Game Notes attached
Georgia State made its second NCAA Tournament in the last four years in 2018 and returns four of five starters from the 2017-18 squad.
• Georgia State will face Tulane for a second-straight season to complete a home-and-home series.
• The Panthers topped the previously unbeaten (5-0) Green Wave 70-59 last season in Atlanta.
• During the last five years, the Panthers own a 7-3 record in the Crescent City.
• Georgia State has combined to go 13-5 in the state of Louisiana since rejoining the Sun Belt.
• Georgia State is currently in the midst of a six-game stretch away from home. The Panthers are 2-1 on the trip earning a third-place finish in the Cayman Islands Classic last week.
• With a win, Georgia State would improve to 5-2 for the fourth time in the last five seasons.
• Last time out, all five starters scored in double-figures as the Panthers dominated in-state foe Georgia 91-67 in the Cayman Islands Classic. GSU led by as many as 35 in the second half.
• Over the last 10 months, three Panthers have made at least eight 3-pointers in a game. Malik Benlevi knocked down eight against UGA last week, while Jeff Thomas did it against Mercer earlier this year. Last season, Devin Mitchell made 10 3-pointers at Little Rock.
• In the latest CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 poll, Georgia State was ranked No. 20.
• Since the start of the 2013-14 season, Georgia State has won more games (114) than any other NCAA Division I team in Georgia.
• GSU will face five 2018 NCAA Tournament teams this season. GSU has already faced Montana, St. Bonaventure, and Creighton. GSU also has games at Alabama and Kansas State on the list.
• Since returning to the Sun Belt in 2013-14, Georgia State has finished in the top two of the final regular season conference standings four times.
• D’Marcus Simonds was named the Sun Belt Preseason Player of the Year after earning AP All-America Honorable Mention recognition last season. He also earned Sun Belt Player of the Week honors on Nov. 12.
• Jeff Thomas has made 160 3-pointers in his career, tied with Kevin Morris for 7th on GSU’s all-time.
• GSU is one of just 13 programs in the country to feature two assistant coaches who have NCAA D1 head coach experience (McCallum – Ball State/Houston/Detroit and Williams – Tennessee State).
• GSU was one of just 13 schools in the country to win a bowl game and advance to the NCAA Tournament last year. Only three schools (GSU, Marshall and New Mexico State) are non-Power 5 programs.
• Head coach Ron Hunter, Georgia State’s all-time leader in wins, earned the 150th win of his career at GSU in the opening game of the Cayman Islands Classic against St. Bonaventure.
• Hunter has led the Panthers to four of the seven most successful seasons in program history, including a pair of 25-win seasons and 24 wins last year.
Georgia State Set For Midday Tip with Tulane Wednesday
ATLANTA-Coming off a big win in the Cayman Islands, Georgia State will travel to New Orleans and return to the court on Wednesday to face Tulane at Avron B. Fogelman Arena at 1 p.m. ET.
Georgia State (4-2) went 2-1 in the Cayman Islands Classic last week, capped by a 24-point win over in-state foe Georgia on Wednesday. Tulane (2-3) opened the Gulf Coast Showcase with a win last week, before dropping the final two games, including the final to Louisiana.
Wednesday’s contest can be heard live on WAOK-AM 1380 with Dave Cohen, now in his 36th year as the Voice of the Panthers, calling the action. Live statistics and live audio will be available at GeorgiaStateSports.com and on most mobile devices.
The Panthers are off to a 4-2 start for the fourth time in the last five years and are currently in the midst of a six-game stretch away from home.
One of the top 3-point shooting teams in the country, three different Panthers have made at least eight treys in a game in the last 10 months. The latest was senior Malik Benlevi who knocked down eight against Georgia last week.
Junior D’Marcus Simonds, who leads the Sun Belt Conference averaging 21.7 points per game, has moved into seventh-place on Georgia State’s all-time scoring list with 1,260 points. He enters play on Wednesday just 19 points shy of James Andrews for sixth on the all-time list.
Simonds, the Sun Belt Preseason Player of the Year, is 36th in the nation in scoring while shooting 45.1 percent from the floor.
“Our team has already been battle-tested on the road this season and this game against Tulane will be no different,” head coach Ron Hunter said. “Despite what their record may say, they have a very good program and play well at home. This will be the next tough challenge, but our guys will be ready after a few good days of practice.”
Georgia State has come to love New Orleans and for that matter the state of Louisiana over the last five years. During that time, the Panthers own a 7-3 record in the Crescent City. Overall, Georgia State has combined to go 13-5 in Louisiana since rejoining the Sun Belt.
Senior Jeff Thomas is averaging a career-best 14.2 points per game and has now moved within 100 points of Georgia State’s top 25 in career scoring. Thomas in third in the Sun Belt shooting 39.0 percent from 3-point range and second in minutes per game (36.2).
Georgia State enters play averaging 8.5 steals per game, No. 2 in the Sun Belt and 40th in the NCAA. Four Panthers are among the top 10 in the conference in steals, as well as blocked shots per game. The Panthers 5.3 blocks per game average is tied for first in the league and No. 27 in the nation.
Following Wednesday afternoon’s game, Georgia State will travel to face Liberty on Saturday. Tip is set for 6 p.m., from Lynchburg, Va.
MIKE HOLMES | Associate Athletic Director – Sports Communications | Georgia State University
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