January 23, 2009
Felton talking MSU
There is no denying that Georgia basketball is struggling.
The Bulldogs have lost their last five games and are winless in Southeastern Conference play. The road does not get any easier for Dennis Felton and his team this weekend as they host Mississippi State, a squad that has won five of its last six contests.
"It's an interesting matchup," Felton said. "Mississippi State has been playing very, very strong obviously up until (Wednesday) night. LSU got a hold of them pretty good. They're particularly interesting against our lineup because of the way they are playing with the primarily four guards and their dominant big guy like (Jarvis) Varnado both offensively and defensively inside."
It is Varnado's presence inside that concerns Felton the most. But just because his reputation for blocking shots preceeds him does not mean Georgia will stay out of the lane and away from Varnado.
"Our players have to stop being a little stubborn and come to embrace the idea of using shot fakes," Felton said. "That's a major thing. There is no doubt and I'd be pretty shocked if Varnado didn't block some of our shots because he is the best in the country. He pretty much blocks shots every game. We're not expecting to totally avoid his ability to block shots. We still want to take it inside and no matter what teams do he has a way of sprinting to the rim to make even help side blocks."
The Bulldogs figured out how to keep Varnado in check during the SEC Tournament last season. Georgia limited him to only three points and one blocked shot in their 64-40 win en route to the tournament title.
Felton has also been impressed with MSU's ability to shoot from the outside and the way they have battled on defense despite giving up a size advantage with their four guard lineup.
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