Mississippi State welcomed a Southern Conference program into their building Wednesday night and took an ‘L.’
The Bulldogs lost to East Tennessee State, 67-65, when the Buccaneers’ Hanner Mosquera-Perea tipped in the game-winning bucket with 1.4 seconds remaining.
Steve Forbes’ ETSU squad now sits 8-2 with a win over an SEC team and losses only against UNC-Wilmington and Dayton on the season with a matchup against Tennessee still on the schedule for next week ahead of league play.
The story here, though, may be Ben Howland’s Bulldogs suffering a loss to the likes of ETSU, at home no less. Mississippi State already lost in Starkville to Lehigh this season and Central Florida on a neutral. They’ve fallen well outside the KenPom top-100.
It’s still early, but at this point it certainly wouldn’t be surprising to see MSU scrapping with Missouri to stay out of the bottom of the SEC.
Mississippi State freshman Abdul Ado will be ineligible to play this season after his appeal was denied by the NCAA, the school announced Tuesday.
“It’s disappointing for Abdul,” Bulldogs coach Ben Howland said, according to the Clarion-Ledger. “It’s disappointing for our team and our players.”
The 6-foot-11 center from Nigeria will be allowed to practice with Mississippi State at the end of the first semester if he completed nine credits. He won’t, however, be eligible to compete until the 2017-18 season, when he’ll have four years of eligibility remaining.
“There are good things ahead for Abdul and this program,” Howland said. “I’m excited about that. I’m disappointed it’s not going to be this year.”
Ado was a consensus top-150 player in the 2016 class.
Mississippi State opened the season with a 78-74 win over Norfolk State last week. The Bulldogs will participate in the Charleston Classic this week, starting with a matchup Thursday against Central Florida.
Mississippi State freshman Malik Newman will enter his name in the NBA draft, but does not plan to immediately hire an agent, he announced Monday.
“I’m still leaving the option open that if I don’t hear the news that I would like to hear, I will be attending Mississippi State again,” he told the Clarion-Ledger.
That unwelcome news would be a second-round draft grade after Newman makes the rounds with workouts and potentially the draft combine. He’s currently projected as a second-rounder by DraftExpress.com.
Newman, a former McDonald’s All-American, averaged 11.3 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game while shooting 39.1 percent from the floor and 37.9 percent from 3-point range during a freshman season that largely didn’t play out to expectations as Mississippi went 14-17.
He played in 29 of the Bulldogs’ 31 games, with turf toe one among a number of nagging injuries he dealt with throughout the year.
While the Bulldogs would certainly like to see Newman back in the fold next year, if he should decide to stay in the draft past the May 25th deadline, Ben Howland won’t be without reinforcements. His incoming 2016 class has more than enough firepower with six recruits signed, four of which are top-100 talents. Mississippi State also a nice core of I.J. Ready and Quandary Weatherspoon in place to help Howland’s large and highly-touted class acclimate, whether or not Newman leaves Starkville.
Mississippi State continues to be one of the big stories in recruiting the Class of 2016 as Ben Howland and the Bulldogs landed four-star big man Abdulhakim Ado on Monday night, a source confirmed to NBCSports.com.
The addition of the 6-foot-10 Ado means that Howland has overhauled the Mississippi State roster very quickly as Ado becomes the sixth four-star prospect to commit to the Bulldogs in the 2016 class. Regarded as the No. 73 overall prospect in the Class of 2016, Ado is a defensive specialist and one of the best rebounders and shot blockers in the national class. While Howland was quick to add a lot of talented guards early in his 2016 pursuits, adding Ado and fellow four-star big man Schnider Herard the last few weeks helps stabilize the future front court for Mississippi State.
Ado and Herard are joined by four-star wing Mario Kegler, as well as four-star guards Tyson Carter, Lamar Peters and Eli Wright. Howland and his staff have put together a no-brainer top-10 national recruiting class during his first full season of recruiting at the SEC program and this class certainly sends notice that Howland is still a force to be reckoned with on the recruiting trail.
Mississippi State has yet to officially play a game with head coach Ben Howland at the helm, but his arrival in Starkville continues to pay dividends on the recruiting trail. Wednesday afternoon the Bulldogs received another important commitment, as 6-foot-7 four-star wing Mario Kegler announced at Oak Hill Academy that he’ll play his college basketball at Mississippi State.
Kegler, a native of Mississippi, was also considering Indiana and Maryland but ultimately decided that the chance to play in his home state was too much to pass up. Kegler is ranked 29th in the Class of 2016 by Rivals.com, and he’s the fifth commitment in the class for Mississippi State.
It’s a class that checks off all of the boxes from a need standpoint. Four-star guard Tyson Carter and Lamar Peters are players expected to have an immediate impact, and the same goes for wings Kegler and Eli Wright and big man Schnider Herard. This is a highly talented group for a program that hasn’t experienced much success since the departure of Rick Stansbury, which goes to show the impact that Howland and his staff have had on the program since their arrival in the spring.
In addition to the five recruits the Bulldogs will add Louisiana Tech transfer Xavian Stapleton, who’s also rehabbing from a torn ACL while sitting out this season. Mississippi State will lose four seniors at the end of the 2014-15 season, and many expect elite freshman guard Malik Newman to head to the NBA after just one season.
Mississippi State is also a finalist for talented power forward De’Ron Davis, who’s scheduled to announce his college decision on Thursday, and Abdulhakim Ado is another interior prospect they’re currently pursuing.
Mississippi State continues to haul in high-level perimeter talented in the Class of 2016 as four-star point guard Tyson Carter pledged to the Bulldogs on Tuesday.
The 6-foot-4 Carter is from Starkville, MS and he’s considered the No. 62 overall prospect in the national class.
Carter burst onto the national scene this summer with MBA Hoops on the adidas Gauntlet as he showed he could shoot and also make plays for others as an attacking lead guard. A tall guard with good athleticism and a lot of upside, Carter is a very good grab for head coach Ben Howland, as he keeps another talented in-state guard at home.
Adding Carter, four-star guard Lamar Peters and four-star guard Eli Wright gives the Bulldogs a nice perimeter trio to work with as they could help replace freshman Malik Newman if he decides to leave.
Now Mississippi State will go after some more size or a bigger wing to add to the class.