NASHVILLE - The Georgia State men's basketball team broke down their huddle before Thursday's practice with one word: Sunday. That's because the Panthers plan to play on Sunday, meaning they'll need to pull of an upset win on Thursday.
"We're a 15-seed playing a 2-seed, chances are low," said Georgia State sophomore D'Marcus Simonds. "Numbers say slim to none. We say otherwise."
The Panthers take on 2-seed Cincinnati Friday at 2pm in Nashville in the NCAA Tournament's opening round. Simonds is right, history is not on GSU's side: only in the NCAA's current format, 15-seeds have gone 8-124 in opening round games.
"It's just another number, anybody can get beat in March Madness," said junior Jeff Thomas. "It's March for a reason."
The team was loose as they practiced at Bridgestone Arena. Head coach Ron Hunter joked that he challenged his players to each name 3 country music artists if they want to be allowed to play in Friday's game. Hunter is as confident as his players, and is not afraid to let them, or the public, know.
"I don't care who we play, I'm going to say we've got a shot," said Hunter. "This is a stage where you can prove that."