FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The Mississippi State men’s basketball team begins the February portion of its schedule with a road contest against the Arkansas Razorbacks on Tuesday inside Bud Walton Arena. Tip time is set for 8 p.m. CT and will air on SEC Network.
The Bulldogs (10-8, 4-5 SEC) are fresh off a dominating 95-56 win over Iowa State during Saturday’s SEC/Big 12 Challenge. Sophomore guard Iverson Molinar led the way with 20 points, while redshirt sophomore guard D.J. Stewart Jr. finished with 17 points and redshirt sophomore forward Tolu Smith finished with 16 points and seven rebounds.
The duo of Molinar and Stewart average 17.6 points per game apiece. Smith is averaging 12.9 points and a Southeastern Conference-leading 8.6 rebounds. The trio of Molinar, Stewart and Smith average 48.1, which is the second-highest in the SEC behind LSU’s trio of freshman guard Cameron Thomas, sophomore forward Trendon Watford and junior guard Javonte Smart (55.1).
Arkansas (13-5, 5-4 SEC) is coming off an 81-77 road loss to Oklahoma State. However, the Razorbacks have been very tough to beat at home, owning an 11-1 record inside Bud Walton Arena.
The Razorbacks are one of two SEC teams to have five players averaging in double figures. Freshman guard Moses Moody leads the way with 16.6 points and 5.6 rebounds per game, while redshirt junior guard JD Notae is averaging 13.9 points per game. Graduate transfer forward Justin Smith and junior guard Desi Sills are third and fourth on the team with 11.4 and 11.2 points, respectively, while graduate transfer guard Jalen Tate has averaged 10.9.
Tuesday’s game will be the 65th meeting between the MSU and Arkansas on the hardwood. The Razorbacks lead the series 33-31, but the Bulldogs have won the last six matchups. MSU won 77-70 and 78-77 last year, capturing its first two-game sweep of Arkansas since 2010-11.