PAC donors benefit at basketball pre-game events

Networking, chalk talks scheduled before eight home games

Georgia State Basketball debuted with a more up-tempo style under new coach Ron Hunter, and donors to the Panther Athletic Club can pick up perks this season too.

The first pre-game event for PAC donors is set for Thursday, Dec. 1, starting an hour before the Panthers’ 7 p.m. tipoff against Florida International University. Donors can meet, network and enjoy food and beverages in the PAC Lounge on the third floor of the GSU Sports Arena.

In addition, one of Hunter’s coaching staff will give a brief chalk talk.

“They give a preview of the opposing team, of what we need to do to win,” said PAC donor and season ticket holder Phil Oneacre (EMBA, 1987). “It’s nice to get that information. . . . Coach Hunter has a much faster style and his players move the ball very quickly and play very good defense. If they can take it inside, they go straight to the hoop. It’s entertaining ball.”

Annual donations made by PAC members cover the rising costs associated with athletics expenses, such as scholarships, facilities, recruiting, travel, schedule enhancements and non-budgeted operating expenses associated with each of GSU’s 18 varsity sports.

“Coach Hunter is excited about the PAC Pre-game Events, and I am sure they will be both entertaining and educational for all in attendance,” said Todd Reeser, Senior Associate Athletics Director for Development. “Coach expects a lot from his team in terms of passion, effort and execution, and I am confident our PAC members will rally around his leadership and enthusiasm for the basketball program.”

Thursday’s pre-game event is the first of eight scheduled this season. PAC members who have donated $100 or more are invited, along with their immediate family members. All must have a game ticket.

Oneacre is one of the team’s biggest fans. He attends the Colonial Athletic Association tournament every year.

Oneacre is an Atlanta transplant from West Virginia, “where basketball is kind of king,” he said. “I was looking for something to do in my spare time, and Georgia State basketball had had some good seasons. After the first season or two, my wife, Jeanne, and I were hooked. It’s been great to see the men’s and women’s team get going.”

The Panthers earned Hunter a debut victory on Nov. 18, defeating McNeese State 69-50.

During that game, from his seats at center court, Oneacre watched Hunter praise James Vincent for giving the team a boost in the second half. As Vincent left the game, Hunter gave Vincent a hug.

“Coach Hunter has so much emotion, and appreciated how well [Vincent]played,” Oneacre said. “That’s not something you see a lot of coaches do in basketball, but I think that’s good and it builds confidence

The Panthers began NCAA competition in 1963, and have appeared in the NCAA Championship in 1991 and 2001.

Both season tickets and flexible ticket packages can be purchased here or by calling 1-866-GA-STATE. Individual game tickets are also on-sale now and can be purchased here.

To support the PAC, visit the Georgia State University Foundation website.

—By Michelle Hiskey; Contact Kim Cretors, (404) 413-3424