Mississippi State’s Ben Howland joined the rest of the league’s coaches on the SEC men’s basketball teleconference on Monday to discuss the Bulldogs recent performances and preview its match-ups this week.
Here is a transcript of Howland’s time on the call…
“We’re hopeful that Gavin Ware will be able to play again tomorrow, which remains to be seen. He’s going through the concussion protocol. Obviously he missed our game against Missouri on Saturday so we were a man short and we’re already thin as it is.
“Then I.J. Ready is questionable for today’s practice. We’ll just have to see how it is. He sprained his foot and his ankle on the same play at South Carolina last Tuesday and didn’t practice until game time on Saturday. We’ll just have to wait and see. Both of those guys are questionable.
“We have obviously a big game at home against Alabama. We’ve had a number of road games early on in the conference season so we’re happy to be at home.
“We’ll play against LSU, who is obviously really talented and very good. I was disappointed they didn’t get that win against Oklahoma shorthanded but it was a big step in how good they are and how well they’re playing right now, now that they’re healthy again and got some guys back that were out even though I know they had some issues this weekend with health.”
Can you talk about Quinndary Weatherspoon over the last few games?
Howland: “He’s really playing well. We’ve been saying for a while now that we think Q is going to be a really special player at Mississippi State before it’s said and done. He’s having a great freshman year.
“He had 14 rebounds the other night which was the most exciting stat of the day and actually we won a game on the boards. He was a big part of that. He had eight offensive rebounds so he did a great job getting second shots for his team.
“He’s playing good all-around – defense, he’s a good passer and a great competitor. That’s what makes him special is that he’s a real competitive kid. All three of our freshmen are.
“Malik (Newman) is really playing well right now. The last three games he’s had 25, 15 and 19 (points) and shooting close to 50 percent from 3 in the conference. Aric Holman, who missed 3 ½ months, is giving us some good minutes. He had a couple of blocks the other night. Even though he’s starting from way behind because of the knee injury, I think what he’s doing this year is important for his future.”