Georgia Coasts Past Mississippi State

The Georgia Bulldogs (14-4; 3-2) continued their dominance over the state of Mississippi on Saturday, throttling Mississippi State 86-64 (Georgia also has wins over Ole Miss and Mississippi Valley State).

If you were a Georgia fan, this was a very fun game to watch.  If you were a Mississippi State fan, you probably didn’t watch past the halftime break.

Georgia was exceptionally efficient on offense, connecting on nearly 50% of their field goal attempts to go along with hitting 11 of 19 from beyond the arc.  The Dawgs played unselfishly, which led to 19 team assists, with Dustin Ware leading the way with 6 dishes.

The Dawgs jumped on Mississippi State early, opening the game with an 11-2 run before State took a timeout with 17:02 left to catch their breath.  Unfortunately for MSU, the timeout didn’t work.  Georgia went on to hit 6 three-pointers in the first half, building up a lead that got as high as 19 points in the first half.  The Dawgs took a 42-29 lead into the intermission.

Things didn’t improve for Mississippi State after the break, with Georgia going on a 17-9 run and taking the lead to 59-38 with 12:49 remaining in the game.  From that point on, the Dawgs were on cruise control.

Georgia came out of the gates on Saturday and gave Coach Mark Fox another sound defensive effort, holding MSU to under 42% from the field and 29.2% from three-point range.  The Dawgs owned the glass, out rebounding State by a tally of 48 to 23.

Georgia was relentless on the boards, hauling down 17 offensive rebounds which led to 14 second chance points (MSU had just 2).

Coach Mark Fox benched Jeremy Price to start the game, and Price responded with a solid effort – 11 points and 5 rebounds in 25 minutes of play.  Price was strong with the ball inside, and he kept his composure on the defensive end, limiting himself to just 2 personal fouls.

Maybe Fox should bench Price more often?

Trey Thompkins was silky smooth as usual, scoring 15 points and grabbing 7 rebounds.  There was a play in the game’s second half that really showcased Thompkins’ versatility – Trey secured the defensive rebound, then proceeded to take the ball the length of the court before making a beautiful bounce pass to a cutting Gerald Robinson, Jr. that resulted in an easy lay-up.  How many 6’10” power forwards are there in college basketball that can successfully run the point guard position on the fast break?

Mississippi State was led by their NCAA rule-breaking duo, Dee Bost and Renardo Sidney.  Bost finished the game with 20 points, and Sidney chipped in 15.

This was another great win for Georgia, putting them back above .500 with a 3-2 SEC record.

An interesting statistic – Georgia has followed up both of its conference losses this season with 22-point blowouts.  This is a true credit to the character of this team and the leadership of Coach Fox.  When this team has lost SEC games this year, they haven’t laid down and licked their wounds.  On the contrary, the Dawgs have responded with dominating performances.

The Dawgs should enjoy this win, but be ready to work tomorrow because they have a very tough week ahead of them – Florida in Athens on Tuesday and then off to Lexington on Saturday for a rematch with Kentucky.