Opportunity Arises for Dante Harris and T.J. Berger With Jalen Harris Out Indefinitely
With Jalen Harris taking a leave of absence, the Hoyas will rely on Dante Harris and T.J. Berger to keep the show going in the Georgetown backcourt.
Georgetown head coach Patrick Ewing broke some news on Friday morning, announcing that Georgetown graduate transfer Jalen Harris is taking a leave of absence to deal with family issues, as Ewing termed it. While Ewing did not give a timetable for when Harris could return, this will be Harris’ second missed game in a row, after missing last weekend’s matchup against St. John’s with back spasms.
With Georgetown thin at both guard positions, freshman guards Dante Harris and T.J. Berger are sure to see increased opportunity on Sunday, and perhaps beyond that, depending on how long Jalen Harris is away from the team.
For Dante Harris, he will start his second game in a row, after putting together an impressive performance against St. John’s last week, scoring 22 points to go along with three rebounds and two assists.
The performance earned Harris the Big East Freshman of the Week award as well.
Berger, meanwhile, has been slowly building up this season in terms of playing time. After not seeing any minutes in the first three games of the season, Berger saw the floor briefly against Coppin State, scoring five points in four minutes, and played eight minutes last weekend against St. John’s, in which he scored seven points on 2-of-3 shooting from the three-point line.
Known for his three-point shot coming out of high school, Berger has also shown a high basketball IQ in limited minutes, and deserves a bigger look, especially when he makes plays like this.
Whether Patrick Ewing wants to, he is going to have little choice but to #PlayTheKids until Jalen Harris is back. The Hoyas don’t have any other guard depth behind starting guards Jahvon Blair and Don Carey. With Dante Harris also starting now, that leaves Berger as the only guard off the bench.
Berger is an intriguing player on this team. He was not expected to garner much playing time coming into this season, at least early on, but he has intriguing size, standing at 6-foot-4, and looks to be the best shooter on the team already. The Hoyas haven’t had a shooter with as pure a shot motion as Berger in quite a few years.
Currently, Berger is shooting 80% from the field, and 75% from three.
How Ewing distributes minutes once Jalen Harris returns is a question for another time. For now, this will be a good early season test for the youth on this team, to see how they handle themselves when thrown into the fire.
So, grab a ticket, find a seat, and enjoy the show, as we see what Dante Harris and T.J. Berger can do with the training wheels being taken off.