Shooting by Hunter. The sophomore, who is becoming the favorite for the Sun Belt player of the year, has made 50.3 percent of his shots, which is amazing considering he has taken 95 3-pointers (making 45.3 percent) in the stretch. He has averaged a team-leading 22.8 points per game.
Block shots. Led by Curtis Washington, the Panthers have blocked 53 shots, 22 more than their opponents.
Fast starts. Though the Panthers have struggled in the first halves of the past two games, they still have outscored foes by 87 points in the first halves of the past 11 games.
The play of Markus Crider, super sub. He isn't scoring or grabbing a lot of rebounds, but Crider has proved invaluable in the middle of the Panthers' zone. Though Crider is only 6-6, Ron Hunter said Crider is so strong he is hard to score against in the post. He has also grabbed more offensive rebounds (18) than defensive rebounds (15).
“I said before the season that our success will depend on (guard) Rashaad (Richardson), but mostly with Markus,” Ron Hunter said. “He has to play so many different positions. He has to play so many different spots and know every one of them. His physicality, he’s playing unbelievable basketball.”
Share the ball. Led by Devonta White, the Panthers have 163 assists, or 14.8 per game, on 291 field goals. White has 65 of those, followed by Ryan Harrow's 54. The team had 110 assists, or 12.2 per game, in the nine games before the streak.
Take advantage of favorable conference set-up. Ron Hunter likes the Thursday-Saturday game schedule because it's what The Summit League used when he at IUPUI. When a coach is comfortable and routines can be set, the players are more relaxed. Plus, though the Sun Belt trails Georgia State's previous conference, the Colonial Athletic Association, by just a few percentage points in the RPI, playing at Louisiana-Lafayette and at Louisiana-Monroe isn't quite as difficult as playing at Virginia Commonwealth and George Mason.
Grow up. The Panthers didn't start well with early losses at Vanderbilt, at Alabama and at Elon, to name a few. But Ron Hunter and the players learned from those losses. The team gave up 74.2 points per game in the season's opening stretch compared with 67.8 during the win streak. In the victory over Louisiana-Monroe, the Warhawks scored only five points in the final 7 minutes, 15 seconds.
Keep their composure. The Panthers have two seniors and two fourth-year juniors in the starting lineup and two more seniors that come off the bench. There's not much they haven't seen, so it's hard to rattle them, especially on the road, and six of their past 11 games were on the road.