News from MSU Media Relations--November 10

The lastest sports news from the MSU Media Relations Department...

Men's Basketball
STARKVILLE, Miss. - TeleSouth Communications, radio rights holder for Mississippi State football and basketball, has released the Bulldogs' 2006-07 men's basketball radio network affiliates list.

Based in Jackson, TeleSouth Communications reported a list of nearly 30 affiliates state-wide that will carry the Bulldogs this coming basketball season. This year's schedule begins with Saturday's (Nov. 11) season-opening home contest versus Nicholls State University out of the Southland Conference. Tip-off for Saturday's MSU-NSU season opener is set for 2 p.m. at Humphrey Coliseum.

Throughout Mississippi State's 2006-07 sports season, WFCA-FM (107.9), a 100,000-watt station located in French Camp, will again serve as the flagship station for both Bulldog and Lady Bulldog basketball as well as Bulldog baseball. The station blankets most of the north central portion of the state of Mississippi.

This season marks another special milestone for MSU broadcasting legend Jack Cristil, who is set to begin his 50th basketball season behind the microphone for the Bulldogs. The veteran broadcaster will be joined for the 24th consecutive season by Jim Ellis on State's basketball broadcasts this year. Each Mississippi State basketball broadcast will begin with a 30-minute pregame show and conclude with a postgame segment featuring MSU's ninth-year head basketball coach Rick Stansbury.


Aberdeen... WWZQ-AM... 1240
Amory... WAMY-AM... 1580
Batesville... WBLE-FM... 100.5
Biloxi... WTNI-AM... 1640
Booneville... WBIP-FM... 99.3
Bude... WMJU-FM... 104.3
Cleveland... WMJW-FM... 107.5
Columbia... WCJU-FM... 104.9
Corinth... WKCU-AM... 1350
French Camp... WFCA-FM... 107.9
Greenville... WDMS-FM... 100.7
Grenada... WOHT-FM... 92.3
Hackelburg, AL... WFMH-FM... 95.5
Hattiesburg... WMXI-FM... 98.1
Houston... WCPC-AM... 940
Indianola... WTCD-FM... 96.9
Jackson... WOAD-FM... 105.9
Lucedale... WRBE-FM... 106.9
McComb... WAKK-FM... 104.9
Meridian... WMOX-AM... 1010
Monticello... WRQO-FM... 102.1
Philadelphia... WWSL-FM... 102.3
Tupelo... WKMQ-AM... 1060
Vicksburg... WVBG-FM... 105.5
West Point... WKBB-FM... 100.9
Wiggins... WIGG-AM... 1420
Winona... WONA-FM... 95.1
Yazoo City... WYAB-FM... 93.1

Cross Country
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State men's cross country head coach Steve Dudley announced the signing of Ben Blankenship of Stillwater, Minn. to at National Letter of Intent to compete in cross country and track and field at MSU in 2007.

Blankenship finished seventh in the state cross country championship meet as a junior in 2005. He was also the conference and section individual champion for Stillwater High School that same season. In 2006, Blankenship won three invitational meets for the Ponies of SHS. He has paced SHS to three consecutive top-five finishes from his freshman to junior campaigns. He was under the guidance of Scott Christenson, cross country coach at SHS. Christenson has won 35 consecutive section championships in the state of Minnesota.

He claimed the one-mile state championship with a time of 4:13.68 last spring, which ranks in the top-17 in the country. Blankenship turned in a time of 9:08.35 to garner third place-honors at the state meet in the two-mile competition. His time in the two-mile also ranks in the top-20 in the nation.

"Ben Blankenship is arguably the best high school distance runner that MSU has ever signed, considering the fast times as a junior," said Dudley. "We look forward to adding him to the line up next year."

Blankenship recorded a time of 15:58.17 at the 4AA Section Meet at the Goodrich Golf Course in Minnesota. As a team, the SHS Ponies were ranked sixth in the Minnesota High School Cross Country Polls while Blankenship also ranked sixth in the individual section of the poll.

"Ben (Blankenship) is a perfect combination of distance and durance," said Scott Christenson, who coached Blankenship on the prep level. "I've had three former players who have competed in the Olympic trials and he has broken those guys' records here at Stillwater."

He is undecided on a major at MSU, but is very interested in history.

"When I came down there (Starkville, Miss.) it felt like a hometown atmosphere," said Blankenship. "The coaching staff is unbelievable at MSU. I am looking forward to coming to compete at MSU."

Track & Field
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State University Associate head track coach Steve Dudley has announced the addition of Michael Chapa (Cha-pa) and Thuom Mathiang (pronounced Thom Math-ang) to compete on the Bulldog track and field squad along with the cross country program. The distance duo comes to State from Wallace State Community College in Alabama under the tutelage of WSCC track and field coach Stan Narewski.

Both Chapa and Mathiang prepped in the state of Virginia at J.R. Tucker High School in the Richmond, Va. area after coming to the United States from Sudan. Both individuals compete in distance events with Chapa in the one mile competition and Mathiang in the half-mile.

"It's an honor to come to MSU especially because of my background. I did not know if I could go to a major university in the United States being from Sudan," said Mathiang. "I can't wait for Coach Dudley to start training me. We are both excited about coming to MSU."

At Wallace State, the tandem finished 1-2 at the Alabama Community College Conference State Championship this past Oct. Chapa claimed top honors with a course record time of 26:56 in the 8K event in Hoover, Ala. Chapa also placed second at the Jacksonville State University Foothills Invitational with a time of 20:32 while Mathiang captured sixth place with a time of 21:57. Chapa recently finished sixth at the Vulcan Invitational which includes a field of 1,300 competitors.

"These two guys, Michael Chapa and Thuom Mathiang, are probably the nicest and polite kids that I have ever recruited," said Dudley. "They are great athletes as well as great students. I look forward to adding their talent along with their attitude and character to our program."

At J.R.HS, Chapa posted fourth place at the 2003 Virginia State Championship at 15:56.07. Mathiang recorded a time of 1:51.10 at the 2005 Nike Meet in North Carolina.

"We knew about these guys when they were in high school," said WSCC head coach Stan Narewski. "They are great guys with very pleasant, outgoing personalities."

Chapa redshirted his freshman season and will have three seasons in a Bulldog track uniform. Both carry a 3.5 grade point average at WSCC.

"I liked it (the university) on my visit," said Chapa. "Coach Dudley has a great relationship with his athletes and I already know some of the guys on the team that were from Wallace State."

Chapa plans on majoring in business administration when he arrives on the MState campus. Mathiang is leaning toward the physical therapy concentration.

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