Texas Southern preview

Former Baldwyn and Northeast Mississippi Community College standout Reggie Patterson has appeared in two games for the Bulldogs. (Kelly Price/ Mississippi State)

Former Baldwyn and Northeast Mississippi Community College standout Reggie Patterson has appeared in two games for the Bulldogs. (Kelly Price/ Mississippi State)

Mississippi State suffered an embarrassing 76-72 loss to SWAC member Southern last month.

The Bulldogs will get another shot at a SWAC opponent hosting Texas Southern tonight at 7 p.m. on SEC Network.

MSU owns a 24-4 record all-time against the SWAC. Tonight is only the second meeting between the two with the Bulldogs winning 95-64 in Starkville on Dec. 17, 1996.

MSU (3-3) has back-to-back wins over Missouri State and UT Martin. In Saturday’s 76-51 victory over the Skyhawks, senior forward Gavin Ware notched a double-double with a game-high 22 points and 10 rebounds.

Ben Howland‘s bunch ranks second in the SEC shooting 49.9 percent from the field and is averaging 81.5 points. The Bulldogs have hit 31.6 percent from 3-point range and 71.7 percent from the charity stripe. State is outrebounding its opponents by 3.8 allowing 77.3 points on 46.9 percent shooting.

Ware currently ranks third in the conference scoring 20.2 points while also adding 7.3 rebounds. Fellow senior forward Travis Daniels is putting up 8.8 points and pulling down 5.7 boards.

Junior guard I.J. Ready is averaging 12.8 points and 5.5 assists while senior guard Craig Sword is contributing 11.8 points and freshman guard Malik Newman is scoring 11.4.

Sword is the league’s active leading scorer with 1,160 points in his career.

Texas Southern is 1-5 on the year with its lone win coming against UTSA on Nov. 25. The Tigers lost 77-65 at Washington State on Saturday led by 23 points from senior forward Malcolm Riley (6-5, 200).

Texas Southern is coached by former Alabama standout Mike Davis, who has taken the Tigers to the NCAA Tournament the past two seasons.

Texas Southern is shooting 42.7 percent from the floor and scoring 70 points per game. The Tigers are knocking down 34.2 percent of their shots from the outside and 60.5 percent from the free throw line. Their opposition is scoring 83.2 points on 50.8 percent shooting against them.

Riley leads Texas Southern with 16.3 points and 5.3 boards. He is joined in the frontcourt by fellow senior forwards Chris Thomas (6-5, 190) with 14.8 points and 4.7 rebounds and Jose Rodriguez (6-7, 215) with 8.3 points and 3.7 boards.

Senior guard David Blanks (6-3, 180) is scoring 10.7 points and junior guard Tyree Bynum (5-9, 165) is chipping in 7.2 points.

Tonight’s game will be televised on SEC Network with Tom Hart and Joe Dean 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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