What you need to know:
* R.J. Hunter was named Sun Belt Player of the Week on Monday. It was the third time he has received the honor this season.
* Hunter led the Panthers to a pair of wins over first-place teams last week, including a 35 point performance on Saturday to secure another Sun Belt championship.
* Georgia State will open the Sun Belt tournament on Saturday facing the winner of Game 3 at 2 p.m. ET at Lakefront Arena in New Orleans.
NEW ORLEANS-Georgia State junior R.J. Hunter led the Panthers to another Sun Belt championship on Saturday and earned Sun Belt Player-of-the-Week honors as announced by the conference office on Monday afternoon.
Hunter averaged 22.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 2.0 steals per game last week and a pair of wins over first-place teams and secure the Panthers as back-to-back Sun Belt champions. Hunter played all but two minutes and ended the regular season with an impressive 35-point performance against Georgia Southern on Saturday.
It is the third time Hunter has won the award this season and marks the fourth consecutive year one student-athlete has earned three Sun Belt Conference Men’s Basketball Player of the Week awards in a single season. UL Lafayette’s Shawn Long accomplished it last season, while South Alabama’s Augustine Rubit did it in 2012-13 and North Texas’ Tony Mitchell accomplished the feat in 2011-12.
Hunter opened the week leading the Panthers to a 58-50 win over UL Monroe on the road. Despite scoring just nine points, Hunter dished out a career-high nine assists, mostly to Ryan Harrow who led the Panthers with 31 points. Hunter added six rebounds and two steals, while adding a pair of 3-pointers in 39 minutes of action.
On Saturday with the regular season title on the line, Hunter scored 35 on 8-of-17 shooting with three 3-pointers while going a school-record 16-of-16 from the free throw line in front of a sold-out Sports Arena. He added six rebounds and a pair of steals to lead Georgia State to a 72-55 win over its in-state rival and secure the No. 1 seed in next week’s conference tournament.
For the season, Hunter is averaging 19.7 points, second-best in the Sun Belt, while adding 4.8 rebounds per game. He is also shooting 87.2 percent from the free throw line and has dished out a team-high 118 assists.
Georgia State will open the Sun Belt tournament on Saturday at Lakefront Arena in New Orleans playing the winner of Game 3 of the championship.