MSU closes homestand with Vandy

Mississippi State ends its three-game homestand with Vanderbilt on Tuesday night. Bulldogs’ head coach Ben Howland will meet the Commodores for the first time in his career but has been impressed with what he’s seen on film.

 On Vanderbilt…

“They are a really good team. They are right in the middle of fighting for the [NCAA] Tournament. I watched them on tape. They were at Auburn their last game and had them down 42 with seven minutes to go. They are really playing well. They have all of the pieces and are an NCAA Tournament team. They have two seven footers in the starting lineup that will both be NBA players. Damian Jones is a true five man; big strong body, really physical, very good skill level, dunks everything around the rim and has a nice touch. [Luke] Kornet is a great story. His dad played there. He was a late developer and he had no scholarship offers at the end of his senior year. He was going to go to SMU and walk on and if he didn’t make the team he was going to be a manager. This guy grew three or four inches since then and has put on a lot of weight. I think he will be in the NBA after his last year of college. Their guard play is great. They have great shooters and run a lot of really good stuff and they really keep it spread and spaced. They really make it hard on you by isolating your post. They are a great defensive team. They are really great on both ends. Vanderbilt is a very impressive team to watch and study.”

On the Georgia game…

“They were knocking us, which we expected going in. They are a very physical team and that has been a problem for us, matching the physicality of other teams. You can see how physical they are in the ways they block out and set screens. The other part was we really struggled to score against that zone defense. We will spend more than half the time in practice working on our zone offense today just so we can get a good feel for it. We will be without Travis [Daniels] in practice today, which is unfortunate but he sprained his ankle. He will be game-time decision tomorrow.”

On Malik Newman’s recent performance…

“He has to get more shots, looks and touches. We need him to score. We did not do a good job finding him in the zone in particular which is where he has a lot of success. In the past, teams have tried to zone us and we have been good in that respect and we need to get there again. In fairness to him, he has been playing with a knee problem. We didn’t practice yesterday. We watched film so hopefully the day off will give his knee some rest.”


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.

Posted in Basketball Tagged with: , , , ,

Want Email Updates? Warning... We Update Often

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 635 other subscribers