John Thompson III on Eastern Washington’s coach: ‘He doesn’t fit the bill of guys who usually guarantee victory’

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The trendy upset pick in the Round of 64 was No. 13 Eastern Washington over No. 4 Georgetown in the South Region.

The Eagles were playing close to home in Portland and had the nation’s leading scorer in Tyler Harvey. The Hoyas also entered with a recent past of struggling against double-digit seeds. Adding to the game’s intrigue was Eastern Washington coach Jim Hayford guaranteeing victory the day before in an interview with Jim Rome.

D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera dropped 25 points to lead Georgetown to an 84-74 win on Thursday night, and following the game John Thompson III was asked about Hayford’s comments.

“So he guaranteed victory,” Thompson told reporters. “Maybe it’s just me, but when I think of that, I think of Joe Willy Namath. I think of Muhammad Ali. I think of Larry Bird in the three-point shooting contest. The kids brought it to me and said, ‘Their coach is guaranteeing victory.’ I kind of looked down there at him. He doesn’t fit the bill of guys who usually guarantee victory. Our guys were fired up about that. Our guys were fired up.”

Georgetown moves on to face No. 5 Utah on Saturday.