Where does the Panthers basketball program go from here?

In a crushing 92-73 defeat against Gonzaga to end the season, Georgia State will now search for answers this offseason. 

The loss is certainly a tough pill to swallow in a score that was hardly indicative of how competitive the game was. 

The Panthers came into their first-round matchup against Gonzaga riding a 10-game winning streak and looked like the aggressor in the first half. 

Gonzaga pulled away midway through the second half as the injury of Eliel Nsoseme proved to be a crucial loss for the Panthers’ interior. 

Foul trouble was also a major issue in the game, as Gonzaga was able to take advantage of the limited depth that GSU was able to utilize throughout the game. 

In a game filled with 10 lead changes, the Panthers didn’t walk away satisfied with the result but should be content with the effort.

The Panthers will start the long wait until next season, saying goodbye to four seniors who have been the program’s backbone. Guards Corey Allen, Justin Roberts, Kane Williams and Center Eliel Nsoseme will depart, having made a tremendous mark in blue and white. 

With massive production lost to these departures, there will likely be a significant drop-off for the Panthers this year. 

The players that will return next year are Guard Collin Moore, Guard Evan Johnson, Forward Kaleb Scott, and Forward Jalen Thomas. The four will likely receive expanded roles within GSU’s offense next season.

With SMU officially hiring GSU Basketball coach Rob Lanier as their new head coach, GSU will have to turn its attention towards the coaching carousel or find a hire from within the program. Lanier will be missed as he posted a 53-30 record at the helm. 

The Panthers will now search for their third coach in as many years.

While the Sun Belt Championship confirmed their bid into the tournament, Georgia State’s seeding was not very favorable to say the least. 

The Panthers will also need to look at scheduling this year to improve their future seeding in the big dance. 

Many fans felt insulted by Georgia State receiving a 16 seed, and it’s pretty clear that the committee was letting  Georgia State know how it felt about the Panthers’ weak schedule. 

With its best win being against a division rival, South Alabama, it will need to bulk up its schedule to help the committee look at the program differently. 

Off-Season Shopping List:

Big Man:

The loss of Eliel Nsoseme will undoubtedly hurt the Panthers on the interior moving forward. The relentless energy and tenacity from the 6’8, 235lb big man will be hard to replace. 

As was evident in their game against Gonzaga, size in the post is something Georgia State needs desperately. 

Depth is also another area of concern, as when the Panthers get into foul trouble, the rest of the bench struggles due to their lack of experience. 

Size is a must for a team that made a living off of second-chance points last year if they wish to return to the NCAA tournament next year. With multiple big men across the country in the transfer portal, the Panthers may be in luck this offseason.

Playmaking Guard:

While positionless basketball has taken over the game as we know it, having a primary playmaking guard is essential in running a dynamic offense. 

With the losses of Corey Allen and Kane Williams, the Panthers will need a guard who can run the offense and get everyone involved. 

The team was relatively stagnant on offense this year, as plenty of possessions ended up being meaningless ones. Many of them usually ended in someone throwing up a bad shot before the shot clock expired. 

A playmaking guard will help offset the losses of Corey and Kane and will provide a much-needed scoring punch going forward.


The Panthers struggled at shooting this year. They shot 40% from the field, which ranked 343rd in the nation and 33% from behind the arc, which ranked 233rd. 

The shooting will need to improve this year if the Panthers plan on making another run in the NCAA tournament. 

Even with the dynamic scoring punch that Corey Allen provided, the team struggled to play off him well, causing the team to force many shots on empty possessions. 

A playmaking guard can only be as effective as his outside shooters are. 

When the outside shooting struggles as much as it did for the Panthers this year, the team will find themselves in tough games where they are unable to space the floor. 

Far too many times this year, the Panthers could not get easy buckets on offense. 

While they did go off in flurries at times, the vast majority of their scores were tough buckets. Opponents were more than happy to load the interior against Georgia State this year, and the Panthers will need shooters to keep their opponents honest on defense.

While the offseason will be an interesting one for the Panthers, fans will be elated to see the team move into its brand new $85 million Convocation Center this fall.