The Tigers had impressive victories over Florida and Vanderbilt, and scraped past South Carolina last week. Saturday is another needed win before the team faces off against Alabama and Kentucky in the coming weeks. Mississippi State has wavered between mediocre and awful this season, but that does not make Saturday a cake walk. The Bulldogs are 9-11 overall, and 2-5 in conference play. State has dropped their last two games against Georgia and Ole Miss.
Things do appear to be getting slightly better for The Bulldogs. Despite losing in a close game to Ole Mis they still shot .55% from the floor. They have also found some consistency in starters Craig Sword and I.J. Ready. Overall Mississippi State has improved since this time last season, when The Tigers scored over 90 points to beat The Bulldogs.
This means Saturday is a must win for The Tigers. There is no reason the team should not cruise to victory. The victory against South Carolina was not the team's best of the season, but it was hard fought, and a good example of how to finish games. For the sixth straight game coach Johnny Jones will go with Josh Gray, Keith Hornsby, Jarell Martin, Jordan Mickey, and Darcy Malone as his starters. The consistency has worked well for The Tigers, with Tim Quarterman and Jalyn Patterson getting ample playing time also. The team may again get off to slow start (no surprise there), but should be rolling by the second half.
Coach Jones said Jalyn Patterson, who was injured in the game against Vanderbilt, is day-to-day, but likely won't play. Elbert Robinson III, who missed last game with an illness, is expected to be back.
The game will air on the SEC Network at 1 PM CST.