In The Godfather, when Tom Hagan is having dinner with Mr. Woltz, he learns that Don Corleone’s plan to get Johnny Fontaine into the new movie is not going to work. As soon as Tom is sure that he can’t convince Mr. Woltz, he politely gets up from dinner and tells him, “Mr. Corleone is a man who insists on hearing bad news immediately.” It’s not because of The Godfather’s advice, but I’ve always felt the same way. That’s why I was disappointed with DaJuan Summers’ decision to end his career as a Hoya. Remember a few weeks ago when he said he would be playing at Georgetown next year? He must’ve known at that time he was lying to people. It would have been nice to know as soon as possible. Other than his misleading the fans, I don’t hold anything against him, and neither should anybody else.
Who can blame DaJuan for leaving? He just finished what was probably the most frustrating season of his entire life as a player, and now he has a chance to live his dream of playing in the NBA – not to mention the income that is in his near future. There are some things that Hoya fans wish had gone differently this season from Summers – like the four buzzer beaters he missed that could have helped to salvage the season – but it’s hard to hold any one player responsible for the team’s poor finish, especially the most consistent player on the team.
Right now it feels like the legacy of DaJuan Summers will be this terrible season, but that is a disservice to him and to the program. It’s important to remember that as a freshman he was a hero on the 2007 team. In the 2007 Big East Tournament semifinal against Notre Dame, when the Hoyas came back from 14 points behind to win by 2, Summers scored 18 points on his way to making the All-tournament team. In the NCAA tournament, he scored 15 points in the last-second win against Vanderbilt, and then he followed up that performance by pouring in 20 points against North Carolina to help the Hoyas make it to the Final Four.
It has been a terrible 2009 for the Georgetown Hoyas – players, coaches, alumni, fans, everybody – even the squirrels on campus don’t have the usual hop in their step. But what’s done is done; there is even more work to be done now by Coach Thompson and company. Georgetown Basketball needs to get moving in the right direction once again, moving forward and not looking back. The success from 2007 and 2008 and the frustration from 2009 are history now, just like DaJuan Summers.