Mississippi State returns home “humbled” according to head coach Rick Ray from its first road trip of the year.
The Bulldogs suffered an 87-68 setback at Utah State on Saturday but has a chance to get back on track against Jackson State at 1 p.m. this afternoon.
MSU has won five straight at Humphrey Coliseum dating back to last season.
The Bulldogs are 4-0 all-time against JSU and are 3-0 against the Tigers in Starkville. Mississippi State claimed an 81-67 victory in the last meeting in the first round of the 2010 National Invitational Tournament behind Jarvis Varnado’s 21 points and 11 rebound performance.
The Bulldogs are 23-3 against teams from the Southwestern Athletic Conference with Jackson State being the third SWAC school they have played already this season.
MSU’s loss at Utah State dropped the Bulldogs to 3-1 on the year. Sophomore center Gavin Ware notched his third double-double of the season scoring 19 points and grabbing 10 boards against the Aggies.
Ray’s roster is shooting 46.8-percent from the field and averaging 77.8 points. Mississippi State is hitting 33.8-percent behind the arc and 63.6-percent from the free throw line. The Bulldogs have outrebouded their opponents by five allowing 67.5 points on 45.9-percent shooting.
Ware leads the team averaging a double-double on the year with 16.5 points and 11.5 rebounds. He has notched double digit boards in each game this year.
Senior forward Colin Borchert is putting up 12.8 points and pulling down 3.3 rebounds.
Sophomore shooting guard Craig Sword is scoring 10 points to pace the backcourt. Sophomore wing Fred Thomas is adding nine points while junior point guard Trivante Bloodman is contributing seven points and 3.3 assists.
Jackson State is 2-4 on the year with both wins over Air Force and Tennessee-Martin coming on the road. Five of the Tigers six games this season have been away from home.
JSU is coming off a 68-64 victory over Tennessee-Martin on Friday led by 17 points each from Julysses Nobles (6-1, 200) and Brandon West (6-10, 235).
Wayne Brent’s club is shooting 40.7-percent from the floor and scoring 66.5 points. The Tigers are knocking down 33.7-percent from the outside and 67.1-percent from the charity stripe. Jackson State has outrebounded their opposition by 3.5 points giving up 74.2 points on 45.5-percent shooting.
Nobles, a senior transfer from Arkansas who played for Brent at Callaway High School, leads the Tigers with 15.5 points per game. He is joined in the backcourt by fellow senior Jeff Stubbs (6-1, 170) adding eight points.
West is putting up 10.5 points and grabbing 9.2 boards as JSU’s center.
Freshman forward Treshawn Bolden (6-8, 235), also of Callaway, is averaging 6.5 points and 3.8 rebounds while junior forward Derrell Taylor (6-6, 200) is chipping in 4.2 points and 3.8 boards.
Today’s game is not televised except on HailState.com but can be heard on the Bulldog Radio Network.