January 31, 2009
Kennedy talking Mississippi State
Andy Kennedy's Ole Miss squad is coming off the heels of their biggest win of the season.
The Rebels had lost three straight and four of it's last five games before knocking off Kentucky 85-80 on Tuesday night. Now Ole Miss will have to put the loss behind them and prepare for in-state rival Mississippi State and travel to Humphrey Coliseum where they haven't won since the 1997-98 season.
"In this league you don't have the luxury of saying okay this is our in-state rival and this game has more significance than the next game," Kennedy said. "They are all very, very difficult and if you don't approach each and every game from a consistent mindset then you are not going to be successful long term. For us the Kentucky game showed our kids that if we take the right approach we can be successful."
While the game is highly anticipated by fans from the Magnolia State it may not be so by the players on the Rebels roster. Ole Miss has no scholarship players from Mississippi and it's only home state product is freshman guard Michael Halford who has only appeared in one game this season.
Kennedy said that while his team does not have many Mississippi ties it has not been from a lack of effort from himself or his staff.
"With me being from the state doesn't it's something that certainly hasn't been from a lack of trying," Kennedy said. "We've recruited a number of players for whatever reason we did not get to come to our program. We will continue to recruit this state as diligently as possible. There's quality players in this state and very good coaching throughout our state so it will continue to be an emphasis in our recruiting."
Mississippi State will continue to use it's four guard lineup for today's noon matchup but with senior forward Brian Johnson finally back healthy, Kennedy feels the Bulldogs can give them a number of different looks in terms of personnel.
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