STARKVILLE, Miss. (MSU Athletics/WTVA) - The Mississippi State men’s basketball team secured a No. 19 preseason ranking by the USA Today Coaches poll to complete the week.
On Monday, the Bulldogs came away with a No. 18 ranking courtesy of the Associated Press poll. The last time Mississippi State was a consensus pre-season Top 25 squad was in 2009-10 when the Bulldogs were ranked identically at No. 18 by the AP and at No. 19 by the USA Today Coaches polls.
The Bulldogs are slated to play 12 games against fellow ranked teams or teams receiving votes inside the poll this season. They are No. 2 Kentucky, No. 6 Tennessee, No. 12 Auburn and No. 23 Clemson with Alabama, Cincinnati, LSU, Florida and Vanderbilt receiving votes.
Mississippi State is led by fourth-year head coach Ben Howland, who guided the Bulldogs to a 25-12 record and a NIT Final Four appearance in 2017-18. The 25 victories were the fourth-highest total in program history behind only the 1995-96, 2001-02 and 2003-04 teams.
Mississippi State returns its top six scorers from last season, who combined for 2,264 points and 83.4 percent of the team's scoring. Quinndary Weatherspoon (14.4 PPG), Aric Holman (10.9 PPG) and Nick Weatherspoon (10.8 PPG) headline the group.
The program’s incoming recruiting class is a consensus Top 25 group, which features McDonalds All-American Reggie Perry along with D.J. Stewart and Robert Woodard.
Mississippi State takes on Georgia Southwestern in a 2 p.m. CT exhibition tilt on Sunday, Nov. 4, at Humphrey Coliseum. Then, the Bulldogs square off with Austin Peay to open the regular season on Friday, Nov. 9. Tipoff is slated for 6:30 p.m. from the Hump. Both games will be streamed by SEC Network + and available online only via the WatchESPN platform.
The Mississippi State Athletics Ticket Office is selling season tickets for as low as $199. Fans can purchase tickets online at www.HailState.com/Hoops, in person at the MSU Athletics Ticket Office located at the Bryan Athletic Building or via the phone at (888) GO-DAWGS (463-2947). Information on single-game tickets and mini plans will be announced at a later date by the ticket office.
Visit www.HailState.com for the latest news and information on the men's basketball program. Fans also can follow the program on its social media outlets by searching ‘HailStateMBK’ on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Mississippi State Pre-Season UPI/USA Today Coaches Poll History
Season, Preseason Ranking
1958-59, No. 17
1962-63, No. 7
1995-96, No. 12
2002-03, No. 13
2004-05, No. 14
2009-10, No. 19
2018-19, No. 19
Pre-Season USA Today Coaches Top 25 Poll – October 25, 2018
Ranking, Team (First Place Votes), Points
1, Kansas (14), 771
2, Kentucky (12), 761
3, Duke (4), 743
4, Gonzaga (1), 699
5, Virginia (1), 656
6, Tennessee, 613
7, North Carolina, 610
8, Villanova, 543
9, Nevada, 521
10, Michigan State, 486
11, Kansas State, 469
12, Auburn, 432
13, West Virginia, 343
14, Syracuse, 297
15, Florida State, 287
16, Oregon, 280
17, Virginia Tech, 272
18, Michigan, 265
19, Mississippi State, 213
20, UCLA, 202
21, TCU, 153
22, Purdue, 107
23, Clemson, 106
24, Washington, 75
25, Nebraska, 67
Others receiving votes: LSU 65, Loyola Chicago 61, Florida 52, Indiana 34, Marquette 34, North Carolina State 30, Cincinnati 30, Alabama 28, Maryland 26, Louisville 10, Providence 10, Buffalo 7, Southern Cal 6, Arizona 5, Butler 5, UCF 5, Wisconsin 4, Notre Dame 4, Texas 4, Missouri 3, Baylor 2, Miami 2, St. John's 1, Vanderbilt 1
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