One game does not make a season. Or a career.
But Eric (Sleepy) Floyd, Georgetown's shooting guard, has made the most impressive early season showing against quality opposition of any area freshman basketball player in recent years.
His 28 points enabled Georgetown to beat Maryland, 68-65, Tuesday night for the Hoyas' first victory over the Terps since 1970. Georgetown fans, giddy over the Hoyas' 23-8 record last season, predicted people would be saying "Derrick who?" after they saw Floyd.
That was a reference to Derrick Jackson, Georgetown's all-time leading scorer and the only starter the Hoyas lost from last year's team. But Georgetown did not win that big a recruiting war for Floyd; the only other major schools interested in him were Florida State and Georgia.
So how does a youngster from the mountains of western North Carolina end up at Georgetown? Well, Hoya Coach John Thompson has a friend there and the Georgetown games are televised in Gastonia via cable.
Floyd liked Georgetown.
Thompson never saw Floyd play at Hunter Huss High School in Gastonia, although a number of Atlantic Coast Conference schools did. But they were scouting Jon Robinson, a teammate who signed at Maryland and is being redshirted this season.
When Thompson did see Floyd, it was in a pickup game. He was impressed.
"I liked his quickness," Thompson said. "We needed a second guard, a shooting guard. Eric was it."
Thompson believes television -- Channel 5 also goes into Winston-Salem, from where the Hoyas signed guard Ron Blaylock -- played a major part in selling Floyd on Georgetown.
"That," he said, "and the fact we beat Virginia and played North Carolina State a good game (in the semifinals of the National Invitation Tournament)."
But, Thompson always has down-played the ability of freshmen recruits, much in the manner of his friend Dean Smith, the coach at North Carolina.
Yesterday, Thompson would not grant a reporter an interview with his new 6-foot-3 shooter.
"It's one game. It's not protecting him," Thompson said. "Go ahead and write whatever you want about him. But I don't want him to be in a situation where it goes overboard at the beginning. I don't want him in a situation in which too much happens too fast.
"Let him play four or five games and let it level out... But we're happy he's here."
Thompson intends for Floyd to remain his sixth man, unless 6-foot-11 center Tom Scates, who was on crutches yesterday, does not recover in time from a sprained ankle (suffered against Maryland) to face St. Bonaventure at McDonough Arena Saturday night.
"You're better off substituting from strength than from weakness," Thompson said.
Against Maryland, Floyd seemed most nervous after the game was over. He had made 11 of 18 shots, many from 20 to 25 feet. A Georgetown spokesman said he was uneasy, because it was his first postgame press conference.
But Floyd handled the questions well.
"I want to congratulate the upper classmen for throwing me the ball and letting me shoot it," he said at one point.
Such a statement may show cockiness or arrogance. But, Thompson said, Floyd is low-key.
"He's very confident about his shooting," the coach said. "It's something he takes for granted, like somebody asking you if you can drive a car. For me to say I can shoot would be bragging. For Eric, it isn't."