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  • Scruff_McGruff_ 11:33 PM on March 8, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: dee bost, , Georgia Dome, , , , , , , , SEC Tournament, Southeastern Conference,   

    MSU SEC Tourney Preview 

    Mississippi State did exactly what it needed to do: survive the SEC schedule and earn a first-round bye in this week’s SEC Tournament. That result is not good enough for some as MSU was chosen in the preseason to win the SEC West. That prediction was made based on the potential of this year’s squad. Would Renardo Sidney play like the McDonald’s All-American he was in high school? How would the team perform when Dee Bost returned from suspension? When it was all said and done, MSU finished 9-7 in conference, three games behind division winner Alabama. MSU played to its potential at times but also underperformed at critical moments this year. Losses to SEC West cellar dwellers Auburn and LSU put a sour taste in the mouths of the Bulldog faithful. However, the Bulldogs responded with wins against SEC champion Florida and won at Thompson-Boling Arena against Tennessee in Jack Cristil’s last radio broadcast as the voice of Mississippi State athletics. A lot of people are critical of Rick Stansbury when it comes to coaching, but he seems to shine during the SEC Tournament. As head coach, he has two championship trophies and two more finals appearances since taking over from Richard Williams in 1998. If history happens to repeat itself, MSU won’t win its quarterfinal game against the LSU/Vanderbilt winner. In 2002, MSU won the tourney, lost in the finals in 2003 and was bounced in the quarterfinals (with a first-round bye) in 2004. MSU won the tourney in 2009 and lost in the finals last season. However, the field could not have shaped up any better for the Bulldogs.

    The Bulldogs play its first game Friday against the LSU/Vanderbilt winner. MSU split the season series with the Tigers, but one bounce here and there could have turned the two matchups into sweeps in either team’s favor. MSU lost its only meeting with the Commodores this year, but was very much in the game. They made some crucial mistakes in the final minutes and let a winnable game slip from their fingers. Last year MSU proved that they could lose to Vandy mid-season and beat them when it matters most: in the SEC Tourney. It seems like a possibility again this season.

    On the other half of MSU’s bracket sit three reams that MSU is a combined 4-0 this season. The Bulldogs swept the Razorbacks, defeated Tennessee on the road and upset the ranked Gators in Starkville. If the Bulldogs can play up to their full potential and get Sidney plenty of rest, MSU can cruise into the finals for a third straight year. Will it be that easy? Of course not, MSU has made the incredibly easy look impossible in athletics since 1878. But working in MSU’s favor is two seniors who have been on the wrong side of Stansbury. However, they have learned from the error of their ways and embraced their roles on the team. The result is Kodi Augustus averaging career-highs in points and rebounds and a rejuvenated Ravern Johnson after his suspension and benching. The national media (Andy Katz and Pat Forde in particular) may not like how Rick has handled this season, but he’s done wonders with the hand he was dealt and has his team in position to win two SEC Tourney titles in three years. The ride to this position has not been a smooth one, but the roads have settled. Stansbury and crew seem to make magic every SEC Tournament, and this year’s field is set for MSU to make more magic.

  • Scruff_McGruff_ 11:04 PM on January 13, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: dee bost, , , , , University of Mississippi   

    MSU – Ole Miss: In-Game Look 

    We are at the half right now with Ole Miss hanging on to a two-point lead over Mississippi State. Dee Bost and Renardo Sidney are leading the way right now with 25 of the team’s 32 points. Ravern Johnson, who leads the SEC in scoring, is scoreless right now. For those not at a TV or a radio, you can follow the game online…


  • Scruff_McGruff_ 8:50 PM on May 28, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Brian Bryant, dee bost, Jalen Steele, , , , Phil Turner, , Romero Osby   

    2010-2011 Basketball Bulldogs – Behind the Numbers 

    2009-2010 Stats

    • Record: 24-12 (9-7 SEC) T-1st
    • Scoring Offense: 72.8 (7th)
    • Scoring Defense: 64.9 (2nd)
    • Rebound Margin:  39.1 – 37.1 (+2.0) (4th)
    • Turnover Margin: 12.7 – 11.4 (-1.28) (11th)
    • Assist/Turnover Ratio: 1.01 (6th)

    Starters Returning/Lost: 2/3

    Players leaving:

    • Jarvis Varnado – Graduation
    • Barry Stewart – Graduation
    • Dee Bost – NBA Draft early entry
    • Romero Osby – Transfer (Oklahoma)


    • Brian Bryant, PG – Niceville, FL (Northwest Florida CC)
    • Jalen Steele, SG – Knoxville, TN (Fulton HS)

    Returning Statistical Leaders:

    • Points – Ravern Johnson (13.2 PPG)
    • Rebounds – Kodi Augustus (5.4 RPG)
    • Assists – Phil Turner (1.4 APG)
  • maroonnation 10:36 AM on November 4, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , dee bost, , , renardo sydney, ,   

    High Hopes For Hoops in Starkville 

    By: Joe Cumberland


    Like Goofy, Mississippi State has high hopes for the season.

    I can remember watching ‘A Goofy Movie’ as a child. Goofy sang a song in the movie with the line: “we’ve got high hopes, we’ve got high hopes”. That song may be the theme song this season for the Mississippi State basketball team and it’s fans. Rick Stansbury, head coach of the Bulldogs, returns all 5 starters from last year’s SEC Tournament championship team. The Dawgs finished the season at 23-13 (9-7 in the SEC), and with the SEC tournament title, went dancing. The Bulldog’s and their maroon and white clad faithful are expecting much more out of this season.

    In addition to the returning five starters, State also returns many players that contributed last season. Among them are Kodi Augustus, Elgin Bailey, and Romero Osby. Stansbury and his staff also signed some of the best players in America to national letters of intent. The staff went just down the road to Macon, Mississippi to snatch up Noxubee Tiger Shaunessy Smith.  Smith is a 6’6 190 guard, ranked the 26th best shooting guard in the ’09 class by Scout.com. Stansbury


    Stansbury signed four new Bulldogs in 2009.

    ventured into Alabama for  a late bloomer in Wendell Lewis, a 6’8 240 post player. John Riek, a 7’2 242 forward, joins the Bulldogs as a 4-star player coming out of prep school. The biggest name in this year’s crop of freshmen may be the biggest name to ever sign with Mississippi State. Renardo Sidney, 6’10 260, is a native Mississippian who transferred to a high school in California. After originally committing to Southern California, Sydney had a change of heart and decided to return home for college. The blue chip 5-star prospect may be the key to the season for the Bulldogs. The NCAA, however, is yet to clear Sydney citing questions into his status as an amateur.

    Running the point for MSU this season will be sophomore Dee Bost. The youngster is no stranger to the competition in the SEC. As a freshman he


    Dee Bost looks to improve on a stellar freshman campaign.

    handled the starting job for the Bulldogs. In his first year he managed close to 11 points and 4.3 assists per game. The native of Concord, North Carolina stands at 6’2 and 170, and was tabbed an All-SEC Freshman and honorable mention Freshman All-American last season.  If the Bulldogs reach their goals this season you can bet that Dee Bost’s play at the point will be a big part of the reason.

    Barry Stewart returns as the shooting guard for Rick Stansbury. The 6’3 170 senior averaged 12.4 points per game in action last season, but perhaps contributed most with his leadership.  Stewart in his final campaign as a Bulldog has the most experience on the team and will once again be looked to as a leader. The Shelbyville, Tennessee native enters the season 56 3-


    Barry Stewart wants a big senior season.

    pointers shy of tying Darryl Wilson for the most all-time in an MSU uniform. With 72 such baskets last season, the 1,000 point club member is expected to take over the top spot.

    SEC Mississippi St Tennessee Basketball

    Ravern Johnson is expected to contribute greatly this season.

    Joining Bost and Stewart in the starting lineup will be Ravern Johnson, a junior standing 6 feet 7 inches and weighing 175 pounds. As a first year starter he led the Bulldogs in 3-pointers made with 83 and went for more than 20 points a team best five times. The product of Coahoma County (MS) High School averaged a shade over 12 points per contests last season.

    Phil Turner completes the four guard lineup, last season saw Phil average 8.5 points and 5.5 rebounds per game. The 6’3 170 junior hales from Grenada, Mississippi where he was a two-time all division performer for the Grenada Chargers. His seven points in the last two minutes of the SEC Championship game


    Phil Turner looks to up his game in 2010.

    helped the Bulldogs defeat Tennessee.

    All eyes in the SEC will be on returning center Jarvis ‘Swat’ Varnado. His presence in the paint strikes fear in every opponent on the schedule. Varnado may be known for his shot blocking prowess, but averaged a team best 12.9 points and 8.8 rebounds per game last season. His 4.7 blocks per game was tops in the country and made Jarvis the single season leader in blocks in SEC history. The 6’9 230 native of Shelbyville, Tennessee was selected to the All-SEC team and was named the conference’s Defensive Player of the Year for the second straight season. Heading into the year Varnado is expected to make a push for National Defensive Player of the

    Mississippi St Preview Basketball

    'Swat' very well could become the NCAA leader in all time blocks this season.

    Year, as well as the SEC and NCAA’s all time shot blocking records. Swat is a mere 19 blocks away from breaking Shaquille O’Neals all time SEC mark of 412. Should the Bulldogs make a deep run in March, it will come off the back of the talented shot blocker.

    With so much talent returning for Mississippi State, the fans are excited for the season to begin. Members of the media picked MSU to win the SEC West crown, should that happen it would be the team’s third such title in the last four years. The much hyped Dawgs start the season ranked #18 in the AP poll, with a few quick wins and the clearing of Renardo Sydney that number could climb quickly.

    The season will start for Mississippi State on November 13th as the squad will host Rider. The first nationally televised game will be on ESPN2 against DePaul in the SEC/Big East Challenge on December 10th in Tampa, Florida. Mississippi State will travel and play UCLA in a much anticipated game just two days later in Anahiem. Conference play will get underway as the Dawgs travel to rival Mississippi on January 9th.

    Only time will tell if this season turns out to be all that Rick Stansbury and his team, as well as the fans expect it to be. Should the NCAA clear Renardo Sydney and Mississippi State avoids injuries one would think the Dawgs would win the SEC West, and possibly the overall SEC title. The team’s second ever trip to the Final Four is also not a far fetched idea this season. Two things are certain for the Dawgs of Mississippi State this season: 1) Swat will be in full force doing what he does best and 2) The Hump will be packed with fans decked out in maroon and white. As the first official game draws near, I’ll sit back in anticipation and continue singing: “we’ve got high hopes, we’ve got high hopes”.

    Feel free to comment or email me at punterjoe@hotmail.com

    Remember to become a fan on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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