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December 22, 2009
Preview: Florida Atlantic at Georgia
WHEN: Wednesday, 7 p.m.
RECORDS: Georgia - 5-4, Florida Atlantic 5-5
RADIO: Georgia Bulldog Radio Network
TV: No TV
Georgia returns home for the first time in three weeks when it plays host to Florida Atlantic on Wednesday night. Not since the Bulldogs dispatched St. Louis back on Dec. 2 have they enjoyed the luxury of their own home court.
• Georgia arrives at this contest with a 5-4 overall record, with its first conference game still 17 days away. Most recently, the Bulldogs returned to competition after a 10-day layoff and posted their most impressive win to date, a 70-67 neutral-court decision over Illinois on Saturday in Duluth.
• Wednesday's game is the second all-time meeting between Georgia and Florida Atlantic. The only previous time these two teams met was on Nov. 25, 2003, with Georgia prevailing 99-84 in Athens. That game remains the last time three Bulldogs scored at least 20 points apiece in a single contest.
• It's worth mentioning that these two teams have one common opponent thus far in this young season: New Orleans. Georgia downed the Privateers 67-59 at home in the season opener, while FAU won 66-48 at New Orleans nine days ago.
• After Wednesday's game, the Georgia team will disperse for the Christmas holiday and is scheduled to return to Athens for a Dec. 27 practice. Its schedule resumes Dec. 30 at home against Pepperdine.
Thompkins honored by SEC
Trey Thompkins, whose outstanding play led Georgia to a rousing victory over Big Ten foe Illinois, was named Southeastern Conference Player of the Week, according to an announcement Monday by the league office in Birmingham.
Thompkins, a 6-10 sophomore from Lithonia, scored a team-high 21 points and added seven rebounds as the Bulldogs edged the Fighting Illini 70-67 at the Gwinnett Arena in Duluth. Most important, he sank four decisive free throws in the game's final 22 seconds to secure the victory. Thompkins did not start the Illinois game and played just 29 minutes. He had missed two practices during the week of final exams after having wisdom teeth extracted.
For the season, Thompkins leads the Bulldogs in scoring at 15.0 points per game, rebounding (7.2/game), blocks (16), field goal attempts (113) and field goals made (49). Continuing the theme from the Illinois game, he has made 11 of 12 foul shots in the final five minutes of games this season. Thompkins is also the leading career scorer among all current Bulldogs with 489 points.
Thompkins becomes the first Georgia player to win the SEC Player-of-the-Week award since Sundiata Gaines took home the honor during the week of Feb. 18, 2008.
This and that
Florida Atlantic is one of nine Sun Belt Con¬ference schools, the second one this season, to have played Georgia. Western Kentucky is the most frequent SBC opponent of Georgia's; the two programs have met eight times, including four of the past five season. ... In the most recent SEC statistics, Georgia leads the league in free-throw percentage at 70.7 percent, a stark improvement from last season, when the '09 team ranked 11th among the 12 SEC teams at season's end. Georgia has never won the SEC's free throw-percentage title in the 50 years for which those numbers have been tallied. A couple of other stats that merit a mention: last year's Georgia team averaged nearly 19 3-point shot attempts per game, compared to only 12.4 thus far for the current Bulldogs. The 2010 Georgia team, however, averages over 21 foul shots per contest, compared to just over 17 per game last season.