BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (MSU Athletics) – A marquee road trip to Texas Tech awaits the Mississippi State men’s basketball team during this year’s Big 12/SEC Challenge on Saturday, January 29 announced Wednesday by both conference offices.
The ninth annual Big 12/SEC Challenge will feature 10 games televised by ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU during the last Saturday of January for the seventh straight season. Game times and television network assignments will be announced at a later date.
The SEC holds a 25-24 advantage over the last five seasons on the strength of winning the challenge in 2017-18 and 2020-21. The two conferences posted a pair of 5-5 draws in 2016-17 and 2019-20.
The Bulldogs provided the challenge clinching victory, a 95-56 rout of Iowa State, last season. Iverson Molinar racked up a game-leading 20 points on 8-of-13 shooting, followed by Tolu Smith’s 16 points, seven rebounds and two steals. Derek Fountain provided a then season’s best seven points off the bench.
Texas Tech has won both previous meetings over the Bulldogs by a combined six points. The latest was a 74-72 decision on November 20, 2015 in San Juan, Puerto Rico during Ben Howland’s first season. The Red Raiders have averaged 23.5 wins over the last four seasons, headed by three NCAA Tournaments appearances and were the 2019 NCAA Runner-Up.
The Mississippi State Athletic Ticket Office is on-sale with 2021-22 season tickets. New season ticket purchasers can call (662) 325-2600 or visit www.HailState.com for more information. Current season ticket holders will receive a renewal notice in late June from MSU’s Athletic Ticket Office.
Mississippi State has landed a quartet of impact transfers in Garrison Brooks (North Carolina), D.J. Jeffries (Memphis), Rocket Watts (Michigan State) and Shakeel Moore (North Carolina State), coupled with a solid freshmen class which features ESPN top 100 recruit KeShawn Murphy, Alden Applewhite and Cam Carter.
The Bulldogs also return two of their top three scorers in Iverson Molinar and Tolu Smith from 2020-21. Molinar ranked among the SEC’s top 10 in points per game (16.7 – 4th), field goal percentage (47.8 – 5th) and 20-plus point games (8 – T-7th), while Smith was the SEC leader in rebounds per game (8.5) and double-doubles (8) last season.
Mississippi State captured a runner-up finish at the 2021 NIT as the Bulldogs earned a bid in postseason play for the third consecutive time when postseason tournament have been played. State won seven of its last 10 games, highlighted by a combined five NCAA NET Quad 1 and Quad 2 victories down the stretch.
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.
2022 Big 12/SEC Challenge – Saturday, January 29, 2022
Hosted by Big 12
Mississippi State at Texas Tech
Kentucky at Kansas
LSU at TCU
Missouri at Iowa State
Tennessee at Texas
Hosted by SEC
Baylor at Alabama
West Virginia at Arkansas
Oklahoma at Auburn
Oklahoma State at Florida
Kansas State at Ole Miss
Mississippi State –Big 12/SEC Challenge History
Date, Matchup, Location
12/05/2013, TCU 71, Mississippi State 61, Starkville
01/25/2020, Oklahoma 63, Mississippi State 62, Oklahoma City
01/30/2021, Mississippi State 95, Iowa State 56, Starkville
01/29/2022, Mississippi State at TBD, TBD