No. 9 seed Mississippi State (14-13, 8-10) vs. No. 8 seed Kentucky (9-15, 8-9)
Southeastern Conference Tourney Second Round, Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, Tennessee; Thursday, 12 a.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: Mississippi State is set to match up against Kentucky in the second round of the SEC tourney. The only meeting between the teams this season came on Jan. 2, when the Wildcats outshot Mississippi State 41.6 percent to 37.7 percent and made six more 3-pointers on the way to a five-point victory.
FABULOUS FRESHMEN: Kentucky’s Brandon Boston Jr., Isaiah Jackson and Devin Askew have combined to account for 39 percent of the team’s scoring this season, including 39 percent of all Wildcats points over the last five games.
KEY FACILITATOR: Davion Mintz has made or assisted on 45 percent of all Kentucky field goals over the last three games. The senior guard has accounted for 17 field goals and 16 assists in those games.
WINLESS WHEN: Kentucky is 0-12 this year when it scores 67 points or fewer and 9-3 when it scores at least 68.
ASSIST DISTRIBUTION: The Wildcats have recently used assists to create buckets more often than the Bulldogs. Kentucky has 40 assists on 73 field goals (54.8 percent) over its past three matchups while Mississippi State has assists on 37 of 77 field goals (48.1 percent) during its past three games.
DID YOU KNOW: Mississippi State is ranked first among SEC teams with an offensive rebound percentage of 35.7 percent. The Bulldogs have averaged 12.2 offensive boards per game.
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