It’s been a memorable season for Georgetown basketball. The 100th anniversary events provided a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see many of the best athletes in the history of Georgetown all in one place. Meanwhile, this year’s team has run off 10 straight Big East wins, propelling them back to the top of the conference. But Georgetown fans have not been celebrating all year. On Dec. 2, I trudged out of the Village C West Alumni Lounge along with a number of other dejected students. Some hung their heads, while others shook them in disbelief and frustration. Georgetown had just suffered its third early-season loss, this time falling to a Duke squad that was not nearly as good as its No. 10 ranking suggested. As I walked across the Village C patio, I heard a girl angrily declare to a friend, “I want my ninety $90 back!” – the price of student season tickets. A preseason No. 8 ranking had led to more student season ticket sales than any year in recent memory and a groundswell of support for the team from the student body. But after early season losses to Old Dominion, Oregon and Duke, the Hoya bandwagon started getting pretty light again. The following home game against James Madison saw one of the worst student turnouts of the year, and spirits that were palpably dampened despite the season-high 89 points the Hoyas scored en route to a 36-point thumping of the Dukes. But freshman Anna Selling (CAS ’10) held a simple sign in the front row of the student section that summed up the sentiment of the loyal fans that hadn’t lost hope: “We Still Believe”After we lost a few games and lost our ranking, a lot of people on my floor and around campus were saying that we were overrated,” Selling said. “I think the most important thing is to believe in your team and I wanted to let everyone know that we still believed.” Veteran Hoya fans, shocked at a loss of faith following several upset losses, appreciated Selling’s attitude amidst a sea of gray moods and fair-weather supporters. John Hawkes (SFS ’04), a longtime Georgetown fan watching from the Young Alumni section, remembers Selling’s sign fondly. “I remember at the time thinking, `God, there’s a need for this sentiment about the team in December?’ But looking back on it now, it’s one of the coolest things I’ve seen this season.” Two and a half months and 16 Georgetown wins later, I sat on a bus with many of the same believers who didn’t abandon ship when the team struggled, including John and Anna. The mood as we headed home from Philadelphia after a victory over Villanova could only be described as euphoric. In the midst of all the celebration, I realized that this recent success was even sweeter because of the struggles endured at the beginning of the year. You can only appreciate the highs when you’ve experienced the lows. Even the team itself stayed confident in the face of early-season tribulations. “We knew that we were a capable team. We knew that a lot of the preseason stuff was just that someone had to do it – someone had a job and they had to write those types of things,” junior guard Jon Wallace said of the early-season hype and losses. “We were focused on what we had to do as a team and hopefully, at this point of the year, we’re starting to peak.” Having faith in your team isn’t just important for current students or players. This historic tear through the Big East is for all those supporters of this program who never lost faith through the hard times, who tuned out the naysayers, who knew that Georgetown Basketball was too strong to crumble because of a few years of ineptitude. The Hoyas have won their last 10 Big East conference games – a streak that Georgetown hasn’t seen since the 1983-84 championship season. They’ve won more than 10 Big East games in one season for the first time since 1986-87, and could finish with their best record since Iverson’s last season. Individuals are overcoming early season stumbles before our eyes as well. We are watching a third-year coach go from “Big John’s son” to one of the best coaches in the country. We are watching Jeff Green transform from a solid player and team captain to an all-American and one of the finest players in the history of the program. We are seeing the 2006-07 Hoyas become one of the greatest Georgetown teams of all time. The next three contests – tomorrow at home vs. No. 8 Pittsburgh, Monday against archrival Syracuse at the Carrier Dome and next Saturday’s Senior Day game against UConn – all have potential to be classics, so enjoy them. And above all, keep believing. This is a resilient squad that has proven it can triumph in the face of adversity. If you believe in them through the thick as well as the thin, you may just find that success is much sweeter in the end.

Have a reaction to this article? Write a letter to the editor.

Comments are closed.