Archive for November, 2012

R.J. Hunter honored by CAA

R.J. Hunter was named the Colonial Athletic Association men’s basketball rookie of the week on Monday.

Hunter scored 14 points and had 10 rebounds in the Panthers’ season-opening 74-55 loss at No. 8 Duke.

Georgia State will play at Brigham Young (1-0) at 9 p.m. Tuesday.

“I am very happy that R.J. was able to earn this honor,”  coach Ron Hunter, R.J.’s dad, said in a statement. “As I mentioned the other night, I was extremely proud to be able to watch him on the court and as he dad, this makes me very happy as well.”

Hunter hit four of his 11 shots, including two 3-pointers. Duke’s defense seemed keyed on him, making it very hard for him to get any open looks at the basket.

– Doug Roberson, AJC. Please follow me on twitter @ajcgsu

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Why Terrance Woodard didn’t play against Maine

Terrance Woodard, a defensive tackle and one of Georgia State’s best players, didn’t play in last week’s season finale at Maine.

Here’s why:

Georgia State requires that all students have health insurance.

For those student-athletes that can’t afford insurance, Georgia State purcahses it for them through the special assistance fund, which is offered through the NCAA to help student-athletes with certain expenses.

Woodard’s original policy was changed earlier this year, which resulted in a less expensive price.

The check for the difference in the price was sent to Woodard’s mother, instead of GSU. GSU realized the procedural mistake, and notified the Woodards, who wrote a check for the difference.

However, to make sure that everything was being done correctly, Georgia State declared Woodard ineligible early last week and notified the NCAA, asking for him to be re-instated. The NCAA reinstated him, but ruled that he accepted an improper benefit and therefore must sit out 10 …

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3 thoughts after Georgia State’s loss at Duke

Georgia State put up a good fight before falling 74-55 to Duke on Friday at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Here are three quick post-game thoughts:

1. Don’t be fooled by the score, the Panthers played well. Did they execute as consistently as they would like on offense and defense? No. There were a few hurried shots and a few defensive lapses when two men would rush at one shooter. But that’s to be expected in the season opener, especially when the team is composed almost entirely of freshmen or transfers who have never played before in coach Ron Hunter’s system. James Vincent, a senior, seemed the most calm on the court and played well. He didn’t start, likely because Hunter didn’t want him to get into foul trouble. That seemed prescient because his replacement, Denny Burguillos, picked up two quick fouls before the first Cameron Crazy could reach for a throat lozenge. A few of the new faces, Markus Crider for example, showed an aggressiveness that indicated they won’t be …

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Curry shares the last in a series of special moments in sports

Bill Curry has lived a life in sports, starting from his days as a player in youth baseball in College Park, dreaming of one day taking the mound for the Yankees, to a prolific football career at Georgia Tech and then in the NFL with the Packers and Colts, among others.

He continued as a coach at Georgia Tech, followed by stints at Alabama and Kentucky. He accepted the coaching job at Georgia State in 2008 and was charged with building the program.

Curry, who turned 70 last month, will coach his last game on Saturday when the Panthers play at Maine. He announced in August that he was retiring after the season so that he could spend more time with his wife, Carolyn, their children and grandchildren.

He has thousands of memories, but he said there are six that stand out. I’m going to share one a day with you, today through Saturday.

Esteemed Colleague Steve Hummer is also working on a couple of stories about Curry that …

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Georgia State falls to Duke

Georgia State hoped to pull off arguably the biggest win in school history on Friday in one of the most hallowed halls in college basketball.

But Duke is Duke and the Panthers are still working on fulfilling coach Ron Hunter’s goal of becoming the best mid-major program.

It added up to a season-opening 74-55 defeat for Georgia State, which gave the Blue Devils a school-record tying 95th consecutive non-conference victory at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Still, though Hunter said he didn’t want any moral victories, he seemed pleased with his team despite the defeat.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” Hunter said. “I’m so excited about this basketball team. I’m bubbling inside.”

The Panthers (0-1) played with fire and only seemed to get rattled by the Cameron Crazies a few times, but they could do nothing to offset Duke’s height and how coach Mike Krzyzewski used that advantage on both ends of the court.

Mason Plumlee, a 6-10 forward, led Duke with 19 points, including an alley-oop dunk …

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Curry shares the fifth of six special moments in sports

Bill Curry has lived a life in sports, starting from his days as a player in youth baseball in College Park, dreaming of one day taking the mound for the Yankees, to a prolific football career at Georgia Tech and then in the NFL with the Packers and Colts, among others.

He continued as a coach at Georgia Tech, followed by stints at Alabama and Kentucky. He accepted the coaching job at Georgia State in 2008 and was charged with building the program.

Curry, who turned 70 last month, will coach his last game on Saturday when the Panthers play at Maine. He announced in August that he was retiring after the season so that he could spend more time with his wife, Carolyn, their children and grandchildren.

He has thousands of memories, but he said there are six that stand out. I’m going to share one a day with you, today through Saturday.

Esteemed Colleague Steve Hummer is also working on a couple of stories about Curry that will run …

Continue reading Curry shares the fifth of six special moments in sports »

Georgia State hopes to send Curry out with a victory

Georgia State has one more chance, in coach Bill Curry’s final game no less, to string two good halves together for what Curry said may be the first time this season.

Players and coaches have theories why the Panthers haven’t been able to play four consecutive good quarters. Turnovers have played a part, but don’t fully explain the apparent difference in energy and results after halftime.

“If we knew why we were starting so poorly we would have fixed it,” Curry said. “We have tried every known remedy.”

But there’s hope, based upon the past few games, that Georgia State (1-9) will put it all together in Saturday’s game at Maine and send the retiring Curry out with a victory, something he may consider more valuable than the traditional golden watch.

Why now? In Maine, on what could be a cold, rainy day?

The Panthers have either outscored or tied opponents in the second half of each of the past four games. They outscored Old Dominion, 27-21, and tied James Madison, Villanova and …

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Georgia State’s potential path to NCAA tournament starts at Duke

The RPI, a mathematical formula used to rank basketball teams according to a variety of factors, isn’t Georgia State coach Ron Hunter’s favorite topic of conversation.

“The RPI are for fans and media,” he said dismissively.

While partially true, a bad RPI near Selection Sunday can make a team RIP when the invitations to the NCAA tournament are issued.

The RPI is important for Hunter and the Panthers this year because they aren’t eligible to play in the Colonial Athletic Association tournament, whose winner receives an automatic bid to the NCAAs.

The only way Hunter’s team can make it is by receiving an at-large bid. One of the proven ways to earn an at-large bid is by being relevant on Selection Sunday. A way to be relevant on Selection Sunday is by finishing with a high RPI, especially when you don’t play in one of the power conferences.

Georgia State’s schedule, which starts with Friday’s season-opener at Duke, seems strong enough that that if the Panthers can win a lot of …

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Previewing the Georgia State-Duke game from the Blue Devils’ view

Georgia State will open its men’s basketball season at Duke on Friday in Cameron Indoor Stadium.

I came to Durham today to do some reporting on a story that will run Sunday to preview the Champions Classic, a four-team event that will be played at the Georgia Dome on Tuesday and will include the Devils, Kentucky, Michigan State and Kansas.

During those interviews, I asked Duke assistant coach Steve Wojciechowski, Seth Curry and Rasheed Sulaimon about the Panthers.

Steve Wojciechowski on Georgia State:

“We know they are very well coached. Early in the season to play a team that plays a lot of different defenses, especially zone defenses, is unusual.

“We’re going to have to handle those defenses and attack them in an organized manner.

“The coach’s son, (R.J.) Hunter, is an outstanding shooter. You have to stay with him and take him off the 3-point line.

“Their point guard, (Devonta) White, presents problems with his quickness and ability to break down defenses.

“They are a very …

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Curry shares the fourth of six special moments in sports

Bill Curry has lived a life in sports, starting from his days as a player in youth baseball in College Park, dreaming of one day taking the mound for the Yankees, to a prolific football career at Georgia Tech and then in the NFL with the Packers and Colts, among others.

He continued as a coach at Georgia Tech, followed by stints at Alabama and Kentucky. He accepted the coaching job at Georgia State in 2008 and was charged with building the program.

Curry, who turned 70 last month, will coach his last game on Saturday when the Panthers play at Maine. He announced in August that he was retiring after the season so that he could spend more time with his wife, Carolyn, their children and grandchildren.

He has thousands of memories, but he said there are six that stand out. I’m going to share one a day with you, today through Saturday.

Esteemed Colleague Steve Hummer is also working on a couple of stories about Curry that will run later this …

Continue reading Curry shares the fourth of six special moments in sports »