Smith on Sports: It was all about having fun for Mississippi State

Danny P. Smith
Staff Writer

Lamar Peters went to the rim with a pass where Aric Holman was waiting for an easy alley oop slam dunk in the first half for the Mississippi State Bulldogs on Saturday afternoon.

It was obvious that the Bulldogs were all about having some fun at Humphrey Coliseum.

Exams were over, Christmas is near and MSU had North Georgia on the schedule.

The Bulldogs didn’t waste any time building a lead and pretty much had their way against the Nighthawks.

After building a 53-26 halftime advantage, MSU went on to a 95-62 victory. The 33-point spread was the largest of the year for the Bulldogs.

MSU coach Ben Howland also seems to be enjoying things.

“We are now through with finals, so it’s all about basketball the next couple of weeks," Howland said. "We can work on some things and really focus in on becoming the best basketball team we can be.”

The entire season has been pretty fun for the Bulldogs. They are 8-0 for the first time since opening the 2003-04 season at 13-0. Mississippi State is the only Southeastern Conference team still undefeated.

There have been some close calls as the Bulldogs defeated Stephen F. Austin 80-75, Jacksonville State 59-56 and Dayton 61-59, so there could be easily one or two losses on the schedule.

Howland is proud of the fact MSU has done a good job of winning all games to this point of the season.

It’s about to get much tougher for the Bulldogs as their first road game is next up on the slate in the form of a trip to Cincinnati.

MSU should be ready for this kind of test now.

Quinndary Weatherspoon has been a consistent leader for the Bulldogs and had a season-high 22 points against North Georgia. They also got an unexpected 11 points from freshman forward KeyShawn Feazell.

Even though he had an off game Saturday, former Starkville High School Tyson Carter has been very good for MSU this season. Having Abdul Ado on the floor has been a big plus offensively and defensively.

There have been plenty of offensive highlights, but the Bulldogs have won because of defense. MSU has only allowed over 70 points in a game once this season.

It’s like Quinndary Weatherspoon put it after the game when asked what it’s going to take to have success at Cincinnati, “as long as we take our defense (to Cincinnati) with us, we will have a chance.”

Danny P. Smith is the sports editor and columnist for The Starkville Daily News. The opinions in this column are his and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SDN or its staff.