Ordinarily, the crowd at a college basketball game is already hyped and excited to be there. But the crowd for Tuesday's Georgia Bulldogs and Mercer Bears game in Athens had a little extra energy in the form of 4,000 students from local elementary schools. The kids were invited to Georgia's 68-59 win in the wake of the tragedy in Newtown, CT.
Georgia moved the game's tip up to an unusually early 11:30 a.m. to accommodate the schools that would be bringing children to Stegeman Coliseum. Guard Kenny Gaines told the Macon Telegraph is was fun playing in front of a crowd with unabashed enthusiasm.
"It kind of just reminded me of my own childhood," Gaines said. "It felt good playing in front of little kids, and giving them a nice little show."
Lucky for Georgia and Mercer, they weren't playing in front of a critical crowd, as the teams combined for 19 turnovers in the first half alone. Georgia resumes play on Saturday at home when they face the USC Trojans.