UT Martin preview

Gavin Ware's 12 made field goals against Missouri State are the most by an SEC player so far this season. (AP Photo/Ricardo Arduengo)

Gavin Ware’s 12 made field goals against Missouri State are the most by an SEC player so far this season. (AP Photo/Ricardo Arduengo)

After three games in Puerto Rico, Mississippi State returns home against UT Martin at noon today.

The Bulldogs lead the overall series 7-1 over UT Martin including a 6-1 mark in Starkville. State won the last meeting 76-50 in Humphrey Coliseum on Nov. 25, 2011 behind 17 points from both Dee Bost and Rodney Hood.

MSU holds a 36-4 record against the Ohio Valley Conference.

The Bulldogs are 2-3 on the year having snapped a three-game skid with an 84-70 win over Missouri State on Sunday. Senior forward Gavin Ware led State with 25 points in 28 minutes and became the 35th player in school history to score 1,000 career points.

Ben Howland‘s bunch comes into the contest second in the Southeastern Conference shooting 50 percent from the field and scoring 82.6 points. The Bulldogs are making 33 percent from the perimeter and 70.8 percent from the free throw line. Mississippi State has outrebounded its opponents by 1.4 while allowing 82.6 points on 48.2 percent shooting.

The Bulldogs have scored 413 points on the year and also allowed 413 points.

Ware paces MSU with 19.8 points and 6.8 rebounds a game. He is joined down low by fellow senior forward Travis Daniels putting up nine points and pulling down 5.4 boards.

Junior guard I.J. Ready tops the Bulldogs backcourt with 13.4 points and 5.8 assists while freshman Malik Newman adds 13 points and senior Craig Sword chips in 12.6 points.

UT Martin is 2-4 on the year riding back-to-back wins over James Madison (78-75) and Harris-Stowe (83-57). In Wednesday’s win against Harris-Stowe, senior forward Myles Taylor (6-7, 235) recorded a double-double with 21 points and 10 points in 23 minutes off the bench.

Heath Schroyer‘s squad is shooting 44.3 percent from the floor and averaging 70.8 points. The Skyhawks have hit 35.6 percent from 3-point range and 63.6 percent from the charity stripe. UT Martin’s opposition is scoring 74.7 points on 47.9 percent shooting this season.

The Skyawks are led by senior guard and former Itawamba Community College standout Alex Anderson (5-11, 180) with 13.8 points. Anderson is accompanied in the backcourt by Chattanooga transfer and Starkville native Jacolby Mobley (6-0, 160), a junior, scoring 10.2 points.

Senior forward Twymond Howard (6-6, 210) of Pearl is averaging 12.3 points and six rebounds while junior forward Kedar Edwards (6-5, 200) is adding 8.5 points and 5.5 boards and junior forward Chandler Rowe (6-7, 205) is contributing 5.3 points and three rebounds.

Today’s game will be streamed on SEC Network + with Bart Gregory and Matt Wyatt on the call.

I have covered Mississippi State in some capacity since 2004 and joined the Daily Journal staff in 2013. I enjoy short walks on the beach, performing concerts in my car and watching professional wrestling.

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