Mississippi State Bulldogs vs. Bethune-Cookman Wildcats Pick & Prediction DECEMBER 31st 2023

Mississippi State looks to close out 2023 with a win when it plays host to Bethune-Cookman on Sunday in Starkville, Miss.

It will be just the second meeting ever between the Bulldogs (10-2) and Wildcats (5-7), who last played each other during the 2009-10 campaign.

Mississippi State has won four in a row and is playing well thanks to 91 made 3-pointers through the first 12 games. The Bulldogs are allowing only 62.8 points per outing, ranking first in the SEC and tied for 18th nationally.

The Bulldogs are coming off a 70-60 win over Rutgers on Dec. 23. Jimmy Bell Jr. scored 17 points and pulled down 18 rebounds for his third double-double of the season.

Bell ranks third on the team in scoring (9.6) and first in rebounds (9.4), Freshman sensation Josh Hubbard leads the team at 14.8 points per game.

Head coach Chris Jans talked with reporters about the culture that has been built after the Bulldogs’ last win, considering the team didn’t lose key players to the transfer portal.

“I don’t like to talk about it in terms of what it says about me, but I think it says a lot about these kids,” Jans said. “Their belief in Mississippi State, our program, how they are treated.”

The Wildcats are coming off a 98-54 loss at UCF on Friday and are hoping to end a three-game losing streak.

They are led by Jakobi Heady, who is putting up 15 points per game and grabbing 5.0 rebounds. Zion Harmon is averaging 14.4 points per game and is a playmaker, dishing out nearly four assists (3.9) per game.

Though it hasn’t been the best start for the Wildcats, head coach Reggie Theus talked before the start of the season about teaching his players about the game of life.

“I’ve been every place they want to go. I have a story for every scenario, good and bad, and I’m able to give them a broader perspective of life. I’m teaching kids how to be successful people,” Theus said.

–Field Level Media

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