STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Rested after a seven-day hiatus from game competition during the Thanksgiving holiday break, the Mississippi State Bulldogs (2-2) tip off another three-game homestand this week by first playing host to the Charlotte 49ers (2-2) Wednesday evening on the MSU campus. Tip-off for the non-televised contest is set for 7 p.m. at Humphrey Coliseum.
Coach Rick Stansbury's Bulldogs will be looking to get back into the win column after dropping back-to-back decisions to South Carolina-based foes Clemson and Winthrop. Last Tuesday's 69-66 setback at Clemson snapped MSU's NCAA-best, 15-game road winning streak against non-conference opponents, while State's 74-63 home loss to reigning NCAA Tournament entry Winthrop on Nov. 18 ended the team's six-game home win string that had dated back to last season.
As a team, the Bulldogs are averaging 70.0 points per game on collective 47.7 percent field-goal shooting on the young season. Defensively, State leads the SEC in three-point field-goal percentage defense (20.0%) and ranks third in overall field-goal percentage defense (34.0%).
Individually, preseason all-SEC sophomore guard/forward Jamont Gordon continues to lead MState in scoring (14.0 ppg), rebounding (9.0 rpg) and assists (5.3 apg), while fellow all-conference performer Charles Rhodes is next at 13.8 points and 6.3 rebounds per outing. Gordon entered the week ranked third in the SEC in rebounding and fourth in assists. With a current string of 22 consecutive games scoring in double figures, Rhodes is coming off a season-high, 20-point effort (8-10 FGs) in which all of his scoring came in the second half because of early foul trouble. State rookie Barry Stewart stands as the third-leading freshman scorer (11.0 ppg) in the conference, while ranking tied for third overall in both three-point percentage (50.0%) and free-throw percentage (83.3%).
Picked in the preseason to finish fourth in this year's Atlantic 10 Conference race, the Charlotte 49ers are also 2-2 on the year after claiming a 72-63 home win over Georgia State this past Saturday. Previously, Charlotte opened the new season with an 88-82 home victory over Hofstra, before falling at home to North Texas (90-72) and on the road to Syracuse (79-67). Guided by ninth-year head coach Bobby Lutz, the 49ers are again led in scoring this season by senior all-league standout and former Oklahoma transfer De'Angelo Alexander at 18.0 points per game. A first-team all-conference choice a year ago, Alexander is also averaging 7.3 rebounds on the year. Junior guard Leemire Goldwire adds 15.5 points per contest, while senior forward E.J. Drayton averages 11.8 points and a team-high 10.8 boards an outing.
Mississippi State owns a 2-0 series mark over Charlotte through the years, having most recently held the 49ers to all-time, school-record lows for points scored in a game (38) as well as single-game, field-goal percentage (21.7%) just over a year ago (Nov. 23, 2005) en route to posting a 53-38 road victory at Charlotte's Halton Arena. The first-ever MSU-Charlotte hardwood meeting resulted in an 87-68 State road win during the 1971-72 campaign.
The Bulldogs will continue their current three-game homestand this Saturday afternoon (Dec. 2) by welcoming the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Islanders of the Southland Conference to Starkville. Tip-off for the first-ever meeting between the two teams is set for 2 p.m. CT at MSU's Humphrey Coliseum.
Continuing to bring the best live local sporting events to the South, SportSouth, the regional sports network that exclusively targets the interests of the southern sports fan, announced today that it will telecast four Mississippi State men's basketball games in December. The Bulldogs telecasts begin this Saturday (Dec. 2) with a match up against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.
This Saturday's Mississippi State game is the second in a current three-game home stand for coach Rick Stansbury's Bulldogs. MSU is led by preseason all-conference standouts Jamont Gordon and Charles Rhodes, who rank first and second, respectively, on the State squad in both scoring and rebounding. SportSouth will also televise the Bulldogs taking on South Alabama (Dec. 9), McNeese State (Dec. 16), and Alabama State (Dec. 18).
The Mississippi State games join an impressive lineup of more than 240 men's and women's 2006-07 college basketball games being telecast by SportSouth and sister network FSN South, the nation's largest regional sports network.
SportSouth can be seen on various cable and direct-to-home satellite providers in the region, including: Comcast, Jackson MS on Channel 48; Cable One, Columbus MS on Channel 59; Vista III, Oxford MS on Channel 73; Northland Cable, Starkville MS on Channel 49; Comcast, Memphis TN on Channel 52; DirecTV Channel 631 and Dish Network Channel 437.
SportSouth reaches more than eight million cable and satellite subscribers across a six state region comprised of Mississippi, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina and regions of central and western North Carolina. FSN South reaches 11.8 million homes in seven states in the Southeast. FSN is the nation's leading provider of local sports. Through its affiliates and other FNG-owned networks, FSN reaches more than 82 million homes through 22 regional networks. Headquartered in Los Angeles, FSN owned or affiliated regional sports networks serve as the TV home to 64 of the 82 MLB, NHL and NBA teams based in the United States.
SportSouth's Mississippi State Men's Basketball Telecast Schedule
SAT - Dec.2 - Texas A&M--Corpus Christi @ Mississippi St. - 2:00 p.m.
SAT - Dec.9 - South Alabama @ Mississippi State - 7:00 p.m.
SAT - Dec.16 - McNeese State @ Mississippi State - 2:00 p.m.
MON - Dec.18 - Alabama State @ Mississippi State - 7:00 p.m.
All Times Central
STARKVILLE, Miss. - The Mississippi State women's basketball team, in conjunction with Callaway Orthodontics, will sponsor Take a Kid to the Game Day on Sunday, Dec. 3 at the Mississippi State/UAB women's basketball game. All children ages 18 and under will be admitted free to Sunday's contest.
Following the State/UAB contest, members of the Junior Bulldog Club are invited to an autograph pizza party with the Lady Bulldogs. For more information on the JBC, contact the Bulldog Club at (662) 325-3074.