Ray Speaks: On Sword, Thomas, Movies

We spent some quality time with men’s basketball coach Rick Ray this morning, and we talked about important things, like movies and cartoons. But more on that later. First, some piddlin’ stuff about disciplinary and personnel issues and whatnot. Feel free to skip ahead.

(For video of Ray, CLICK HERE.)

• Ray said freshman guard Craig Sword is quite sorry for his recent arrest for having a BB gun in his dorm.

“Obviously he is remorseful and it’s a situation he will learn from. His approach to basketball has always been good and it hasn’t changed his work ethic or how he goes about his business.”

Ray said he hasn’t settled on a possible suspension of Sword, but he’s doing a lot of running right now.

• Speaking of Sword, he’s now the backup point guard with presumptive starter Jacoby Davis sidelined by an ACL injury. Juco transfer Trivante Bloodman will be the starter now.

“Ultimately I want to use Craig more as a combo guard, being a two and then a one,” Ray said. “But now I don’t see him playing any at the two guard position and I think he will strictly be a point guard this season.”

• Ray expects freshman Fred Thomas, a guard, to be academically eligible.

“This is his last week of (summer school), so once he finishes up summer school then we’ll have a definitive answer as far as how he did in that particular class he’s taking. We don’t know any information on that until he gets those grades turned in for this week. We anticipate him being academically qualified if he does what he’s supposed to do. As far as our guys here at Mississippi State, there are not academic issues at all.”

• On whether players welcome his up-tempo style on offense: “We want to push the basketball, we want to run, but you’ve got coaches getting paid millions of dollars to stop you from getting easy baskets. At the end of the day, you’re going to have to know how to score in a half-court setting.”

• MSU will hold its first practice in conjunction with the second annual Maroon Madness event on Oct. 25.

• Ray has hired a graduate assistant and a video coordinator, positions that did not exist on the previous staff. It’s something Ray asked for after he was hired.

• OK, NOW THE GOOD STUFF. Ray’s favorite buddy comedy: “48 Hours.” He also loves Batman. “I’ve read some comic books. I hate to say this but, I love comic book cartoons. The whole Batman comic book cartoons, I’ve got the whole boxset. I’ve got the whole selection of them and I’ll pop them in and watch them with my son or daughter.”

If you follow Ray on Twitter, you’ve noticed he’s doing a daily countdown of his top 10 favorite movies. So he’s a bit of a film buff.

Of course, we wanted to know what kind of movies his wife prefers. He said you might be surprised. “She loves gangster films, any of the Godfather movies or anything like that. She’s different, that’s why she married me, she’s a little different.”