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Bulldog Monthly September 2017

Dates and Deadlines

September 15: Gymnastics Endowment Fund Renewal Deadline

September 27: Georgia Baseball Fund Renewals Mailed

October 31: Gymnastics Priority Season Ticket Deadline

October 31: Georgia Baseball Fund Renewal Deadline

2018 Gymnastics Schedule Released

ATHENS, Ga. --- Three 2017 Super Six teams at home highlight the 2018 University of Georgia gymnastics schedule announced by first-year head coach Courtney Kupets Carter.

The GymDogs' schedule includes six home meets and five on the road during the regular season, which begins Friday, Jan. 12, at Alabama.

The GymDogs are set to host the three 2017 Super Six teams, beginning with 2017 NCAA champion Oklahoma on Monday, Jan. 15. Florida comes to town on Friday, Feb. 16, followed by LSU on Friday, Feb. 23.

"We have assembled a schedule that will provide quality and challenging competition for our gymnasts, week in and week out, while also exciting and energizing our fan base," Kupets Carter said. "We look forward to competing six times in the newly renovated Stegeman Coliseum, where the passion and energy of our fans will give us a true home-arena advantage. By season's end, as we head into the SECs and NCAAs, there's no question we will be stronger because we will be battle tested. I am so proud of the efforts our gymnasts have put in thus far and we will continue to work hard to get ready for our season opener in January."

Also highlighting the season will be a four-way Elevate the Stage podium competition meet Friday, March 2, in Augusta, Ga., against Stanford, Nebraska and Illinois. The meet will be held at the James Brown Arena.

The final home competition of the season will take place on March 10 against Boise State. The GymDogs will close their regular-season series in Salt Lake City on either March 16 or 17 against Utah before heading to St. Louis, Mo., for the SEC Championships on Saturday, March 24.

NCAA regionals are slated to take place at various sites on Saturday, April 7, while the NCAA Championships will take place in St. Louis on April 20 and 21.

The regular-season schedule dates and times are subject to change as the television broadcast schedule has not yet been finalized.

MBB CONFERENCE SCHEDULE ANNOUNCED

ATHENS, Ga. — A quartet of Saturday matinees headline the Georgia Bulldogs' 2017-18 SEC slate. The league office announced starting times and television assignments for all 126 conference games.

Three of the Saturday afternoon dates will air on the SEC Network, while one will be on ESPNU. The Bulldogs will host Alabama at noon on Jan. 6, South Carolina at 1:00 p.m. on Jan. 13 and Auburn at 3:30 p.m. on Feb. 10 on the SEC Network. A Feb. 24 matchup with LSU will begin at 2:00 p.m. on ESPNU. A fifth Saturday home contest against Tennessee on Feb. 17 is set for 6:00 p.m. and will be televised on the SEC Network.

Georgia opens league play with a 6:00 p.m. New Year's Eve date against Kentucky at Rupp Arena that will air on ESPN. The Bulldogs will be on the ESPN family of networks five times, including a 9:00 p.m. ESPN2 outing at Missouri on Jan. 10 and three ESPNU appearances – at LSU on Jan. 16, at Mississippi State on Feb. 3 and the aforementioned LSU game in Athens on Feb. 24.

The Bulldogs have won 51 SEC games over the past five seasons, the program's winningest stretch in league play ever. Georgia returns four starters and nine of its top-10 scorers from last season's team that finished 19-15 and advanced to postseason play for the fourth consecutive year. Yante Maten, a two-time, consensus All-SEC forward, is the Bulldogs' top returnee. The 6-8, senior from Pontiac, Mich., enters the 2017-18 campaign as the SEC active career leader on points (1,250), rebounds (606) and blocked shots (149).

September Donor Spotlight: Samuel D. Holmes

This month’s donor spotlight recognizes Mr. Samuel D. Holmes for his generosity to both UGA athletics and to the university as a whole. Sam and his wife Lara are two of several donors who have made a commitment to both the Magill Society and the Georgia Commitment Scholarship Program. Established in 2015, the Magill Society recognizes those who make commitments of $25,000 and above to the University of Georgia Athletic Association. Commitments to the Magill Society will be used to fund new athletic facility construction, as well as existing facility enhancement and renovation. The Georgia Commitment Scholarship Program is one of the University’s top fundraising priorities in providing support for students with financial need. Through this program, the UGA Foundation will match gifts for new endowed need-based scholarship funds starting at $50,000. To date, this program has generated 130 new scholarship endowments to support UGA students.

Q: Why do you feel it is important to support UGA Athletics?

A: UGA is an amazing academic institution that I am proud to say gets better every day. Students are receiving a world class education. However, college is much more than just what you learn in the classroom. UGA Athletics not only provides student-athletes with amazing academic and sports opportunities but it enriches the overall experience for all students. I would venture to say more lifelong friendships have been forged cheering on the Dogs than anywhere!

Q: How would you like to see your gift impact today’s generation of UGA student-athletes?

A: I have confidence that President Morehead, AD Greg McGarity and the UGA Athletic Board know where the needs are greatest. Leaders are tasked to lead and I am sure donor funds are in good hands.

Q: You are one of a growing number of donors who have given to both The Magill Society and the Georgia Commitment Scholarship program. What is it about these two programs that inspired you to give?

A: Both are incredibly easy for donors who want to be involved. As for the Magill Society, it was obvious that UGA needed the indoor practice facility and that the country's most beautiful stadium, Sanford, needed upgrading. Furthermore, how could anyone not support a group named for Coach Magill? He was one of my childhood heroes and as important a figure in UGA history as anyone. I am particularly proud of the Georgia Commitment Scholarship. I have had the pleasure of being on the UGA Foundation (Board of Trustees) since 2003 and we identified needs-based scholarships as being critical. Nothing is more rewarding than providing hard working young men and women who might not have the resources necessary to attend our great university a well-deserved hand up. We are eternally grateful for the partnership with the Woodruff Foundation that made this amazing scholarship possible.

Q: With so many great charitable organizations you could choose to support, why do you include both UGA and UGA Athletics among your philanthropic priorities?

A: UGA has meant so much to my family. My parents met in school. My brother, sister, and I graduated from UGA. I met the most important person in my life in school, my wife Lara. My oldest 2 children are in Athens now representing the 4th generation of my family to attend UGA. My youngest wouldn't even attend the college fair at her high school this weekend because she said, " Dad, you know the only place I am going to college is UGA."

Q: Describe your experiences cheering on the Bulldogs on game day.

A: I have had some of the greatest times in my life at UGA ball games. My father was a 3 year football letterman and 2 year starter in the early 60's so we grew up huge fans. We went to all the home games and many road games including great bowl trips to the Cotton, Sugar and yes even the Astro-Bluebonnet! That tradition continued with my children as we have been everywhere from Tucson to Tampa to South Bend this weekend. Nothing is better than family, friends and UGA football (except maybe UGA basketball).

Q: What would you say to a friend who was considering making a gift towards UGA Athletics?

A: Do it now and do it with confidence as the future is very bright.

September Student-Athlete of the Month: Kendall Kazor

Kendall Kazor is a senior for the UGA women's volleyball team. Originally from Dallas, Texas, Kendall finished the 2016 season second on the team with 191 kills and fourth with 53 blocks in 90 sets of action. She currently ranks fifth on the team with 39 kills for the 2017 season. Kendall majors in marketing/personal and organized leadership, and minors in studio art.

What her UGA scholarship means to her:

“To me, my scholarship has brought incredible opportunities. An opportunity to challenge myself every day and play the game I love at the highest level. An opportunity to earn a degree from Terry. An opportunity to be a part of this incredible Bulldog Nation. If it weren’t for my scholarship, I would not be here at UGA and I would not have had some amazing experiences I’ve had such as going to Costa Rica with LEAD last May or attending the Terry Gala and networking with today’s business leaders. I am continuously thankful for the opportunities my scholarship has provided me, and hope to reap as much as I can before I graduate.”

Off the Court

• LEAD Dawgs Soles 4 Souls trip to Costa Rica – interacted with impoverished children, washed their feet, gave them Nike tennis shoes, and painted a school lunchroom

• Give Volunteer Immersion Excursion–Connected with rural villagers by living like a local and diving headfirst into their culture and way of life while positively impacting their communities in volunteer initiatives

• Clarke County Mentor Program- meets weekly with her mentee to listen and to offer friendship and guidance while encouraging positive choices, supporting academic achievement and empowering her mentee to achieve her dreams

• “Learn, Play, Excel” – University of Georgia Athletic Association’s “Learn, Play, Excel” event with students from F.L. Stanton and D.H. Stanton Elementary Schools in Atlanta, as well as a group of Athens youth transported to the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta for another edition of the event. The program includes UGA coaches and student-athletes visiting with elementary and middle school students on topics such as education, leadership, anti-bullying, respect for authority and the value of participation in athletics.

• UGA Miracle

• Special Olympics

• UGA Relay For Life

• Hunger Bowl – canned food drive benefitting the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia

• It’s on Us

• Student-Athlete Mental Health Awareness Week with SAAC

• END IT Movement – Assisted with the END IT Movement at UGA, which is part of a coalition of the leading organizations in the world in the fight for FREEDOM. It is a movement of all people, to shine a light on slavery. END IT Movement at UGA exists to champion this cause here at UGA by inspiring, empowering, and uniting our student body to raise their voice and play their part in ending slavery.

• Member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee 2017-18 and has served as her team’s representative on SAAC since 2015

• Inducted into the UGA Athletic Association’s Leadership Education and Development (L.E.A.D.) program in 2015. L.E.A.D. is designed to encourage leadership development in UGA’s high-achieving and most-promising student-athletes.

September Student-Athlete of the Month: Michael Chigbu

Michael Chigbu is a wide receiver for the UGA football team. Originally from New Orleans, Michael appeared in 10 games in the 2016 season, making 6 starts. He finished with 9 catches for 88 yards, missing the last two regular season games and the Liberty Bowl due to injury. Michael is a junior majoring in finance.

What his UGA scholarship means to him:

“My scholarship means another barrier in my life has been broken; it gives me the ability to pursue my dreams on and off the field. It's one of God's blessings through his Grace. My scholarship means a reward for the past, motivation for the present, and opportunity for the future.”

Off the Field

• LEAD Dawgs Soles 4 Souls trip to Costa Rica – interacted with impoverished children, washed their feet, gave them Nike tennis shoes, and painted a school lunchroom

• UGA Indoor Athletic Facility Dedication Ambassador

• Camp Sunshine visitation – Member of a group that visited the camp that provides recreational, educational and support programs for children with cancer and their families.

• Hospital Visitations – Visited patients at Athens St. Mary’s Hospital, the Children’s Health Care and Scottish Rite Children’s Hospital facilities in Atlanta, and Wolfson Children’s Hospital in Jacksonville, Fla. (in association with Georgia’s participation in the 2014 TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl).

• Countdown to Kickoff – Volunteered and assisted with the charitable event co-hosted by former Georgia players and current Bulldogs to benefit Children’s Health Care of Atlanta, the UGA College of Education and the Georgia Transplant Foundation.

• Extra Special People – Following football practices, visited with members of Extra Special People, an organization assisting individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.

• UGA Miracle – Volunteered and assisted with student-run Dance Marathon, a nonprofit event that benefits Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, a branch of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals nationwide. It serves as the official philanthropy for Greek life at the University of Georgia.

• Youth Football Mentor – Serves as a mentor to young athletes of various ages throughout the Athens/Clarke County Area.

• Special Olympics – Served as a volunteer for the local Special Olympics.

• Christmas Gift Distribution – Assisted with the distribution of Christmas gifts to local underprivileged youth.

• Homeless Shelter – Volunteered at a local shelter for homeless residents of Athens.

• Inducted into the UGA Athletic Association’s Leadership Education and Development (L.E.A.D.) program in 2016. L.E.A.D. is designed to encourage leadership development in UGA’s high-achieving and most-promising student-athletes.

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