Basketball teams are ready to get back into the swing of things after a quiet December.
Georgia College’s women host UNC Pembroke, Tusculum and Limestone in the Stair South Holiday Classic at the Centennial Center.
UNCP takes on Limestone at 5 p.m. on Friday followed by Georgia College (2-6) and Tusculum.
UNCP and Tusculum play at 1 p.m. on Saturday followed by Georgia College and Tusculum.
Limestone is the only team to have beaten defending national champ Clayton State this season, taking a 63-51 win in late November.
As part of the weekend, Georgia College’s women will host a free youth clinic on Thursday from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at the Centennial Center. It is free and open to children from 6-12, and will split into different stations to teach a variety of skills.
The Georgia College men (6-2) will participate this weekend in the Wyndham Holiday Classic in Savannah at Armstrong Atlantic State.
The Bobcats face Mars Hill at 3 p.m. on Friday and then Shaw at 11 a.m. on Saturday followed by Mars Hill-AASU.
FVSU’s men haven’t played since Dec. 13 and host Valdosta State at 4 p.m. on Saturday. The Wildcats are 2-3 under new head coach Sammy Jackson. The Blazers are 5-4.
The Lady Wildcats (6-2) got head coach Lonnie Bartley his 600th career win on Dec. 17 and are off until hosting SIAC foe Kentucky State on Tuesday.
Wesleyan’s month-long break ends Jan. 4 when it visits Huntingdon (Ala.). The Pioneers (0-4) aren’t back home until Jan. 16 against LaGrange.
Central Georgia Tech’s men (5-5) played five games in December and return on Saturday at the College of Central Florida while the women (6-6) visit Chattahoochee Valley on Friday.
The undefeated Middle Georgia College women beat Darton on Dec. 3 and will shake off the rust Jan. 9 when they host East Georgia.
The 9-3 men have a slightly shorter break, from Dec. 5 to Jan. 5, and they’ll travel to USC Salkahatchie.
The Notre Dame-Mercer game is one of the featured tipoffs in this year’s “Pack the House” campaign by the NCAA of women’s basketball.
Mercer’s game at Kennesaw State on Feb. 11 is part of the initiative, as well.
RPI watch: Mercer’s men are up to No. 101 as of Tuesday night in CollegeRPI.com, second-best in the A-Sun behind No. 91 Belmont.
The rest of the A-Sun men: No. 139 North Florida, No. 152 USC Upstate, No. 207 East Tennessee State, No. 236 Florida Gulf Coast; No. 243 Lipscomb; No. 247 Stetson; No. 257 Kennesaw State; No. 311 Jacksonville.
Georgia Tech fell from 110 to 140 after losing 65-59 last week to the Bears, who moved up 19 spots.
CollegeRPI.com is not doing women’s RPI this season. RealtimeRPI.com, however, has Florida Gulf Coast at No. 53, topping the conference, which doesn’t have good numbers.
Stetson is No. 96, with a huge gap to No. 248 ETSU and No. 249 USC Upstate. North Florida is No. 278, followed by No. 293 Kennesaw State, No. 307 Mercer, No. 319 Belmont, No. 320 Jacksonville and No. 334 Lipscomb.
Marquette King boomed a 65-yard punt and Demario Barber scored a touchdown in the third annual Russell Athletic HBCU Bowl in Atlanta on Dec. 18.
The two former FVSU players were among five Wildcats who participated for the West: linebacker Courtney Daniel of Putnam County, center Bobby Young and safety Ricky Johnson.
The teams were coached by two Canadian Football League staffs, Toronto for the West and Montreal for the East, which won 23-13.
Daniel had four tackles and half a tackle for loss, and Johnson had three tackles and a sack for a loss of 6 yards.
Young saw plenty of time at center, and Johnson also had 12 yards on a kickoff return.
King averaged 43.7 yards on three punts with two landing inside the 20.
Former Hawkinsville standout and Marshall transfer DeQuan Starling of Benedict had three tackles. Baldwin graduate Wayne Williams of Tuskegee had 8 rushing yards and 11 yards on kickoff returns.
Fort Valley State’s Whitley Smith is the latest SIAC women’s basketball newcomer of the week.
The Athens native had 16 points, six rebounds, seven assists and seven steals in wins over Miles and West Georgia.
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