Bears and Sycamores Set to Tangle in Terre Haute
Head coach Paul Lusk
Head coach Paul Lusk

Jan. 14, 2013

  |  MSU Game Notes (PDF)  |  ISU Game Notes (PDF)

Missouri State Bears (5-12, 3-2) at Indiana State (10-6, 3-2)

The Last Meeting
Indiana State59
Missouri State46
February 22, 2012
Springfield, Mo.
Bears Miss Opportunity in Home Setback to Indiana State
Missouri State (16-14, 9-8) shot a season-low 31.3 percent from the field and never led here Wednesday in a 59-46 Missouri Valley Conference setback to visiting Indiana State.

Jan. 16, 2013, Hulman Center (10,200), Terre Haute, Ind., 6:05 p.m. (CT)



The Ten Count

  • MSU’s bench is averaging 18.8 points and has outscored 9 of 17 opponents this year and 4 of 5 in Valley play. 
  • Nathan Scheer (Jr., Washington, Mo.) and Christian Kirk (So., F, Springfield, Mo.) are the only two MSU players to score in every game this season and are joined by Downing and Williams as the only players to play all 17 games.
  • The Bears are 5-2 when out-rebounding or matching their opponents and 0-10 when getting beat on the glass.
  • MSU will play all five Preseason All-MVC players in consecutive games. Before playing ISU’s Jake Odum, the Bears squared off with UE’s Ryan (13 points), DU’s Simons (17), ILSU’s Carmichael (21), and CU’s McDermott (39).
  • Indiana State is ranked No. 42 in this week’s RPI. MSU has recently climbed nearly 100 spots to its current 238th.
  • The Bears improved to 10th nationally this week in fewest turnovers (10.6), tops in the Valley. MSU also ranks 7th among all Division I programs over the last three years with just 881 turnovers in 84 games (10.49). 
  • Anthony Downing (Sr., Atchison, Kan.) is averaging 18.2 points in Valley games and recently moved into 83rd place on the Bears’ career scoring list (613). He ranks 9th in the MVC in scoring (14.4) and second in minutes (34.1).
  • MSU has had fewer turnovers than 14-of-17 opponents this season and the same or fewer than 31 of its last 37 foes. 
  • Keith Pickens (Jr., St. Louis, Mo.) is coming off a team-high 11 points vs. No. 11/13 Creighton, marking the first time in his career he has led the Bears in scoring. He has led MSU in rebounding four times this season.
  • This week, the Bears rank 26th nationally in 3-point FG percentage defense (.292) and 34th in turnover margin (+3.4)..

Setting the Stage

  Locked into a tie for fourth place in the Valley, the Bears and Indiana State will square off on Wednesday night at the Hulman Center (10,200) in Terre Haute to begin Week 3 of conference play.
 The Bears are coming off a 74-52 home loss to No. 11/13 Creighton on Friday night (Jan. 11), in which Valley Preseason Player of the Year Doug McDermott went 15-for-19 from the field, snagged 10 rebounds and broke the JQH Arena scoring record with 39 points.  CU’s win was just its second in the last eight meetings between the two clubs.  Keith Pickens (Jr., F, St. Louis, Mo.) led MSU with 11 points and 4 rebounds, while Anthony Downing (Sr., G, Atchison, Kan.) posted 10 points for his 17th straight double-figure scoring output at home. Gavin Thurman (Fr., F, Wichita, Kan.) also had a good game against Creighton with 10 points and 3 rebounds.
 Indiana State has lost two of its last three games, including Saturday’s 76-71 setback in Carbondale. Against SIU, the Sycamores committed 19 turnovers, got out-rebounded 36-34 and wasted a 16-point performance from newcomer Manny Arop (Jr., F, Edmonton, Alberta) who led four double-figures Sycamores.

Head Coach Paul Lusk

Paul Lusk (Southern Illinois, 1995) is 21-28 (.429) in his second season at MSU and 23-51 (.311) in his third season overall as a head coach.  He is 12-11 in the MVC (6-6 at home, 6-5 on the road), 9-16 in non-conference play (6-6 at JQH Arena, 3-6 away and 0-5 at neutral sites).  He is also 12-12 in all home games, 9-11 on the road, and 0-5 at neutral sites. He is 1-1 against ISU (1-0 in Terre Haute).
 The 41-year-old Lusk took the reins as MSU’s 17th head coach on April 1, 2011. He came to Springfield after seven seasons at Purdue (2004-11), including his last three as associate head coach there.  Now in his 15th season in the coaching profession, Lusk has previous assistant coaching stops at Southwestern Illinois (1996-97), Missouri Southern (1999-2002) and Southern Illinois (2003-04) in addition to a one-year head coaching stint at (Div. III) Dubuque (2002-03). Lusk has played or coached in 10 NCAA Tournaments.
 He returns five lettermen and six squad members from a 16-16 club that tied for third place in the Missouri Valley standings a year ago. His Bears were picked sixth in last year’s preseason MVC poll, but finished three spots higher, earning him MVC Coach of the Year.

The Series

  The series between the Bears and Sycamores dates back to the 1951-52 season with Missouri State holding a 37-21 all-time lead in the rivalry.
 MSU is 12-15 all-time in Terre Haute, including a 69-63 victory at the Hulman Center last season (Jan. 7, 2012). In that game, the Bears shot 54 percent and had just one turnover in the second half as Anthony Downing scored a team-high 17 points to help MSU overcome a 33-26 halftime deficict.
 In the most-recent meeting, MSU shot a season-low 31.3 percent and never led in a 59-46 setback on senior night at JQH Arena (Feb. 22, 2012). Downing led the Bears with 14 points, while Jarmar Gulley added 13. MSU’s four seniors combined for just 14 points as Missouri State suffered just its third senior-night loss of the Division I era.

The Opponent

   Greg Lansing (South Dakota, 1990) is 48-35 in his third season at Indiana State and overall.  He has one starter -- All-MVC second-teamer Jake Odum (6-4, Jr., G, Terre Haute, Ind.) -- back from an 18-15 club that was 8-10 (8th) in the league last year and earned a spot in the 2012 CIT.  
 This winter, Odum once again leads the Sycamores with 14.4 points and 6.8 rebounds per game this season along with team-bests 70 assists and 26 steals. Manny Arop (6-6, Jr., F, Edmonton, Alberta) had pitched in 13.0 points and 5.5 rebounds per game, while returner R.J. Mahurin (6-8, Jr., F, Rockville, Ind.)  is scoring 8.9 points per outing, along with Justin Gant (6-8, So., C, Terre Haute, Ind.). Gant ranks just behind Odum (14.4) in Valley scoring with 14.2 points per game.
 ISU is 5-1 at the Hulman Center this season, including an overtime loss to New Mexico, and is 2-0 at home in Valley play

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