MACON — Mercer students, faculty, staff and alumni are riding high following the Mercer Bears’ clean sweep of Alabama’s SEC schools. Mercerians plan to stoke the competitive fires – literally – on Friday night and then hold a full day of events and tailgating before and after the Homecoming game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at the University Center.
Mercer’s basketball team is now ranked No. 1 in the RPI strength of schedule for the first time ever, coming off the strength of its victories against Alabama on Nov. 16 and Auburn on Nov. 19, and the strength of the team’s remaining schedule. The timing could not be better, with Mercer’s launch of its new tradition -- a fall Homecoming for its alumni and students.
This year’s Homecoming has the theme “Reconnect, Reunite, Rediscover.” Mercer is expecting hundreds of Alumni and their families to come back to campus this weekend. In recent years, the University’s Homecoming was held in the winter at the end of the basketball season.
Fire and Fireworks In Macon on Friday
Alumni events begin on Friday night with a stationary float competition at 7. Then at 8 p.m., a bonfire and pep rally will be held on Bear Hill – the outdoor area between Claude Smith Field and the Hilton Garden Inn. The event will feature the introduction of the Homecoming Court and performances by the Mercer pep band and cheerleaders, as well as the ceremonial bonfire lighting by President William D. Underwood. Men’s Basketball Coach Bob Hoffman will fire up the crowd for the Homecoming game on Saturday. The event will conclude with a fireworks display.
The public is invited to attend these events.
A Day of Orange and Black to Beat the Jackets
Saturday’s events are highlighted by the Mercer men’s basketball team’s tilt with the Yellow Jackets at 1 p.m. The game is already sold out and a record crowd is expected. The game will be televised to more than 8 million households on Fox Sports Net South as well.
The morning of the game promises to equally action-packed, beginning with the 2008 Homecoming 5K Road Run, which will start from Porter Patch at 8 a.m. The family-friendly events continue at 9 a.m., with the Orange Pancake Breakfast at Porter Patch.
Alumni will get a chance to reconnect to campus from 10 to 11:30 a.m. with campus tours and Godsey Administration Building tower tours and a Greek Village open house.
The game-oriented festivities begin at 11 a.m. with a pre-game barbecue lunch and party on the University Center plaza.
After the basketball game, there will be a post-game cookout from 3:30 to 6 p.m. and anniversary class reunion parties.
The men’s club lacrosse team will play an exhibition match against Augusta State at 4 p.m. on Bear Field. At 6 p.m., the University Center arena will host another exciting athletic event, the Atlantic Sun Conference Volleyball Championship Game.
The evening will culminate in the annual Homecoming Dance from 7 to 11 p.m., featuring The Grapevine, at The Armory Ballroom in downtown Macon.
Sunday will conclude the festivities, with a 10 a.m. Homecoming Chapel service in Newton Hall. At 3 p.m. there will be a “Thanksgiving Song” concert featuring the Mercer Women’s Choir and Mercer Men’s Choir in the McCorkle Music Building.
- 30 -