100th Year Of Mississippi State Basketball Begins
STARKVILLE, Miss. – Not
only does Mississippi State usher in a new season on Monday against
Eastern Kentucky, the Bulldogs officially launch their 100th year of
basketball in what will be a year-long celebration.
game at Humphrey Coliseum, scheduled to tip at 7 p.m., is part of the
2011 2K Sports Classic that continues on Wednesday at 6 p.m. against
Akron on ESPNU and concludes the following week at Madison Square
Garden in New York City against a field that features Texas A&M,
Arizona and St. John’s.
The Bulldogs open the 2011-12
campaign after posting a 2-0 record in exhibition play following
Friday’s 94-70 victory against defending NAIA national champion
“It all counts now,” said 14th-year MSU coach
Rick Stansbury, who currently ranks 11th in SEC history with 272
victories, just six shy of moving into the Top 10. “As I’ve said many
times, I like the talent we have, and we have the type of schedule that
will test us early.”
The Bulldogs, who are 23-2 all-time
against teams from the Ohio Valley Conference, are coming off 17-14
year that ended without a postseason bid for the first time in five
years. Two starters return from that unit in senior guard Dee Bost and
junior forward Renardo Sidney, along with a list of other players that
saw ample playing time in Brian Bryant, Wendell Lewis, Jalen Steele and
“Our focus has been great,” said Bost, who in
October was voted co-captain. “Everyone is on the same page our goal is
to win a championship.”
The Bulldogs face a Colonels team
that returns two starters from last year’s 15-16 squad. Monday also
marks just the second meeting between the two schools, with MSU
claiming a 75-62 victory in Stansbury’s first year at the helm.
run that Princeton style offense,” Stansbury said of EKU. “They offset
what they don’t have by spreading you out on defense and shooting 3s.
It is different when a team has their five position player shooting 3s
against you. It can present some problems.”
Stansbury, the Bulldogs are 10-3 in season openers. Overall, MSU is
77-22 in lid-lifters and has won 21 of its last 26 dating back to the
Monday also marks the earliest
Mississippi State has ever opened a season, topping the previous mark
of Nov. 10, 2007, vs. Louisiana Tech at the Hump.