The more I look at this schedule, the more daunting it seems for the maroon and white for the upcoming season. Some of those games that we used to assume were easy wins may not be that way this year. Add to that a trip to the Maui Invitational and a very difficult SEC schedule, and we may be in for what will be a long season. Let's take a look at what the schedule looks like for the 2012-13 season, and how I see it potentially playing out.
Wow, that SEC schedule gets more brutal every time I take a look at it. Looking at what each team is bringing back, it will be very, very difficult for MSU to find SEC victories this season.
I'm predicting 3 SEC wins for the 2012-13 season, but even that may be a stretch. That's assuming State could overcome a pretty good Ole Miss team at home, simply based on it being a rivalry game and them being up for it. That one could easily be an L, which would leave only home games against South Carolina and Auburn as wins, and even those are in question. Brace yourselves for a potentially winless SEC season, but be hopeful for a 3-5 win SEC season. In my mind, if this team was somehow able to win 4 or 5 ballgames in this conference schedule, there's no way Rick Ray isn't a coach of the year candidate.
Overall I have MSU with a predicted record of 10-20 going into the SEC tournament. Again, that's pretty much a best case scenario, assuming State can win home non-conference games against usually lesser opponents. That's also assuming State can go on the road to start the season and get a win at Troy, which may prove tough to do as well. What's the bright side to this? Well record wise, there won't be much of a bright side. This team's capabilities in year one of the Rick Ray era are, at best, the 10-20 record you see above, in my opinion. Records less than that are certainly a potential reality, with records above that being a pie in the sky scenario.
The positives you gain this year will have to be in watching these players develop throughout the season, hopefully growing into a team that plays well together, even if the scoreboard doesn't always indicate it. You also have to think that many of the young players, including Trivante Bloodman, Fred Thomas, Gavin Ware, and Craig Sword, will see substantial improvement and progress as the year goes by, as they will be getting their first true tests at the college basketball level. It won't be pretty, but there are glimmers of hope here and there State fans. I suggest you grab them and hold on to them, because it could be a long ride in 2012-13.
Schedule above was provided courtesy of Mississippi State University | HailState.com
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