couple minutes before the game started. I had the same mentality I have every game, just to bring energy and try and get a win. That is always the mentality.”

On if they feel that Georgia’s record does not reflect the team…

“I would say so. We feel like we can play with anybody. Even though our record doesn’t show it, we come out and we leave it all on the floor. We stay confident, we come out every game thinking that we can win. So, that is always the mindset we try to have.”

On his basketball journey…

“I have had to be very patient. I have had a kind of unique college career. This is really my only second year actually playing, even thought I am a senior. I transferred after my sophomore year at Troy, I was hurt my sophomore year at Troy, so I redshirted. Then, I got here sat out because of the transfer rules. I was eligible last year, just did not play. So, it has been a pretty long journey. I have had to stay persistent and I am just confident”

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2019 SEC Football Media Days schedule announced

The 2019 SEC Football Media Days Schedule has been announced. Media Days kicks off on Monday, July 15 at the Hyatt Regency Birmingham – Wynfrey Hotel in Birmingham, Alabama.

Georgia Bulldogs head football coach Kirby Smart and a few players to be named will speak to the media on Tuesday, July 16.

The four-day event will once again feature national television coverage via ESPN and the SEC Network.

Names below are listed alphabetically by school. The exact rotations and times, along with student-athletes attending, will be determined and released at a later date.

2019 SEC Football Media Days Schedule

Monday, July 15
Florida – Dan Mullen
LSU – Ed Orgeron
Missouri – Barry Odom

Tuesday, July 16
Georgia – Kirby Smart
Ole Miss – Matt Luke
Tennessee – Jeremy Pruitt
Texas A&M – Jimbo Fisher

Wednesday, July 17
Alabama – Nick Saban
Arkansas – Chad Morris
Miss. State – Joe Moorhead
South Carolina – Will Muschamp

Thursday, July 18
Auburn – Gus Malzahn
Kentucky – Mark Stoops
Vanderbilt – Derek Mason

UGA Football Schedule

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Bulldogs lose at Texas A&M, 73-56

COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The Georgia men’s basketball team dropped a conference road contest to Texas A&M, 73-56, Tuesday evening at Reed Arena.

A tough shooting night at 35.3-percent (18-for-51) including a 13-percent clip (3-for-23) from three-point range, contributed to Georgia’s defeat. The Bulldogs fell to 10-14 overall and 1-10 in the conference, while the Aggies improved to 10-13 overall and 3-8 in the SEC.

Individually, a double-double performance from Nicolas Claxton led the Bulldogs. The sophomore forward tallied 18 points and 10 rebounds for his seventh career double-double – all this season. Junior guard Jordan Harris chipped in 10 points and corralled eight rebounds. Harris has scored in double digits in three of the past four games. Also helping in the scoring department was sophomore guard Teshaun Hightower with nine points.

“We missed some shot, we were short on shots, but I thought their [Texas A&M’s] defense was good – there is no double about that,” Georgia head coach Tom Crean said. “But I also think we missed some open shots. Texas A&M played very well tonight.”

At the half, Texas A&M owned a 34-21 lead thanks in part to closing the half on a 19-7 run. Claxton and Hightower teamed up to give Georgia an 8-4 lead to start the game. A Claxton dunk and a Harris bookmarked an Aggie three for the Bulldog lead, 14-11, by the midpoint of the first half. TAMU overtook the lead with four-straight points, until an E’Torrion Wilridge recaptured the edge with a layup at 16-15 with 8:43 left in the first frame. The game’s fourth lead change followed and this time the Aggies rallied off a dozen unanswered points to gain a double-digit lead. Georgia dipped the deficit to nine twice prior to half but went into the break down 11 points.

The first points of the second half came at the free throw line after Harris was fouled on a 3-point attempt and converted all three to bring Georgia’s deficit to an even 10 at 34-24. The Aggies responded with a six consecutive points, until Claxton converted an and-one hook shot and free throw. Just above the 10-minute mark of the second half, Harris went high off the backboard on a contested layup to make it a 14-point margin at 53-39.

Later, Claxton scored five points in a row including another old-fashioned three-point play to cut the score to 59-46 with 6:38 to play. Georgia had the deficit at 13 points in two more occasions with the last one off a Tyree Crump three, but the Bulldogs weren’t able to narrow the deficit any further.

“I haven’t been able to study that yet, but I think at times it was good [energy off the bench],” Crean added. “We struggled guarding the basketball. We struggled at the post too, but we struggled guarding the basketball. I thought early on, we missed some close shots, some open threes, and I still don’t know if we are over the hurdle of the mentality if you miss those how good you have to be on the defensive end. We have got to get better at being able to guard the dribble. They [Texas A&M] are very aggressive and have numerous guys that can go get a shot. We don’t have that right now, so we have to trust our offense, trust our spacing and movement, and have to have strength in numbers, which is when the bench comes in.”

Next, Georgia returns home to battle LSU in front of a sellout Stegeman Coliseum crowd on Saturday, Feb. 16. The tip is scheduled for 6 p.m. ET and will be aired on SEC Network.

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Anthony Edwards commits to Tom Crean and UGA

Anthony Edwards, the No. 2 overall recruit in the country, has committed to Tom Crean and the Georgia Bulldogs.

Edwards announced his commitment Monday morning at a ceremony at his high school in Atlanta, Holy Spirit Preparatory School.

Anthony Edwards (6-5, 215) is rated five stars, the No. 2 recruit, and the No. 1 shooting guard by Rivals.com.

In the 247Sports Composite, Edwards is listed as a five-star recruit, the No. 2 overall recruit, and the No. 1 shooting guard in the country for the 2019 class.

Edwards joins UGA commitments Jaykwon Walton and Toumani Camara, both four-star recruits, in Georgia’s class for 2019. The class is now ranked 12th by both 247Sports and Rivals.com.

The news of Edwards’ commitment to UGA is a huge uplift to the program, which is suffering through a nine-game SEC losing streak in conference play. The team is still adjusting to the new coaching staff and not everyone is on the same page.

UGA Basketball Commitments & Signees

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Georgia falls to the Rebels 80-64

ATHENS, Ga. – The University of Georgia men’s basketball team lost to the Ole Miss Rebels 80-64 on Saturday afternoon in Stegeman Coliseum.

Three Bulldogs shared team-high scoring honors. Guard Jordan Harris notched his first career double-double with 10 points and a career-high of 11 rebounds. The other 10-point scorers were guard Tyree Crump and forward Rayshaun Hammonds.

“We want to win games,” said Georgia head coach Tom Crean. “I’ve got to keep looking at what we can do to get this better now, and there is no one answer on how you handle that. You keep giving it. It does start with me, and it does start with my level of energy, my level of confidence, my level of belief. You’ve got to try to get that to them every day, and hopefully there’s other things that they absorb that will make them better through that.”

A 3-pointer from guard Teshaun Hightower started the Bulldog advantage 15 seconds into the game. The teams traded baskets and a pair of free throws from Hammonds brought the Bulldogs into the double digits leading 10-6. Hammonds’ second 3-pointer of the half gave Georgia its first double-digit lead at 18-8 with 15:27 remaining. The Rebels fought back to tie the game 20 all at the 11:29 mark and then took the lead 22-20 a minute later.

The lead changed hands with the game being tied twice at 22 and 25. Ole Miss went back on top at the 7:06 mark with a 3-pointer to make it 30-28 and maintained the advantage for the rest of the game.

Hightower sunk a three to open the second half and bring the deficit into single digits, 36-45. A jumper from forward Nicolas Claxton brought the score to 47-38.

With 13 minutes left, Ole Miss boosted their advantage 55-40. The Bulldogs fought to chip away with a tipin from Claxton and a three from guard Turtle Jackson narrowing the gap to 12. The Rebels maintained their composure and held on to a double-figure lead for the remainder of the game.

Georgia travels to College Station to take on the Texas A&M Aggies on February 12 at 7:00 p.m. on the SEC Network. The Bulldogs return to Stegeman Coliseum next Saturday when they host LSU at 6:00 p.m. That contest is sold out and will be Georgia’s sixth-straight sellout and seventh in the Bulldogs’ last eight home outings.


• Another big crowd at Stegemen Coliseum with 10,033 fans. Through 13 home games this season, Georgia has averaged 8,939 fans, which is the most since the 2002-03 season.

• Despite today’s loss, Georgia still holds an all-time series record of 73-43 over Ole Miss. The Rebels’ win was the first at Stegemen since January 21, 2012. Prior to tonight, Georgia had won 7 of the last 9 meetings.

• The rebounding battle went to Ole Miss to a tone of 38-32. It marked only the seventh time Georgia has been outrebounded this season and the Bulldogs are 0-7 in those games.

• Nicolas Claxton had two blocks to put his season total of 62, an average of 2.7 bpg – both tops the SEC. On the Georgia all-time season block chart, Claxton past Yante Maten who sat at No. 6 with 61 (2016).

• Two-Block, Two-Steal Game: Nicolas Claxton finished with two blocks and two steals. It is the seventh time in his career that he has recorded at least two of each and they have occurred all this season. He leads the team in both categories this season.

• Moving up in top-10 in Career Rebound: Derek Ogbeide grabbed three rebounds. He is now 14 boards away from tying Chris Daniels who sits No. 8 on the all-time Georgia rebounding list.

• Both Georgia and Ole Miss had seven 3-pointers in the first half. The Bulldogs finished with 11, while the Rebels hit two more in the second half. Teshaun Hightower had three, marking his fourth time having multiple threes this season. Tyree Crump, Turtle Jackson and Rayshaun Hammonds all hit two.

• Junior guard Jordan Harris led the Bulldogs in rebounding for the first time this season.

• Ole Miss’ Breein Tyree dropped 31 points, tying his career high he set last month. Entering the game, Tyree was third in the conference in scoring, averaging 18 ppg. He has scored 20+ points in five straight games.


Head Coach Tom Crean

On players showing frustration…

“I’ll chalk it up right there to the lack of mental toughness, and we knew that. We know that. We’re working on it every day. When you’ve lost some games, you’re going to either move up with it or it’s going to come down. We saw that a little bit too much today. So I have to gauge that. Every day it’s a matter of how we practice and get ready to play, and if I continue to see that type of frustration — here’s what happens. We don’t talk. We don’t talk on defense. And it doesn’t matter if we’re man, it doesn’t matter if we’re zone. We’re trying to protect the paint with switching, we’re trying to mix defenses some, not as much as we’re going to need to, but we don’t guard the dribble very well, so we have to do the switching potentially but when two guys come together and they don’t talk or one guy talks and the other one doesn’t respond, those kind of things happen.”

On improving mental toughness…

“We just keep practicing. I could give you a litany of things. I could give you 100, I could give you 150, but here’s the thing: It’s what they absorb. Coaches don’t give guys mental toughness, okay. It’s — your strength coach can give them a better form for physical strength. But the mental toughness has got to come through knowing that you have some ability, knowing that you’re not getting them — we had 16 turnovers in the first half. I just said this on the radio: We may very well have to pull this break off, and because we’re not — that’s not the way it’s going to be at Georgia. I promise you, this is going to be a fast-paced program as we go, but we’re just hurting ourselves with turnovers that make no sense.”

Sophomore Forward Nicolas Claxton

On level of frustration at this point in the season….

“I think we started out the game and it was 18-8, you know we were up. Everyone was knocking down shots, we were in rhythm. And I think those turnovers, the turnovers hurt us but just us not having that fight, and just coming back and trying to hit them in. That is just really disheartening for us to come out like that and not play hard. So we just need to get it right.”

On why mental toughness is just a struggle for the team…

“I think that is just maturity. Not letting one mistake affects another one. Not letting one mistake affect another play. So, if we get a turnover, we just have to have short-term memory, you can’t dwell on that. So, I would say that is something we really need to work on.”

On why the team lacks fight…

“I can’t even tell you. We just need to come together as a team. I can’t just tell you that. We really need to come together as a team, and just have a meeting. Just talk about it because at this point in the season we don’t have anything to lose, we might as well just go out there and give it our heart. I feel like we should just come together as a team, and give it our all every game.”

Junior Guard Jordan Harris

On level of frustration at this point in the season….

“For me, I think once everyone on the team realize there will be mistakes made in the game that will help us out. Some guys get down when they make a turnover or frustrated with another player, I think that is just running throughout our team and it really effects us on the court.”

On why the team lacks fight…

“Everybody just got to sell out. We just got to fight till the end. No one likes playing behind. But, sometimes when we get behind and a lot of negative things carry over they just get worse. But that is something we are working on. ”

On how the buying into the new coaching…

“There is no issue there, I feel like everyone bought into the program. And to what he is bringing to the table. Some guys are going to be upset about playing time but, you know, everyone wants to play. I feel like everyone has bought in, and we all in for it.”

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Justin Fields eligible immediately at Ohio State, issues statement

Former UGA quarterback Justin Fields has been ruled immediately eligible to play at Ohio State, the NCAA announced on Friday.

Justin Fields transferred to Ohio State after not receiving much playing time as a true freshman in Athens. Fields was second string behind true sophomore Jake Fromm and likely would have remained there heading into the 2019 season.

Below is the release from the NCAA:

The transfer waiver application seeking immediate eligibility for student-athlete Justin Fields that The Ohio State University submitted to the NCAA has been approved. Fields will be eligible to compete in the 2019-20 academic year.

“I am happy for Justin and his family,” Ohio State head coach Ryan Day said. “I also want to express my appreciation to the NCAA for its assistance in getting this matter resolved efficiently and with such a positive outcome for Justin.”

Shortly after the NCAA’s release, Justin Fields issued a statement. He addressed his time in Athens and rumors that were reported by several websites concerning his treatment in Athens.

I thank God for His guidance during this time of uncertainty. I would like to thank the NCAA for its approval of the waiver allowing me to be eligible to play football this fall. I also want to thank all those who supported and encouraged my family and me during this process. While my case was pending before the NCAA, my family and I did not feel that it was appropriate to publicly speak about the circumstances leading to my transfer. In my silence, people began to speculate, and the story took on a life of its own.

Now that this matter is concluded, I would like to clarify some facts. I have no regrets about my time at UGA and have no hard feelings for the school or football program. My overall experience at UGA was fully consistent with UGA’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. My sister is a softball player at UGA. I am still close friends with many of my UGA teammates. A part of me will always be a Georgia Bulldogs fan.

To Buckeye Nation: thank you for your warm welcome. I will work hard to represent you and The Ohio State University in a professional and respectful manner. My dad always tells me that “you can’t get to where you are going by looking in the ‘rear view mirror.”‘ I’m ready to move forward and embrace the next season of my life. I will not be speaking about my transfer again. Instead, I will focus all of my attention on getting to work in the classroom and on the field- and doing whatever else I can to help my teammates as we prepare for the 2019 season.

Now that this matter has been resolved, the Justin Fields saga appears to be over. Moving forward, discussion should turn to his performance for Ohio State.

It’s possible that the Georgia Bulldogs will meet the Ohio State Buckeyes in the College Football Playoff during the next few seasons. If that happens, of course it’s Go Dawgs!

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