Despite the 10,333 people in attendance of the Mississippi State University thrashing of the University of Mississippi, as MSU would win 80-49, MSU head coach Vic Schaefer said he was unimpressed with his team’s performance.
“You’ve got people up top hanging from the rafters, and it’s boring,” Schaefer said. “The third quarter is boring. You’re boring me, and it’s boring because we’ve lost our intensity. There’s a couple of triggers as a coach, how you can tell if your team is engaged, but we’re not engaged.”
The most frustrating thing for Schaefer was how he felt like his team was not engaged the whole 40 minutes on defense, which really upset him as he demands his players give everything they have on the court.
“We had that little spurt there in the second quarter we talked about, and that’s great,” Schaefer said. “Can we sustain that for any period of time or do we have to have a lull for eight minutes, and then all of a sudden for two minutes it’s over? Let me get interested and deny a ball and have ball pressure, play a passing lane, and all that. I just want more. More is better, isn’t it? We want more.”
Before all of this was said, Schaefer took a moment to address another situation that happened during the game, as two spirit squad members were injured during a routine. The most recent update about the two spirit squad members came from the official Twitter account of the spirit squad, which said they were at home recovering.
“Before I talk about basketball, I understand that we had an accident today with our spirit squad,” Schaefer said. “I just want them to know we’ll be thinking about them, and we’ll be praying for them today when we close. I hope they’re okay, and we’ll keep them in our thoughts and prayers.”
Schaefer remained appreciative of the atmosphere the fans created following a sellout crowd that watched the men defeat Auburn on Saturday night. Schaefer said the Hump’s atmosphere would be incredible even for a professional team.
“Those fans are here to support those kids. They deserve it. That’s why I get upset when they’re boring everybody,” Schaefer said. “When we are engaged, when we are playing defense in transition, the roof is about to blow off of that place. I’m just appreciative of our fans, and of all we’ve done in our administration to make sure we get those folks here.”
Teaira McCowan, a senior from Brenham, Texas, had 33 points and 13 rebounds, and Anriel Howard, a graduate student from Atlanta, had 16 points and 11 rebounds. Howard said coming to MSU, she knew she had a chance to get better at rebounding from competing with McCowan.
“I knew that we would compete for the boards,” Howard said. “That’s good for both of us, we want to compete. I think Coach (Schaefer) is pleased that we do compete for the boards almost every time.”
MSU will go on the road to the face LSU at 7:30 p.m. Thursday in Baton Rouge.