After two losses on the road, Mississippi State returns home to the friendly confines of Humphrey Coliseum searching for a win against Tulane at 3 p.m. today.
The Bulldogs (4-5) fell 90-66 at Florida State on Wednesday without the services of senior forward Travis Daniels, who missed the trip due to a concussion. Senior forward Gavin Ware and freshman guard Malik Newman also left the loss with injuries. Senior guard Craig Sword led MSU against the Seminoles with 20 points.
Ware, the Bulldogs’ leading scorer and rebounder, is doubtful for today’s game with a lateral bruise in his left knee and Daniels is questionable. Newman is expected to play.
State leads the series 54-39 over Tulane and 26-10 in Starkville. The Green Wave won last year’s meeting 59-54 in New Orleans behind 17 points from Jay Hook. Daniels was Bulldogs’ leading scorer with 13 points in the loss.
The Bulldogs own a 77-61 record against teams that comprise the American Athletic Conference.
Ben Howland‘s bunch is shooting 47.5 percent from the field and averaging 78.7 points per game. Mississippi State is making 30-percent of its 3-point attempts and ranks third in the conference at 73.8 percent from the charity stripe. MSU has been outrebounded by its opponents by 0.4 while allowing 77.7 points on 47.6 percent shooting.
State is expected to start a four guard look against the Green Wave. Sword is scoring 13.2 points while Newman and junior I.J. Ready are adding 12 and 11.9 points respectively. Senior guard Fred Thomas is contributing 4.2 points.
Daniels is putting up 9.1 points and pulling down 5.6 rebounds.
Tulane is 6-5 on the year, falling at North Carolina 96-72 on Wednesday. Senior guard Louis Dabney (6-3, 210) was the Green Wave’s top scorer with 18 points and lead the team averaging 14.5 points.
Sixth-year coach Ed Conroy‘s club is shooting 44 percent from the floor and scoring 69.5 points. Tulane has hit 31.9 percent behind the arc and 64.9 percent from the free throw line. The Green Wave have outrebounded their opposition by 3.4 while surrendering 67.6 points on 40.4 percent shooting.
Junior Malik Morgan (6-4, 205) joins Dabney in the backcourt scoring 10.8 points and sophomore Cameron Reynolds (6-7, 215) chips in six points.
Sophomore Dylan Osetkowski (6-8, 245) is putting up 9.4 points and pulling down 9.1 boards while Washington graduate transfer Jernard Jarreau (6-10, 235) adds 8.7 points and 6.1 rebounds.
Today’s game will be televised on SEC Network with Matt Stewart and Mark Wise on the call.