ICYMI: Georgia State Athletics in the News, Nov. 18-24

Each week on Monday, we take a quick look back at the past seven days to review some of the highlights of stories in the media for Georgia State student-athletes, coaches, administrators and, like you’ll see this week, occasionally our university leadership. Enjoy a few minutes today catching up on the headlines you might have missed during your lunchtime.

And always feel free to tweet us @GSUPanthers with headlines you’ve seen around the nation that highlight the Panthers. We’re all one big team, and the few of us here in 125 Decatur don’t always see every article, or hear every interview, that’s posted out there. If you think there’s something we’ve missed, shoot it our way.

New York Times – Former Louisville Guard Kevin Ware Finds a Home at Georgia State
Kevin Ware anonymously traversed the Georgia State campus one day last week between the gym and classes in astronomy, history and journalism. The uninterrupted commute on foot was typical. If Ware draws attention going about his daily routine, it more likely stems from mistaken identity — he resembles a younger André 3000, the noted rap artist from Atlanta — than from his one shining moment under unimaginable duress.  Read more

WDRB.comKevin Ware, Ryan Harrow return to national basketball spotlight
What Kevin Ware needed was to run into a wall.Fall down. Hurt. Get up. Feel better. And then recognize that he truly could trust the right leg that he once publicly shattered.For Ryan Harrow, the obstacle was different. What Harrow had to do was miss a game-winning shot. Beat himself up. Share his greatest fears with coaches and teammates. Feel better. And then recognize that he truly could enjoy playing basketball again. Read more

ESPN.com – John R. Wooden Watch List Announced
R.J. Hunter was one of 50 men’s basketball players named to the prestigious John R. Wooden Watch List among the top players in the country. Read more

SLAM Magazine – Ryan’s Song
The stage could not have been set any better for redemption, for a true Cinderella song. The number one seed Georgia State Panthers and junior transfer Ryan Harrow came into the Sun Belt Conference tournament final on a roll having only lost one conference game all season (17-1). Harrow was just one victory away from his first NCAA Tournament game, despite playing for his third Division I program in four years. Harrow’s journey to that point has been even more complicated than his migrant college career. Read more

–Mike Holmes

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Men’s Basketball Number(s) of the Game: 11 and 16

Georgia State continues its 5-game, 10-day road trip against Chicago State on Monday afternoon at 4:30 p.m. ET in the first game of the CBE Hall of Fame Classic in Rochester, Mich.  Make sure to listen to the game live on 1340 The Fan 3 with Dave Cohen and Brandon Leak calling the action.

Despite the fact the Panthers have never faced Chicago State, head coach Ron Hunter has faced them 18 times, going 9-9, while he was head coach at IUPUI. However, that is not your Number of the Game.

As you know, running through the entire season, the InsideGSUSports blog will present the Number of  the Game, a quick number and explanation of its significance before tip-off.

The number will come from a variety of different places, but will always be significant to the team or that specific game.

Tonight’s Number(s) of the Game:

11 and 16

These numbers represent the number of field goal makes (11) and field goal attempts (16) taken by junior T.J. Shipes in three games this season. How is that significant? As a sophomore, T.J. made 11 field goals on 16 attempts.

Coach Hunter has talked about Shipes’ improvement on the court and these numbers are a good indication that he was correct.

Come back Tuesday before the Panthers continue the CBE Hall of Fame Classic in Rochester, Mich., taking on Western Carolina at 4:30 p.m. ET.

–Mike Holmes

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Inside Academics: What is SAAC?

On the fourth Monday of every month, a member of the Academics staff will give a behind-the-scenes look at what’s going on around its area and the department. Over the course of every month, each department will be featured at least once. Coming Wednesday: PantherVision.

What is SAAC?

SAAC is an acronym that stands for Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.  Each Panther team has two representatives that are selected by coaches and the Student-Athlete Development staff to represent the approximate 350 total student-athletes.

The SAAC committee meets once a month to discuss issues surrounding all student-athletes, current and pending NCAA and Sun Belt Conference legislation, along with Georgia State leadership and community development. In addition, the committee plans multiple events throughout the academic year.

SAAC members in 2014-15 have worked closely with their coaches and teammates to organize community service events for their teams. Most recently, a group of SAAC members visited the Children’s Hospital of Atlanta where the student-athletes spent their morning playing video games, having a dance-off and making some pretty cool art of turkey’s for this upcoming holiday. All student-athletes combine for more than 5,000 hours of community service.

The SAAC organized a method for teams to support other teams all year long and build a Panther school spirit bonding system.

An annual major project the SAAC is working on is the Athletic Awards Banquet. This banquet recognizes student-athletes for their accomplishment in competition, in academics and in the community.  This year, SAAC has been asked to take on an increased workload in the planning, which the committee has been eager and excited to do.

Having the student-athletes serve on SAAC gives them a voice and input, as well as transferable skills they can apply in the workforce after graduation.

The Following Student-Athletes Serve on the 2014-2015 Advisory Committee

 

First Name
Last Name
Sport
Joey
Roach
Baseball
Ryan
Blanton
Baseball
Curtis
Washington
Men’s Basketball
Ryann
Green
Men’s Basketball
Keith
Rucker
Football
Sean
Jeppesen
Football
Joel
Ruiz
Football
Hayden
Poole
Men’s Golf
Nathan
Mallonee
Men’s Golf
Ali
Elkhalil
Men’s Soccer
Bo
Stroup
Men’s Soccer
Feliple
Jaworski
Men’s Tennis
Christian
Gochnauer
Men’ s Tennis
Gaby
Moss
Women’s Basketball
Morgan
Jackson
Women’s Basketball
Mackenzie
Nail
Women’s Cross Country
Hannah
Stefanoff
Women’s Cross Country
Lauren
Court
Women’s Golf
Solen
Le Coz
Women’s Golf
Lauren
Harriman
Women’s Soccer
Nikki
Fedele
Women’s Soccer
Taylor
Scarpantonio
Softball
Callie
Alford
Softball
Masa
Grgan
Women’s Tennis
Chaimaa
Roudami
Women’s Tennis
Ravin
Gilbert
Women’s Track
Kelsey
Gray
Women’s Track
Kristina
Stinson
Volleyball
Sydney
Mauer
Volleyball
Sarah
Agnew
Sand Volleyball
Katelyn
Rawls
Sand Volleyball
Jessica
Summey
Advisor
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Gameday Poll: How Many Games has GSU Played on Natural Turf in its History?

Poll Answer: Thank you to all who voted in the Gameday Poll. The correct answer was five. Georgia State played on natural turf at Alabama twice, Tennessee, Houston and Rhode Island.

It’s Gameday and the Panthers will play their final road game of the season, traveling just up I-85 to face Clemson in Death Valley. If you can’t make the trip with us, we hope that you will follow along on ESPN3 or the RSN Family of Networks or listen to our radio broadcast on 1340 The Fan 3.

Thank you to all who have been voting in our Gameday Polls and if this is your first time voting, we hope that you will come back to our blog and vote during every game. We have had some great numbers through 10 games.

Also, as I mentioned before the last game, if you are a basketball fan, make sure to come back before every men’s basketball game for the Basketball Number of the Game. It will replace our Gameday Nugget from last year, but be equally entertaining.

Playing its home games in the Georgia Dome and with many stadiums going to artificial turf, the Panthers have not played too many games on the natural stuff. The Panthers will get that opportunity against Clemson this afternoon. So we have turned this week’s Gameday Poll almost into a Gameday Quiz.

So, our Gameday Poll/Quiz asks the simple question: Before today, how many games has Georgia State played on natural turf in its history?

Thanks for voting and hope you come back one more time next Saturday before the Panthers host Texas State for Senior Day in the Georgia Dome at 2 p.m.

–Mike Holmes

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Men’s Basketball Number of the Game: 9

Georgia State will begin a 5-game, 10-day road trip at Colorado State on Friday night at 9 p.m. ET. Make sure to listen to the game live on 1340 The Fan 3 and WRAS-FM 88.5 with Brandon Leak calling the action.

It will mark the first time that the two schools meet on the court and just ninth time the Panthers face a program from the current Mountain West.

Running through the entire season, the InsideGSUSports blog will present the Number of  the Game, a quick number and explanation of its significance before tip-off.

The number will come from a variety of different places, but will always be significant to the team or that specific game.

Tonight’s Number of the Game:

9

The number 9 represents the number of Father-Son combos at the NCAA D1 college basketball level this year. The list includes:

Steve & Kory Alford – UCLA
Steve & Bryce Alford – UCLA
Todd & Blake Bozeman – Morgan State
Billy & Billy Donovan – Florida
Ron & R.J. Hunter – Georgia State
Dale & Ethan Layer – Liberty
Craig & Cullen Neal – New Mexico
Keith & Lance Richard – UL Monroe
Bill & Tyler Self – Kansas

Come back Monday before the Panthers open a set of three games in the CBE Hall of Fame Classic in Rochester, Mich.

–Mike Holmes

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Inside Communications: The Power of Technology

On the third Monday ( a couple days late this week) of every month, a member of the Communications staff will give a behind-the-scenes look at what’s going on around its area and the department. Over the course of every month, each department will be featured at least once. Coming Monday: Academics.

Telling stories of our individual student-athletes and teams has become easier with more technology at our fingertips. It’s made our lives more difficult, in a way, with always having to be connected to see who’s saying what, but having more technology is huge a benefit to help us do our job, and a greater service to the media as well as fans.

Here’s a small example: Most people may not think about the fact that when you have a TV game like our men’s basketball team did earlier this week, there are at least two people feeding statistical information to the commentators throughout the telecast. As the action rolls on on the court, the stats are input on the scorer’s table by a two- or three-person crew and then disseminated to the web, mobile devices, scoreboards, live video feeds and anywhere else you can think of live stats ending up. The people the TV production company employs then help break down the stats more easily so the commentators can better inform the viewer at home.

The thing that’s many times overlooked is that we do this every game, no matter whether there is TV or not. We still have to put out the stats, and while we may not have national TV nearly every game like a Big 12 or SEC or Pac-12 school, we do have media doing a live broadcast every game. And we have fans who want the immediate update just by logging into their Georgia State Athletics mobile app or looking on GeorgiaStateSports.com.

That little bit of technology goes a long way for us to communicate through our radio crew. Helping them provide a complete picture with the use of a new stats technology we’ve purchased this year – Stat Broadcast – has put the true power of our stat crew into their fingertips. Every single thing that is entered in the stat program is logged and easily accessible to Dave Cohen, Brandon Leak and Rodney Turner within seconds. Drew Hinesley and John Morgo can do the same at a women’s basketball game at home too, just like the football radio team did. They can pull up a run over the last 1:13 or look to see that Ryan Harrow is 8 for 8 in the second half overall inside the arc. Nearly anything is accessible.

The Stat Crew program has not come far since it began in the mid-1990s. It is still DOS-based (yes, you read that correctly and if you know what that means, you understand our frustration with the program) and has actually not evolved much over the years. Luckily, other technologies like Stat Broadcast have come along to harness that power and help us push the information out more quickly to help our media calling live action do their job more easily, and tell a more complete story of the game.

 

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Inside Operations: Basketball Season is Upon Us

On the third Wednesday of every month, a member of the Operations staff will give a behind-the-scenes look at what’s going on around its area and the department. Over the course of every month, each department will be featured at least once. Coming Thursday: Communications.

There is a lot of buzz in the air around campus and the Sports Arena as we move into basketball season.  The men’s basketball team is coming off of a strong season last year, one of the best in GSU history, and the team is looking to improve upon that success.

With on the court pressure comes pressure to make sure the Sports Arena in the best possible condition for all of the fans attending the games.  Fresh coats of paint have been put walls, locker rooms, and other areas that fans will be walking around.  Floors have received fresh coats of wax and the bathrooms on the third floor South hallway have been completely remodeled.

Another new addition this season is the lighting fixtures that have been installed on the Courtland Street Bridge to provide more light at the main entrance of the Sports Arena.  Prior to each game the facilities team walks the arena to make sure all lights are functioning, signage is correct, trash is in garbage cans as well as ensuring that the concourse is set the way it needs to be for optimal fan experience.

Sound tests and scoreboard tests are also done prior to each game to ensure that everything is functioning correctly. All of these things are important to fan experience, it may not be something that you recognize every time you walk into the arena, but if something was out of place or if the sound system was not functioning correctly fans would definitely notice.

Next time you attend a game take a minute to look around and notice the detail that the facilities team takes to ensure the arena is in top condition. See you at the game!

–Steve Wojcikowski
Assistant AD Facilities and Operations

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ICYMI: Georgia State Athletics in the News, Nov. 12-17

Each week on Monday, we take a quick look back at the past seven days to review some of the highlights of stories in the media for Georgia State student-athletes, coaches, administrators and, like you’ll see this week, occasionally our university leadership. Enjoy a few minutes today catching up on the headlines you might have missed during your lunchtime.

And always feel free to tweet us @GSUPanthers with headlines you’ve seen around the nation that highlight the Panthers. We’re all one big team, and the few of us here in 125 Decatur don’t always see every article, or hear every interview, that’s posted out there. If you think there’s something we’ve missed, shoot it our way.

ESPN.com- First Bracketology
Many believe that Georgia State has a great chance to make the NCAA tournament this year, including ESPN’s Joe Lunardi.  Read more

Yahoo Sports – Sixty-eight predictions for the new season that are sure to come true (unless they don’t)
College basketball season tips off Friday night with 23 AP top 25 teams in action. To celebrate the end of the offseason, here are 68 fearless predictions for the new season. Read more

Associated Press – A guide to the 2014-15 college hoops season
Last season’s NCAA Tournament was one for the ages, filled with massive upsets and brilliant performances, capped by an unexpected champion taking down a powerhouse. But in the days after UConn cut down the nets in Jerry Jones’ football-topia, the adrenaline wore off and college basketball fans were left with a hollow feeling: The next game was seven months away. Read more

Sports Illustrated – College basketball preview: 68 things to watch this season
Don’t think that the college basketball season begins in January. After seven long months, the sport is back with a strong slate of games in November and December. Here are 68 things we’re looking forward to until the nets are cut down again in April. Read more

–Mike Holmes

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Men’s Basketball Number of the Game: 15

Georgia State will face No. 14 Iowa State in Ames, Iowa on Monday night. The game will air live on ESPNU at 9 p.m. as a part of the 24 hours of College Basketball Tip-off Marathon.

The game will serve as a little bit of revenge for head coach Ron Hunter whose collegiate career at Miami (Ohio) came to an end in the NCAA tournament in a 81-79 loss to Iowa State. Hunter did go 6-of-6 from the floor for 12 points in his final game.

Running through the entire season, the InsideGSUSports blog will present the Number of  the Game, a quick number and explanation of its significance before tip-off.

The number will come from a variety of different places, but will always be significant to the team or that specific game.

Tonight’s Number of the Game:

15

The number 15 represents the highest ranked team ever defeated by Georgia State, but which could be broken on Monday night. Georgia State defeated No. 15 St. Joseph’s during the 2001-02 season. Iowa State enters tonight’s game No. 14 in the AP and Coaches Polls.

Come back Friday before the Panthers face Colorado State in Ft. Collins, Colo. The game will air digitally live on the MW Network at 9 p.m. ET.

–Mike Holmes

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The Copycat Season Begins Saturday Night

The women’s basketball copycat season gets under way Saturday night in Jacksonville, Fla., against Atlantic Sun Conference foe North Florida.

The 12 returning letterwinners make the women want to be copycats for the men’s season that saw those Panther 10 returning letterwinners improve by 10 wins from the previous season and earn a regular season conference title.

Here’s a few other numbers to consider as the season starts:

1 – GSU will need to win on the road to be successful. It took the fifth game on the road last year to get the first road win and the team was just 5-11 away from the Sports Arena.

2 – The number of freshmen and the number of preseason all-conference picks. Freshmen Makeba Ponder and Kennesha Nichols both played well in the exhibition win. Seniors Brittany Logan and Alisha Andrews were named preseason All-Sun Belt Conference.

3 – The number of new assistant coaches added by Sharon Baldwin-Tener.

5 – Seniors to provide leadership.

12 – GSU had a rebound advantage in 12 of the final 14 games last year and the board control will be another key to the success.

70% – The team shot above 70% from the free throw line last year. That’s another goal that needs to be met to win in 2014-15.

702- Games played experience by the returning 12 players.

3,629 – Career points scored by the returning 12 veterans.

The copycat season starts at 7 p.m. Saturday. Listen live on WRAS-FM (88.5) as Drew Hinesley describes the action.

–Charlie Taylor

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