Zachary and Others Participate in Ultimate Training Camp

Seven Georgia State student-athletes (Eliza Zachary and Deidra Bohannon of the volleyball team, Kate Rawls of the sand volleyball team and Emiere Scaife, Sebastian Willer, Trey Payne and Nate Simon of the football team) went to Fort Collins, Colo., for a week at the end of May to participate in the Ultimate Training Camp. Zachary is interning in the sports communications office this summer and recorded her account of the trip.

Every Tuesday night, Athletes in Action meets and discusses ways to incorporate God into our sports. It is a place where student-athletes can congregate and help each other get past obstacles that comes with the college lifestyle. The leaders presented the opportunity to take part in the Ultimate Training Camp and the seven of us jumped on board.

The focus of the camp was to teach us many principles about how to play your sport with God.  After each session we would go to “lab”, which was learning how to apply each lesson while playing volleyball with your designated teams.

Once we got through all five principles it was time for what they called the S.P.E.C.I.A.L.  This was the main event of the camp, something everyone feared, but was excited for. S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stands for Spiritual Principles + Exhaustion = Confidence in the Almighty Lord.  For S.P.E.C.I.A.L., teams were selected through a mock draft where captains from each team selected players (there were twenty teams). Deidra, Emiere, and I were chosen out of 150 athletes of be captains for S.P.E.C.I.A.L., which was a huge honor.

Summarizing S.P.E.C.I.A.L. is hard.  It was twenty hours of activity, with 2-3 hours of sleep in between each day.  The first day started at 5:30 pm on Tuesday and ended at around 1 a.m. the next day.  The first day’s events ranged from ultimate frisbee, to tug-of-war, basketball, swimming, and even relays.  The first day is really when everyone struggled with learning how not to rely on their own strength, but surrender to God to give you strength to push through.

The start of the second day depended on what place your team came in. This dictated the amount of time you were able to sleep.  For example, my team finished in the middle, so we got about two and a half hours of sleep.  Our event the next day started at 4:30 a.m. The first event was an obstacle course around the Colorado State Campus which was about 3.5 miles long.  Then we played five or six rounds of kickball and a relay that truly brought everyone to their breaking point (this was not even the last event).

The last event was Golgotha. This event by far was the most humbling for not only me but all the athletes at the camp.  Before we started, our Pastor rounded us up and retold the story of Jesus’s journey to the cross. He explained to us that all the events during S.P.E.C.I.A.L. are a representation of the journey Jesus took to his death.  After he read a passage from Mathew of Jesus’ last words on the cross we started. During this event you took a 2×4 plank and ran down a Level 5 hill with the plank at your side.  Once you reached the bottom you pick the plank up and put it on your shoulders, draping your arms over the top, and ran back up the hill.  In total this hill is about a mile, which is not that long but after twenty hours of activity it feels like a 5K.

This event alone really changed my view on life and sports. As I made my journey back up the hill I thought about how the pain I was feeling right now was nothing compared to what He went through just to save me.

On the last day of camp everyone got the chance to share what they have learned from their experience, which was truly moving to hear. I believe that this trip taught all of us wonderful lessons about our lives and our sports. I learned so much about being a leader and how to play my sport not for God, but with Him.  We all made great connections with a lot of people at camp, especially the members of our S.P.E.C.I.A.L. teams.  The seven of us that were fortunate enough to experience UTC are so excited to share with our teammates and families about what we’ve learned.

Posted in football, Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports, volleyball

Time For The Peachtree Road Race!

We are quickly approaching the 2-year anniversary of the launch of the InsideGSUSports blog. It has been a great success and it started with the Peachtree Road Race in 2013.

The world’s largest 10k and its 60,000 runners will once again take to Peachtree Street on July 4. With its Georgia State roots, we figured it was time to once again call on Panther Nation and the #PantherFamily.

If you are a GSU alum and will once again be running, we want to hear from you. After the race, we will put together a blog with everyone’s times, but before the race, we want to know your story. We heard so many great stories last year and want to do it again.

Over the next three weeks, we will publish your stories on the InsideGSUSports blog as to why you run the Peachtree. Maybe you ran your first while a student at GSU and still run years later. Maybe you run in honor of a family member. Whatever your story is, we would love to hear it. If you just want to be included on our list of Peachtree runners that is fine as well. At the end of the day, we just want to hear from you.

This year, tweet at us (@GSUPanthers) wearing your GSU gear and we will retweet it. All of you are a member of the #PantherFamily and we want to see you representing the Blue and White!

Finally, if you are not already, make sure to sign up to receive instant notifications when our blog is updated. It is simple to sign up and makes it easy to keep track of GSU Athletics. Just put in your email address in the box in the upper righthand corner of this page.

As you finish up your training for the race, good luck and Go Panthers!

– Mike Holmes

Posted in Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports, Peachtree Road Race

Inside Facilities: #PantherFamily Day in Panthersville

On the third Wednesday of every month, a member of the Facilities 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: Communications

Georgia State Athletics hosted its annual #PantherFamily Day this past Saturday at the Panthersville Athletic Complex. The free event featured a softball doubleheader, two men’s soccer scrimmages, football’s spring game, and an unexpected sixteen innings of baseball! Mother Nature decided to join in on the festivities Friday evening during the scheduled baseball game. With a forecast of ¼-inch of rain, the grounds department expected Friday evening’s game to be played without incident, boy were we fooled! Panthersville was hit with 1 ¼ inches of rain Friday afternoon and evening leading to extra baseball on Saturday. After two innings, the game was postponed and scheduled to finish Saturday at 2 p.m. with another game to follow.

Events like #PantherFamily Day take a great deal of planning and effort from all departments involved. The grounds department began our field preparations for the event two weeks in advance. In order to transform the soccer stadium into a dual football and soccer field, a new mowing pattern was created and two different colors of paint were used to differentiate the playing dimensions. With help from the Facilities and Operations departments, Thursday was spent painting the final lines on the baseball, softball, and combined football/soccer fields. Logos were also painted on each field. Baseball had their traditional white “GSU” logo behind home plate. Softball’s “GSU” logo in centerfield was painted pink with a white outline as part of the team’s Breast Cancer Awareness Game. Finally, the popular blue, white, and red “GSU” logo was painted at midfield of the soccer stadium.

Everything seemed to be going along as planned until the April showers came rolling in. After one-inch of rain fell Monday and 1 ¼ inches on Friday, the grounds department became a bit anxious about the conditions of the soccer field. The 2014 STMA Soccer Field of the Year is a native soil field without a draining system. Our crew was able to mow all the fields a final time Friday morning before the heavy rain hit. With all the field preparations complete, we were left crossing our fingers that Mother Nature wouldn’t wash away the day and all our hard work.

Thankfully, the skies opened up and Saturday morning was filled with sunshine. Our crew arrived at 7 a.m. to set up the finishing touches before gates opened at 9 a.m. The weather remained beautiful all day, allowing game fields to dry from all the rain. The outcome of #PantherFamily Day featured two Sun Belt Conference victories each for the baseball and softball teams, a victory for the men’s soccer team, and an exciting spring game for the football team. After two weeks of preparations and a very long day, the 2015 #PantherFamily Day was deemed a success. Thank you to everyone involved for all of your hard work!

See you at P-ville!
–Erin Weigle
Grounds Graduate Assistant

Posted in Facilities, Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports

Inside Ticketing: Special Young Alumni Offer for 2015 Football Season Tickets

On the second Monday of every month, a member of the Ticketing 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: Operations

Georgia State University graduates from the last five years (2010-2014) will have the ability to request up to two complimentary general admission season tickets for the 2015 football season.

Young alumni are extremely important to our success and we want to reward you for your loyalty to the Panthers. To request tickets please click here and fill out the online form. Additional ticket information will be sent in August regarding print-at-home options. For ticket upgrades to reserved Scholarship Seating, $50 per ticket, please call 404-413-4020, M-F, 9 a.m to 5 p.m.

Young alumni are also encouraged to join the Panther Athletic Club, which helps support student-athlete scholarships. Membership gifts are used to defray the $5.7 million that will be spent by the athletic department on scholarships annually.

The Panthers open the 2015 season on Friday, Sept. 4, when we host Charlotte in the Georgia Dome.

–Tyler Wilcher

Posted in football, Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports, Tickets

Inside Compliance: Outside Competition

On the second Wednesday of every month, a member of the Compliance 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: Ticketing

The NCAA defines outside competition as “any athletics competition against any other athletics team that does not represent the intercollegiate athletics program of the same institution.”  The general rule is that a student-athlete who competes (as opposed to practices) as a member of an outside team in a non-collegiate competition during the academic year will be ineligible for any intercollegiate competition.

There are four listed exceptions to this rule for non-basketball sports.  The first exception allows student-athletes to compete on an outside team as long as the competition occurs outside of the institution’s declared playing and practice season.  In other words, the competition must take place during an official vacation period for the sport.  Second, a student-athlete may participate in outside competition, even during the academic year, if the student-athlete represents only himself or herself and does not engage in the competition as a member of an outside team.  Third, student-athletes may participate in international competitions on a foreign tour, but the number of teammates allowed from one school on a team of this type is limited depending on the sport.  Lastly, a student who participates in pre-season tryouts but does not make the team is not subjected to the outside competition limitations and can participate freely in any competition.

For basketball, the NCAA greatly broadened the scope of what is considered an outside competition to include games with fewer than five players if certain factors are met.  For example, any of the following conditions accompanying a competition could potentially render the contest as impermissible and, therefore, jeopardize the eligibility of any participating student-athletes: wearing team uniforms, keeping official score and time, using officials, charging admission, scheduling/publicizing the contest in advance, using predetermined team rosters, or utilizing corporate sponsorships/promotions.  It is important to note that, as far as the NCAA is concerned, the presence of even one of these factors is sufficient to turn a friendly game into an outside competition.  The prohibition against organized outside basketball competitions applies to any student-athlete who has reported for the squad, or who was recruited for basketball and then subsequently enrolled in the institution.  The prohibition remains applicable until the student-athlete’s intercollegiate basketball eligibility has been exhausted.

However, basketball student-athletes are permitted to participate in certified Summer Basketball Leagues under certain conditions.  Some requirements for a summer league to be certified include that no player can be paid to play, no all-star game is permitted, no admission may be charged, and any postseason competitions must end before August 31st (or the first day of classes, whichever comes earlier).  Additionally, teams in certified leagues are limited to a maximum of two players with remaining eligibility from any single Division I institution.  Further, a Division I student-athlete can only be a member of one team, within one league.  The league the student-athlete joins must play within 100 miles of the institution they attend or their official residence.  If a student-athlete is in the process of transferring, and has officially withdrawn from the original school and enrolled in the second, the student does not count as a member of either institution on the summer league’s roster.

Beyond the previously listed exceptions, the NCAA has outlined four specific instances in which outside competition is permitted for all sports (including basketball).  First, student-athletes may participate in one high school alumni game per year as long as it takes place during an official vacation period.  Second, student-athletes are allowed to tryout and compete for officially recognized U.S. national teams, or the foreign equivalent for international students.  The national team must be designated by the U.S. Olympic committee or national governing body as such (or the equivalent organization for another nation).  Selection for the team must be conducted on a national qualification basis and the international competition in question must require entries to officially represent their respective nations.  Additionally, basketball student-athletes are permitted to play in the U.S. against the U.S. National Team.  Thirdly, participation in the Olympic Games (including tryouts that directly qualify competitors for the Olympics) and participation in any official Pan American games or tryouts is permitted.  Lastly, basketball players are allowed to participate in a draft combine sponsored by a professional sports team during any part of the calendar year, provided they receive written permission from the Director of Athletics of their institution.

–William Winter

Posted in Compliance, Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports, NCAA

Inside Marketing: #PantherFamily in the Spotlight

On the first Monday of every month (a day late this week), a member of the Marketing 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: Panther Athletic Club


Clean off your tailgating materials, plant your favorite tailgating chair in the parking lots of Panthersville, and take in an off day hanging out with your #PantherFamily!

Come out and support #PantherFamily Day, this Saturday, April 11 in Panthersville at 2401 Wildcat Road in Decatur. Parking lots will open at 9 a.m. for tailgating.  The lineup includes:

  • 9 a.m. – Tailgating lots open at the soccer complex
  • Noon – Panther football team spring game
  • 1 p.m. – Softball faces Appalachian State in Game 1 of a doubleheader
  • 2 p.m. – Baseball first pitch against UL Monroe
  • 2:30 p.m. – Men’s soccer scrimmage versus Thomas University
  • 3 p.m. – Softball continues action in Game 2 against the Mountaineers
  • 5:30 p.m. – Men’s soccer ends the day by scrimmaging North Georgia

We hope to see you there!

Immediately following the football team scrimmage, fans can mingle with players during a meet and greet where they can get coach and player autographs. The tailgating area will also remain open to the public through the end of the final men’s soccer scrimmage.

Admission is simple:

  • Admission to all Athletic events on Saturday is FREE – just show up!
  • Parking is FREE
  • Photo Booth is FREE
  • Face Airbrushing is FREE
  • Pounce House and Inflatable slide is FREE
  • The fun you will have is FREE too…

Ok, enough of the corny jokes.  The only thing that costs you money will be food from our resident Panthersville concessionaire and two additional treat trucks, Queen of Cream (@queenofcreamATL), and Kona Ice Midtown (@konaicemidtown).

The GSU Soccer Complex is located at 2401 Wildcat Road, Decatur, GA 30034. The softball complex is also at the same location while the baseball stadium is two minutes away at 2819 Clifton Springs Road, Decatur, GA 30034 next to Georgia Perimeter College.

Please check and GSU Athletics social media accounts on the morning of April 11 in the case of inclement weather. If weather becomes an issue, football practice may be moved back to the GSU Football Practice Facility at 188 MLK SE and would still be open to the public. Other GSU athletic events will follow standard weather protocol.

Panther Athletic Club Spring Tour


The Georgia State Athletics Spring Tour will kick off the 2015 season, reaching out to eight cities throughout the Atlanta area.

Each event will feature a review of the exciting men’s basketball conference championship and NCAA run and a preview of the 2015 upcoming football season. There will also be a Q&A session with our coaches. Select stops will include director of athletics Charlie Cobb, men’s basketball coach Ron Hunter, football coach Trent Miles and women’s basketball coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener.

Representatives from the Panther Athletic Club, marketing team, and ticket sales staff will be on site to answer questions on how fans can become a part of the team behind the team.

The 2015 Georgia State Athletics Spring Tour is open to the public and admission is complimentary courtesy of the Panther Athletic Club. Light appetizers and a cash bar will be available.

For more information, please call 404-413-4170 or email
2015 Georgia State Athletics Spring Tour Locations:

4/7- Alpharetta
Time: 6:30pm-8:30pm
Venue: 5 Season’s Brewing, 3655 Old Milton Pkwy, Alpharetta, GA 30005

4/8- Smyrna
Time: 6:30pm- 8:30pm
Venue: McCray’s Tavern, 4500 West Village Place, Suite 2009, Smyrna, GA 30082

4/9- Decatur
Time: 6:30pm- 8:30pm
Venue: Square Pub, The Square Pub, 115 Sycamore St., Decatur, GA 30030

4/15- Peachtree City
Time: 6:30pm-8:30pm
Venue: Crosstown Grille and Ale House, 620 Crosstown Drive, Peachtree City, GA 30269

4/16- Kennesaw/Marietta
Time: 6:30pm- 8:30pm
Venue: Olde Towne Tavern and Grill, 2500 North Cobb Parkway Suite B-7, Kennesaw, Georgia 30152

4/21- Tucker
Time: 6:30pm-8:30pm
Venue: Marlow’s Tavern, 4156 LaVista Road, Tucker, GA 30084

4/22- Duluth
Time: 6:30pm-8:30pm
Venue: The Arena Tavern, 2000 Satellite Blvd., Duluth, Ga. 30097

4/23- Buckhead
Time: 6:30pm-8:30pm
Venue: Gordon Biersch- Buckhead, 3242 Peachtree Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30305

To RSVP, click here.

Look forward to seeing all of our #PantherFamily soon!

–Matt Newhouse

Posted in Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports, Marketing, Panther Athletic Club (PAC)

Hunter’s Enjoy Evening at Turner Studios

Georgia State head coach Ron Hunter and son R.J. enjoyed Thursday evening being a part of the NCAA tournament broadcast on TBS. Coach Hunter spent Thursday evening and will do the same on Friday evening serving as a guest analyst for Sweet 16 games being played on TBS.

R.J. spent the first segment of Thursday night’s production on-set talking about Georgia State’s magical run in the NCAA tournament last week, including his 30-foot 3-pointer with 2.6 seconds remaining to cap an incredible comeback against No. 3-seed Baylor.

Following his stint on-set, R.J. enjoyed a tour of the studio, including a trip to the graphics room which had some fun with the junior while he was on-set (apparently they think R.J. looks like Prince).

Coach Hunter will be back on-set Friday evening beginning at 6 p.m. for the TBS pregame show before two more games on TBS. Hunter will also appear at halftime and post-game of each of the two games.

Fans can view a photo album above of some of the behind-the-scenes images.

–Mike Holmes


Posted in Basketball, Basketball News, Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports, Men's Basketball, NCAA

Men’s Basketball Number of the Game: 18

It’s Gameday! Georgia State has been the talk of the nation all week, but now it is time to lace-them-up and play ball. There have been so many headlines: Ron and R.J.-the Father-Son combo; Kevin Ware returning to the NCAA tournament; Ryan Harrow and the most famous hamstring in sports; and then there is coach Hunter’s Achilles.

No. 14 Georgia State will face No. 3 Baylor at 1:40 p.m. ET live on TBS. You can also listen to the game on 680 The Fan and 93.7 FM with Dave Cohen and Brandon Leak calling the action.

You already know the team believes it can win and seeing what all of our fans have said this week, we know you believe we can win. So how often does a No. 14 beat a No. 3…more times that you think.

The InsideGSUSports blog has presented the Number of  the Game all season and we plan to continue it for several weeks to come (you know where are heads are at).

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

Today’s Number of the Game:


The No. 18 represents how many times a No. 14 seed has topped a No. 3 seed in the NCAA tournament. Wanna know the last time it happened? Just travel down I-75 last year as No. 14 Mercer topped No. 3 Duke. Maybe there is some in-state karma about being a No. 14 seed…we will find out soon.

We will be back with another Men’s Basketball Number of the Game on Saturday (I told you, we’ve got a feeling).

–Mike Holmes

Posted in Basketball, Basketball News, Gameday, Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports, Men's Basketball, NCAA, Uncategorized

Inside Operations: Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day

On the third Wednesday of every month (a day early this week), a member of the Facilities and 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 Wednesday: Communications

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This year St. Patrick’s Day is a busy day at Panthersville with both baseball and softball in action.  The grounds crew decided to use this day to showcase off some of our creativity and join in on the festivities.  In 2011 we had a baseball game against Harvard and painted the “GSU” behind home plate green and painted the bases green for the game.  Both were big hits.  Since then the NCAA has outlawed colored bases.  We wanted to step it up a notch this year.  We will again paint the “GSU” behind home plate green and add a few shamrocks around the logo and on the dirt behind the umpire at baseball.  Our biggest splash will be a large 40’ by 60’ shamrock “watermark” in the softball outfield.  Below is a step by step look at the process.  For more pictures of our special preparations for St. Patrick’s Day like us on Facebook at “Georgia State Grounds Crew” or follow us on Twitter @GSUgrounds.

  • Photos 1 and 2: Layout logo on a paper with a grid. Measure and create grid on the field. When doing a large logo in the outfield we “stretch” the grid by making the vertical rows 1.5 times longer than the horizontal.  We made the vertical rows 15’ and the horizontal 10’.  If you don’t “stretch” the logo it will look bunched together from the stands.
  • Photos 3 and 4: Using paper grid as a reference use string to outline your logo.
  • Photos 5 and 6: Outline logo by hand with aerosol paint. Fill in rest of logo. We used our aerosol line painter going back and forth quickly to put down a light coat.  We used a turf colored green to give us a natural “watermark” type look.
  • Photos 7 and 7: Clean up. Play Ball! See you at the ballpark

–Kyle Slaton,Director of Sports Turf and Grounds

Posted in Facilities, Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports, Softball, Uncategorized

Men’s Basketball Number of the Game: 2

It’s Selection Sunday! It’s Sun Belt Championship Day! It’s #StateNotSouthern! It’s March Madness at its best! Today is a Sunday like no other Sunday’s during the year.

Georgia State will face Georgia Southern with an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament on the line at 1 p.m. ET live on ESPN2 in the Sun Belt championship game.

Winning a conference title is the subject of the Men’s Basketball Number of the Game, but before we get to that, here is today’s important information.

If you were not able to make it to New Orleans, you can either watch the game on ESPN2 or listen to 1340 The Fan 3 as Dave Cohen and Brandon Leak call the action. Free audio is also available on and the GSU mobile app.

The InsideGSUSports blog has presented the Number of  the Game all season and we plan to continue it for several weeks to come (you know where are heads are at).

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

Today’s Number of the Game:


Decided to keep it simple today. The No. 2 represents the Panthers previous appearances in the NCAA tournament which came 10 years apart in 1991 and 2001.

We will be back with more Men’s Basketball Numbers of the Game later this week, so make sure to check back in with the InsideGSUSports blog to keep the fun rolling!

–Mike Holmes

Posted in Basketball, Basketball News, Gameday, Georgia State Athletics, InsideGSUSports, Men's Basketball, Sun Belt Conference, Uncategorized