Former UGA Basketball Great JJ Frazier Discusses Tom Crean Era In Athens

Former UGA Basketball Great JJ Frazier Discusses Tom Crean Era In Athens

Athens

Former UGA Basketball Great JJ Frazier Discusses Tom Crean Era In Athens


The Georgia men’s basketball team suffered a heartbreaking defeat to Arizona State Saturday, after squandering a 14-point halftime lead.

Entering the break, Georgia led the Sun Devils 47-33, in complete control of the game.  However, a late surge put Arizona State back in the contest before stealing the game in the final minute.

After the loss, the Bulldogs (5-4) find themselves in a tricky position with only three nonconference games left before SEC play.

We caught up with former All-SEC point guard JJ Frazier and received some input on last Saturday’s game and the current state of the program.

Frazier, the starting point guard at Georgia from the 2013-14 to 2016-17 season, played in the NBA G-League last year for the Memphis Hustle.

While in Athens, the point guard led the Bulldogs to the postseason all four years, with three NIT berths and one NCAA appearance for 2014-15.

Frazier also helped the Bulldogs reach the SEC semifinals in three out of four years, making him one of the most successful players in program history.

Frazier interview:

Georgia’s efforts: 

Frazier was impressed with what he saw at times against the Sun Devils but knows the Bulldogs lack a go-to scorer in crunch time.

“Playing the 20th ranked team I expected it to be difficult but they (UGA) jumped out early and played well,” Frazier said.

“In the end, it showed that they have no go-to guy, but that will come with time.”

On the outcome: 

Despite a strong offensive performance in the first half, Georgia went cold late in the game and lost all the momentum it had built.  So, what exactly went wrong?

“I think the shots that we were making in the first half just weren’t falling in the second,” said Frazier.

“The defensive intensity just wasn’t there like it was in the first half either. You have to give them (Arizona State) credit the – guys they needed to make big plays stepped up and did just that.”

No matter how you spin it, Arizona State simply outplayed Georgia down the stretch to get the victory.

Georgia’s potential:

Sitting just one game over .500, the Bulldogs find themselves in a desperate situation rather early this season.

However, Frazier knows the season is far from over and has confidence going into SEC play.

“Having the talent they have and style of play I expect them to get a lot more wins,” Frazier said.

“UGA can beat a lot of people in the SEC and it’s a tough conference so it’ll be fun to watch.”

Tyree Crump comparisons: 

Guard Tyree Crump lit up the scoreboard in the first half for 16 points, igniting the Stegeman crowd.  At times, Crump’s play-making abilities draw a comparison to Frazier’s for three-point shots but the former point guard doesn’t see it.

“I wasn’t really a sharpshooter I was more of a scorer.  I scored at all three levels.  Crump’s game is different from mine because he’s more of a shooter.”

“I think he’s pound for pound the best pure shooter in the SEC,” said Frazier.

A message for the fans: 

Georgia fans packed ‘the Steg’ on Saturday and made a noticeable impact on the game when things were rolling.  Frazier was impressed with the crowd but wants to see the fans do it more often.

“In every big game, UGA fans show up (UT UK AU Bama).  I don’t think they realize how much of an impact they have on the team with their energy, so if they come out to every game with that level of noise and excitement, we’d play with a lot more emotion and energy.”

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