FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The University of Arkansas women’s basketball team will be playing in its second of three consecutive games against ranked opponents as it travels to Starkville, Miss., to battle unbeaten and No. 14/15th-ranked Mississippi State Thursday night. Arkansas will be looking for its second win of the season over a ranked team after previously defeating No. 17/16 Iowa Nov. 28. The Razorbacks last win in a true road game against a ranked conference opponent came last Feb. 23, 2014, when Arkansas took down No. 19/18 LSU in Baton Rouge, La.
Here is a look ahead to the Razorbacks’ next opponent:
SCOUTING MISSISSIPPI STATE
• The Bulldogs enter Thursday’s contest with a perfect 17-0, 2-0 SEC record. Mississippi State defeated Georgia at home and Missouri on the road to open conference play
• Mississippi State leads the SEC and is eighth nationally, averaging 81.6 points per game
• Mississippi State is led in scoring by a pair of freshmen, as forward Victoria Vivians leads the team with 15.2 per game and guard Morgan William is responsible for 10.2 points per game. Vivians (twice) and William have combined for three SEC Freshman of the Week honors already this season
• The Bulldogs are second in the conference and fourth in the nation, pulling down 19 offensive rebounds per game.
• Vic Schaefer (Texas A&M, ’84) is in his third season as head coach of the Bulldogs, owning a 52-31 (.627) record. He owns a 132-141 career record as he is in his ninth season overall as a head coach.
• Schaefer has ties to the University of Arkansas women’s basketball program as he spent six seasons (1997-2003) on the coaching staff. Serving on former head coach Gary Blair’s staff, Schaefer was an assistant coach from 1997-2000 and an associate head coach from 2000-03. During his six seasons on staff, Schaefer helped Arkansas compile a 121-76 (.614) mark and reach the program’s only Final Four in 1998. Current Director of Basketball Operations Amber (Nicholas) Shirey was on Arkansas’ staff at the same time as Schaefer and Schaefer coached current Razorback assistant coach Christy Smith, who played at Arkansas from 1994-98, for one season in 1997-98.
• Arkansas leads the all-time series with Mississippi State 18-14, including a 6-8 mark in games played in Starkville. Arkansas has won three of the last four meetings in Starkville.
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