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Xavier will face Georgia in the first round of the NIT

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Xavier will face Georgia in the first round of the NIT


For the second time in three years, Xavier’s season will conclude with a trip to the NIT. After winning the tournament in 2022, Xavier will begin their quest to capture another title with a trip to Athens, Georgia to face the Georgia Bulldogs. Georgia will host the game by virtue of being the second automatic qualifier from the SEC after Ole Miss turned down a bid to the NIT. The Bulldogs, who are 17-16 on the season and finished 6-12 in conference play, may be without their second leading scorer Jabari Abdur-Rahim who missed the last four games with an ankle injury.

The game will take place on Tuesday night at 7 PM and will air on ESPN 2. The winner will take on the winner of Wake Forest, the top seed in the region, and Appalachian State. We’ll be bringing you a full fledged preview as we approach tip time, but the news is simple for now: Xavier is going to keep playing basketball until there isn’t any more basketball for them to play.



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Players to Watch on Georgia Tech’s Offense in Tomorrow’s Spring Game

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Players to Watch on Georgia Tech’s Offense in Tomorrow’s Spring Game


After a month of practice, Georgia Tech is going to take the field tomorrow for the Annual White and Gold Spring Game and it will be the first chance to see the 2024 Yellow Jackets on the field. The highly anticipated season opener vs Florida State is nearly four months away and it won’t be long after that Georgia Tech will be turning their focus to Ireland and the Seminoles. 

There is no shortage of things to be looking out for in tomorrow’s spring game, but let’s talk about the offense. 

Georgia Tech made a huge turnaround on that side of the ball last year, going from one of the worst offenses in the country to one of the best. They led the ACC in rushing and quarterback Haynes King was one of the best success stories in the conference after transferring over from Texas A&M. The Yellow Jackets had breakout stars at wide receiver and one of the best offensive lines in the ACC. The good news is that they are bringing back most of their production on offense, as well as most of the coaching staff. This is expected to be one of the best units in the conference and a reason why Georgia Tech will be a tough team to beat. 

Because Georgia Tech returns so many players on offense, the questions will be about their depth and Saturday will potentially give a glimpse into that. 

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So who are some players to watch on offense tomorrow?

1. Anthony Carrie-RB

Georgia Tech has one of the best running backs in the country with Jamal Haynes but with Dontae Smith gone, Georgia Tech needs to find reliable depth at a position that always needs it. 

So who might that be? 

Whether it is head coach Brent Key or running backs coach Norval McKenzie, coaches have praised true freshman running back Anthony Carrie this spring. Carrie is a four-star running back that Georgia Tech landed on signing day last December and he is a talented prospect who might make an impact sooner than later. 

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Here is what McKenzie had to say about Carrie earlier this spring: 

I think Anthony’s having a good spring ball. You always worry about as a freshman like how would he grasp the offense, kind of where would he be in pass protection. Is he a physical kid or is he gonna get bullied or whatever? And right now doing really good with the playbook and also doing fine and pass protection as well. So there’s still some things he has to learn in terms of where he fit in protection, but when it comes to actually fitting up a guy and protecting, he’s actually showed that he can and he’s more than willing to. So that’s the biggest thing too. Is he a willing blocker, which he is. So like I mentioned, man, I’m excited about where he is right now and the progression that he’s taken from practice one to practice eight.”

2. Leo Blackburn-WR

Georgia Tech has a deep and talented wide receiver room, but Blackburn adds a different dimension to this team. The problem for him unfortunately has been health. Blackburn tore his ACL last spring and did not play in 2023, but he is back this spring and Saturday will be a chance to show how his skill set can be a difference-maker. Blackburn is 6’5 220 LBS and Georgia Tech could use a receiver with that kind of size and playmaking capability. If healthy, Blackburn can make an already dangerous offense even better.

3. Jackson Hawes-TE

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Georgia Tech lost Dylan Leonard and Luke Benson from last year’s tight end room and went out and got two transfers. One of them was Yale tight Jackson Hawes and he is someone that Key has pointed out in both of Georgia Tech’s earlier scrimmages this spring:

“But then today really showed up as a big target that’s hard to bring down is Jackson Hawes, the Yale transfer. He’s a big target to see over the middle, especially when you get down in the red area, part of the game.”

Georgia Tech did not use their tight ends much in the passing game, but Leonard was also a solid blocker. Saturday will be a chance for Hawes to show he can add something new to the offense. 

4. Aaron Philo and Graham Knowles- QB’s

Philo and Knowles were early enrollees and have been practicing this spring and they have been getting great reviews from their coaches and their fellow quarterbacks:

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“They’re still learning the information, and what I share with them is that I’ve been there. I know what it feels like. So what happens is, as they continue to try to understand what we’re doing, the body physically slows down. So that’s where they’re at right now. They’re great additions to the room. They’re wired the right way. They want to be great.” says quarterbacks coach Chris Weinke. “They want to be coached. I couldn’t ask for two better guys in that room. I think that’s where they’re at right now. the bonus that they have sitting in this room is you’ve got two older guys, right? That have been there and done it. They kind of observe how they go about their business. And I think the sky’s the limit for both of those young guys”

Starting quarterback Haynes King says they are picking things up fast and learning well through this spring.

“The way they pick up on the offense pretty fast they’re coachable they want to do stuff the right way they’re falling in line they’re doing everything the right way showing up on time they’re competing every day I know at times they have to split some routes and they’re doing a good job of running the offense and just operating you know and that’s the big thing right now and I feel like they’re they’re doing a great job picking up on the offense and operating.”

Both Philo and Knowles are stepping into a really good situation. King is one of the best quarterbacks in the ACC and it is a huge advantage to have an experienced and talented quarterback like Pyron as a backup. Both of these quarterbacks can learn from these two quarterbacks and not have to worry about competing for a starting job and offensive coordinator Buster Faulkner sees that as a huge advantage:

“I think the biggest thing is it’s great they got here in January right and you’re seeing that across college football and now really at every position but it started with quarterbacks, with the kids enrolling early so they could learn the offense and compete for the job. The best thing for those two kids and their future is, is they don’t have to play right now. So we can bring them along slowly, continue to develop them, get them as many reps as we can get them. And I think that gets lost a lot of times in college football. The older you get, the better you are, and those kids don’t have to play right now and we’re excited they’re here. We look forward to seeing, forward to you know, developing them and it’s good that they are here because these are going to be 15 practices that you normally wouldn’t have if you aren’t here till the summer and then obviously all summer they’ll be here and have a chance to compete and they both got bright futures and we’re excited they’re here.”

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Both guys are the future of the quarterback room for Georgia Tech and they will get to step on the field for the first time as Yellow Jackets. I think they are the guys to watch on Saturday.  



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Germany's Scholz, Georgia's Kobakhidze Clash Over Foreign-Funded NGO Law

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Germany's Scholz, Georgia's Kobakhidze Clash Over Foreign-Funded NGO Law


BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s Chancellor Olaf Scholz on Friday appealed to his visiting Georgian counterpart to withdraw a planned law on foreign influence, increasing pressure from the European Union over the legislation. Critics have compared the law under debate in the country that aspires to join …



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Federal judge dismisses challenge to Georgia's citizenship verification process

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Federal judge dismisses challenge to Georgia's citizenship verification process


A federal judge on Thursday dismissed a challenge to a Georgia policy requiring new citizens to provide ID in order to vote. 

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The New Georgia Project is one of seven groups in a coalition that have been fighting the state’s voter verification process in court since 2018. They say they’re worried about how this could impact those who have just become U.S. Citizens.

Stephanie Jackson Ali, policy director for the New Georgia Project, says her family knows firsthand how difficult it can be to get registered to vote before becoming a new citizen of the U.S.

“As the wife of a naturalized citizen who did just this, he registered to vote on the day he got his citizenship, had to prove citizenship for his registration. I was disappointed,” Ali told FOX 5. “I know that he got flagged the first time he applied, even with that proof.”

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But the judge ruled that the plaintiffs failed to prove the voting rights of naturalized citizens are violated by having to show papers or get a new state ID before voting.

Secretary of State Brad Reffensperger agreed in a statement sent to FOX 5 saying, “Georgia’s citizenship verification process is common sense and it works. With this ruling, we are able to continue ensuring that only U.S. citizens are voting in our elections.”

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Ali argues the process creates an extra hurdle.

“New Americans, new Georgians are getting an added barrier that other Georgians are not getting,” she said.

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She also argues the federal government does not automatically update the state or county’s election systems with citizenship changes. Ali says there have been examples of new citizens missing an election in Georgia because they did not know they needed to update their status with the state in order to vote.

“People come out of that ceremony, and they are so excited about getting the right to vote. They’re like, ‘I’m a citizen, I’m a vote. I’m excited.’ And to think of these folks who, by some administrative error, by some box not checked, by some paper, not sent to the right clerk, may not get to live that little piece of the American dream,” Ali said.

FOX 5 requested an interview with Raffensperger to discuss the issue, but his team stated he was not available prior to our on-air report. 

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His statement goes on to say, “ensuring that only U.S. citizens vote in our elections is critically important to secure and accurate elections.”

As for whether the New Georgia Project will continue to challenge the ruling, Ali stated they were not ready to comment on that. But she did say they will continue to help register new naturalized citizens to vote.



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