Mercer will have all of four games under its belt in the new season -- and first since the 1940s -- when one of the NFLs most respected former head coaches visits campus.
Former Tampa Bay and Indianapolis head coach and current NBC analyst Tony Dungy will be the guest speaker Oct. 2 at Hawkins Arena.
His visit is sponsored by Mercer, the 100 Black Men of Macon-Middle Georgia and the Motivating Youth Foundation.
Dungy, who will be in town four days before his 58th birthday, went 54-42 in six seasons with Tampa Bay, leading the Bucs to the playoffs four times in his span from 1996-2001.
He then went north to take over at Indianapolis, where he won 75.9 percent of his games in seven seasons, finishing first in the AFC South five times and second twice. The Colts won the Super Bowl after the 2006 season, with Dungy becoming the first African-American head coach to do so.
Dungy has served on committees or as an advisor under presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, only bolstering his reputation of integrity, compassion, faith and community
Tickets go on sale Friday. Tables for 10 cost $1,000, with individual tickets costing $125. Table sponsorship options will be available, as well.
Ticket information is available online at www.mercerbears.com, by phone at 301-5470 and by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Middle Georgia State hires Knight
Middle Georgia State will have a new baseball head coach with plenty of NCAA experience with the hiring of Paul Knight.
Knight took over at Lenoir-Rhyne, a member of the NCAA Division II South Atlantic Conference, before the 2008 season and went 114-179 in six seasons with the Bears before his was dismissed after last season, a 21-29 year.
Knights first head coaching job was at another Division II program, Florida Tech, where he went 139-128 in five seasons.
He was an assistant at Wingate when the Bulldogs won one South Atlantic Conference regular-season title and a tournament championship.
Knight graduated in 1994 from Methodist College after helping the Monarchs to two NCAA Division III World Series. The native of Long Island, N.Y., earned his masters degree two years later at Richmond.
He replaces Craig Young, who resigned in June after 16 seasons. Middle Georgia State is retaining the former Middle Georgia Colleges spot in the NJCAAs Georgia Collegiate Athletics Association for the 2013-14 academic year but is looking at a move to four-year athletics next summer.
Fountain City Classic broadcast
The annual showdown in Columbus between Fort Valley State and Albany State is one of several SIAC games to be broadcast this season by broadcast television network Bounce TV.
In addition to the Fountain City Classic, Bounce TV, carried by WPGA digital subchannel 58.3, will carry the SIAC championship game and three other regular-season games.
CSS will carry three SIAC games, while ESPNU will carry one. Cox Communications, the primary cable provider in Macon and Warner Robins, does not carry Bounce TV or CSS.
Mercers mens basketball team is off to an 0-2 start in its tour of Europe.
The Bears lost 84-79 to Kaunas Zalgiris and 71-66 to Lithuania Sports University.
Mercer plays Neptunas at 1 p.m. on Thursday, the Latvian National Team at 11 a.m. on Friday and Neptunas again at 1 p.m. on Saturday.
Live streaming is available on the mens basketball page at www.mercerbears.com
Around Georgia College/Peach Belt
Georgia Colleges cross country teams were picked to finish in the middle of the Peach Belt Conference pack.
The women were predicted to finish eighth, with two fourth-place votes and a pair of fifth-place votes to finish two points behind Young Harris.
Columbus State was picked to finish first and Clayton State second.
The men snagged three fourth-place votes en route to a pick of seventh, trailing Young Harris by a point.
Columbus State and Georgia Regents -- formerly Augusta State -- were first and second.
A couple of Georgia Colleges top tennis players in recent years have returned as members of the Bobcats staff.
Head coach Steve Barsby has added Wictor Andersson and Kayla Barksdale as assistants.
Andersson won 77 spring matches and went 16-7 in singles as a senior. Barksdale was a three-time all-conference selection.
Around the state
Georgia Southern is ninth in The Sports Networks preseason FCS poll released Tuesday.
The Eagles got 2,002 points, 87 points behind Southern Conference rival Wofford, and a first-place vote. Appalachian State, which like Georgia Southern is leaving the conference after this year and is ineligible for the FCS postseason, is 12th with 1,696 points.
Chattanooga is 24th with 505 points, and Southern Conference teams The Citadel, Samford, Furman and Elon received votes.
San Diego, Butler and Drake from the Pioneer Football League also got votes. San Diego ranks highest at 45th.