STARKVILLE – Rick Stansbury will get to take a look at his team with the lights on today – well, most of his team.
Mississippi State’s men open exhibition play by hosting Lindsey Wilson, an NAIA school from Columbia, Ky., at 2 p.m. at Humphrey Coliseum.
Even though he must serve a nine-game suspension to start the season, sophomore Renardo Sidney should play today, although how much is not certain.
“My main objective’s not going into this exhibition worrying about Sidney, I can promise you,” Stansbury said. “Will he play (today)? We haven’t talked about it a lot … Probably play him somewhere along the way – probably.”
Dee Bost will not play at all. The junior guard has a nine-game sentence as well, but he’s also academically ineligible for the fall semester.
Bost won’t be on the floor until Jan. 8, so Stansbury, who’s entering his 13th season as head coach, has other things to worry about early in the season.
“There’ll be a lot of rotating going on every game,” he said, “seeing what mixes and matches, see if we can figure it all out, what functions best, how it functions the best.”
MSU opens the regular season in six days at home against Tennessee State.
Bost and Sidney on the bench will mean more minutes for guys like sophomore big men Wendell Lewis and John Riek, as well as newcomer guards Brian Bryant and Jalen Steele.
All four of those players should make notable contributions this season, with Bryant, a junior college transfer, possibly starting.
Twany Beckham, a sophomore point guard, spoke for all the Bulldogs: “I’m just ready to play, man. Two-a-days felt like a whole year.”
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Brad Locke/NEMS Daily Journal