A Decade of Hobbs

The annual schedule for men’s basketball head coach Karl Hobbs, as he describes it, goes something like this: Most of October is dedicated to getting ready for the season, grinding through practices and film sessions. Once the season starts, there’s usually two games per week plus practices, meetings and film sessions.

As soon as the season ends, Hobbs’ focus turns towards making sure his players finish their school year strong as well as organizing recruiting for himself and his coaching staff. When school ends, he starts work on the July recruiting period, one of the busiest times of the year.

In August, Hobbs usually gets a couple weeks to catch his breath, he says, but once his players start returning to campus, he has to make sure that they all kept up with their workouts over the summer. Then September and October hit and it’s back to prepping for the season again.

This season will be Hobbs’ 10th on the sidelines at the Smith Center, and with such a busy schedule, he says it can be tough to take time to look around.

“Ten years, isn’t that scary?” Hobbs said. “To be quite honest with you, number one, it’s obviously quite an honor. It’s rare these days that a coach stays in one place for 10 years. I think it’s a credit to GW. The other thing for me is, when you’re working so hard and you’re busy trying to win, you’re recruiting, you don’t really have time to sit back and reflect on everything… You’re working so hard that you really don’t enjoy the ride.”

Hobbs said that while he’s enjoyed the on-the-court portion of his job, what he cherishes most is the opportunity to bring players to GW and watch them evolve both as players and as people over the course of their career.

“The real joy, to be quite honest with you, and the real pleasure of the job itself is to go out, recruit a young man, bring him to GW and you see him leave an entirely different way.” Hobbs said. “That’s where the real joy, that’s where the real sense of service, that’s where the real sense of what makes the job really worth while [comes from], and that’s what makes it fun.”

He’s makes sure to emphasize his program’s graduation rate and takes pride in the fact that 18 of 21 players who have exhausted their eligibility at GW have left the University with a degree. Hobbs also talks about his own growth, how he’s learned not to become complacent with success and how he’s gained experience as a coach. Earlier in his career, Hobbs said he had grown content with his own record. Today, he knows how fleeting winning can be.

“You have to constantly, what I call, be chasing,” He explained. “It’s a constant chase. It goes back to the story of the lion and the gazelle. When you wake up in the morning you’re either the lion or the gazelle. If you’re gonna eat that day, if you’re that lion, you better catch that gazelle. If you want to stay alive, if you’re that gazelle, you better be faster than that lion when you wake up. That’s been my attitude about this business.”


Ten years of Colonials basketball

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2001-2002

Record: 12-16
A-10 Record: 5-11
Postseason: None

2002-2003

Record: 12-17
A-10 Record: 5-11
Postseason: None

2003-2004

Record: 18-12
A-10 Record: 11-5
Postseason: NIT First Round

2004-2005

Record: 22-8
A-10 Record: 11-5
Postseason: NCAA
Tournament First Round

2005-2006

Record: 27-3
A-10 Record: 16-0
Postseason: NCAA
Tournament 2nd Round

2006-2007

Record: 23-9
A-10 Record: 11-5
Postseason: NCAA Tournament First Round

2007-2008

Record: 9-17
A-10 Record: 5-11
Postseason: None

2008-2009

Record: 16-15
A-10 Record: 10-18
Postseason: CBI First Round


HighLights

2003-2004

After posting identical 5-11 Atlantic 10 records in GW’s first two seasons under Hobbs, the Colonials switched their won/loss totals and earned a spot in the National Invitational Tournament. The bid was the team’s first trip to postseason play since 1999, when GW made the NCAA Tournament under then-coach Tom Penders.

2005-2006

On the heels of his first trip to the NCAA Tournament as a head coach, Hobbs led the team to one of the best seasons in program history. The Colonials went undefeated in Atlantic 10 play and lost only three games all season. GW was nationally ranked for the whole season, but lost in the Atlantic 10 Tournament and lost to top overall seed Duke in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

2007-2008

After three NCAA Tournament appearances in as many seasons, the team plummeted to the bottom of the Atlantic 10. Three separate players were dismissed during the season and the team finished in second-to-last place in the conference and without a spot in the A-10 Tournament.

2009-2010

GW began to show signs of life after two straight 13th place finishes, tearing through non-conference play with a 10-2 record. The Colonials slowed down once conference play started, going 6-11 against regular season A-10 opponents and losing in the first round of the conference tournament at Dayton. GW’s record was still good enough to earn a berth in the CBI, where it lost at home in the first round to Virginia Commonwealth.

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