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LINKS: Georgia State Not Just a Warm-up for 2K Classic

Expect some solid defense and decent shooting from GSU

Georgetown Hoyas v Central Arkansas Bears Photo by Tony Quinn/ Images

In another preliminary game of the 2K Empire Classic, the Georgetown Hoyas will host the Georgia State Panthers.

GSU is coming off a 63-74 loss to Duke. With Georgetown’s struggles in the first three games, and the Panthers able to hang close with Duke for 23 minutes before a 13-0 run, Georgia State is not to be trifled with.

Here are the links:

How will the Panthers fare on the hardwood this season? - The Signal | GEORGIASTATESIGNAL

Returning starters Kane Williams and Damon Wilson will be vital to any success the team has this season. Williams was fifth on the team last year in points, with 11.1 per game, and led the team in steals, with 1.9 per game. Other returning players include forwards Chris Clerkley, Kavonte Ivery and Josh Linder, as well as guard Nelson Phillips.

There are some newcomers as well. Freshmen big men Joe Jones lll and Jalen Thomas will add some much-needed size to the interior. Also, after being redshirted for the 2018-19 season, guards Corey Allen and Justin Roberts will be eligible to play. These four will add a much-needed bench presence and will be able to apply pressure to the opposing team when the starters are resting on the bench.

2019-20 Georgia State men’s basketball preview | DUKECHRONICLE

The new head coach is Rob Lanier, who has worked as associate head coach for esteemed programs like Tennessee, Texas and Florida. The Panthers lost their top four scorers from the 2018-19 season, including guard D’Marcus Simonds, who declared for the NBA Draft but went undrafted. After losing a strong core, Georgia State will have to restore their depth chart.

Unfortunately, the Panthers have come up short in recruiting. Their most promising freshman is three-star forward Jalen Thomas, who will be a valuable contributor but may not be able to bring the team back to last year’s level. Georgia State will likely still be dominant in the Sun Belt, but it is up for debate whether they can compete with the rest of the NCAA.

Rk            Player G   MP  FGA  FG% 3PA  3P% FTA   FT% TRB AST STL BLK TOV  PF  PTS
1        Corey Allen 3 25.3 12.3 .459 5.0 .333 2.7  .625 1.7 2.7 1.0 0.0 3.3 1.7 14.7
2      Kane Williams 3 28.0 12.0 .361 4.3 .462 5.3  .688 3.0 4.7 1.7 0.0 3.3 3.3 14.3
3    Nelson Phillips 3 21.3  8.7 .423 3.7 .455 0.7 1.000 5.3 0.7 1.0 1.7 2.0 2.3  9.7
4       Damon Wilson 3 22.3  5.7 .647 2.0 .833 1.3  .500 5.7 1.7 1.7 0.3 3.3 4.0  9.7
5     Justin Roberts 3 30.3  8.0 .333 1.7 .200 4.0  .750 4.3 2.3 2.3 0.0 1.7 1.3  8.7
6        Josh Linder 3 12.0  3.0 .667      0.0 4.0  .750 5.0 0.0 0.3 1.0 0.0 2.0  7.0
7      Kavonte Ivery 3 15.0  4.7 .286 2.0 .333 2.7 1.000 2.7 1.3 1.0 0.3 1.3 2.7  6.0
8       Jalen Thomas 3 16.3  4.3 .692      0.0 0.7  .000 4.0 0.0 1.0 0.7 1.0 0.7  6.0
9      Joe Jones III 3 21.0  3.7 .636      0.0 1.7  .400 5.7 0.0 0.0 1.3 0.3 1.7  5.3
10    Chris Clerkley 2  8.0  1.5 .333      0.0 1.0  .500 1.5 0.5 0.5 1.0 0.5 0.5  1.5
11      Kalik Brooks 3  0.7       0.0      0.0       0.0 0.0 0.0 0.3 0.0 0.0 0.0  0.0

“We get boogie, baby.” Kane Williams is ready to step into his new role and help Georgia State men’s basketball claim more silverware - The Signal | GEORGIASTATESIGNAL

“[Coach Lanier] is very defensive-minded,” Wilson said. For the senior, the transition into a hard-nosed man defense was difficult at first. “It was a big change,” he said. “We are getting used to it and we are learning to love it.” ...

Fans will not be seeing a zone defense much, if ever, this season. “We will be a man-to-man defense,” Lanier said during April’s introductory press conference. “We’re going to guard you all the way up the floor and then when you get into the halfcourt, we’ll be guarding you then.”

Second Half Run Leads No. 2 Duke Over Georgia State, 74-63 - Georgia State University | GEORGIASTATESPORTS

Corey Allen led Georgia State (1-2) with 20 points on 9-of-18 shooting, while junior Kane Williams added 16 points and seven assists. The Panthers held Duke (4-0) to just 34.2 percent shooting and 7-of-28 from 3-point range but could not overcome Tre Jones who played all 40 minutes, scoring a career-high 31 points on 10-of-19 shooting, including four 3-pointers and 7-of-10 free throws...

Georgia State led by three with just over a minute to play in the first half and trailed by just two at halftime. After Duke took an early second half lead, the Panthers responded and on a jumper by Allen tied the game at 40 with 17:25 to play. Over the next seven and a half minutes Duke used a 20-4 run to push the lead to 60-44 with 9:53 to play.

Georgia State 104-35 Brewton-Parker: How it happened - The Signal | GEORGIASTATESIGNAL

In the last few months, coaches and other players were very vocal when talking about Kane Williams’ leadership on the court. He was vocal all night on both ends of the floor against Brewton Parker, with an efficient 14 points on 4-for-7 shooting (4-for-4 from three) to go along with three rebounds and six assists.

Damon Wilson, the lone starting senior for the Panthers, dropped 16 points in the first half, missing just one of his seven field-goal attempts and going 4-for-4 from three...

As a team, the Panthers were 14-for-28 from three-point range, with Wilson, Williams and Allen being the ones who had the green light. The trio shot 10-for-18 from beyond the arc, a promising first step in replacing last season’s sharpshooters.

Duke men’s basketball to face Georgia State with likely No. 1 ranking on the line | DUKECHRONICLE

Though a heavy favorite to win, the Blue Devils will be at a disadvantage on the glass—Georgia State is averaging 47.5 rebounds per game, while Duke averages 39.7. On top of that, the Panthers have outrebounded their opponents on the offensive glass by a margin of 39-20. The greatest threat will be 6-foot-8 forward Josh Linder, who picked up 12 rebounds in just 23 minutes of action against Charleston. Duke has the physicality in Carey and DeLaurier to stifle Linder and company on the offensive glass, but failure to do so will result in easy second-chance buckets.

Georgia State men’s basketball East Coast road trip preview - The Signal | GEORGIASTATESIGNAL

The resume isn’t nearly as extensive for the Hoyas as it is for Duke, but this is still a well-coached program. They return two key sophomores from last season: former four-star recruit Josh LeBlanc and former three-star Mac McClung. LeBlanc led the team in field goal percentage and will be the best returning rebounder for the team as well. He’s a gritty player, and with his 6-7, 215-pound frame, Lanier and his Panthers squad will have their hands full on the glass.