March 13, 2012
Mississippi State is not in the postseason tournament they'd hoped for but the Bulldogs will have the opportunity to play in front of their home crowd at least one more time this year.
MSU hosts Massachusetts tonight at 6 p.m. in the opening round of the National Invitation Tournament at Humphrey Coliseum.
It will be the Bulldogs eighth appearance in the NIT and hold a 7-7 record in that tournament. Their last showing came in the 2009-10 season losing to North Carolina 76-74 on a last second shot by the Tar Heels.
This marks State's 18th postseason berth (10 NCAA, 8 NIT) and the 11th time under Rick Stansbury's watch. The Bulldogs are 10-10 in the postseason under Stansbury with a 4-6 record in the Big Dance and 6-4 in the NIT. They are 5-1 at home under Stansbury in the NIT.
Tonight will be the first ever meeting between Mississippi State and UMass on the hardwood. The Bulldogs are 16-9 all-time against Atlantic-10 opponents while the Minutemen are 7-11 against SEC foes.
MSU earned the No. 4 seed in the NIT finishing 21-11 during the regular season. The Bulldogs were ousted from the SEC Tournament in the first round by Georgia 71-61 last Friday committing 14 turnovers. Sophomore shooting guard Jalen Steele paced the team with 19 points in that contest hitting 4-of-9 behind the arc.
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