Feb 22, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; Georgia State Panthers head coach Ron Hunter reacts to play against the Old Dominion Monarchs during the second half at the GSU Sports Arena. Old Dominion won in overtime 65-60. Mandatory Credit: Paul Abell-US PRESSWIRE

Georgia State, Old Dominion Ineligible For CAA Championships

The Georgia State Panthers announced in a press conference Monday that they will join the Sun Belt Conference for the 2013 season.

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Coach Ron Hunter Weighs in on CAA Vote

SB Nation Atlanta got the chance to sit down with Coach Hunter on Wednesday and speak with him about the Colonial Athletic Association’s unanimous decision to exclude Old Dominion and Georgia State from being eligible. It became apparent very quickly that Hunter was very displeased with the vote and had some strong things to say about how his team will respond.

"It’s disappointing," Hunter said. "I feel as though and will coach this year as though we are an independent. To say we are in the Colonial, just to be playing games… we’re not and I don’t want anyone to kid themselves. So that’s how we’re going to approach this year and we will definitely have a chip on our shoulder. "

"If we do play in the Colonial, we aren’t looking at it as the Colonial," Hunter continued. “To be honest I would be happy to take everything off our floor that says CAA and I probably won’t even say the word Colonial, I will just say we are playing this team.”

Hunter also seemed to think he had some insight into who might have particularly opposed the Panthers playing for a conference title.

"This will cause me to be more motivated against certain schools, because I know who wanted Georgia State and Old Dominion to not be eligible," explained Hunter. "There are certain teams I would love to play and I hope they are having good years so that we can try to knock them out of an at-large bid. There are a lot of ways to use this to motivate our players. But we may not even play these guys, and if I made my way we wouldn’t."

Regardless of whether or not the Panthers will compete in the CAA, one thing for certain is that Coach Hunter is one of the best in the country at finding ways to motivate his team. This time he didn’t have look very hard.

Hunter has said many times in the past his goal is to win 20 games every season and be competitive in postseason play. In order for that to be the case in the NCAA Tournament this year, he will have to have a very impressive unit and earn an at-large bid. The University announced on Wednesday that Hunter has taken steps to help ensure that by adding non-conference games at Duke and BYU, thus bolstering Georgia State’s strength of schedule.

Stay tuned for more updates on Georgia State Basketball as the updates continue to unfold.


Georgia State Football Officially Joins Sun Belt Conference, FBS Level In Press Conference At Georgia Dome

A new generation of Georgia State University athletics was officially sworn in on Monday, as the Panthers joined the Sun Belt Conference in a press conference held at the Georgia Dome. Georgia State move from the Colonial Athletic Association to become the 11th football-playing member of the league, which competes at the Football Bowl Subdivision level.

"This has turly been a banner day for Georgia State athletics and Georgia State University," said Georgia State athletic director Cheryl L. Levick.

Sun Belt commissioner Karl Benson, who was in attendance for the announcement, said the league is looking to expand to 12 football-playing programs by the time expansion is done, as already existing member of the Sun Belt, the University of South Alabama, is also making the jump from a FCS to FBS. Both Georgia State and South Alabama will join the Sun Belt in a transitional period in 2013, and will become eligible in 2014.

"It's still important to us to maintain geographic connections," said Benson about making sure expansion remains regional.

Both Benson and Levick talked about the process of Georgia State joining the Sun Belt, and both admitted that talks began back in January, when Benson was yet named Sun Belt commissioner.

Currently, the only issue surrounding Georgia State's move to the Sun Belt dealing with the Panthers' soccer programs which will not have any conference opponents because the Sun Belt does not have a soccer league.

Levick addressed the issues, saying there are plans A, B and C in place that will help them work through the issue and it will be resolved once the athletic department speaks with the soccer coaching staffs.

For more on Georgia State's jump to the Sun Belt Conference, follow SB Nation Atlanta's StoryStream.

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